Monday, 31 August 2009

Jay-Z Advert Recreates Album Covers (video)


Thursday, 27 August 2009

'Further Into The Wood' - Tom Bombadeal (album review)

Fresh from Tea Sea Records is Tom Bombadeal’s follow up to 2007's 'Songs From The Wood'. ‘Further Into The Woods’ is a far as a magical mythical character from middle earth gets to releasing a mixtape. It’s a prequel to Bombadeal’s main album (which is as yet untitled) which will tell a story in sequence and will feature some familiar characters from ‘Songs From The Wood’ and ‘Further Into The Woods’.

At 35 tracks, yet only 50 minutes long, this is like a collection of snapshots giving insights into the world of Tom Bombadeal. What strikes me is that, despite this being set in an imaginary world, this album really captures many aspects of modern day life – and it makes me glad to be alive.

As you saunter through The Shire with Tom you meet the Sun, the Moon, trees, a witchdoctor, a troll and many more characters some voiced by rappers Elemental, 777, Dizraeli and Teej. Tom’s production is beautifully folksy making this as un-Hip Hop as Hip Hop gets – it’s extremely refreshing and in the short time I’ve owned this album I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve listened to it.

‘Further Into The Woods’ is out now on Tea Sea Records and I can’t urge you enough to go pick this up from them or Suspect Packages. But be warned, if you do buy it; be ready to be stripped of all your rap inhibitions. Play this one for yer kids.

'No Matter'/'Sweet and Sour' - Knew Jeru'slum & Miss Tofelees (free downloads)

Miss Tofelees + Johnny Alpha + Watson G =

Here are two new tracks from the combination of peeps in the above equation.

The first track is 'No Matter' by Knew Jeru'slum, so that's Johnny Alpha and Watson G on spits with nice production from Miss Tofelees. 'No Matter' is all about sticking at things despite trials and tribulations - something serious for you. This track is taken off their forthcoming LP 'Jerus and Gentiles' which will be released on Don't Talk To Strangers.

The second track's not so serious. This one is 'Sweet and Sour' by Johnny Alpha, featuring Watson G and produced by Miss Tofelees. If you're into Chinese food, or just food in general, get this track playing whilst you cook up a storm (or get on the phone to your local takeaway). 'Sweet And Sour' will feature on the Miss Tofelees album 'Mist Over Leeds' which will be out late 2009/early 2010.

'Soldier' ft. Wretch 32, Kyza & Orifice Vulgatron - DJ Vadim

Check out this remix of DJ Vadim's 'Soldier' (the original is on his 'You Can't Lurn Imaginashun' LP). This remix features big in the game MCs Wretch 32, Kyza and Orifice Vulgatron of Foreign Beggars. The original was a banger and so's this UK version. Remember, this is the track that The Last Skeptik remixed which you can download for free here.


Shlomo Commissioned to Write Classical Work

Big up to Shlomo and his Beatbox Orchestra (especially Homecut/Testament on the end there) for being commissioned by the Southbank Centre to write a new classical work entitled 'Concerto for Beatboxer and Orchestra'. Here are Shlomo's own words from his own blog:

"Anna Meredith (who you might have seen recently on TV teaching Goldie how to write orchestral music) is one of the UK’s hottest up and coming composers - she has written two BBC Proms and last year was commissioned for the Last Night of the Proms.

Our new piece will be performed on February 19th and 20th 2010 at the Queen Elizabeth Hall with a specially created 20-piece orchestra, plus the Vocal Orchestra (my 8-piece beatbox choir) embedded within the ensemble.

This will be a challenging modern classical work recognising the human voicebox as a musical instrument in its own right, and also a chance to create the first full notation for beatboxers.

I’ll be blogging and tweeting throughout the whole process, and all the latest info, photo, video, blog posts and links to buy tickets can be found on the Concerto’s project page."

Go here for more info.

'How To Cut & Paste: The 30s Edition' - DJ Yoda (review)

I treated myself to DJ Yoda’s latest mixtape in the ‘How To Cut & Paste’ series: ‘The 30s Edition’ and now here I am, revving up to tell you all about it.

First off, ‘The 30s Edition’ is more bearable than ‘The 80s Edition’ (which was still dope) and it’s a real light listen, especially if you want to have a bit a laugh at the sort of jaunty music they used to make. Yoda makes for additional comedy as he scratches samples and drops ridiculous beats over the original tracks.

Stand-out selections are ‘Cheesecake’ by Louis Armstrong (pure hilarity) and Moondog’s ‘Lament 1, Bird’s Lament’ (the original sample from Mr Scruff’s ‘Get a Move On’). Speaking of sample sources, Thelonious Monk’s ‘Black and Tan Fantasy’ (of Wu-Tang Clan's ‘Shame On A Nigga’) fame also crops up. You’ll also enjoy the one-two combo of Fats Waller’s ‘Reefer Song’ and Cab Calloway’s ‘Reefer Man’ for the possibly unintentional drug references.

DJ Yoda never fails to entertain, he also makes me want to buy all these records for myself. ‘How To Cut & Paste: The 30s Edition’ is out now and available on itunes and on CD.

'Last Breath' - The Guvnor (free download)

If you like eclectic beats then you couldn't go far wrong today by downloading The Guvnor's latest (and last) EP 'Last Breath'.

