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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Raekwon / Kaimbr / Hassaan Mackey + Diamond D

Now, this is a sick line-up if I ever saw one! Two of the emcees responsible for two of the illest underground albums of the year joins forces with Raekwon The Chef over this Diamond D laced heater, titled simply "The Heater". Diamond and Raekwon of course represents two of the sickest crews hip-hop ever wittnessed and as far as I remember this must be their first collaboration since the 1996 classic "Rainy Dayz" remix that the D.I.T.C. producer helped Jodeci's Mr. Dalvin to create. The cut is lifted from a forthcoming project presented by Peter Rosenberg & Popchips (?!) called "What's Poppin' Vol. 1" that I think will feature a bunch of different artists.


Torae's "For The Record" Tracklist

It looks like Torae has gathered an all-star cast of producers for his upcoming "For The Record" album which hit stores on November 1. If the first single, "Do The Math", is any indication of what will be going down on this record, this will be an absolute killer. I brought back the link to the song in case anyone missed out on it, DON'T SLEEP!!

01. "Intro" [prod. by Torae]
02. "Alive" (Ft. Wes) [prod. by Khrysis]
03. "You Ready?" [prod. by Marco Polo]
04. "What It Sounds Like" [prod. by !llmind]
05. "Shakedown" [prod. by 9th Wonder]
06. "That Raw" [prod. by Pete Rock]
07. "Do The Math" [prod. by Large Professor]
08. "Changes" [prod. by Diamond D]
09. "Over You" (Ft. Wes) [prod. by E. Jones]
10. "Imagine" [prod. by Eric G]
11. "Only Way (Interlude)" [prod. by 9th Wonder]
12. "For The Record" [prod. by DJ Premier]
13. "Thank You" [prod. by Nottz]
14. "Reflection" [prod. by Eric G]
15. "Panorama" (Ft. Mela Machinko) [prod. by Fatin]


Blaq Poet & Meyhem Lauren - "Hood Talk"

The Screwball front-man continues to bless us with that grimy shit as he's soon about to unleash a new remix EP entitled "QB Slasher". The EP features new versions of a gang of choice cuts from his latest album, "Blaq Poet Society", which was released earlier this year on Brutal Music. Besides four new remixes with cameos from Meyhem Lauren, Roc Marciano, Reef Tha Lost Cause, Wais P and Blacastan, a brand new song called "Freezerz" featuring Big Noyd and Bloodsport is included. The remix of "Hood Talk" is definitely a vintage QB banger, and Poet and Meyhem sounds iLL together. September 6 is the date.

01. "Bushmaster Music (Remix)" (Ft. Roc Marciano & Wais P)
02. "Mortuary Music (Remix)" (Ft. Reef Tha Lost Cauze)
03. "Hood Talk (Remix)" (Ft. Meyhem Lauren)
04. "Butcher Shop (Remix)" (Ft. Blacastan)
05. "Freezers" (Ft. Big Noyd & Bloodsport)
06. "Power Music" [Instrumental]
07. "Butcher Shop" [Instrumental]
08. "Shootouts" [Instrumental]
10. "Hood Talk" [Instrumental]
11. "Bushmaster Music" [Instrumental]
12. "Gunz N Ammo" [Instrumental]
13. "New Age Villain" [Instrumental]
14. "Bloodpool" [Instrumental]
15. "Life Of A Hustler" [Instrumental]


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The RZA / Black Knights - "Caught Up" (2006)

Since things are moving kinda slowly today, I'm bringing out a Wu banger from 2007 that I doubt anyone except the most devoted Wu-Tang followers have heard in full. The song in question is called "Caught Up" and performed by the West Coast Killa Beez, Black Knights, over a sick RZA production. It was recorded around 2006 for the soundtrack to the "Afro Samurai" anime series which RZA scored all music for. All the hip-hop songs on that first soundtrack is nothing short of amazing, anyone who ever doubted that The RZA still can lace classic, Wu sounding beats should take a listen to all those songs again ("Cameo Afro", "Certified Samurai", "Just A Lil Dude", "Who is The Man", "Take Sword Pt. 1 & 2", "Fury in My Eyes/Revenge"). 

"Caught Up" appeared in the series, during the air-fight between Afro Samurai and whatever that big bear was named now again, but failed to make the actual soundtrack album for some reason. Fans were amped by that snippet in the flick though and for a few years this was highly sought after amongst RZA and Black Knights heads. There was a live performance of it on a MySpace page but it didn't really capture the essence of the track and like so many other RZA productions it looked like fans would never get to hear this song in full. Until one day when... aah fuck it, I don't even remember how this track got leaked in the first place but it's quite possible that Christ Bearer released it (EDIT: I got informed that it was uploaded to Black Knights myspace page and ripped by Luz @ Wu-Corp forums, thankx man). However that may be, it's a dope track that in my opinion should've made the "Afro Samurai" soundtrack in the first place.

As a bonus I also uploaded another sick collaboration between The RZA and Black Knights called "Killer Bee Til' Ya Die" which was released in 2008. Everything points to this being recorded for RZA's "Digi Snacks" album as it appeared as the B-side to a limited promo version of the single to "Drama". The fact that this song is better than pretty much anything on that album, while also sounding more like a Bobby Digital track, makes you wonder what the genius producers are thinking sometimes.



Monday, August 29, 2011

Tracklist for Murs / Ski Beatz LP

I'm not really feeling the cover but MURS always been an interesting emcee to me although I admit to not checking too much for him since the second album with 9th Wonder. It will be interesting to hear him rock an entire album with Ski Beatz who really managed to reinvent his career the last couple of years; quite impressive though I'm a bigger fan of his older work. "24 Hour Karate School Part II" is out now too btw for those who's into Ski. The album with Murs will be out in stores on October 11 and is called "Love & Rockets Vol. 1: Transformation".

