Monday, 24 September 2007


I know some people hate Oasis and brand them as uncreative for their use of similar chord progressions in their songs, particularly on What's The Story Morning Glory but I jolly well like their music from that period. This is a timeless classic, one that everyone should hear, that has, as is often the way, been covered by everyone who has ever picked up a guitar in the last 10 years. The song was so popular that some nonce covered it within a year of its release (Mike Flowers stand up) and even just the other night I heard some bird singing a strange slow and stretched version of it on the wireless. (Go vote for a version inc. Mike F and Jackie O!)

Imagine my shock when itunes randomly selected Omillio Sparks's's's 'In The Ghetto' for my listening pleasures and it sounded just like Oasis went 'hood. This is a classic ghetto narrative a la 2Pac except that Sparks is spitting over a drum machine-less Wonderwall chord pattern driven track. Anyway, it's not a bad song, more interesting than amazing, but it's not a bad song.

Oasis - Wonderwall (remix) - it's got beats and cuts and that.

Also on a Wonderwall tip; did you ever hear the mashups with Green Day (Boullevard of Broken Dreams) and Travis (Writing to Reach You)? The only reason that I found out they existed is that after hearing a (much better than the ones on you tube) mashup of these tracks with what I think was 'The Message' by Melle Mel in Turkey I really wanted to hear it again. If anyone can find the Turkish one I'd like that!

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Slim Pickings

Slim Pickings Zshare File (10 tracks)

Love him or hate him he’s still the biggest thing that happened to music in the last 10 years. Notoriety has got him to where he is now; broken down but rich. I’m not going to analyse the highs and lows of Em’s life nor am I going to praise or diss him; enough people have done both of those already.

Everlast (aka White E Ford of House of Pain) has, as far as I can tell, never liked Eminem. On Dilated Peoples ‘Ear Drums Pop Remix’ Everlast said his piece about Slim:

“I’ll buck a 380 on ones that act shady/I’m original…You know you aint the
one that rep peckerwood status/I’ll bust that ass, keep your eyes on the
floor/What you come in here for/son, you know the law/let’s take you back to the
house…expose your panties for the world to see/you can’t rep it like me…you must
be crazy or just plain dumb/you’d catch a beat down where I come from”

Ooof. Eminem responded with the destroying 'I remember' and now White E returns on ‘Whitey’s Revenge’ with an entire track ‘dedicated’ to Slim on which he spits a whole bunch of wrathful grapes.

This guy seems to have turned from fan to hater as a result of his dealings with Em. Kyle Spratt allegedly robbed Kim’s phone to get Eminem’s number so he could play him his demo. I’m guessing this track isn’t the one he wanted to play but a reaction to the situation. Anyway, this track just sounds like Eminem; voice to production. Oh, and also check out the way that guy says ‘Yeah’ when Kyle asks him if he called the cops on him! 'Slim Sellout'

Eminem has caught the wrong end of the fundamentalist Christian stick but KJ-52, a Christian rapper (who does sound like Em), made the most Christ-like response possible in the form of these two tracks: ‘Dear Slim’ and ‘Dear Slim 2’. Based around the ‘Stan’ concept of a letter written to Eminem these tracks really display true Christian concern and love for someone who is need of a Saviour.

KJ echoes my thoughts:

“See I heard your first album, it’s called Infinite/I shook my head cos nowadays
you sounding different (way different)”
Check out this track from Infinite: ‘313’. This is classic Eminem in top form before his voice got more annoying and when he rhymed lyrically for hip hop and not for commercial success. Also check out ‘Any Man’ from Soundbombing 2, the Rawkus compilation, for some original Slim stylings. If you haven’t already heard and appreciated ‘The Slim Shady LP’ go buy it because the album is pure quality. Then don’t buy any more of his albums.

And for fun…

A Bob the Builder/Eminem mashup, an Eminem/Benny Hill mashup and an Eminem/M.O.P./Queen mashup (“We will, we will… rock you in the face, stab your brain with your nose bone”).

In case you couldn’t tell…I am a big fan of Em’s earlier music but not of his later stuff. I like his film and how he was portrayed in that, I warmed to him again after that. I feel sorry for how his life has turned out and I’m with KJ in pretty much every way that he details.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

What Come Around (Go Around, Kid) #3

The second option for the tenth track was N.O.R.E featuring Jadakiss and Kurupt ‘Throw ‘Em Under The Bus ’.

11. I chose to follow this with a remix of the Jadakiss track ‘Why?’ which features Common and Styles P.

12. Common works a lot with Kanye being that they are fellow Chicagoans so here’s ‘Southside’ from Commons ‘Finding Forever’ album.