Whether you like classic Metal ('Money & Mates'), choirs singing over scratched and broken beats ('Krush Style' - a rework of The Cinematic Orchestra's 'Night of the Iguana'), foreign Jazz-Rap ('Toxic Psychosis is not Enlightenment') or downtempo Hip Hop Soul ('Filsofia Musical') you should open up your leftfield and enter into The Guvnor's world of Hip Hop psyhcadelia by downloading 'Last Breath' for free:


'On The Radar Vol. 4' Artist Highlight: Leady

Having featured on 'On The Radar Volume 4' with his track 'Travelling Man' it was time that Leady got the Certified Banger interview treatment. See what he has to say for himself:

Certified Banger: Can you tell us your necessary background details so we can build on basics for the rest of the interview?

Leady: My name is Leady and I have featured on Mixtapes such as UK Runnings, HHB Radio Mixtapes, Certified Banger 'On The Radar', I have worked with the likes of Filthy Rich, JabbaThaKut, Beit Nun, Baron Samedi, Joe Gutta, Lunar C, WydeBoi, EXP, and plenty more.

CB: What are your current or upcoming projects?

L: Currently I'm working on my solo project 'Toxic Nonsense' as well starting possible joint projects with the likes of Manchester based Producer X-FIRE or Huddersfield producer Kegzi. Obviously I have a track featuring on the current Certified Banger 'On The Radar Vol.4'. Also I will be featuring on a project that will be released by E.L.D.E.R.S, a coalition of MCs from the states, Canada and the UK put together for working together, and promoting each other as well, so with that said, keep eyes open for the debut from E.L.D.E.R.S - 'The Black List'.

  • Click here to read the rest of the interview

  • Also check out:
    www.myspace.com/mrleady
    www.reverbnation.com/leady
    www.youtube.com/leady
    www.youtube.com/Illuminatielders
    www.myspace.com/illuminatielders

    Wednesday, 26 August 2009

    Free New Orphans of Cush Tracks

    Couple of free tracks for all you salivating Cushites out there: M9 just dropped these on his blog to whet your appetites for Orphans of Cush (pictured left in a very 90s rap group pose - think Onyx or Naughty By Nature).

    'Rain Blood' and 'Reflections' can be yours - they're just a click or two away so do the download thing and get some of that hardcore British realness.

    'White Noize', the group's first LP, will be out on October 5th. You can expect every track to tackle "particular issues" and the album as a whole "aims at raising awareness of what is really happening with our youth, particularly black youth as statistics show that they are the most affected in an environment which is not only void of support but almost void of any spiritual, moral guidance." - deep stuff as usual.

    Tuesday, 25 August 2009

    ** New Date** The Line Up #1: Jehst, Micall Parknsun, Jack Flash, Kidkanevil Live in Leeds!

    A few changes to the details here: Due to a few teething problems the first night will now be 30th October. The line up at The Line Up might change to Sonny Jim, Extra-curricular with Jack Flash, No Change and Defenders of Style.

    Forget the usual "if you're in the area" thing - even if you're not get there and get the first train in the morning home. Jehst, Micall Parknsun, Jack Flash with Extra Curricular and Kidkanevil? Be there. 30th October. Leeds. The Vault, 123 The Headrow. Brrrrrap!

    Organix #4: Punchlines

    Organix again. This time Dweller, Day Two, Jay Madden (of SK Crew/Tactical Thinking, check their single which is out this week), Scrabble, Mal, Sherbet, Gadget, Baron, Pez and 777. Check out www.myspace.com/organixhiphop for more! Here is the vid of Wizard and Scizzahs deciding on the winners:


    'The Need To Be Heard' - Karl Hinds (album review)

    It’s been 5 years since he dropped his last album but Karl Hinds is back with ‘The Need To Be Heard’. If you’re a fan of tracks like ‘Don Gramma’ and ‘You Don Know’ then don’t get too excited about this release – there is nothing of that classic calibre here. ‘Sarcasm’ is the closest Karl gets to his previous highs – definitely the album’s biggest track. Last track ‘Conspire to Deceive’ is also pretty hot and ‘Over 3 Years’ could have the potential to appeal to fans of the new wave of British urban music.

    The rest of the LP, unfortunately, falls flat. It’s not that Hinds can’t spit – he can, but the tracks just don’t grab the listener and a lot of the production seems kinda out of tune. This is a collection of pretty competently made Hip Hop (and I hate to be the one who says this) but musically and conceptually it just does not stand up in the current scene.

    ‘The Need To Be Heard’ will be about in September or October on Ill Flava Records so you can make your own judgments on this CD then.

    'We Ain't Rich Yet' - Mr. Witts (album review)

    I love it when an unknown artist gets in touch and then sends a really great looking product. Obviously I love it even more if the CD inside the artwork sounds good too. Mr. Witts did just that.

    Mr. Witts is from Stroud (I’ve just been on Google maps, it’s in Gloucester between Birmingham and Bristol) so he’s got the relevant regional accent – all good when you’re trying to stand out from the crowd. He does his own production and the 11 tracks on ‘We Ain’t Rich Yet’ are all a one man job – apart from the additional sung female vocals by Aimee Bea Ballinger.

    Over what sound like non-sampled productions with a healthy amount of bottom end Mr. Witts raps seriously about the realities of life. For a debut DIY release this is a fine attempt - a little more originality in concept and subject matter to match the more inventive beats wouldn’t go amiss next time but this is a solid release no less.

    ‘We Ain’t Rich Yet’ is available from Mr. Witts himself by emailing him at bdot@live.co.uk.

    Best UK Hip Hop Video Ever - Neurosonics Audiomedical Labs Inc.

    Crikey! Have I just witnessed the best UK Hip Hop video ever? I think so! Scratch Perverts, Shlomo, Foreign Beggars, Dr. Syntax and Stig of the Dump all feature on this groundbreaking short - more like this please!