01. "Epic Salutes"
02. "Remember 2 Forget"
03. "67 Cutlass"
04. "Eazy-E"
05. "Hip-Hop & Love" (Ft. Tabi Bonney)
06. "International"
07. "S-k-i-B-e-a-t-z" (Ft. Locsmith)
08. "Westside Love"
09. "Life & Time" (Ft. OC & Ab-Soul)
10. "Reach Hire"
11. "Dream On" (Ft. Dee-1)
12. "316 Ways"
13. "Animal Style"

Exile - "Intro to Outro" [Mixtape]

The producer behind Fashawn's "Boy to Man" and Blu's "Below the Heavens", both rightfully critically acclaimed, released this mixtape "Intro to Outro" a couple of days back. This tape showcases some of the California natives illest production placements mixed in with some previously unreleased stuff; sounds good to me. Includes joints from Pharoahe Monch, Strong Arm Steady, MED, MF DOOM, Bun B, Mobb Deep, Fashawn and Blu. Spotted @ The Muzinc.

01. Dag Savage - "Intro To The Outro"
02. Pharoahe Monch - "Evolve"
03. Co$$ - "Leiment Park"
04. Dag Savage - "Growing Pains" (Ft. Fashawn)
05. Bun B - "Brolic"
06. Fashawn - "Freedom" (Remix)
07. Adad - "Slowly"
08. MED - "Your Life" (Ft. Blu)
09. Strong Arm Steady - "Give It Up" (Ft. Guilty Simpson & Talib Kweli)
10. J. Mitchell - "Flawless" (Ft. Co$$)
11. Emanon - "Count Your Blessings"
12. Blu & Exile - "Below The Heavens Medley"
13. Blu & Exile - "Cold Hearted"
14. Mobb Deep - "Pearly Gates"
15. Blame One - "Disturbed" (Ft. Sean Price & Fashawn)
16. Exile - "Klepto"
17. Dag Savage - "Mic Jackson"
18. Big Sean - "Wait For Me"
19. Emanon - "Forgive Us"
20. Fashawn - "S.O.F." (Remix)
21. Fashawn - "Boy Meets World Medley"
22. Fashawn - "Samsonite Man" (Ft. Blu)
23. Blu & Exile - "New Seasons"
24. BK-One - "Tema Do Canibál" (Remix) [Ft. MF DOOM]
25. MED - "And They Say / Outro"


Jay Billion Ft. Sadat X & Eeva - "Big Bills II"

Pretty cool new track with a summer type of vibe - too bad we're at the end of August already but it is what it is. Jay Billion will release this song on his digital album, "The Audacity", available via Def Jam/HTM Media sometime this fall. As you can see by the title of this post the single features a sick guest verse from Brand Nubian legend Sadat X who sounds sick over this beat. Track also features a Serbian singer by the name of Eeva, and while X and Billion filmed their parts in Brooklyn she performed hers over in Belgrade, Serbia.

12" Throwback: PHAT KAT - "Dedication to the Suckers"

Detroit emcee Ronnie Cash's (A/K/A Phat Kat) and producer Jay Dee's three songs classic "Dedication to the Suckers" single not only stands as some of Dilla's finest productions ever but for me personally one of the absolute illest 12" singles of all time. At the time, Jay Dee had become a household name on the underground hip-hop scene through his many amazing collaborations with A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Busta Rhymes, The Pharcyde, Mad Skillz, Keith Murray and other sick hip-hop acts, mainly based in NYC. If anyone ever doubted, his work with Slum Village was proof that he was still repping The D to the fullest, often saving up his most banging tracks for his hometown... The ultimate testament to this ethic came in late 1999 when he reunited with Phat Kat and laced all production for the entire single.

The chemistry between this duo was absolutely mindblowing to hear on this, although in hindsight the perfect dynamics displayed here wasn't that suprising. After all, before there was a Slum Village there was a duo called 1st Down - consisting of Ronnie Cash and James Yancey. Their track "No Place to Go" was Dilla's first taste of wax when it was released in 1992. 1st Down eventually got signed to Payday/FRRR (at the time the home of artists like Show & AG, Jeru the Damaja, Group Home and even a young Jay-Z) and released the underground classic "A Day With The Homiez"/"Front Street" in '95. They eventually got dropped from the label without getting to come out with a follow-up release, but the above-stated facts shows us the way that the duo's creative minds was already connected, interlocked and ready to peak. 
The two clearly brought out the best of eachother, as the often soulful Jay Dee showed off his diversity by creating what, at the time, might have been the hardest beats to make it up from the infamous Dilla basement. Phat Kat doesn't miss the oppurtinity and his confidence shines bright like a star throughout every verse, every line, every banging track. It is not that he's the most lyrical emcee, actually he's far from it, but his gruff, dominating force of a voice and hardcore, thugged out lyrics is the perfect match for this batch of beats. 

This is the sound of Detroit right here; the sounds of a city dominating the statistics of crime in the USA for several years but also a city with a vast and extremely rich musical history. Both of these important factors have, of course, played large parts on the city's hip-hop scene and it's sound. Strong influences from both the soulful Motown sound and the original Techno and House scenes that preceeded the rise of hip-hop are clearly traceable on records like "Dedication to the Suckers",  "Don't Care About Us", "Microphone Master", "Let's Grow", "Get Dis Money", "Fall in Love" and countless other Dilla classics - including the entire LPs "Welcome to Detroit" and Frank-N-Dank's "48 HRS"

The original "Dedication..." 12" was released on local DJ and radio personality Michael Buchannan's (better known as "Detroit's ambassador to the world", DJ House Shoes) independent House Shoes Records. According to Phat Kat, the record sold a mind-blowing number of 5,000 copies in its first day of release, a very strong number for an independent underground record like this. In other words, it didn't take very long til' the original pressings were all out-of-print. Any vinyl represses has yet to happen but hopefully it will in a near future as this shit is way too fantastic to be left as a rare out-of-print single. Phat Kat himself, however, issued the single as an EP on compact disc in 2002, featuring two exclusive Dilla produced bonus cuts from the same era. That CD was however even more limited as only 2,000 copies in total were pressed up and sold exclusively through the now defunct website. I mention this since this is the source of the rip presented below, despite the sound of an actual vinyl filling up the room beats that of a CD any day, a CD rip always sounds better than a vinyl rip. The sequence of tracks is pretty much the same as on the original but as mentioned before it also has two bonus tracks tacked on at the end - "Big Booties" (also released on "The Undeniable LP") and "World Premier" (the latter unreleased in any other form). While both are solid joints in their own right they are not on the same high level as the three OG tracks. Aight, that's more than enough talk from me... tune in, turn on, TURN IT UP!!!!

