Kendrick Lamar-Ronald Reagan Era Ft. RZA

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After seeing that video with Kendrick Lamar and Wu-Tang clansman RZA, this was the track I was most pumped for off of #Section80. It doesn’t disappoint either, it’s a straight banger. Production by Tae Beast with a pretty dope beat. Thinking it’s a little generous to say the track is “featuring” RZA as I’m pretty sure he only has one line. Whatever, it’s not like K-Dot has needed any assistance with the stuff he’s been putting out lately. Used to think Kendrick had some pretty bland lyrics, but he’s been keeping me engaged as of late.

First “HiiiPoWer,” then “Sex With Society,” and now “Ronald Reagan Era?” Shit, Kendrick, #Section80 is starting to shape up as potentially one of the best music releases of the year. I’ve never been too fond of this guy but with the music he’s been putting out lately, I think this kid may be alright. Oh, by the way, #Section80 drops July 2nd.


Download: Kendrick Lamar-Ronald Reagan Era Ft. RZA

Cris Cab-Foreword EP

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I know I’m incredibly lateon this, as everyone and their mother has should jump on this EP, but it definitely deserves a post. I’ll start by saying that I downloaded this on a whim. I’ve never been a big Jack Johnson fan, nor any music like this at least 90% of the time. I’m not sure what it is but, it’s nothing that tickles my fancy.

So, I downloaded the EP the day it came out and there it sat until I checked out the “No Hatred” music video. That was the point when I decided I’d dust it off (in my iTunes) and see what I thought of it. Absolutely dope. Maybe I’m a jackass, but I was definitely expecting something less reggae. I knew I thought he was some Jack Johnson-Dave Matthews hybrid, but as I listened to it more, I started to see him more as a white Bob Marley, with a better, smoother voice. Or Maroon Five and Slightly Stupid’s more chill and mellow younger brother that has a penchant ability to play some music and get chicks panties to drop. You get the picture.

Overall, the EP is incredible. It’s one of those kickback in your chair, while sipping on some Stella Artois (or something American if you prefer) kinda things. Totally chill music that you could listen to for hours and not notice what time it was, or that you listened to the same song at least four times already. I’m gonna say my favorite song on the EP is “Better Off Running” but it’s not like there are any songs on the album that I feel the urge to skip. The revisited “Black and Yellow” track is also amazingly dope; Cris was kind enough to toss that on the EP as a bonus track. This kid is destined to do big things and with support from huge artists like Pharrell, it seems like the sky is the limit. Which is only slightly higher than the clouds you’ll feel like you’re on when you play this ish.

Cop the album for free on Cris Cab’s Official Site

or,

If you’re feeling generous, snag it on iTunes for $6.93

Big Sean-Finally Famous Album Stream

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Looks like with all the leaks on his Finally Famous album, Big Sean decided to let the whole album stream on Soundcloud. Big props to BS for doing this, hopefully it will quell the amount of illegal downloads before the actual release of the album. I was kind of thinking this album was going to be a bit overhyped, but I gave it a spin and it sounds pretty damn solid. Favorite songs right now are “High” and “Memories” but I can see a few other tracks growing on me, and again I think it’s solid enough that many people are going to varying favorite songs. Definitely not a one trick pony and I’ll be coping the album July 28th. So here’s to a G.O.O.D. artist putting out a quality album.

Preorder the album here

J Cole-Work Out

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Looks like it’s shaping up to be a Cole summer. Oh, me and my terrible puns. J Cole dropped off this (approved) track on his blog yesterday saying:

Gotta love the Warm Up tribute on the artwork. How that lined up to the sample clearing today is God working.

Thanks to Kanye West, Paula Abdul.

Obviously it’s a sample over Kanye West’s “New Workout Plan” from one of the greatest albums of all time, College Dropout. I’m just curious, but how many other artists have successfully sampled this song by Yeezy? I honestly can’t think of one off the top of my head. J Cole keeps his nice lyrics and flow going over the track. I’m not sure when Jermaine’s album is supposed to come out, but stuff like this is getting me hyped. It’s a shame J Cole disapproved of the “Lost Ones” leak because that truly was one of the best J Cole songs I’ve ever seen. Oh well, I’m  hopeful it will come out sooner or later. Overall, the track has 90s rap feel with a touch of some funk. This definitely seems to be more of an attempt to get his music some radio play before the album comes out. Good but not great, first single off of J Cole’s upcoming album.

