25 September 2014


In my last post I gave uall a list of end of the year albums slated to drop before we hit 2015. My hope is that these albums end the year off right for hip hop. A few emcees have already dropped some singles to hold us down until the full projects are released. And so far I am liking what I am hearing, at least from the select emcees I'm checking for. 

Rapsody's Beauty and the Beast EP is set to drop on October 7th and looks to place itself in another winner for Rapsody's catalog as well as for hip hop as a whole. This album will be her follow up project to her 2013 mixtape, She Got Game. Her second single, DRAMA, is a Khrysis produced super nova track. Raps goes Super Saiyan on the energetic instrumental. I don't even know what else to say, just peep the track below. 

Also threw in a freestyle from the NC beast over ScHoolboy Q's Hoover Street track.

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VIDEO: PRhyme trailer

In one of our many email treads, a BITM hip hop fiend made a comment that this summer was a big meh. Especially in comparison to last year. There were some solid projects we've reviewed, but there were many that did not live up to the expectations we had. My response to this comment was that maybe we are heading into a hot fall/winter. September will be but a memory real soon, but we still have an Alchemist joint, a Joey Bada$$ debut LP, and Saigon's third installment of his Greatest Story Never Told series to look forward to. October will gives us the 5 Tape recipient Rapsody, Game, T.I., Adlib, Black Milk, and a Killer Mike & El-P sequel album. And the year will end with projects from Raekwon, Big K.R.I.T., Eminem, and Action Bronson. Of course dates can change. But if we get a fraction of what we hope are 4 Tape albums, we will def end the year off right.

Royce Da 5'9" hopes to join this list with a DJ Premier coop album. At this time we do not have a release date for PRhyme, but it is slated to drop this year. The duo enlisted big name features including: Killer Mike, Jay Electronica, Common, Ab-Soul, ScHoolboy Q, Slaughterhouse, Mac Miller and Dwele.

Peep the trailer below. Are uall looking forward to PRhyme or any other album on this list?

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23 September 2014

SINGLE: Kendrick Lamar - i

If for some reason you are following K.Dot's barren instagram page, you may have seen this coming, but most of us were caught off guard with this one. Kendrick has been mighty quiet most of 2014. Understandably so, as Top Dawg's strategic moves this past year have been focused on giving the rest of TDE some shine. It may be safe to say that these last few months this year will belong to Kendrick Lamar. His new single "i" samples "That Lady" from the Isley Brothers and is far more lighthearted than what we are used to from him. It's a welcome departure from his normal formula, as it looks like he is slowly beginning to settle into his identity as a well-rounded artist. Peep the track below and let us know what you think!

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09 September 2014

VIDEO: Childish Gambino freestyle

Yes, another one. And the reason you should listen/watch this one is because the man is so damn talented. Some may argue that his freestyles aren't pure (read: semi written) but really, who cares? His style, flow, delivery, and cadence is uncanny. Who in this current generation of emcees is touching Gambino?

What I like even more than the flow itself is watching him spit, real talk. I see the passion in his bars. Some cats spit for a reaction. Donald Glover spits for his heart. I really wish this guy was less slept on. Peep and argue your thoughts in the comments...

VIDEO: Wale - The Album About Nothing trailer

Wale has been bumping out of car trunks through Georgetown since the mid 00s. But his commercial notoriety outside of the DMV hit a drastic incline when he signed with MMG three years ago. His Interscope debut, Attention Deficit, received positive reviews but only peaked on the Billboard charts at 21. While his MMG counterparts, Ambition and The Gifted, peaked much higher, at 2 and 1 respectively. Wale's fourth studio album, The Album About Nothing, will hopefully drop before the end of the year. And while he has mastered the "club banger" formula, he is also able to craft much more complex tracks. He can jump into the rapper mentality and create a successful radio single, but he can also channel his inner emcee and give us thought provoking bars. Wale has been mostly consistent with his LPs and has also garnered the same critiques from his mixtapes.

