The idea of having a Rakaa solo album might seem daunting, especially for some hip-hop fans who may be diehard supporters of Dilated Peoples but are uncertain of any solo project. If you are a Rakaa fan, you don’t have to worry about this one being a disappointment, or at least I wasn’t worried.
Crown Of Thorns (Decon): I mean look at the title right there. Is it a metaphor to suggest that he knew and expected to be put up on a metaphorical cross, to risk exposure and ridicule, or shameless praise? Or is it a means of honor? Regardless of how you read the title, it’s an album where the man known as Iriscience is able to keep one foot on the side of that “real hip-hop” but another to continue on with a more accessible side that Dilated Peoples attempted to do with their last album. By being accessible does not mean he’s trying to make sellout music, whatever that may mean in 2010. What you do hear is someone who knows he can’t remain true to one person’s view of what hip-hop should be, but one must be diverse, just like Rakaa himself.
I’ll put it this way. While the attitude that Kanye West has shared in his music is nothing new, there’s a bit of that swagger, sans ego, in some of Rakaa’s delivery, and the thing about it is that it works. When he hits us up with some dope rhymes over incredible beats, it does not sound dated one bit. There’s an old school feel, without a doubt, but it’s very much in the now, the same way Slug (of Atmosphere) and Blueprint do it. You still have the top notch clever rhymes, there’s still the deliver you know and love, that one that may have made him your LL Cool J or Rakim or KRS-One.
I’m from the school where rappers were heroes because we honored their voices, rapping techniques, and level of intelligence, we were down with the flow from someone in the know. While Rakaa is someone perhaps too humble to call himself a hero, he is someone who takes pride in what he does and shares that with the world. To rock the mic means not only wanting to be heard, but knowing you have the capabilities on how to be heard. There’s a level of confidence on Crown Of Thorns that comes from someone who knows and loves what he’s doing, and the one thing I love about the album is that he sounds like he’s having fun. A perfect representation of what hip-hop music is.
Last year around this time, you were not able to say what I’m about to say in the second sentence. Grammy-nominated Foreign Exchange will be returning with their third album, Authenticity (+FE Music), which is said to be a deeper exploration into what both Phonte Coleman and Nicolay Rook have wanted in their sound as FE.
The album will be released on CD and MP3, and yes, as double vinyl. I’m very glad FE are choosing to keep the vinyl light alive, so vinyl junkies, so some support when the album goes on sale October 12th.
ACTUAL PROOF – COMPETITORS from Pricefilms on Vimeo.
This song, produced by 9th Wonder, is from Actual Proof‘s self-titled EP due out next week Tuesday. The video was put together by the guys at Pricefilms, keeping things close to home with that North Carolina connection.
These guys should not be confused with the jazz Actual Proof from Charlotte, North Carolina.
Sahara Smith has been compared to the likes of Emmylou Harris and Alison Krauss, all before she released her debut album. That album is called Myth Of The Heart (Playing in Traffic), and will no doubt get a lot of critical acclaim not only because it was produced by T Bone Burnett (which may make it a Grammy contender with his name alone) but because the music is that good. I love the sound of “Thousand Secrets”, as it doesn’t sound like one distinct style or era. You’ll hear subtle electronica influences in this with the percussion and clock loops, and the compressed drums that would make it perfect on any trip hop anthem, but this is not about the boom bap, but rather an exploration of earthiness from different places to create the sound that is Sahara Smith.
Or just look at her name. Smith may sound ordinary, but Sahara almost brings to mind exploration and discovery. Discover her as she hits the road next month in support of Myth Of The Heart, including a few in-store performances. Some of these days will also feature Raul Malo
Sept 8 – Austin, TX @ Waterloo Records (In-Store Performance)
Sept 9 – Austin, TX @ Shady Grove
Sept 15 – Brooklyn, NY @ Union Hall
Sept 16 – New York, NY @ Living Room
Sept 17 – Philadelphia, PA @WXPN Live at Noon/World Café Session
Sept 18 – Boston, MA @ Toad
Sept 23 – Fort Worth, TX @ 8.0 Bar
Sept 29 – Austin, TX @ Antone’s w/ Raul Malo
Oct 2 – Houston, TX @ House Of Blues (Bronze Peacock Room) w/ Raul Malo
Oct 5 – Kansas City, MO @ Knockelhead’s w/ Raul Malo
Oct 6 – St. Louis, MO @ Old Rock House w/ Raul Malo
Oct 8 – Austin, TX @ Austin City Limits Festival
Oct 28 – Austin, TX @ Cactus Café
NeptunePinkFloyd.co.uk reports that electronic music pioneers The ORB have collaborated with guitarist David Gilmour for the group’s forthcoming album, Metallic Spheres, due out in October. According to the article, all artist royalties will be going to helping British hacker Gary McKinnon fight off extradition to the USA. Considering that some of The ORB’s music could be considered hacking to some degree, it would make sense that they would take to McKinnon’s cause.
Also, it would also make sense for them to be working with Gilmour, since they were often called “the Pink Floyd of ambient” by critics, and of course their Live ’93 album featured homage to the 1977 album Animals.
A love song which features this excerpt as the chorus;
She can be a saint, she can be a looker
she can make love, fuck like a hooker
If the right one came along
God knows I’d do her wrong
The wrong way
The only way I know
It’s far from I’m so horny, that’s okay, my will is good but you can’t be that good and clever every day.
It’s along the same vibe as current-day Linkin Park, you may find it to be of interest. Take a listen to Atom Smash.
You probably have heard of the news that Actor Laurence Fishburne has a daughter named Montana, who claims that Kim Kardashian is a role model of hers because she was able to do a sex tape and become more popular than before. As Chippie D, Fishburne wants to go for it all, to the delight and disgust of many.
Here’s a music video by porno performer Brian Pumper (a/k/a B. Pumper) featuring Fishburne as a dancer. Since high definition video tends to let everyone see everything, the fact that she is indeed shaved is not the issue, it’s the fact that no one tried to touch up the boil scars on her ass. The hook of the song sounds like he’s singing “oh, anus shave/oh, anus shave”, which could spark a unique phenomenon if interpreted as such. In today’s musical climate, this will either become as popular as Ray J., or become as moving as a Traci Lords 12″ single or Hyapatia Lee‘s cover of “Telephone Man”.
While he has been concentrating on a Hollywood career in recent years, with appearances in CSI:NY, Nelly is still doing his thing in the music business, in fact he has a new album due out very soon. This is a taste of it, in the form of “Tippin’ In Da Club”. Click here (4.71mb) for a listen.
Response song, “Tippin’ At Da Farm (Country Grammar Part II: Sip The Teets)”, is inevitable.
Okay, you’re probably thinking “oh no, John, please don’t turn your website into a typical pop culture rumor mill” and I will not. What I found interesting about this article is that it mentions a common thing between Alicia Keys and Fantasia Barrino, which wouldn’t matter if it wasn’t for the fact that they’re both in the spotlight for alleged affairs. Normally, my interest in this would end because I could care less. The article, however, goes out of their way to suggest that one of these ladies seems to be getting bashed for her actions, while the other seems to be free from any wrongdoing. Not only that, but the article makes an attempt to suggest why this is so.
Click to TheRoot.com to read the full article.