01. "Dedication to the Suckers"
02. "Dedication to the Suckers" [Instrumental]
03. "Don't Nobody Care About Us" (Ft. DJ Dez)
04. "Don't Nobody Care About Us" [Instrumental] (Ft. DJ Dez)
05. "Microphone Master"
06. "Microphone Master" [Instrumental]
07. "Big Booties" [* Bonus Track]
08. "World Premier" [* Bonus Track]


Saturday, August 27, 2011

Apollo Brown - "The Arrival" [Compilation]

I first came in contact with the skilled trade of Detroit's latest addition to their legacy of incredible producers, Apollo Brown, through his work with The Left last year. I, and many with me, was immediatly captivated by the thick sound he provided for his group as he carried on The Sound of The "D" laid down by musicians like Dilla and Black Milk, while also drawing on inspirations from New York legends DJ Premier and The RZA. From there his work ethic has proved to be extremely serious as he's been dropping solo albums and full-length collaborations with Boog Brown and Hasaan Mackey. And he already got a signature sound that you often immediatly recognize, one with raw boom bap qualities often utilizing heavily chopped up, high-pitched vocal samples and instrumental parts from classic soul records; after all he's from the hometown of Motown, is he not?

Apollo Brown seems to be mostly interested in lacing whole bodies of work, and every album he's laced so far has been well worth of both hearing and copping. Less talked about amongst underground hip-hop followers are his guest productions, which is a shame really since there's plenty of absolutely amazing pieces in that part of his boom-bastic portfolio. Hopefuly fans of the man will find a few gems on the compilation presented below and new heads will be inspired enough to convince themeselves to pick up "Daily Bread", "The Gas Mask" and "The Revival". The 16 track compilation I put together features a mix of established artists and new cats on the block, from both Detroit and elsewhere, getting their chance to rip trademark productions from Apollo Brown. Over the coming month I plan on putting together and releasing, including this one, four compilations each showcasing four pure talents from Detroit - and in what better way to kick things off with than opening up with the newest talent to emerge on the MoTown scene? While listening check out A.B.'s guest blog post for Above Ground Magazine (where the image on top is borrowed from, thanks) and start following him on MySpace.

01. Danny Brown - "The Wizard"
02. Trek Life - "What it Is" [Remix]
03. Roc Marciano, XO & Tranquill - "Helpless Dreamer"
04. The Regiment - "Battle Cry"
05. Verbal Kent - "Cry"
06. Kenn Starr & Finale - "Home Comes First"
07. Buff1 & Magestic - "Judas Priest"
08. Diamond District - "Streets Won't Let Me Chill" [Remix]
09. D-12 - "Kush & Green"
10. The Left - "One Day"
11. eLzhi & Danny Brown - "Contra"
12. Ro Spit - "All Alone"
13. Kam Moye - "Blue Skies"
14. Hassaan Mackey & Sean Born - "The Trenches" [Remix]
15. Future Joyner - "Nightmares"
16. Finale - "Arrival & Departure" [prod. by V-Tech & Apollo Brown]


The DIX - "The Art Of Picking Up Women" EP

The who? That's right, the motherfucking DIX! These guys dominated the airwaves back in the '60s with their impeccable mashing of funk, soul and gospel as well as elements of styles yet to be created; such as hip-hop and reagge. With a concept like this and the looks you see displayed above it's easy to see how The DIX was getting girls panties wet anywhere they pulled out their massive instruments. At least that's what the hilarious 15 minutes documentary "The Rise & Fall Of The DIX" tells its viewers in a right-on-the-spot classic music documentary style. I believe that the mockumentary was the main reason this group of gentlemen joined forces as The DIX but that doesn't mean that the compact disc EP that came packaged with the DVD isn't both hilarious and well worth hearing.

But who the hell where really behind The DIX? It comes as no suprise that Prince Paul is involved as producer and one of the main members (taking on the alias of Orgynius), even grabbing the microphone on "I Luv U Gurl". I also knew that Mr. Len is one of the guys involved in this (appearing as Burn Hard Gets) but I'm not sure what his exact position was as the production is credited to Paul and there's really no turntablism on here either. I do believe that the documentary and EP might have been Len's creative concept as it was released on his own SMACKS RECORDS in 2005. Besides that I was clueless to who the rest of the crew really was, until I luckily managed to find a used copy of the CD/DVD in a record store a couple of days ago and watched the DVD (I had heard the music previously, being a fan of both Paul's and Len's previous work). Rapper Mr. Dead is performing most of the sung vocals as Peter O'Tool, keyboardist Donald Newkirk takes the stage as one of the Johnson brothers (giving an fantasticly funny performance in the movie) and rapper/producer/engineer Bimos appears as John Handcock. MC Paul Barman is lightly featured in the flick but I doubt he's featured on the actual musical side of things.
As you might be aware of all of the mentioned guys are associates of Prince Paul, that creative genius motherfucker we all love. Paul has always been known for his goofy humor and stretching the creative limits with each experimental project he touches on. "The Art Of Picking Up Women" might however be his weirdest project yet and I think it's the combination of him and DJ/producer Mr. Len that really made this into what it is. The question is how the hell something like this sounds; there's no question you would need major talents to pull off a faked '60s soul/funk album while still managing to please the hip-hop heads - but that's exactly what they do. There's no rapping, there's barely any cuts but hip-hop music has drawn from soul, funk, ragga and gospel since the dawn of its time which means the idea isn't that strange when you really think about it. The samples and actual playing sounds authentic to the late '60s in a way, but with the big beat breaks on top of all of it gives the songs that head-nod quality we're all looking for. "Here Comes the DIX" kicks off the release with a bang and with its glaring horns, heavy drum beat, 'Kirk on the keys and the vocals of Mr. Dead I sincerely believe that this could've been a minor hit had it been given the right attention. Matter of fact is that it was actually released on 7" vinyl single as well. "When I Come Home to You" is another one of my favorites, with Newkirk playing a driving accoustic piano (which could in fact be a sample) with Paul incorporating both a high-pitched vocal sample and some of the guys singing it over. And then again, you have those fat ass drums that, to me, makes the whole thing not just funny, but officially banging.