    'It's So Different Here' - Tom Caruana (album review)

    Don your lifejacket, hoist the mainsail – and then slip Tom Caruana’s latest LP ‘It’s So Different Here’ into your yacht’s boombox. Embark on a voyage to somewhere truly unlike the usual realms of UK Hip Hop.

    Caruana’s newest album is a pastiche of amusing snippets, bits and bobs and rapping over happy time beats – TC certainly keeps things interesting. With less than half the tracks resembling traditional rap songs it’s fun for the whole family.

    The title track sees Tom rapping about fishing over a sample previously heard on a Beatnuts track, single ‘Someone Else’ speaks volumes of truth about the personalities we all choose and ‘Wonderlust’ featuring Vecks is straight up head bob Hip Hop. Elemental features on ‘Blind Bob’s Vengeance’ which is a breakneck speed pirate themed track – top stuff.

    For lots of laughs head over to Tea Sea Records and order yourself a copy of ‘It’s So Different Here’ – don’t take your bloodclart selves so seriously UK Hip Hop heads. This LP is the follow up to 'Welcome Aboard' (available free from Buda Beats or on CD from Disorda at Suspect Packages) and if you really get into the mood of things Tom's holding a colouring-in competition so people can colour in the front and back cover and send them in to me, the best one will get printed as a limited edition reissue - the page to download the artwork is www.teasearecords.net/competitions.

    'Join.The.Dots' - The Nextmen (album review)

    Ever since The Nextmen created my most favourite DJ mix ever (on Radio 1) and released tracks with the likes of Ty and Rodney P I’ve checked for their movements. Their latest album ‘Join.The.Dots’ is out now and I thought I’d share my thoughts.

    First off, and overall, it’s a great album and one worth your moolah. Secondly, if you didn’t like the lead single ‘The Lion’s Den’ featuring Ms. Dynamite, don’t let that put you off – it’s definitely my least favourite track on the album.

    The title track is an enticing instrumental with enough variation to keep a beats and breaks fan happy. ‘Round of Applause’ is fully vocalled up by long time collaborator Dynamite MC as he chats breezily about a good-looking lady. The quality of the vocal contributions on the LP is second to none – the cutesy voiced Betty Steeles provides a chilled and less mainstream alternative to Lily Allen on ‘Whisper Up’ and Kivanc puts down some sung melodies on ‘Love Someone’ – both of these tracks rock a great reggae vibe. Singer Jonny Tarr, ragga rapper Jimmy Screech and songstress Lindsay West also feature on excellent and differing tracks covering Hip Hop Soul, Dancehall and Big Beat Trip Hop productions respectively.

    ‘Stay at Home’ doesn’t sit with the rest of the album with it’s dancy, clubby sound although ‘Red Setter’, another instrumental vaguely reminiscent of the 90s 2 Step garage craze, is a nice brief excursion.

    The Nextmen make music as close to easy listening as Hip Hop gets – ‘Join.The.Dots’ is not a strenuous listen and it’s one you can pop on with your non-Hip Hop mates – even they’ll appreciate it. It’s out now on Universal and can be bought just about everywhere.

    Monday, 24 August 2009

    'On The Radar Vol. 4' Track Highlight: 'Dreamcatchers' ft. JND - Knew Jeru'slum

    Name: Knew Jeru'slum - Watson G, Jonny Alpha & Belinda Hards
    Age: – Collectively 79 years old, mostly in favour of Jonny Alpha, don’t be fooled by his Oil of Olay looks.

    From: Hudds and Halifax

    Track on ‘On The Radar’: ‘Dreamcatchers’ ft. JND

    Tell us the story behind the track: The track’s produced by Eliphino (9 Livez), and features one of our extended fam, JND. He's dope and always comes with some freshness, so we asked him to jump on this as we’d been talkin collabos for a minute. I watched a film with the same title, and thought it’d be good just to write to a title, get three different perspectives on the word. We took too long from start to finish with gaps inbetween movements on it - a year must be a record!

    Record label: Don’t Talk to Strangers fam.

    Who you roll with: The main fam are Bane, Mury Poppinz (No Pretense) Chief Wigz, Optics, Spida Lee, Brutal Artistry, Mega Mouth, Ball-Z, Deadboy,TCB, Guvnor, Mikey 3D...We like to think were pretty tight with a certain Miss Tofelees (Biggin’ her up so we get more beats!)...couple of mans further afield like Iz-real, Naryckin, Turtle hands. We're working a bit with Whichcraft too(the artist, not the pastime!).

    Favourite album: Jonny - Personally, I’d throw Gravediggaz '6ftDeep' up there, along with 'Illmatic' (Watson – “me too” and 'Baduism')

    Describe your style in three words: Watson - “Completely – Mixed & Diverse,”..Jonny – “True – imaginative - Poetry!” Belinda – “Timeless – soulful – real”

    Past/Present/Future projects: You can check the DTTS myspace for all previous releases and who's whos. As far as Knew Jerus goes, our album ‘Jerus & Gentiles’ will be the first project, out very early 2010, featuring production mostly from Miki B, and featuring beats from Guvnor and Eliphino, Our first single on Download only –‘Non-Apologetix’ came out a bit ago ft. Manchild from Mars Ill Available on i-tunes, next single is a Double A side 12” Hibernation ft. Pigeon John, and on the flip No Pretense ft. Prince Po – Elevation.

    We got an album entirely over Guvnor beats in the pipe line for 2010, an EP called ‘Plastercine’ ft. Some very special guests, and we’re each working on solo material too, keep check on the DTTS myspace for schedules, and other interesting ish happening - we’re busy bees!

