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Slimkid3 & DJ Nu-Mark – Slimkid3 & DJ Nu-Mark

September 22nd, 2014
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Working Hard or Hardly Working?

In 2001, Slimkid3 and DJ Nu-Mark released an EP entitled Another Day Another Dollar. Now the two are collaborating once again on their latest release,  self-titled Slimkid3 and DJ Nu-Mark. Slimkid3 and DJ Nu-Mark have more in common with each other than with their new LP. Both have been a part of notable hip hop acts: Nu-mark as a DJ for Jurassic 5 and Slimkid3 as one of the original members of The Pharcyde. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews ,

Busdriver – Perfect Hair

September 19th, 2014
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Album Full of Supercuts

Many artists never reach their tenth album. However, on Perfect Hair Busdriver proves that can be an attainable goal. With the vocabulary of a Scrabble champion and the vocal delivery of a cattle auctioneer, Busdriver is an artist who stands out among his contemporaries. Perfect Hair is the culmination of over a decade of determination. Never sacrificing substance for filler or compromising principles for profit, Busdriver has the type of artistic integrity that makes him a force in hip hop. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews

Sims – Field Notes

September 10th, 2014
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Stronger than an Oak

Sims, one seventh of the rap collective Doomtree,  goes out on a limb with his third solo effort Field Notes. As they say the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree; Sims brought some of his compadres along, creating seven unstoppable beats. Field Notes blossoms track after track with green leaves of lyricism and beautiful budding bass lines. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews

MC Frontalot – Question Bedtime

September 5th, 2014
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The Future of Fairy Tales

Self proclaimed “world’s 579th greatest rapper,” MC Frontalot has gone in a new direction with his sixth release Question Bedtime. Known as a “nerdcore” rapper, Frontalot aims to gain a different demographic into his fan base: children. Question Bedtime takes a twist on 14 different children’s bedtime stories and fables and delivers them in both an entertaining and interesting way. Though younger listeners will enjoy these songs, that’s not to say that it’s strictly a children’s album; there will be no comparison to Kid’s Bop here. Instead, presented are over a dozen songs that are great hip hop tracks that just so happen to center around fictional accounts of make believe events. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews

Katie Kate – Nation

August 24th, 2014
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One Nation, Divisible

Katie Kate studied classical music and played the flute in college, but since her days at Cornish University, she has gathered her own electronic orchestra in which she is the maestro. On her sophomore release, Nation, Katie Kate proves she is a hip hop virtuoso, crafting interesting beats, spitting fierce lyrics and singing formidable hooks. These 10 compositions start off strong but starts to fall flat after a few songs. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews

Tre Mission – Stigmata

August 16th, 2014
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Man on a Mission

At the age of 22, Toronto-born rapper Tre Mission sits in a very precarious place.  After his debut album Malmaison dropped in 2013, phrases like “Grime’s Must Watch Artist” began to circulate.  Now on his sophomore effort, Stigmata, many wonder: can Tre Mission can live up to the hype or will he be crushed under its weight? Upon first listen, its evident that Tre has learned a lot over the last few years and have developed into a more polished artist. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews

Planet Asia & TzariZM – Via Satellite

August 12th, 2014
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Too Much To Finish

Grammy award nominee Planet Asia and producer TzariZM come together like Rice Krispies and marshmallows to make us a delicious treat served up as Via Satellite. Veteran Asia brings the familiar flavor he’s notorious for while TzariZM holds everything together with some gooey beats. Don’t be deceived though; there is nothing sweet about this composition. Via Satellite contains ruthless, revenge-soaked diatribes that pull no punches. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews ,

Shabazz Palaces – Lese Majesty

August 10th, 2014
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Worth a Gamble

Sub Pop’s experimental hip-hop group Shabazz Palaces ups the ante on Lese Majesty. Ishmeal Butler, formerly of Digable Planets, and multi-instrumentalist Tendai Maraire rolled the dice with their debut album Black Up, and on their sophomore release the two aimed to break the house.  Filled with spacey instrumentations and solid rhymes, Less Majesty shows that they still can work miracles with the cards they are dealt. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in Reviews

K.Flay – Life as a Dog

August 1st, 2014
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A Dog, but not a B…

After ten years of releasing EPs, mix tapes and appearing on video game soundtracks, K.Flay’s official debut album Life as a Dog sees the light of day. In spite of a lengthy dispute with RCA Records, K.Flay crowd-funded this opus and released it via Bummer Picnic Records revealing an album that she wanted to make instead of losing creative control and not being satisfied with the end product. 44 minutes and 11 songs later, Life as a Dog is definitely an album its maker should be proud of. Read more…

By William Hannan Posted in High Fidelity, Reviews

Death Grips – The Powers that B (Disc 1: Niggas on the Moon)

July 17th, 2014
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Ending on a High Note

Previous to the news of their recent disbandment, Death Grips released the first disc of their double LP The Powers That B. Entitled Niggas on the Moon, Death Grips brings forth the sonic fury and raw vocals that they have captured on their previous three releases and project it at full volume. When Death Grips became the opening act for the recent Nine Inch Nails/Soundgarden tour, this industrial hip hop act’s spotlight began to shine a little bit brighter, introducing new listeners to their brand of experimental art, but in light of the recent news of their breakup Niggas on the Moon is the first half of this band’s swan song.

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By William Hannan Posted in Reviews