Of course it wouldn't be a Prince Paul project if it wasn't full of crazy skits and in that department "The Art Of Picking Up Women" really don't dissapoint. There's a lot of weird old sampled commercials like an old one for cold milk that will have you shaking your head, wonering where the hell did they find all this strange shit. One of my favorite parts of the EP is actually a skit without a beat, it's just too god damn hilarious; I'm talking about "From The Top".  Here they make a full-blown parody of the classic group presentation intermission from The Wu's "36 Chambers", an album Paul has mentioned in interviews for carrying the best skits of all time. If you're well known with the original skit you're gonna love this one as it's really on point and even that radio DJ doing the interview is right on the spot. All in all, "The Art Of Picking Up Women", is not A-grade material but it is an entertaining 20 minutes to say the least and although it isn't made to be taken serious, Mr. Len and Prince Paul has still created something  that's rewarding to listen to plenty of times, which in itself is a feat. I'm not able to give this an actual fair rating, there's too much to consider and different ways of looking at the music but for fans of Prince Paul and Company Flow founder Mr. Len it is a must hear. Of course the actual mockumentary is a must-see too and the music works best after actually seeing that piece of work. Since this release is by now out-of-print I can assure you that if you see this in a used records store; pick it up, pick it up, pick it up (as KRS-One would say)! Until then, you can always download the project below and hear it for yourself... One thing that will please you about this digital version, is that I cut out the 40 minutes of silence that follows the one minute outro on track #7 which saves a lot of room on your music players depiste it being ripped in 320 kbps. Enjoy!

01. "Intro to Women"
02. "Here Comes the Dix"
03. "Tears in My Eyes (Dirty Girl)
04. "I Luv U Gurl"
05. "When I Come Home to You"
06. "From The Top"
07. "Outro to Women"


Lil' Wayne @ The Lost Tapes?!?

What's this? Two songs from the most commercial rap release of 2011; Lil' Wayne's "The Carter IV"? On The Lost Tapes nontheless? Hahah nah, I haven't flipped on you as I never been a fan of Baby's baby boy and I promise you'll never hear his voice on anything you'll find on this site. The reason I'm posting this is because the aforementioned album features an interlude and an outro featuring some of the major lyricists in the game right now ripping a beat by Willy Will to shreds. Wayne himself is using the same beat for the LP intro which means that we avoids his vocals on both remaining takes and instead gets to enjoy quality verses from Tech N9Ne, André 3000, Bun B, Busta Rhymes as well as a more or less horrible one by Shyne and an absolutely outstanding one by NaS. I know alot of people who's mainly into underground hip-hop, like myself, would've missed out on these epic tracks being the source they come from but I'm telling y'all - Don't Sleep!!


Throwback Mix by DJ Mellow V

This is some rather cool shit for you to upload to your iPod's and mp3-players for this Saturday and reminisce on all the classics on here, slickly mixed by DJ Mellow V. DJ Mellow V is a fresh young talent on the DJ scene, hailing from Springfield in Massachusetts, at 21 years young he's already been handling the turntables for six years. As you'll noitce by this smooth mix, he specializes in hip-hop and R&B and you'll find tracks from Run DMC, A Tribe Called Quest, Slick Rick, EPMD, Digital Underground, Bobby Brown, Mary J. Blige, New Edition, 2Pac and many, many more. One of the main things that made me take notice and impressed me was how he choosed to mix in Q-Tip's '99 single "Virvant Thing" between late '80s classics by Run DMC and Slick Rick. A quite daring move given the time differences which would have fell flat with the wrong songs but DJ Mellow V pulled it off. He's is currently signed to Cypha Music Group and I wish him all the best in the future, personal and career wise. Originally you had to sign up to MixCrate to download this but after an agreement with the artist, I was given the rights to publish this mix on The Lost Tapes.

01. Run DMC - "Here We Go"
02. Q-Tip - "Virvant Thing"
03. Slick Rick - "Children's Story"
04. EPMD - "The Big Payback"
05. 2Pac - "Rebel Of The Underground"
06. Digital Underground - "Same Song"
07. Sweet G - "Games People Play"
08. A Tribe Called Quest - "Luck Of Lucien"
09. Pete Rock & CL Smooth - "Straighten It Out"
10. Grand Puba - "360* (What Goes Around Comes Around)"
11. Leaders Of The New School - "Sob Story"
12. Nice & Smooth - "Hip-Hop Junkies"
13. Mary J. Blige & Biggie Smalls - "Real Love" [The Remix]
14. Bobby Brown - "Don't Be Cruel"
15. S.O.S. Band - "Just Be Good to Me"
16. Bernard Wright - "Who Do You Love?"
17. Yarbourgh & The People - "Don't You Stop The Music"
18. New Edition - "A Little Bit Of Love is All It Takes"
19. The Gap Band - "Outstanding"
20. Midnight Star - "Curious"


Friday, August 26, 2011

Illus - "Feel Good" [The Johnny Juice Remixes]

This is some pretty cool shit for both fans of Illus and old Public Enemy heads who might remember Johnny Juice who supplemented for/with Terminator X and is sometimes listed as an original Bomb Squad founder. Just listening to the track above I'm really feeling the smooth soulful sound of the beat that blends perfectly with the reminiscing theme of Illus lyrics. The major cuts is a big plus too; it's especially Johnny Juice's involvement that made me curious to check out the full 7-track remix EP found below but the rhyming is on point. Here's a little piece of info supplied by the artist in companion to the download:

“As a special thank you to everyone that has been supporting my projects recently I am proud to offer you the FEEL GOOD Remixes album, produced entirely by the legendary DJ Johnny Juice from Public Enemy and original Bomb Squad founder. Chuck D called the original Feel Good Music "one of the best albums of the year" and with DJ Johnny Juice on the beats remixing, we have created an entirely new sound that builds on the original's passion, heart and soul.”