His junior MMG album (does that work? after his sophomore album..junior album....?) promises to tap into his successful mixtapes, The Mixtape About Nothing and More About Nothing. The versatility of those mixtapes are classic examples of Wale's lyrical range. Songs like The Kramer discuss racial tensions created by the "n-word". Wale's stirring lyrics follow a sound bit of Michael Richards (Cosmo Kramer) doing stand up and losing it when a black audience member "heckles" him. And songs like The Posse Cut give us the classic hood/club track delivered with sharp bars and head bobbing instrumentals. Wale even gives us a spoken word style track with The Ambitious Girl.

The DC/PG native is regarded as a strong lyricist from most of his peers and critics. His clever metaphors and beat selections ensure that he puts together solid tracks on a regular basis. His Go Go influences come through in not just his instrumentals but in his cadence and especially in his hooks. Wale reps the DMV regularly and calls upon his upbringing to develop his lyrics. Wale is also a diehard Seinfeld fan, stating that he has seen every single episode. This admiration comes across in the aforementioned mixtapes where he samples many classic Seinfeld episodes. Going by the album title, The Album About Nothing, I hope that Wale gives us the sharp lyrics and a strong thematic collection that we all know he can create.

Peep trailer for The Album About Nothing below:

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05 September 2014

REVIEW: Jeezy - Seen It All: The Autobiography

Is it me or has the hip hop trap rapper assembly line been working double time lately? It seems that that every other young radio rapper is molded from the drugs/guns/money formula. Not to say that if that's all you rap about, you can't be a legitimate emcee. But since his Def Jam debut in 05, not many can say they've done it better than Jeezy. The platinum certified ATL emcee has shown us that you can stay in your trap lane and remain relevant after all these years. Jeezy isn't going to construct complex metaphors or rearrange rhyme patterns that'll blow your mind. Instead Jeezy recognizes this and chooses to focus on his strength, this authenticity.

With Seen It All the Snowman is peeling off another layer from his street life and is bringing us closer into his world. In a Complex interview Jeezy said that with this album, "the statute of limitations is over with." Basically his other albums couldn't give us the detail that Seen It All does due to the legal consequences it would've had. His second single (and titular track), Seen It All, is by far the best track on the album. Not only did Jeezy drop a classic trap verse, but he also inspired Jay Z to deliver one of his best d-boy bars in recent memory. Hova's emotional verse paints the clearest narrative of his boy (and cousin) Emory Jones' incarceration in 00. And I still stand by my Me Ok music video post, all we want now is the music video to accompany the single, Seen It All.

When I say that Jeezy's strength isn't his lyricism, I don't mean that as a knock. I (along with most 90s hip hop heads) view Tupac as one of the best to ever do it, but most might not necessarily say Pac is the most lyrical. I am not saying Jeezy is Pac, but both write raps that are not as metaphor heavy as others. Instead they let strong emotions come across in their stripped down narratives. And while all of his albums are trap/street themed, he is able to continue to immerse the listener with his cinematic tales. "I'm the realest [dude] in this," this line is the best summation of what Jeezy represents. There is no doubt that line for line, we always get 100% genuine lyrics and first hand accounts. His authenticity, passion and respect from his peers are the driving forces behind the Jeezy experience. While a few tracks fall below expectations, you can be sure that this trap star delivers hood sagas that will satisfy old and new fans.

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03 September 2014

VIDEO: Time Is Illmatic trailer

Since Nas dropped his 20 year anniversary re-release of Illmatic (Illmatic XX) in April, the god emcee has been making his rounds in the entertainment circuits. Even blessing the stage at Coachella with a performance of his entire classic album. In October Nasty is gearing to go on a month long tour, the Time Is Illmatic tour, where he will again play all the tracks from his debut album (with a few surprises and extras I'm sure). In addition Nasir Jones will be screening the Time Is Illmatic documentary on a few stops. While Mr.Jones was aware of the documentary from it's earlier stages, he did not jump on board until he was shown a rough presentation. Nas was impressed with the direction of One9 and writing of Erik Parker. Robert DeNiro's Tribeca Productions is taking on the productions duties for the documentary. The documentary will include Nas' perspective on growing up in the Queen's Bridge project and the upbringing that made him the man he is today. It will also include interviews with Illmatic's producers and emcees/artists who were influenced by the album.

Peep trailer below.

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