Veeay feat. Boldy James “Play It Cool”

Here’s the second single, “Play It Cool”, from Philly native Veeay’s upcoming release Pieces. It’s a laid back affair featuring Detroit’s Boldy James.  The MC’s trade verses over a devilishly relaxed instrumental from Eardrum.  This one is for Friday evenings after you’ve cashed that check.  Feet up and exhale towards the ceiling…that’s an order.

Kendrick Loves Himself…But We Already Knew This

Kendrick Lamar can do no wrong…at least that’s what the hipster blogosphere wants you to believe.  Well, fuck that.  His new single “i” is the epitome of playing it safe.  Following his verse on “Control”, an unreleased remix carefully orchestrated to shake shit up, he drops the first single from the next episode of the Kendrick saga. And it’s a colossal let down.

From the contrived cover art depicting a blood and a crip gang-signing hearts while their colors fly, to the Isley Brothers sample-heavy cheesiness throughout, “i” is the equivalent of a toppled ice cream cone in the summer sun. You desperately wanted to eat the hell out of that cone, but the powers that be saw it fit to wipe that happiness away.

Pressing play on this one yesterday made me shake my head at that cone splattered sidewalk and wonder what it would have tasted like had the ice cream gods given a shit about my feelings. Love yourself and take a listen.  Comment below if you care enough.

 

 

Your Old Droog Is A Real Boy

This just in…Your Old Droog exists in the flesh, and he still ain’t Nas.  His September 3rd Webster Hall show finally put an end to the drama and the chatter that Droog was in fact Nasir Jones, and he did so with gusto.  This kid is dead fucking serious, and could very well tilt the axis of hip-hop end over end.

Sure the comparisons are there.  Droog’s cadence and breath control are eerily similar to Nas and other hip-hop heavyweights, but what he gives away in familiarity he dramatically earns back in his effortless, gargantuan bars.  He isn’t aping the culture; instead he’s studied the classics in order to hone his craft.

This Droog/Nas debate is the stuff the rabid internet clamors for. Hopefully that nonsense doesn’t dead the facts.  This kid is a phenom, and could be the next great rapper to emerge from NYC. His free EP is chock full of dusty samples and nostalgia so thick you forget he’s in his early 20’s.  Substance over style is what makes a rapper a MC, and Droog’s got the goods.  Lets hope he’s built for this fickle game.

Death Of Print Media: XXL Magazine To Go Digital

XXL

According to the NY Post, XXL Magazine is the next print source to be put to bed after being purchased by Townsquare Media.  While the magazine will exist online, it will no longer print and circulate in its original glossy form.

What does this mean for the culture?  To many, not much.  Digital media has steadily replaced traditional print methods for a decade, but there’s something to be said for grabbing your favorite mag in the airport or on vacation by the pool.  XXL’s notoriety took off after their annual “Freshman List” became a battleground for discussion and debates the past few years.  Let’s hope the reported 11 staff members who will be offered jobs keep their integrity in tact and continue to deliver the niche brand of hip-hop coverage we’ve come to expect over the last 17 years.

Run The Jewels 2. It’s About Time.

I hope today’s post makes your dog-shit Monday a tad less awful. Run The Jewels, the rap juggernaut of El-P and Killer Mike, are gearing up for the October 28th release of RTJ2 via Mass Appeal. For free.  If you haven’t heard the first record, you’re fucking up. This duo shouldn’t work, but their collective “we shit on any and everyone” attitude is undeniable.  They’re not the biggest names in the game, but after one listen it doesn’t matter.

Rappers like you get robbed for your chains.

Interpol- El Pintor

El Pintor, the 5th studio album from New York’s Interpol, sounds something like hitting 40 homers in a contract year.  It’s not as if anyone had written the band off quite yet; but they seemed to have faded into the crowded memories of music fans who once became enamored with the garage revival of the early 2000’s. What made Interpol stand out was their Mod Squad cool factor. Pissy and proficient, Interpol’s gloom juxtaposed their natural flair.

El  Pintor whips itself into a tight little frenzy reclaiming the Mood King crown.  “All The Rage Back Home” is a pitch perfect opener that beckons 2002 with a delicate balance of energy and regret.  “Same Town New Story” sports a haunting riff buried under swirling keys and a harmony that would make Bon Iver proud.  Re-imagining the band as a three piece took some time, but in true artist form El Pintor’s broad strokes illustrate Interpol’s exciting future.

Meek Mill feat. Mac Miller- ‘I Like It’

Meek and MacWhile you scream “Free MEEK”, I’ll just sit and wait patiently for his highly anticipated sophomore record, Dreams Worth More Than Money, while devouring leaks like this one featuring Mac Miller.

These two couldn’t possibly have more distinctly different flows, yet “I Like It” it works.  Mac destroys his verse, more than holding his own. Meek gets out of the lock up in October and should be finalizing DWMTM for a holiday release. Enjoy this one loud.