01. "Ready" (Remix)
02. "Beautiful Day" (Remix)
03. "Old Friends" (Remix)
04. "Have Fun Will Travel" (Remix)
05. "Happy Little Accident" (Remix)
06. "Feel Good Music" (Remix)
07. "Secret Identity" (Remix)


Showbiz & AG - "God is Force"

One of the top three rap MC/producer duo's of all time imo, Showbiz & AG, returns with their new single "God is Force". The track follows "Suspended Animation" as the second leak/single from their forthcoming full-length album "Mugshot Music". The duo is recording at former D&D Studios, now HeadQCouarterz, together with DJ Premier who is acting as an executive producer of the album which most likely we means we'll get at least a few Show bangers with vintage Preemo cuts on top or even a remix. As expected, the song, which is produced by Showbiz and mixed by Preem, don't dissapoint and I for one can't wait for this new release. AG seems to be one of those rare emcees who gets better with his age as he's a reflecting person who's life experience and gained knowledge really shines through in every track he does.

Also if you're skilled in the art of Photoshop or creative design overall, the duo is asking people to send in contributions of their own designed artwork to The illest and best suited entry will be properly credited and used as cover for the retail album. Peace to The DJ Premier Blog for the track and info.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Troy Ave. Ft. Prodigy - "Dirty Martini" (VIDEO)

What's a tired ass Friday morning without some hard ass gangsta shit in the speakers huh? Bang this track loud as fuck and watch out for when P comes in and absolutely bodies this monster at 2:45. Like a comment on YouTube says: "Troy Ave's alright but as soon as Prodigy comes in the whole vibe of the track changes. I'm loving it!"

Blu - "NoYork!" [Full Album]

Another young lyricist that's been delivering alot of interesting music over the last few years is L.A. born rapper Blu. The 26 year old West Coaster has been planning for the release of his new full length album "NoYork!" which he's been working on since at least mid 2010. The plan has been to release it this year via Warner Brothers, but I'm guessing they didn't care to deliver something this left field in the record industry climate of today. Tired of waiting for an official release, Blu, who recently performed at Rock The Bells, and gave out free copies of the full mastered album. I'm not sure if he's officially behind the internet leak of the LP either but it seems he doesn't mind his fans hearing this banger in full already. This is blunted/psychadelic lyrics driven hip-hop that KNOCKS. It's not at all as strong as "Below The Heavens" and some of the beats don't really fit my taste but overall a solid effort and Blu plays his part as well as expected. Producers include Exile, Madlib, Flying Lotus, Sa-Ra and others. If this ever sees an official release y'all should all support for the cause cuz this shit bangs. If anyone feels this link violates the copyright law it will be immediatly taken down, just hit me with an e-mail.

01. "Doin' Nothing" (Ft. U-God)
02. "Everything Ok" (Ft. Jack Davey)
03. "Never Be The Same" (Ft. Sa-Ra & Nola Darling)
04. "Above Crenshaw" (Ft. Cashus King)
05. "Slngbngers!"
06. "Soupa" (Ft. Suzianna Loung)
07. "Hours"
08. "Annie Hall" (Ft. Chop, Cherry Pop & Tiombelockhart)
09. "Tags" (Ft. Exile)
10. "Spring Winter Summer Fall" (Ft. Jimetta Rose)
11. "Down to Earth"
12. "My Sunshine" (Ft. Nia Andrews)
13. "Jazzmine" (Ft. Andy Allo)
14. "Jazzmen"
15. "Ronald Morgan" (Ft. Edan)
16. "Keep Pushin'"
17. "Doin' Something" (Ft. El Prez, UnI, Pac Div, J.Davey, Tiron & Ayomari)

BLU - "NoYork!" [320 KBPS]

Skyzoo - "The Penny Freestyle Series"

Ever since the release of his official debut album, 2009s incredible "The Salvation", Brooklyn born emcee Skyzoo has been highly ranked amongst the new generation of rap heroes. With no signs of slowing down, he kept popping up on mad guest features, doing a coll collaboration LP with producer !llmind and recently released the free project "The Great Debater". And even after that he has been busy treating us with sick freestyles for a number of weeks in what he calls The Penny Freestyle Series. As the final entry of the collection, "Wikipedia Rap", hit the net today, the complete series was also released in one package that's definitely worthy of a download if you missed out on these when they first dropped. Shouts to the good folks @ 2DopeBoyz

01. "Boat Check In" ['Otis' Freestyle]
02. "This & That" ['Lil' Bruh' Freestyle]
03. "Wonderfully I" ['Trouble On My Mind' Freestyle]
04. "Black Hero Music" ['Superman' Freestyle]
05. "Take It There" ['Lift Off' Freestyle]
06. "Wikipedia Rap" ['Failure' Freestyle]


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

More "80 Blocks From Tiffany's"

Over here at The Lost Tapes we always give love The Soul Brother #1 and Camp Lo gets their fair share of props too of course. Unless you guys have a extreme short-term memory you'll remember that the trio decided to join forces under the collective name of 80 Blocks From Tiffany's. From there they released their banging back-to-basics debut single/video "Mic Check" which soon was followed by their official mixtape with DJ Trackstar & Mark DiVita, "The Tiffany Blue Mixtape, Vol. 1"

Besides that "Mic Check" joint the tape almost exclusively featured new Camp Lo freestyles over classic Pete Rock beats or Trackstar blends. This was of course nice and it's great to know for certain that the Camp Lo duo is still not a camp to be fucked with. "The Tiffany Blue Mixtape, Vol. 2" seems like it will be more original material, which will serve as a warm-up to their self-titled debut album which has yet to get a release date according to HipHopDX. There it is also revealed that the album will feature 14 songs (just like the recent Pete/Smif-N-Wessun collaboration LP) and that the sound will largely draw on inspiration from the New York gang life of the 1970's and 1980's which is, of course, where the name of the group comes from (see Wikipedia). 

