Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Soope - "F*** Da Police" Music Video

I've been waiting for Hip-Hop to get dangerous again. It's gotten far too safe soft. Not that that in and of itself is a bad thing. Hip-Hop can be as expressive of softer emotions as any art form out there. I'm talking about that soft "Hip-Hop" aka Fist Pumping BS aka Nobody is Going to Riot With This Trash Playing in the Background music. I won't get much deeper into it as that would spark an entirely different conversation that's far too lengthy for this blog post.

That's also not to say that Rap music has to be limited to ignorant, violent and misogynistic content. That's just stupid and if you follow this blog you know that I know better. Anyway...

Soope dropped a dangerous record off this morning. This is not suburbia friendly Hip-Hop. Soope's "F*** Da Police" is the type of music that pushed the creation of the Parental Advisory sticker or backed the LA Riots. This record is offensive.

This record just put Soope on a watchlist.

Full of 80s 808 and 606 styling punctuated with stabs a la Rick Rubin, "F*** Da Police" is Soope's reminder that Hip-Hop is hard edge. The video, shot in "Roadrunna Vision," follows the Indiana native through the streets of NYC as he and his crew fill the polluted Manhattan air with unadulterated Hip-Hop. They even had the ABC news crew boppin' to the music! A brilliant moment and poignant message whether intended or not.

Check it out ... Mee-Meep!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Muhsinah - "Emergency" Acoustic Live

DC songstress Muhsinah is a real diamond in the rough. What she is able to hear and articulate musically shines even brighter than Moissanite though. She's incredibly gifted.

In this live footage from a recent show at Black Cat in Washington, D.C. Muhsinah gives us a brand new song she, of course, wrote and produced herself. This incredibly special performance gives me goosebumps every time I hear it! This was an encore performance at the last show of her first tour. The never before performed "Emergency" will be featured on her upcoming 'Gone: Deluxe' album shipping July 10th to fans who pre-ordered the album through her Kickstarter campaign.

I'm just going to get out of the way for this one. Muhsinah will take care of the rest. You're going to looooove this....

Monday, June 18, 2012

Real Jay - 'RAELBLZ'

Real Jay is someone you want to know. Not only in the "He's on this blog so know his music" sense but also the "I went shopping with him 2 days ago" sense. Dude is just cool like the cousin that would come to visit sometimes during the summer, when you were a kid, and you'd hate it when he/she left. That coolness is the first thing that cuts through in his music. Listeners are immediately engaged by his tone, delivery and wit.

The self-proclaimed Jahfather of Soul is back with a new release titled 'RAELBLZ'. Don't bother asking me what that means because I have no idea. It sounds good though, and I'm cool with that. Whatever it means, it (the project) sounds amazing! (Though I do assume it means Real x Blu ... the producer) 'RAELBLZ' is another carefully crafted body of work with soulful lo-fi sounds draped with dope wordplay and stories. Topics that range from social commentary to lesbianism. It's all perfectly marked by Jay's ability to give you straight talk and then punctuate it with a bit of humor. He's a truly skilled MC.

Real Jay and Blu laced this project from start to finish. He takes the listener through a range of emotions and landscapes that leaves one clicking on the loop album icon. It's signature San Diego underground but distinctly Real Jay. It reminds me of the old Invisibl Skratch Piklz videos I used to watch as a teenager. I get images of a small dark club full of broken Heineken bottles and graffiti and 300 heads nodding to the beat.

This is definitely one to throw in the mp3 player ASAP. Free stream below but cash and carry for the download.

Focus the Truth - "As the Horn Blows" Music Video

"It's the reeaaaaaaal! Hip-Hop, Hip-Hop..."

I've never been to London but I have a special affinity for the place. There's something in the water there that nurtures good Hip-Hop genes. Whether you've been paying attention to music or not, you have to have realized that some of the biggest stars of popular music over the last 10 years were products of London town. It is no surprise then that Jamaica, Queens born Focus the Truth has greatly improved his craft there and is proving such on this new release "As the Horn Blows."

I met Focus the Truth on a radio show last year and he gave me his new, at the time, mixtape 'The Last of the Greats' to listen to. I was very impressed with the opening number "Number One Woman" but was underwhelmed with the rest of the project. Even still, you could clearly hear that Focus the Truth is serious about the art of Rap and is damn good at it.

That desire to grow as an artist is made more apparent in this new video. Focus delivers a straight forward but poignant performance. It's Hip-Hop as we used to know it; beats and rhymes. This is the Focus that I first heard and the one that I hope we hear more of.

Look for his new mixtape 'Something From the Pavement' in the near future. Free stream and download below the video.