    Watch out for a couple of guest spots from us here and there...watch out for WYdeboi’s EP!

    Watch out for the DTTS releases in the next 12 months, it’s getting BIG!

    Peace!

    **New Release Date** 'The Puppa Murc EP' - LDZ (review)

    ‘The Puppa Murc EP’ merges gradually from Grime to Bassline to Dubstep to Hip Hop. The first of the four tracks is ‘Wave 2 Da Floor’ a double-time rapped stab at the clubs’ dance floor – I can imagine this being fairly successful in that environment but it’s not one for home or the ipod. ‘Bitch’ is track two and it’s not about a lady dog – a bit too abrasive for my liking.

    ‘Relevant’ is where I get into the EP; a rapid guitar riff with the half time dubstep beats – quality. ‘Go This Way’ will keep your head nodding and whilst it’s not as original as ‘Relevant’ it’s still pretty good on account of Dabbla’s ill lyricism.

    ‘The Puppa Murc EP’ is out on September 21st on Dented Records and I’m fully aware that many folk are gonna feel ‘Wave 2 Da Floor and ‘Bitch’ – go buy it and see for yourself! Listen to 'It's Not Relevant' now on the Certified Banger Podcast.

    Sunday, 23 August 2009

    'The Man With No Shame' ft. Shameless - The Thunderclaps (free download)

    Purveyors of one of last year's biggest UK Hip Hop club tracks The Thunderclaps are back. This time 'Judgement Day' MC Shameless takes centre stage on their next banger - 'The Man With No Shame'.

    The production lives up once more to the name of it's creators and the Paddy Ragga Man drops his rhymes fiercely and without mincing any of his words - a seriously heavy track. At this rate this duo are gonna be big - people will want to hear this.

    If you haven't already then I'd strongly advise you pick up a copy of Shamless's LP 'Smokers Die Younger' and the 12" of The Thunderclaps' 'Judgement Day' - two hard and related releases for you.


    'Fish Outta Water' - Chali 2na (album review)

    A Chali 2na album – quite different to a Chali 2na verse be that with Jurassic 5 or on one of the many tracks he guested on. What you get is more than 30 2na verses – most of which consist of high quality rhymes, rhythms and rapping. What you don’t get is that delightful moment when his unmatched baritone kicks in after another entirely differently toned rapper finishes – and that was half of the fun.

    The beats are pretty modernistic and entirely unlike J5’s selected productions. ‘Fish Outta Water’ shouldn’t be held up against any of his group’s work but even if it wasn’t many of the instrumentals on it would be considered weak. What they do achieve is to provide Chali the opportunity to show his diversity and versatility.

    There are some pretty odd choices of guests too – Damien and Stephen Marley and Beanie Man stand out like a sore thumb. Talib Kweli drops probably the most lack-lustre and off beat verse of his career on ‘Lock Sh** Down’ but Anthony Hamilton lends some suitable soul on ‘Don’t Stop’ – one of the LP’s highlights (and probably one originally intended as a J5 cut). Elzhi’s opening verse works well on ‘When Will I See You Again’ which isn’t a bad track. ‘Comin’ Thru’ is another J5-esque one which sounds pretty fresh and ‘Righteous Way’ is a great exploration of how love and life go round in circles.

    ‘Fish Outta Water’ sees Chali spit the type of verse he is lauded for, some awful beats (that blatantly say “We want the mainstream)some good beats, some strange guests and some great ones – overall, it’s patchy with some standout moments. I still love Chali 2na though.

    'Fish Outta Water' is out now on Decon and is available to buy now.

    'Pure Flowin'' - First and Last (video)


    Saturday, 22 August 2009

    'Verbal Scriptures' - VA - Out Now!

    Tricksta is about to do it again - the latest in the UK Runnings series is set to be a big one and a must for every UK Hip Hop fan's collection. I'm not going to say anything else right now except for this: look at the tracklist:

    01 - Blak Twang - So Hard
    02 - Kyza – Dirty
    03 - TBear – Flexasize
    04 - Mr Drastick - I Spy Pussy
    05 - M9 - Wrong Growth
    06 - Stylah - Please Listen
    07 - Sonnyjim Feat Jehst & Cappo - God Complex
    08 - Asaviour & DJ IQ Feat Dubbledge – Nextweek
    09 - Salvo Feat Kashmere & Chester P - The Info
    10 - Lowkey - Long Live Palestine (The Last Skeptik Remix)
    11 - Streetz Feat K.Ners - Get Away
    12 - Manny Moscow Feat LATE & Jai Boo - Flows & Bars
    13 - Raggo Zulu Rebel, Big Cakes, Teach, Logic & Manic - My Pain
    14 - Haka Presents DVS & OC Jigga - London Is Calling
    15 - The Colony - New Rules
    16 - LATE - Supply & Demand
    17 - Joker Starr Feat Micall Parknsun - Stay On The Move
    18 - Jabba Tha Kut Feat Supar Novar - All Alone

    01 - Cobane - I Need More
    02 - Nasah from Mud Fam - No Long Ting
    03 - Jyager Feat Foreign Beggars & Kashmere - Frozen In The Night
    04 - Kroscene Feat Kid Rad – Greed
    05 - Big V Feat Mailk & Dreadful - That’s Danger
    06 - Unfriendly Neighbours – Swagga
    07 - Conman Feat 10Shott - Pay Up
    08 - Undercurrent Feat Grit Grammar – Paratroppers
    09 - K9 - Code Red
    10 - King P Feat Yogi - Won't Stop
    11 - P.A.C - What U
    12 - AC Feat Terra & Genesis Elijah - Bad Luck
    13 - Million Dan - Hip Hop You Don’t Stop
    14 - Ramson Badbones & Jetsun Beats - Hit Da Deck
    15 - Iron Braydz – Lost
    16 - OC Jigga - Caller ID
    17 - Skandal – Spaceship
    18 - Willo Wispa - Same Ol' Same Old

    You can buy it now for £6.99 by clicking here.