Below you'll find two singles from the upcoming mixtape which should be out soon. "Pot-A-Butter" (thanks to Jin10304 for the find) has been confirmed to appear on the album as well, albeit it's not certain if it will be the same version, and my favorite of the two; "No Hook (The Ambassadors Theme". Here Pete flips The Ambassadors' soul classic "Ain't Got The Love" which was of course previously used on the P.R./CL Smooth track of almost the same name back in '94.

80 Blocks From Tiffany's - "No Hook"

80 Blocks From Tiffany's - "Pot-A-Butter" [Remix]

Bronze Nazareth w/ Masta Killa & Rebel INS

The second single from Bronze Nazareth's "School For The Blindman" is called "The Road" and features quality apperances from both Wu-Tang Clansmen Masta Killa and Inspectah Deck. The production is classic Bronze with chopped drums and soulful vocal samples on some Wu meets the Detroit sound. Man, I just wish my brother K could hear this joint cuz I know he would've loved it. The video clip above seems to be the official visuals that goes with the song although it's just fight scenes from "Kill Bill, Vol. 1" (which of course, The Abbot himself had a role in scoring and music supervising).

Apathy - "Peace Conneticut"

Apathy has released the third and possible final single from his new album, "Honkey Kong" with a video directed by "Open" Mike Eagle & Greg LaRose and all I can say is that both Apathy and Da Beatminerz (who produced this) absolutely went IN! The album is stacked with fat rhymes and beats provided by the likes of DJ Premier, DJ Muggs, Beatminerz, Evidence, Khrysis, Statik Selektah and cameos by everyone from Xzibit to General Steele and Ill Bill. Support a starving artist and pick it up @ UGHH.

I want to send this track out to my brother Johan Davidsson who I and many of his closest friends were led to believe had already passed on. This happened through misinformation randomly given by the fucking police, seemingly just to mess with peoples mind. He's in critical condition though and I hope and pray that you'll make it through my brother, I'm with you all the way!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Only the Good Die Young...

I learned that one of my closest brothers in this world has returned to the essence this morning, and while I'm certain that my man is in a better place now, the pain and missing of you is almost too much to bear. Kaddu [pictured on my right side below] (1984-2011), you was a stand-up guy if I ever know one and you'll be forever missed and I will always love you and keep you in my heart. Until we meet again... Rest in peace my beloved brother. One Love!

VIDEO: Timbo King / S-N-W / Royce Da '59"

Several clever and interesting music videos to banging songs of the year has been released to the net over the last 24 hour. As usual, instead of making individual posts for every  joint in these type of cases, I merged them all into this bigger post. As some people have complained about the small size of the videos on the site, which is a problem I've tried to fix but I haven't gotten there yet, you can just double click on the video which will open a new window and then pause the video in the window with The Lost Tapes still in it.

Let's kick things off with this absolutely hilarious concept video for Timbo King & R.A. The Rugged Man's brilliant "Higher Ranking". The track is the second single from 'Bo King's equally brilliant "From Babylon to Timbuk2" which I hold as one of the best albums of the year so far, review coming very soon. The CD was released yesterday while the limited edition vinyl edition drops one week later. You can order/pre-order either from, for example, UGHH. Please support real hip-hop while it's still alive and kicking!

Another mad funny concept to me is executed on the third video, which happens to be for the title track, from Pete Rock & Smif-N-Wessun's "Monumental" LP. The trio takes to the streets of London to hijack one of those red double deckers, with the passengers riding along and nodding their heads to Pete Rock's thumping beat and the trio's banging vocals. If you've missed out on it before, check out my review of "Monumental" and once again, please support this album if you're feeling it. 

Last out of our video viewing session for today is the visuals for Royce Da 5'9"s latest album, "Success is Certain" which is in stores now. "Writer's Block" is a sick track which has Royce spitting hard with Eminem providing the hook. An interesting part about the actual viddeo is that it works as kind-of a double feature; about halfway through the beat switches to the DJ Premier remix of the joint. That track only appears on the digital iTunes deluxe edition of the album, but you can download the CDQ of the remix below. You can buy the CD, a version of the album on CD or the LP edition on Amazon.


Oddisee Ft. yU - "Still Doing It"

As I reported a few days ago, Oddisee will release his new instrumental album "Rock Creek Park" in September, which is lead by the first single "The Carter Baron". The always interesting DC producer has already decided to release the second single through always reliable label Mello Music Group. "Still Doing It", which is the only vocal joint on the LP, features 2/3 of Diamond District as it's a collaboration between Diamond District who recently reunited in full on the first single, "Told U So", from Uptown XO's coming album. Check out more about Oddisee @

Oddisee - "Still Doing It" (Ft. yU)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Grap Luva & Damu teams up for EP

Pete Rock's younger brother, former InI member Grap Luva, is no joke on either the mic or on the production side of things as proven on the shelved classic "Center Of Attention". On that album he produced the impeccable joint "Step Up Time", and also created a few other Pete Rock assumed productions like "Markd4Death", "Press Rewind" and "Half Man, Half Amazin'" from "Soul Survivor". While he's been rather quiet over what could've been his glory days, but these two recent videos proved that he has kept up his SP1200 skills to the fullest. And Damu The Fudgemunk is another fantastic producer of the "younger generation" who has released loads of simply incredible instrumental music, most recently on his new label Redefinition Records. If you haven't heard of him yet (I would first ask you if you'd been sleeping under a rock though), quickly check out "This How It Should Sound Vol. 1 + 2".

With such amazing artists it's not hard to figure out that them combined will produce great things and that is just what label Slice-of-Spice Records will treat fans with in a very near future. The A-side will feature two previously unreleased tracks with Grap on the mic, while the B-side will have six previously unreleased Grap Luva SP1200 instrumental beats, fully remastered. Damu The Fudgemunk is featured on this EP as turntablist, producer or engineer/recorder of the material. This is definitely one to watch out for and if you don't believe me you can listen through high quality snippets of ALL THE TRACKS through SoundCloud below (all the songs on the first page is from the EP besiddes the two at the bottom). Enjoy!