13. Staying in ’07 and featuring on ‘Graduation’ (I think) is Kanye’s ‘Can’t Tell me Nothin’ remix featuring Young Jeezy.

14. Young Jeezy also worked with Kanye on ‘I Got Money ’ but more importantly this cut is a duo with fellow southerner T.I.

15. T.I. probably paid the price of a reasonable semi detached house for this cameo from Def Jam’s big man Jay-Z: ‘Watch What You Say’.

16. A nice surprise last year was the release of Lupe Fiasco’s first album proper; ‘Food & Liquor’. Guess who appeared here too on 'Pressure '? Yeah, Hova.

17. On the same album was a track produced by Mike Shinoda of poppy/rappy nu-metallers Linkin Park; ‘The Instrumental ’.

18.Reanimation was a remix album by Linkin Park, other people. One of those other people was The Alchemist who kindly remixed ‘Forgotten’ only for someone to rename it something ridiculous like ‘FRGT10’ (dya see what they did there?). This track also features Chali 2na.

19. Chali 2na worked alongside Supernatural, Akil, Marc 7 and Rakaa (of Dilated Peoples) but more importantly the UK’s own Joe Buhdah produced this soulful head nodder - 'Work it Out'.(Note the other Alchemist link here: Dilated Peoples production)

20.The 20th track? The final link in the chain? Joe Buhdah produced Rodney P’s ‘The Future’, the title track of his 2004 album.

There, it can be done in two different ways.

Thursday, 13 September 2007

What Come Around (Go Around, Kid) #2

At number 10 we branched and the first option for the tenth track was N.O.R.E and Kanye West with ‘Ima Get You’. In 10 tracks we’ll cross the pond to London, take the seacat to the land of frogs legs and snails and then hop right back to Rodney P.

Download this lot here all zipped up

11. Kanye West had a big hit with the Shirley Bassey sampling ‘Diamonds (from Sierra
Leone)’, a bigger hit for me is the remix with Jay-Z…”Yup, I got it it from here

12. On what was supposedly Jay-Z’s departing album a different producer was
drafted in for each track. One of these was the most reliable 9th Wonder who
produced the excellent ‘Threat’.

13. 9th Wonder got together with Murs to make the underground smash – Murs 3:16: The 9th Edition. Pick of the bunch is title track ‘3:16’.

14. Murs, who seems to tirelessly put out music, featured on the Z-Trip produced ode to cartoons and cereal ‘Breakfast Club’ with Supernatural.

15. Z-Trip gave us ‘Something Different’ by getting Chali 2na, Keno-1 and The Hermit to guest on the same track.

16. Chali 2na, who seems to have his fingers liberally dipped in a few pies at the moment, features alongside Roots Manuva on the lyrically awesome ‘Join the Dots’.

17. Roots Manuva took a trip to France to join Saian Supa Crew on their international version of ‘X-Raisons’, this genius manoeuvre (sorry) resulted in ‘Hey Yo My Man’.

18. Saian Supa Crew featured on a remix of Mark B & Blade’s ‘The Unknown’.

19. Mark B & Blade did alright for themselves and UK Hip Hop in general when they released the album ‘The Unknown’, guess who featured on ‘We Stay Rough’? Yup, Rodney P.

20. Finally, the 20th track, from Rodney’s ‘The Future’ full length is ‘I Believe’ featuring Olivia Chaney.

Whadya think ‘o that then? I reckon you could do that with most semi known artists, have a go yourself.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Any Beat Will Do...

Whodathunkit? Kid got a concept: get hipster tracks, rhyme over them, make mixtape. Job done. Good one. But is it? Yes!

So Ced emailed me with a link and a track list on some confident, self promotion ish. Being a sucker for free, new music I raced over to zshare to download his mixtape ‘Ced & The Technicolour Soundwave’; good name huh? His aim here is to take music that he loves and to combine it all together into one genre; he has hit the centre of the target.

Ced’s vocals are VERY reminiscent of Lupe Fiasco’s but in my opinion that’s a good thing, what’s even better is the fact that he’s about ten times more lyrically adept than Lupe. Tracks such as the ‘We are your Friends’ sampling ‘Friends don’t let Friends use Protection’ and the Stereolab sampling ‘Sunset Round up the Galaxy’ work particularly well; both providing a different vibe to the other. The introduction track may yet prompt me to listen to the million time posted by bloggers Interpol as Ced flips one of their tracks so well. Not only does Ced rob beats from the likes of Interpol, Justice vs. Simian, Mark Ronson, Kasabian and Daft Punk (amongst others), he produces his own tracks too. One that stands out is the classic Hip Hop James Brown sampling ‘My Cool is the Envy of the Iceman’; a nattily produced track about how cool Ced thinks he is.