    Friday, 21 August 2009

    'Stop Stressin'' - Lunar C (free download)

    Check out Lunar C - he's an MC from Bradford, part of the group Missing People and is part of the Sinoptic Music clique. He's only a young un but check these bars - they're clever and funny and probably just plain genius. Check him out on myspace and facebook and also check out Sinoptic Music.

    Download 'Stop Stressin'' here for free or download the whole 'On The Radar Volume 4' instead - there are 20 more tracks on it!

    'Happiness Is' - Chima Anya (free download)

    Here's some future-head nod for your ears courtesy of Chima Anya, Astrosnare and Jason McDougall - love it, can't wait for Chima's album. You can download this track now!


    'Crazy Ill Mad Rowdy' - SonnyJim & Jon Phonics (free download)

    More Jon Phonics + Eat Good Records artist ahoy! This time Mr. Phonics has hooked up with head honch SonnyJim on 'Crazy Ill Mad Rowdy' which features one of those joyous premo-esque scratched choruses. SonnyJim? Well he just does his thing - you know what to expect - quality hungry lyricism.

    This is NOT a track from Jon Phonics' 'Chronicles of the Calcium Kid'; that was an all-live project he did for uni and he is considering dropping it on bandcamp, so watch this space! He also may have a 'Half Past Calm Style' free download album out for download very soon.


    'Main Source' - Tom Caruana vs. Large Pro (free download)

    Tom Caruana aka Probably the UK's hardest working rapper/producer/label manager has just knocked out another release! Not content with the fact that he's just put out Tom Bombadeal's 'Further Into The Woods' and his own 'It's So Different Here' (watch out for some reviews here soon) he's just remixed Large Pro's whole album 'Main Source' in a day and made it available for free download!

    His inspiration was Small Professor's 'Small Pro vs Large Pro' (download that here), you can download Tom's instrumentals here, and Large Pro's acapellas here.


    'Agency Scum'/'Bad Mannaz' - Redbeard (free downloads)

    Now this is original stuff - Redbeard rapping about working for a recruitment agency - you've never heard that before! Over a Kelakovski beat Mr. Beard chats about timewasting, breaks, steel toecaps and high-vis vests as he works at a warehouse, a factory and an office - top stuff.

    The second free track taken from Redbeard's forthcoming 'Tha Bearded Wonda' LP is produced by Jon Phonics and features S.K. and Sam Stealth and it's called 'Bad Mannaz'. Phonics keeps the beat menacing during the verse before it explodes into some dirty bassline in the chorus. S.K. brings his unique madness to the mix.

    Redbeard - 'Bad Mannaz' ft. S.K. & Sam Stealth

    The dirty versions of these two tracks can be heard at Redbeard's Reverbnation page.

    'The Movement' - Delusionists (free download)

    'On The Radar' contributors Delusionists have been busy boys - they've hooked up with Slim Pickens to bring you a new track by the name of 'The Movement'. It's free to download so get on it now! It features a nice headnod beat and some sick lyrics - what more d'ya want? Love the fact that he name checks Nastro Azzurro.

    Producers, don't forget the Delusionists remix competition - remix 'Parallel Worldz' and have your track featured on the CD of their 'The Prolusion' EP. Click here for more detail!

    'Spinning Round'/'Busy Road'/'That's Entertainment' - Scorzayzee (free downloads)

    Scorzayzee's forthcoming LP must be a belter - these three tracks didn't make the final cut and they're blinders. Scorzayzee speaks so much sense on 'Spinning Round', 'That's Entertainment' and 'Busy Road (remix)' - in his dormant years he's really had his thinking cap on. Birth, life, death, God, creation, drugs, families, fame, riches - it's just so refreshing to hear these topics covered in style and without being preachy. This is some quality UK Hip Hop, I'm really feeling these tracks. All three tracks are produced by Nick Stez.

    Scorzayzee - 'Spinning Round'
    Scorzayzee - 'Busy Road (remix)'
    Scorzayzee - 'That's Entertainment'

    'White Noize' - Orphans of Cush (video)

    Check this - a genuine rap video to remind the youtube generation what's what! Orphans of Cush are Kyza, M9 and Cyrus Malachi and also possibly Masikah so beware of words you'll have to look up in the dictionary!


    Wednesday, 19 August 2009

    'First Second Time Around' - Micall Parknsun (album review)

    Here's the unedited, not pushed for space version of the review just in case you're interested:

    Charismatically rapped real life rhymes that never fall flat over weighty production from the likes of M-Phazes and Apa-Tight. High quality but limited guest verses from YNR associates leave Mr. Parknsun plenty of time to shine with his consistent and dynamic verses. ‘All 4 Hip Hop’ sounds like the anthem it should be, tracks like ‘Still Here’ and ‘Come Again’ covertly push this thing forward whilst others offer the indispensably classic sounds of Hip Hop.

    The published version can be found by clicking here.

    HHC Digital 004 Out Now!