Boogie Down Productions' "Philosophy Night"

This is a true piece of hip-hop history right here, straight from the personal archives of Mr. Kevin Beacham. Kevin taped this amazing full 9 minutes radio broadcast of Boogie Down Productions ripping the stage on what was called the "Philosophy Night" party held in The Bronx back in 1988. The event celebrated the release of BDP's new single and video release "My Philosophy" and features The Teacher, KRS-One, on the microphone and D-Nice holding down the turntables. Apparantly WNUR 89.3 didn't broadcast the entire show but the tracks their listeners, and now we thx to Beacham's uploading of his old cassette, were treated to performances of "Up to Date", "Stop the Violence", "Dope Beat" and "I'm Still #1". Head over to Fifth Element Online to read more about the event and don't forget to thank Kevin Becham there for this fantastic upload. All thanks to him for letting me use this piece on The Lost Tapes (right click on the link + save as to download).


Saturday, August 20, 2011

K-DEF - "Most Underrated" (Official Comp.)

It's finally time to premier this fantastic official compilation showcasing K-Def's legacy in the proper way it deserves. This is something we've been working on for a good while, making sure everything is 100% as good as possible; it's a collaboration with Redefinition Records, Justice Equality Supreme at 2DopeBoyz, Chris Moss at Al Lindstrom and myself here at The Lost Tapes

As you should be aware of by now, the legendary producer recently joined Redefinition Records and released the incredible instrumental 7" single "For Def's Sake"/"Time's Change". If you haven't picked it up yet, make yourself a favor and do so while you still have the chance; orer it direct via Redef or Fat Beats. K-Def is currently working on an EP with Raw Poetic and has recently recorded songs with Rob-O so the future promises great things. Aight, so together with the compilation "The Most Underrated", the homie Chris Moss conducted an interview with 'Def where he broke down all the classics we featured on the tape. It's a great companion piece to read while you're listening to the 1 hours worth of incredible productions featuring artists like Lords Of The Underground, Tragedy, Keith Murray, Ol' Dirty Bastard, Ghostface, Real Live, Lord Tariq and many more. Even if you never even heard the works of Kevin Hansford before, I strongly recommend listening to the full tape and I can almost guarantee a new found fandom of the man. Below is K-Def breaking down every track on the compilation in the order they appear on the compilation and at the bottom of the page you'll find two mirror links to the full compilation. Enjoy and TURN IT UP!!

Intro & Interview by Chris Moss
Photos by Dan Love (
Compilation produced by J.E.S.A. Of 2DopeBoyz, Chris Moss, claaa7 Of The Lost Tapes & Redefinition Records

"For a producer -or any artist for that matter- to articulate their vision and have it manifested sonically for the masses to hear is no simple task.  Equally difficult is having that same artist verbally detail the creative processes that went into the creation of that work of art.  Be it painting, writing, rapping, or beat making, describing the intricacies of creation is a difficult undertaking.

I had a chance to talk with K-Def the other day and he is one cat who can put his words down in a similarly poignant fashion as one of his signature drum patterns.  To borrow the title to his latest release on Redefinition Records, he’s adapted quite well as "Time's Change".  K walks us through a sampling of some of his discography and several releases you may or may not be familiar with.  Quite candidly, this selection was chosen not only to illustrate his rightfully earned place in Hip Hop, but also to show the breadth of his catalog and talent.  For a producer to have worked with Diddy and UGK and Ghostface and Ol’ Dirty Bastard is quite an accomplishment.  K-Def gives readers –and listeners- a chance to hear a little insight from the producer himself and some never before shared knowledge into the origins of some of his records.  Pay attention."  

01. "Introducing the Magnificent"
K-Def: “That was done in ’95 and I had just gotten the MPC 3000 hooked up with various sound modules.”  This was really the first time I had started playing keys on my beats.  “The drums came right from a clean-ass, Akai factory drum disk, no sampled drums!”  I was looking to move my production game away from what I had previously been doing and started incorporating more technology into my equipment setup. 

02. "Real Live Shit Remix" (Ft. Real Live/Ghostface/Lord Tariq/Killa Sin/Cappadonna)
K-Def:  “It was a methodical hypnosis beat.  I had programmed the drums and hooked the sample up with the strings and the hard timpani hits.  Everyone wanted to rhyme on this beat and Wu and others were really down to get on this record.  I also have this session on videotape, too.  It was the original version that helped us get a deal with Big Beat/Atlantic.”  

03. "How Nice I Am" (Ft. World Renown)
“This was another methodical hypnosis joint.  I was working on this around the same time as I did Da Youngsta’s song ‘Reality’ and it derived from the same sampled record.  I actually had Illmatic a year before it got released and ‘The World is Yours’ inspired me to do this record.  I won’t reveal the exact song, but I will say it was a Chick Corea sample and I’ll leave it at that.”

04. "Axel's Replay"
K-Def: “I was a big David Axelrod fan.  The more and more I study these guys in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s the more I understand I like to use the same instruments they used.  I found a record of his that had open drums on it and that was rare itself.  I programmed that and played the live sounds over it to emulate the original record without just sampling it.”

05. "Funk Mode" (Ft. Tragedy)
K-Def: “We did a bunch of records together around this time.  We were at Power Play Studios listening to the beat with the break.  I mentioned to him that Brand Nubian just came out with it and he was like, ‘I don’t give a fuck, let’s use it.’  I was just a sample maniac being around Marley a lot.  Trag, once he was done with a record, he was done! (laughs)

06. "Rather Uneke" (Ft. De'1)
K-Def: “He wanted to do it as a DJ record after I had laid the cuts down on this record.  This was the record that set me up to do the ‘Lord Jazz Hit Me One Time’ record afterwards.  Marley saw that I was ready to make that kind of record now.

07. "Pop The Trunk Interlude"
K-Def: “When I came across the sample (mimics the sounds), I was like ‘what the fuck is that.  I pulled the part of the output plug out to separate the frequencies and was able to remove the big kick from the sample.  I wanted to get Red vocals on there, Mobb Deep’s on there, too, all the main dudes that were rockin’ at the time.  I had to argue a little with Big Beat to get this one done.  They weren’t going to clear everything, but I got those two samples on there.”