Download: J Cole-Work Out

BEeFF-DAViD Mixtape

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BEeFF stands for Bertran, Evan, and of course, every fucking female. The guys are from West Los Angeles. From what I’ve heard, women can be found everywhere. Bertran also goes by BC, as in he is part of the duo that made the Prehistoric Honey Baked Sounds mixtape. That tape was dope, and so is the DAViD tape.

I’m not sure how to describe the sound of BEeFF. If NERD and the Cool Kids had an evil step-brother with an diagnosed case of mild Bipolar disorder, this wold be it. Oh, and this brother also has a penchant for making head-scratching, yet amusing and hilarious songs. A little different sound from BC’s work with Jasyc, as it has a bit less otherworldly beats. But, this tape is still good as fuck. I’ve given it a few listens all the way through already and I think “<3 LA” is the song that best embodies the work that BEeFF is capable of doing. Lazy, dope beat over some clever lyrics. Every track is pretty solid and you’ll laugh out loud at least a couple times throughout the twelve tracks. So grab a beer, steam a J and vibe out to the DAViD Mixtape by BEeFF.

Download: BEeFF-DAViD mixtape

Frank Ocean-Novacane (Official Video)

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Some new new official visuals for the hit “Novacane” by Odd Future’s most controversial neutral artist, Frank Ocean. If you haven’t bough, Nostalgia, Ultra yet, I won’t judge you, however, you can cop it here. Nostalgia, Ultra is set to be re-released by Def Jam on July 26th.

The video shows Frank being “numb” to everything going on with his gurl. Next level/other worldly stuff going on and Frank is sporting a pretty dope shirt. Oh, a nice surprise ending too, that’s gotta hurt.

 

Happy Birthday Tupac Shakur

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Happy Birthday to the late LeSane Parish Crooks. The man known as Tupac Shakur was born on this day in 1971.

In my eyes, even today, Tupac is one of the most influential artists in hip-hop, rap, and music as a whole. If any artist said they weren’t influenced or at least inspired by the man, I would call them a liar; he was one of the biggest artists of his time and even now, almost 15 years later, people still vibe to his music. Tell me that while listening to “California Love” you can’t just stop what you’re doing and starting to get into the music; head-bobbing, terrible white person dancing, whatever, you can’t do it. Go ahead, I’ll give you a minute.

You know how people can always tell you an artist or album that they would listen to, even though they were terrified that their parents would flip out if they knew what they were listening to, but still did it anyway? Yeah, that artist was Tupac for me.

I think when I was in 5th grade or so, I was so obssessed enthralled with Tupac that I read a biography on the guy. People always saw him just as an artist that spoke about issues, and had illicit lyrics. The dude was an intellectual; he read The New York Times daily and just listening to his interviews, you knew the guy was a lot deeper than what he showed on the surface. I read that book cover to cover at least five times before I got to high school, which was only one less time I read Hoop Dreams, which was my go to book for, like I don’t know, forever. He read Machiavelli while in jail and even went by Makiveli as a homage to one of my favorite political theorists. Somewhat related, I was kind of pissed when Lil Wayne sang “Hail Mary” at his MTV Unplugged bullshit. Yeah, it was a nice ode to Pac, but I don’t think it hit the mark, at least for me.

I’m not really going into the whole he faked his own death thing because from the reading I’ve done, it sounds like he had hundreds of unreleased tracks that were obviously found/released after he died. People liken it to Machiavelli faking his own death, but Machiavelli never did that; he only advocated it in The Art of War. I used to cling to the hope that Pac was still alive chilling with Steve Bartman, Osama Bin Laden and Dave Chappelle but Chappelle resurfaced, Osama is obviously no more, and well, the only people that care about Bartman are Cubs fans. Who technically don’t count as people. White Sox, what up?

Obviously, Tupac has a lasting legacy as one of the greatest ever; some of this could be attributed to his untimely death, but while he was alive the guy made fucking good music. I have a friend that only listens to country music. Well country music and Tupac; I think that says a lot of the guys ability to cross over to many people, especially those that aren’t familiar with hip-hop. In some weird way, he made hip-hop more acceptable to all people, or at least closer to center stage with American music; along with Biggie, of course. Their deaths kind of ended the East vs West rivalry because people realized how pointless the whole dispute was.

I don’t know, it sucks that we still have the same problems now that were around them. Racism is obviously still around, at least subtly. Politics are still a problem. Basically, nothing has really changed that much, but to me he was one of the most high profile artists to actually speak on issues. Sorry for the rant and totally unformulated thoughts, I was planning on making this a short post but I kept typing. Shit, my bad. In a nutshell, if you get nothing else from my ramblings, just remember this; when Tupac and Biggie died, hip-hop died a little bit too. And for better or worse, it’s never been the same.

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