    "Click here to download HHC Digital 004, which goes all out on the DMC tip as we celebrate 25 years of the world’s premier mixing competition with contributions from DJ Craze, Q-Bert, A-Trak, Scratch Perverts, Roc Raida, Cutmaster Swift and more.

    Keeping up the DMC angle, we also present the greatest archived DMC photos you’ll ever see, including James Brown live in London in ‘88 and behind-the-scenes footage of the legendary Royal Albert Hall stage set-up. Oh, and we also grabbed DMC champ DJ Switch to put together a 30 minute mix of the best new rap songs released this month."

    Also be sure to check out my review of Micall Parknsun's latest album in there.

    Tuesday, 18 August 2009

    'We Don't Want Them' - Lowkey, The Last Skeptik, Eslaam Jawaad & Get Cape.Wear Cape.Fly (live video)


    'Ear To The Beat' - Wizard (album review)

    Producer Wizard’s latest offering is something he should be proud of. Over 22 self produced tracks he’s gathered 30 MCs from both the UK and the US. I don’t know how long Wizard has been making beats but he’s naturally gifted and it’s no surprise that all these artists want to spit over his varied but always immense productions.

    Farma G drops in with a split persona on the heavy ‘The Anthem’, Micall Parknsun raps as hungrily as ever on ‘The Land Of The Lost’, Verb T rocks over the jazzy but hard ‘The Dungeon’ and Jack Flash examines himself on the piano-led ‘Sound Of A Genius’. Ramson Badbonez brings golden bars as usual on the punchy ‘Jammin’ On The Street’ and SonnyJim and Conflix wrap the album up with ‘King’ – sure to give you a long-lasting screwface. Other UK MCs who appear on equally as awesome tracks are Baron Samedi, 777, Unfriendly Neighbours, Ed Strong, Enlish (on the very true to life ‘Jealous Type’), Rup, Influx and Vecks and Scizzahz.

    Tragic Allies, Erg One and Singapore Kane kick things off for the Americans on the threatening ‘Run For Cover’ (a joint production with Kelakovski) and Random gives one of the best lyrical performances on ‘New World’ as he tells the story of an African being taken into slavery. Verbal Kent and Wizard keep heads moving with ‘Fast Forward’, the album’s non-cheesy love song. Other US rappers to feature are Lil E, J-Black, Mike Mass and Altruisms.

    'Ear To The Beat' will be available soon at Suspect Packages.

    'Heavy Rotation Vol. 2' - VA - Crackhouse Recordings/Subterrania Studios (album review)

    If you need an introduction to the hardest working Hip Hop label in Leeds then look no further than 'Heavy Rotation Vol. 2'. It features tracks from all the Crackhouse Recordings rappers - Instance, PCP, El-D, No Change and Ill Phil - over non-conformist beats from Subterrania Studio's Mike D.

    The compilation features 23 tracks of the artists making light of their everyday lives over some big US influenced productions - it's like the illest after hours cypher between a bunch of mates only seeking to have a good time. 'Heavy Rotation Vol. 2' is a lot of fun without being silly and it's easy to tell that this has been made as a result of a love for the art.

    Things can get pretty ig'nant as the boys rap about everything you'd expect them to - girls, sex (these two come up often), cash, Hip Hop and life stories all get covered in the forthright Crackhouse style. Despite there being a certain sound, each MC brings his own style - for example, Instance has his gravelly tone, No Change demonstrates the ability to rap with the melody and El-D has the tight multisyllabic rhymes. The tracks don't get boring either, each has it's own sound with neighbouring tracks, the rock infused 'Tour Bus' and sing-a-long ballad 'City Life' being a fine example of the variety Crackhouse Recordings is capable of.

    'Heavy Rotation Vol. 2' is out now and can be bought from the Crackhouse Recordings website for £6. If you take a liking to what they have to offer head over to their downloads sections for free versions of their past releases.

    'The Street Team Show' - Capitol 1212 & Donald D (free download)

    Partial to a bit of Old Skool Hip Hop every now and then? Checkout 'On The Radar' artists Capitol 1212 and their mixtape with legendary Bronx MC Donald D - you get an hour of his hits with the B Boys through to his Rhyme Syndicate days and finishes with his some of his new work and it's definitely worth checking out. There are exclusives and collaborations with Ice T, Kurtis Blow, Grandmaster Caz, Melle Mel and Scotland's own Capitol 1212.

    The Capitol 1212 boys also inform me that they are "currently finishing off a bunch of new tracks and writing and recording with some great people... such as Tenor Fly, ED OG, Mike G(Jungle Brothers), Dizzy(Ugly Duckling),Cadence(Raw Produce),Time Machine, Profisee, Danny Diamond, Serocee and Mr. Bang On.


    Truth Interview on Basement Sessions

    You can check out the latest Basements Sessions show at www.basementsessions.podomatic.com and you can visit their official new homepage at www.thebasementsessions.com. Basement Sessions can also be found on the wonderful Sensei FM station here: www.sensei.fm/basementsessions.php.