08. "It's Getting Hot Remix" (Ft. Artifacts)
K-Def: “Me and Larry had our shit out and I was feeling the Buckwild remix the Artifacts did with Busta (Ed. Note:  Artifacts were label mates with Real Live around this time).  Pete (Rock) had this first and I loved ‘In The Flesh’ as I used to ride around to this in my car all the time.  I thought I could change the drums and add a little bit more of the original record with the Akai S3000 since I had more sample time than the SP-1200.  The record never came out, but cats were really feeling this one.”

09. "For Tha Family" (Ft. Mic Geronimo)
K-Def:  “That song started off good, although I didn’t make it for the final mix.  It was a hot record and I was competing with Pete Rock’s ‘Unstoppable’ and Diddy’s record and they went with Diddy’s record.  Mic Geronimo and I were cool: he came through and played basketball.  However, at this point, I was an artist now and focused a little more on Real Live at this point.” 

10. "What I'm After Remix" (Ft. Lords of the Underground/Keith Murray)
K-Def: “That shit was crazy; Keith was amped.  Everyone was yelling loud as hell and Keith was louder than everyone and he said, ‘I want to be heard, Def, I want to be heard!’  Keith was a beast on there. That break is rare and I haven’t told anybody about it either.  I looped it, filtered it and left it like that.”
11. "In This Cold World” (instrumental version)
K-Def: “This is a Lord Tariq record called ‘In This Cold World’ on a white label promo.  He and DJ Enuff came by Sugar Hill Studios at the time and I was playing the beat.  As soon as he heard it, he wanted it!  Tariq is one of the coolest and most fun cats I’ve been in the studio with.  We went to go clear the samples and we couldn’t get them cleared.  The joint did come out on a white label 12” though.”

12. "Come to Me Remix" (Ft. Diddy/Biggie/Voice of Harlem)
K-Def: “Basically, I got the vocals, put my beat to it and put it to their original video by the next day!  Who was doing that sort of thing?  Diddy and everyone loved it to the point where I heard every office at Bad Boy listening to this joint while I was up there.  Unfortunately, the artist I sampled it from wanted 100% of the copyright.  Diddy wasn’t going for that.

13. "Have A Clue"
K-Def: “This is on Willie Boo Boo ‘The Fool.’  My man, 45 King, hipped me to this as I was by his house one day and went crazy for it.  I got the soundtrack and I know no one knows what that is because the part I used is not from the record; it’s from the movie score to that movie and I played every note over.  By the way, it’s from a John Wayne movie and that’s all I can tell you (laughs).

14. "Reality" (Ft. Da Youngsta's)
K-Def: “As I said before, this was the same record that I used for ‘How Nice I Am,’ just a different section.  I wanted to make something melodical for them and have them make something that had substance to it for cats coming of age during that time.  They were getting a little serious with this joint.  Once again, this is in the same vibe as the ‘How Nice I Am.’”

15. "High in the Clouds" (Ft. Ol' Dirty Bastard/Black Rob)
K-Def: “I had the vocals first and I looped up the beat.  I knew if another producer/dj/whatever ever confronts me and he starts poppin’ shit, I’d have to pull out a break that is rough, rugged and funky, all at the same time.  It will automatically get your attention and it’s a gem as far as I’m concerned.  Everything is in the sample, just a loop (laughs), down right and dirty.”

16. "Time Changes"
K-Def: “I haven’t heard a lot of people where someone could take different records and keep it at the same tempo all the way through.  Let me try to put 10 different loops or chop ups together over the drums and see how it turns out.  No one has used those drums and made them sound as loud as I have.  I restored them, got rid of the hiss and put transients on them, too.  I got a copy from the master tape.  Dr. Dre gave me the insight when he put together the Doggystyle album to get the best kick and snare possible when making a track.”     

17. "Monty"
“That joint was done the same time as ‘Crime is Money’ and I used the same drums, too.   The original drums came from a Cash Money & Marvelous Marv record.  Whew, the drums were open and, oh yeah, it was over!”

18. "It's Over" (Ft. Ghostface Killah)
K-Def: “Seven Shawn and this girl, Wahkena, did the hook to that shit.  There were three singers on the original song and Wahkena was able to sing each part over.  Basically, Ghost’s budget for this album was spent.  I came in knowing I could not just use the original sample because the clearance fee was too high.  I replayed everything on this joint-piano, drums, everything

19. "Supa Nigg Outro"
K-Def: “King Tee used that originally for one of his 12” joints and I was a fan of his.  I liked the sample from Carmen McRae and hooked it up.  At first, I didn’t know where the sample originated; but, a record collector from Connecticut came to the Big Beat offices one day and I bought some records from him.  I got home and played them.  Turns out, I had just found the original record that King Tee used for his joint!  This was one of the first beats I did in Cubase around ’97.”  

20. "Next Up" (Ft. UGK/Big Daddy Kane/Kool G Rap) [*]
K-Def: “Marley said he was working with UGK and I think Primo had done the joint originally.  I gave Marley the beat because it was basically done.  I had reprogrammed the drums; I did the whistle and replayed the piano.  This beat was originally called ‘The Symph’ that was released two years earlier on my Willie Boo Boo ‘The Fool’ album.  My drums are crackin’ on that!”   

21. “Chief Rocka” (Lords of the Underground) {*}
K-Def: “I had just seen Marley two weeks prior and I was at his house.  I was thinking that I had no more beats after I gave like 25 joints to him, so I knew I had to get more beats done.  After I had got back to my crib, I went home, vibed, and I pulled out some breaks from here and there and pieced it together with the drums.  Afterwards, I put the beat on and everyone went crazy. This was at time when everyone was focused and Mr. Funke went in!  Even with the rhymes, it set us apart at a time when originality meant everything.  Listen how he sets off the record (mimics the first couple words).  Ten years later when I went to rehook the beat up for an R&B group; I forgot how I originally programmed it.  It was the only beat that I couldn’t figure how to reprogram.  Just a few years later though, I figured it out.  So, we’re good (laughs).