Hip-Hop

Lese Majesty

Artist: 
Shabazz Palaces
Label: 
Sub Pop

Shabazz Palaces' debut release, Black Up, is one of my personal favorite hip-hop albums of all time so it'd be an understatement to say I was excited for their follow-up, Lese Majesty, released this past July. While I don't think it's necessarily a better album than the incredibly cohesive Black Up, Lese Majesty has higher highs and lower lows, making for a different experience than what Shabazz have delivered in the past.

Sounds Like: 
Digable Planets
Sounds Like: 
Flying Lotus
Name: 
Jake Calegari
Date Reviewed: 
09/16/2014

There is Only Now [Clean]

Artist: 
Souls of Mischief
Label: 
Jive Records

For me, Souls of Mischief are one of the main groups that defined Bay Area/Oakland hip hop. I will admit that I haven't been up to date with their current releases, so I was stoked to see their latest release come through the station. I had no expectations going into this album because I didn't want to assume it would sound like their 90s music, but man this is IT. I feel like they are still able to carry their signature 90s bay area sound without being outdated. They bring fresh ideaology to their lyrics, natural flows, fresh samples and smooooooooooooooth as hell beats.

Sounds Like: 
THE BAY AREAAAAAAA $$$$$
Name: 
Parisa Eshrati
Date Reviewed: 
09/16/2014

"Blockbuster Night Part 1" - Single

Artist: 
Run The Jewels
Label: 
Mass Appeal

Run The Jewels is a hip-hop superduo comprised of emcees Killer Mike and El-P, both of whom have been critically renowned starting in the early 2000s and each having a fairly prolific output into the present day. This newest track, "Blockbuster Night Part 1," comes from their upcoming second album Run The Jewels 2, set to release this October. While I was only mildly interested in their first self-titled release, this track has definitely gotten me interested in what to expect on this upcoming LP.

Sounds Like: 
Killer Mike
Sounds Like: 
El-P
Name: 
Jake Calegari
Date Reviewed: 
09/15/2014

Hoodie Weather feat. Prodigy

Artist: 
Your Old Droog
Label: 
N/A

Your Old Droog was a mystery rapper who was thought to be Nas for a time, before that myth was dispelled. However, Your Old Droog has a great style that is reminiscent of NY hip hop acts from the 90s, and he's no slouch when it comes to lyrics either. Hoodie Weather is a relaxed track from the MC, with a nice feature from Prodigy of Mobb Deep fame. The MC looks reminisces on his groundbreaking summer and looks forward to the fall, and the "hoodie weather" when his debut LP could possibly drop.

Sounds Like: 
Nas
Name: 
André Pettman
Date Reviewed: 
09/15/2014

CLPPNG

Artist: 
clipping
Label: 
Sub Pop

CLPPNG is the sophomore effort from West Coast hip hop group clipping, and it's a quite impressive follow-up to their debut album, midcity. This album will grab you with its blistering fast rhyme patterns and its unique beats (one track features an alarm clock as the foundation for the beat...it was not my favorite to say the least). Clipping seems to aim to mock the subject matter of much of mainstream rap: money, cars, bitches, etc. on tracks such as Work Work and Tonight.

Sounds Like: 
Ratking
Sounds Like: 
B L A C K I E
Name: 
André Pettman
Date Reviewed: 
09/15/2014

R.I.P. Blackedout

Artist: 
Blackedout
Label: 
none

So I picked up this album at the KAMP meeting because I haven't listened to anything in the hip hop department in a while now. The next morning, I forgot my iPod, so I popped the CD into my car and was super pleased to hear some nice nature sounds. That was track 1. I was so surprised -- this album was EXACTLY what I wanted to hear and I had no idea what I wanted to hear until I listened to it, and then knew it was this. New York producer Blackedout has made something really, really, really pretty here on his debut album.

Sounds Like: 
Clams Casino
Name: 
Melanie Trecha
Date Reviewed: 
09/13/2014

Perfect Hair

Artist: 
Busdriver
Label: 
Big Dada

Busdriver's album Perfect Hair brings me back to the old days of Tech N9ne. Not only does Busdriver's overall sound resemble that of Tech N9ne, but also the content of his raps. I've placed this album under the category of horrorcore, which refers to horror-themed lyrical content and imagery. However, this album is on the mild side of the horrorcore spectrum. The album features Danny Brown and Aesop Rock. In the track "Ego Death", Danny Brown calls himself the Marilyn Manson of rap. If you're into Tech N9ne you'll definitely be into Busdriver.

Sounds Like: 
Tech N9ne
Sounds Like: 
Schoolboy Q
Name: 
McKenzie Storey
Date Reviewed: 
09/09/2014

Never Catch Me [feat. Kendrick Lamar] [Single]

Artist: 
Flying Lotus
Label: 
Warp Records

Never Catch Me is the first single of off Flying Lotus' forthcoming album entitled You're Dead, and this is quite the primer to his latest project. Featuring Kendrick Lamar rhyming over a spastic beat with crazy synths and cymbals, he flows perfectly with the beat, matching the production with his own frenetic rhyme patterns. If you liked the song Rigamortus off of Lamar's project, Section. 80, then you'll love this track. FlyLo is going in a new direction with more vocal features on his album, and if this single is any indication, he's on to a winner. 

Sounds Like: 
Thundercat
Name: 
André Pettman
Date Reviewed: 
09/08/2014

No Type

Artist: 
Rae Sremmurd
Label: 
Interscope

Rae Sremmurd is a duo from Mississippi who have blown up thanks to their song "No Flex Zone" which Nicki Minaj and Pusha T have both jumped on for remixes. Riding that wave, they have released this new cut, and it's damn catchy. Backed by a Mike Will Made It beat, "No Type" doesn't have any bars that'll knock you off your feet, but Rae Sremmurd inject enough personality to make this song a worthy follow-up to "No Flex Zone." 

Sounds Like: 
Bobby Shmurda
Sounds Like: 
K Camp
Name: 
André Pettman
Date Reviewed: 
09/02/2014

About the Money feat. Young Thug

Artist: 
T.I.
Label: 
Columbia Records

Self-proclaimed King of the South, T.I. has been in the game for a long time, but it's been a minute since he's put out a major hit. While About the Money hasn't hit #1 or even the top 10, it's catchy as hell, and doesn't feature any of the gimmicks that have vaulted many mediocre songs to the top of the charts. This song also serves to be the coming out party for Young Thug to a mainstream audience, as he injects his colorful personality on to the track, balancing perfectly with T.I's delivery. It's also nice to see T.I.

Sounds Like: 
Jeezy
Name: 
André Pettman
Date Reviewed: 
09/02/2014