    This week, Truth of Rapsploitation and a dope emcee in his own right drops by to chat to Vice about everything from free downloads to Skype! Here's what to expect music-wise:

    1. Masta Ace - Brooklyn Masala
    2. Sonnyjim & Kosyne - EG Professionals (prod. Kelakovski)
    3. Pseudo Slang - Omelette
    4. Lewis Parker - Sunflight
    5. Soundsci - Remedy*
    6. Amor Jones - My Addiction
    7. Truth - Take Time**
    8. Common - Funky For You (Prod. by J.Dilla)
    9. Truth - Heavyweight f. Conflix & Sonny Jim**
    10. Art Of Fresh - Get Free
    11. Truth - Numbers**
    12. Raze Brooks - Burnin' f. Reach

    BEATS:
    1. d. C. - My Lonely Room
    2. Elaquent - Above & Beyond (Teal)
    3. Elaquent - Neon Glow (Turquoise)
    4. Vice - Legendary
    5. Vice - Sunshine
    6. Raul Supreme - Midnight Soul
    7. Myke Forte - Alleyway Breaks
    8. Myke Forte - Fallin Up
    9. The Roots - What They Do
    10. Myke Forte - Break It Up
    11. Raul Supreme - R2D2
    12. LG & Biscuit f. Micall Parknsun & D.Ablo - Life

    * = Available as a free download! Go to www.mainingredient.blogspot.com for more info (Props to Crate Escape Records)

    ** = Truth's 'Procrastinat (K)ing' is available for free download! Go to www.rapsploitation.co.uk for more info

    'Enemies Of The State' ft. General Steele - Punchline & Fokis (prod. by Jaisu) (free download)

    UK Hip Hop Producer Jaisu is going worldwide. His latest step towards domination is the track 'Enemies Of The State' which is from the forthcoming Punchline (of EMC) & Fokis 'The Appetizer EP' which drops today through Hip Hop Game.com, 2 Dope Boyz.com and Kevin Nottingham.com. The track also features General Steele from Smif n Wessun - a big look for our boy Jaisu.

    'On The Radar Vol. 4' Track Highlight: 'Mad Real' - Chose Spokesmen

    'Mad Real' - Chosen Spokesmen (produced by Chemo)

    The second exclusive track from 'On The Radar Volume 4' comes courtesy of Chosen Spokesmen and top UK producer Chemo. Chosen Spokesmen are a collection of artists including Blick Kid (Beat Maker/MC), Gadget Boy (Beat Maker), Modulation (Beat Maker/Beat Boxer/MC), Danger The Sargent (MC) and Mr Flex (MC).

    The version of the track featured on 'OTR Vol. 4' didn't include the cuts in the chorus so here's that new version. Look out for this track in other places in the near future but remember where you heard it first. Stay tuned for some more Chosen Spokesmen music at Certified Banger.

    Delusionists Remix Competition!

    Calling all beatmakers! Here is your chance to remix the Delusionists track 'Parallel Worldz' as exclusively featured on 'On The Radar Volume 4'! The winning entry will be featured on the CD version of their next EP (which, they say, they'll be "promoting heavily, so there's a bit of free exposure on offer for the winner").

    All you have to do is download the acapella, do your remix thing and then email it to delusionists@hotmail.co.uk by 31st August. That gives you a couple of weeks so dust off the old MPC, fire up the computer, dig out that sample and get to work.

    If you want to know more then get straight at Mr. Ben Black for info at any of these places: twitter.com/MrBenjaminBlack, myspace.com/delusionists or beatslayingabout.com.


    Monday, 17 August 2009

    'Young Gun Geordie Vol. 2' - Suus (free download)

    New and improved, young Newcastle rapper Suus is back with 'Young Gun Geordie Vol. 2'. With a grasp of the English language that 99% of the teenage British population just don't have Suus displays a real gift for constructing rhymes. It's not just big words and interesting topics though - he's got the delivery to match. Don't let his extreme Northern-ness put you off either, put away your preconceptions, forget about other Geordie MCs who might have repulsed you previously and download this.

    The use of autotune on 'Abnormal' is almost too slick to be a joke, but best believe, he hates autotune so it's OK. Whilst you and I might not agree with 'Test Your Faith', it displays Suus's thinking side as he speaks out on something often avoided in Hip Hop. 'Not 30 Something' is pretty funny as Suus takes on Dre's Jay-Z beat. Sinima's 'Not Alright' is exemplary of the rising production talent that Suus has drafted in for this release.

    This is good already and if Suus keeps on, who knows where he'll be when he hits 20? To his credit, there are limited signs of immaturity here - this definitely will appeal to an older audience.


    'Keep Keepin' On' - Incisive (free download)

    It's been a while since I've posted anything about Incisive but he's dropped a free download mixtape called 'Keep Keepin' On' so I thought I'd throw it up on here (as per usual). Incisive handles both production and rhymes on a good percentage of the tracks here and tracks like 'Daily Routine' display his ability to do something just a little different with both his raps and beat making. Origimoz and TE1 also feature on the boards and they bring differing sounds to the table making this a pretty value for (no) money release.

    Incisive is for fans of the likes of Sway who still do the Hip Hop thing but with the modern London state of mind. Incisive is a pretty entertaining MC who may yet do big things.


    'Face Boglin EP' - Lousain Hekla/Cervantis (free download)

    Lousain Hekla/Cervantis and Squid Ninjaz have this for you: 'Face Boglin EP'. If you fancy a bit more audio sickness complete with Harry Potter and Dinosaur references and pig noises then go download this for free. It features four full tracks of Welsh based illness over some pretty spaced out beats.

    If you like what you hear be sure to check out the rest of their website, if you carefully there are more free things to download.

    Disgracelands #3 - Stig & Syntax

    The next Disgracelands happens in September and the mighty Fatty and Specky show will be the main event. Stig and Syntax will no doubt tear down the place as will all the other guys on the bill - 'On The Radar' artist Lunar C and Wydeboi and hosts Chief Wigz and Spida Lee. This is real Hip Hop so get down and support!