This mixtape is free so whatever you do, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth, accept this present because he could be the future. You would do well to download this and not bother with the whole Kanye/50 scenario; I’m not sure Joseph would approve but he was a greater man than I.

What Come Around (Go Around, Kid) #1

*Fixed link to the .rar*

The ‘Collabo Connections’ series had me so deep in links to other artists that I was floundering and almost choking on it as I struggled to keep my head above surface. This is an evolved species of ‘Collabo Connections’, most of it’s DNA is the same but there are significant changes. The skeleton of this new creature is the same: the songs are linked by collaborations but the flesh is altogether different. The skin of ‘What Come Around…’ is a list of 20 tracks that link in sequence and end up with the same artist that the list began with. There are no strict rules; it can be cross-genre and it can link through artist, featuring artist or producer so long as there is a clear connection between each track in sequence. If you don’t get it you’ll pick it up as we go along:

Download the whole funky chunk here

To link in with ‘Collabo Connections 3’ I thought I’d start off with...

    1. Rodney P: I Don’t Care (Time to Party) featuring Mystro.

    2. Mystro did a track with Braintax entitled ‘On the Road’ which can be found on Low Life Record’s superb ‘Life Before 40’ compilation.

    3. Braintax, on his excellent ‘Birofunk’ LP, recorded ‘Riviera Hustle’ alongside Jehst.

    4. Jehst and Huddersfield’s favourite rapping son Asaviour got together to make ‘People Under The Weather’ to feature as the penultimate track on Jehst’s ‘Return of the Drifter’ set.

    5. Asaviour (along with Jehst on the production boards) created the totally banging ‘Money in the Bank’, the even more banging remix of which only features Yungun and Kyza doens't it?!

    6. On the excellent ‘The Essance’ album Yungun and Lewis Parker collaborated to bring us ‘The Big Idea’.

    7. Lewis Parker worked with Klashnekoff twice on ‘It’s all Happening Now’, the better of the two tracks being the title track ‘It’s all Happening

    8. Klashnekoff blagged (and deservedly so) a partnership with the legendary Kool G Rap and produced the rugged ‘Terrorise The City’ (also featuring Kyza).

    9. Kool G Rap hooked up with Capone ‘n’ Norega on the 'Rawkus Soundbombing Volume 3' for the nod inducing, vocoder utilising affair that is ‘My Life’.

This is where the list branches, enabling me to show you two different ways to complete this circular.

10. Norega is also known as N.O.R.E and under this guise we have ‘Ima Get You’ featuring the hype magnet, Kanye West.


10. N.O.R.E, with his bullying mates Jadakiss and Kurupt, made the scarily but hilariously titled and chorused track ‘Throw ‘Em Under The Bus’.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

In the studio with 10Shott

Winding country lanes. Surrounding fields recovering from recent downpours. Birds singing sweet refrains. A village hall with a crunchy gravel drive. A quaint old dwelling and coach house. A muffled but pounding bassline. This is the juxtaposition of Aynho, Oxfordshire and Wolverhampton's finest purveyor of original Hip Hop.

Inside the converted building, the beat was no longer muffled and the vocals were loud and clear. Children's games, remnants of snacks, stacks of amps and racks of guitars welcomed us to the 'Creative Recording' studio. The dual glass doors separating the main recording space and the control room opened; 10Shott had just finished in the booth. After friendly greetings we got down to business.

10Shott, so called because of his ability on the Basketball court, was 8 when he penned his first rhymes, he can still recite them now. He has made good use of the last 16 years; his allegiance with Tricksta's Wolftown Records has seen him releasing material on the regular. His most notable release as one half of 'Vicious Circle' (alongside Size8) was the album 'Bagged Out' (it reached number 29 in a recent rundown of the top UK Hip Hop albums in Hip Hop connection). "I did notice that other big albums were behind it, so it did make me feel good, but I don't want people to keep returning to that." 10Shott is proud of his achievement but was keen to point out that those tracks don't represent him now, his mum hated all of them; something he wants to change with the album he is currently recording.

If you are a regular here you will know that 10Shott has recently signed to Zion Records and is now recording a new album. 10Shott's time in this studio has been "amazing" although it hasn't been easy. When we met he had been there everyday for 6 weeks from 9am to 6pm and had completed 12 out of 15/16 tracks for the album. Watching him at work makes it clear that he strives for perfection; his self-discipline means that he will produce the best possible results. He re-recorded one verse for a track (possibly called 'Business' judging by the lyrics and subject matter and featuring Big Wayne, Size8 and Reload) so many times that we walked away rapping it ourselves.

The production credits for the new album entitled 'A Di Real' are split equally between 10shott and'Creative Production' although 10Shott made all the beats himself. 10Shotts manager was keen to play us some tracks; he assured us that he'd heard nothing like it before and that his engineers had never had a project so good on the boards. 'Memory Blank' is a huge, banging track about writers block with an immense hook. 'Tin Soldiers' is cinematic and emotional; 10shott's lyrics brought me into the world of a soldier in Iraq… and left me there, almost unable to speak. 10Shott took over at this point and played me 'Twin Brother', a track about, you guessed it, his twin brother (Conman) who is to have the third verse on it. His Mum, a backing singer for Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant also features.

The reason 10shott caught my ear in the first place was his unique hushed flow and his ability to rap about seemingly anything. The new tracks added to this refreshing feeling; he was covering new ground and new concepts. When asked the question "Are there any areas that you wouldn't touch on?" the answer was a definite "No". 10Shott explained "there's no boundary I wouldn't touch, but I don't want to offend people, I wanna keep it clean".

According to 10Shott his audience is "everyone" and I can well believe it, his music is appealing, his scope means there will be something for "everyone". "Everyone" does not just include everyone in his local area, he's "Done the ghetto celeb thing" and is not interested in that any more. It's also definitely not just everyone in the UK; it's everyone in the world. 10Shott claims "I've had a positive reception in a lot of Europe and Japan" and a trip to Amsterdam was on the cards to arrange distribution to Scandinavia. Once the album is finished they're hitting up America – 10Shott and his management consider it essential to break the US. He could well succeed, the UK artists who get attention in the US are the ones with something special, something different, something unique (see Sway, Wiley, Dizzee and Lady Sov) and 10Shott certainly possesses the skills and talent to show our friends across the pond how it is done.

His take on the 'Hip Hop is Dead' debate reflects his determination and confidence: "Hip Hop needs a kiss of life. 10shott is gonna give it the kiss of life!" How does he intend to do this? " I just wanna be me, I just wanna be 10Shott". He doesn't seem to care how people label him and his music; he's a rapper, songwriter, a producer but overall he's an artist. He forecasts radio play and the resulting haters branding him as pop, but as he quite rightly says "something isn't just pop because it's popular". 10Shott knows that if those same people heard that same track on the streets they'd think it was sick. 10Shott is keeping it as real as it gets; his music is interesting, entertaining, original and emotional and all power to him if he manages to use to get fame and fortune - he deserves it.

Go ahead and support him, check for the release of 'Dis A Di Real', I'll be reviewing it for sure. Download what you can from mixtapes, in his words: "When it comes to mixtapes there's no question, [the internet and mp3 downloads] are great. But for selling records it can't do any good. At the moment, go ahead, download my stuff, but for the big labels, it can't do any good for selling."

Check Hip Hop Connection this month for another praise singing article (if you don't trust me) about the man of the moment. Watch this space for more exciting news possibly including a sneaky peek inside the video shoot for 'Memory Blank'.

Monday, 3 September 2007

Back in the Day 2 - Trouble Funk - Pump Me Up

Are Trouble Funk Hip Hop? Hard to tell. Is this track anything to do with Hip Hop? A resounding yes. It has a rap in it. Apparently Trouble Funk were a Go-Go/Funk band, if you want to find out a little bit more about that then slide on over to Wikipedia.

More about the track: It's very percussive (that's the Go-Go influence), it's funky in a typical 70's/early 80's funk/disco way, it has raps very much in the style of Hip Hop circa 1979-1985 and it has one of the most energising and easily recognised choruses ever.

The 'Pump Me Up' sample is a much scratched bit of vinyl, two examples being 'Fight the Power' by Public Enemy and 'Funky Piano' by EPMD. Unlike many rap tracks at the time the music for this was original; written by the band themselves and not sampled or replayed.

Just a note of interest (maybe, if you're a goon like me): I do have a Trouble Funk LP called 'Trouble over Here' which features Kurtis Blow and funky legend Bootsy Collins of Funkadelic and Parliament fame (amongst others).

Trouble Funk - Pump Me Up (zshare)
Major Force - Pump Me Up (zshare)
Mark Seven - Pump Me Up (zshare)

E is for...Eclectic Alphabet

Just go hit up my (best) man T over at Eclectic Hermit and look at his genius alphabetised post! It's sure to be eclectic and it may turn you into a hermit as you listen to 26 varied tracks. It's such a banger of an idea that I am finding it hard not to entertain the thought of straight up hijacking it and doing one for my own Hip Hopping self.

Anyway get over there for some goodness... A to Z.

Stay alert for some postage from yours falsely. Up and coming posts to include some tunes about cereal, an old school track and other certified bangers.