    Chima Anya's Album Preview



    'Fields Of War' - Cyclonius


    'Alternative Income' - JVF Clique (free download)

    'On The Radar' mainstays JVF Clique want you to have this exclusive version of the title track from their 'Alternative Income' LP. The album is still available in exchange for money over at the ever-faithful Suspect Packages and if you like the things they do and say then check out 'Those Dudes' on 'OTR Vol. 1', their Certified Banger Exclusive on 'OTR Vol. 2', 'Drugs Need Kids' on 'OTR Vol. 3' and 'Loose The Chains' on 'OTR Vol.3'!


    Life MC New Album News

    Here's a new Life MC track. It features Skuff of 'Delegates of Culture and the production is by the Krate Krusaders. Life MC has an new album out soon entitled 'Life Beyond Rap' which features Ill Bill, Chester P, Si Phili, Skuff and Inja and of course with beats by DJ Nappa.


    Sunday, 16 August 2009

    T.I., Flo-Rida & Wiz Khalifa and the Europop Sampling Travesty

    What is it with today's R'n'B/Rap? It's turning into Europop from ten years ago! And why is it turning into Europop from ten years ago? Because that's what their sampling and it's just plain wrong. Sure it makes for cheesy/catchy/annoying/easy-to-sell ringtone, pop chart hits but it's sampling gone mad. Gone are the days when DJs would go to every length to hide what breaks they were playing, when producers wouldn't share their sample sources - these are the days of shamlessly plundering already bad music to make a quick buck.

    Sure, R'n'B and Hip Hop's history is littered with similar stories. Take Will Smith's hits for example - all very popular old tracks (that only he'd afford sample clearance for). But the difference in this case? All very popular GREAT old tracks, for example Diana Ross' 'Love Hangover' being converted into 'Freakin' It' or The Clash's 'Rock The Casbah' making it to the charts as 'Willenium'.

    So who are the main culprits now? Well T.I. set it off with 'Live Your Life' which sampled the awful 'Dragostea Din Tei' by O-zone. Now Flo-Rida has followed with 'Sugar' which samples Eiffel 65's 'Blue (Da Ba De)' (I know...!) and last year Wiz Khalifa nicked Alice Deejay's 'Better Off Alone' for his terrible 'Say Yeah'.

    It's sampling gone mad and it needs to stop. Or is this what folk have always been saying about rap records? Do you know of any more examples like this? Let us know your thoughts. All I can say is I'm looking forward to when they tap into the rich Europop vein that is Aqua of 'Barbie Girl' fame.

    Friday, 14 August 2009

    Ewan Hoozami and Whichcraft (free download)

    Just in case you haven't had enough Bristol-based music today, here's some more:

    Ewan Hoozami (see what he's done there? Love it.) has hooked up with rapper Whichcraft to conjure up (alright, that was bad, I know) a couple of tracks. Whichcraft appears to be from the US and if I've found the right one on myspace he's from NY/Charlotte, NC.

    The tracks come on that Def Jux/Epitaph type vibe - quite alternative/indie, pretty dark and paranoid. If ill lyricism about things of the night from a guy who actually might be a vampire is your thing then check out these tracks. Ewan Hoozami's beats probably served to further fuel the MCs psychotic vocals - a perfect match.


    'Suicide Clutch Rap' - Milestone (free download)

    Ignore the weird and off putting name, get this on download and devote half an hour to checking this out. Milestone, aka Mylo from The Swamps, has gathered together a nice selection of producers and MCs to put together 'Suicide Clutch Rap'.

    There are strong connections here with Geordie crew Dialect (and if you checked their 'D.Day' set then you'll want to hear this) with Peta Max and Chattabox both mucking in. Mylo also brings Sam Otis of Bristol crew Lowercase (and also of The Swamps with Chattabox and Mylo) and a whole host of other blokes including Bristol rappers B'Tol and Chalk MC on the raps and Shanksy, Joey Blitz, Rola, Mr. Monk (of Fat Club), Herboy and Flipz on the boards.

    Anyway, the beats will keep your cranium violently bobbing and the raps will make you wonder who wronged these guys and which mental disease has them in its steely grasp - great stuff, if you like that kind of thing!


    'Self Harmony Vol. 1' - DJ Rogue (free download)

    Check out DJ Rogue's new mixtape which is hosted by Mistafire and features 13 of Bristol's finest MCs - Sirplus, C-Spillz (Koast, Mackie Skillz, C-Strike Z, Redskin, Shadz), B'Tol, Awkward, Project 13 (Chalk, Switch), Dribbla and Blunt.

    The production, all by DJ Rogue, is a nice mix up of Reggae, Dubstep and Hip Hop and 'Self Harmony Vol. 1' is up for free download for you. If you're around Bristol and you can track him down you might even be able to get a CD version off him - track him down!

    If you're into the Bristol Hip Hop scene then why not go join their forum 'Hijack Bristol' - it's full of good stuff like this.


    'Little Young' - A&E (Masta Ace & Ed O G) (free download)

    Really feeling this new Masta Ace and Ed O G track. It's produced by M-Phazes who seems to be just going worldwide right now - maybe that's what being from Oz does for you? Anyway, Ace and Ed have clubbed together to form A&E and are planning to release their LP 'Arts & Entertainment' on 6th October. 'Arts & Entertainment' features guest appearances from Large Professor, KRS-One, Posdnous (De La Soul), DOITALL (Lords Of The Underground), Chester French & Marsha Ambrosious and features production by Double O (Kidz In The Hall), M-Phazes & DJ Spinna.

    Masta Ace is the king of the concept and this track is no exception - him and Ed name drop aload of rappers with Lil' and Young in their rap name and it's just darn entertaining!