Repost: All of my non-Aesop album tracks. EVER.

So, someone on facebook recently hit me up asking about some random track I did a long time ago and I was reminded of these three compilations. Basically, I took all the tracks (at least the ones that i remembered and could find) that I’ve ever produced that weren’t on Aesop albums, and gave you three installments of music. All in all, 39 songs. Some very rare, some, not so much. But, I figure there are a lot of people out there who like having everything. This should suffice. Some of this stuff dates back to the late 90’s so, you know, this is some throwback shit right here.
It should also be noted that these were compiled before I did any of the albums with Illogic, Billy Woods and Marq Spekt so, obviously, I’m not including those. Also, go buy those. Help me buy that picture of a yacht I’ve been eyeing.
Anyway, here is a ton of free music. Enjoy and please never tell me I never gave you anything.
1)Apology: Vast Aire & Aesop Rock

2)Meditation: Johnny 23

3)Smokin’ them trees: Blair Cosby (AKA Camu Tao)

4)In Crowd: Chase Phoenix

5)A thousand apologies: Chase Phoenix

6)Hotel no motel:Lodeck
7)Scenester: Cage

8)Tough Guy: Chase Phoenix

9)Beautiful Disease: Lodeck

10)Blood boy: Cage

11)Get rich (or try dying): Despot

12)Killing time: Illogic Feat. Aesop Rock

13)Unicycle (water cycle): Cryptic One
1)Substance D: Despot

2)Twenty Something: Chase Phoenix

3)Stripes: Cage

4)Feed me grapes: Lodeck

5)Mermaid pornography: Mac Lethal

6)Love to fuck: S.A. Smash feat. Aesop Rock

7)Room the breath: Hangar 18

8)Struggles: Vordul Mega

9)Haunting:Chase Phoenix

10)Bicycle(Gold cycle): Cryptic 1

11)I pollute: Lodeck

12)Tuscon: Isaiah Toothtaker
1)Applause: Lodeck

2)Crap Artists: Despot

3)Too Heavy for Cherubs: Cage

4)The west Wing: Hangar 18

5)Fishin’!: Blair Cosby (AKA Camu Tao)

6)Happy Pillz: Murs Feat Aesop Rock

7)Secret Agents: Chase Phoenix Feat. Aesop rock

8)Sticky Pigs Feet: Chase Phoenix

9)Midnight Manhattan: Mac Lethal

10)Demon-str8: Lodeck

11)PAtience: Chase Phoenix

12)Miss By a Mile: Slug, Eyedea and Aesop Rock

13)Tricycle: Cryptic 1

14)Winds Know Better: Isaiah Toothtaker Feat WitchDoctor

Root for the hometown kid! Dinosaur Burps.

I’ve been doing these demo reviews for a few years now. Over the course of the two years, I’ve heard some really bad music, some very good music and , mostly, a lot of mediocre stuff that is neither here nor there. While the bad music is almost the most fun , every now and then , a group I review with actually stand out as music I would actually listen to in my spare time. In the case of these demo reviews, that’s happened twice. One time was this dude Vernon Bridges but the other time was a group out of West Virginia with a funny name. Dinosaur Burps.
I actually liked them so much I even did a “Yay or Nay?” with them, in which they were “Yay’d” by a landslide.
Well, it’s been a year or so and it would appear they have a new album out. I’ve heard it. I like it. Now you should hear it.
It’s called “Awesome Stuff we did when nobody was looking”

This is one of my personal favorites from the album

and here’s a new video

Check these guys out! I feel as they’re the hometown kid done good. See, dreams do come true. Kinda. I mean, it’s only my blog but still, I’m proud of these dudes.

Ask Dr. Tony vol. 38

Oh hello there. Welcome to another edition of “Ask Dr. Tony”. While my name is Tony, I am not actually a doctor. In fact, i dropped out of college after one year and never looked back. That said, though my qualifications are shady at best, i do think I give good honest advice. Especially to strangers that I have no emotional connection to whatsoever. I got no reason to lie to you or blow smoke up your ass. Might as well be brutally honest. So, if you want some advice (Life, love or other), send me a question. I’d love to try and help you see the light. Email them to me at or leave them in the comment section below. it’s all anonymous so don’t worry about exposing yourself. No one knows you, it’s the internet.
Let’s see what was in the mail bag this week…

I recently got back together with an ex and could use your input.

Obviously, you’re not a fan. I didn’t think I was either. However, I realized that I do still have feelings for this guy and he never really stopped trying to get me back for the two years that we were apart (together 4 years before that). Before we broken up he had gotten me a ring (that I didn’t know about) and he would always say that it’s here waiting for me and that he cried every day for months when we broke up. We were best friends and it definitely sucked to be apart, although necessary. I’m proud of him for getting his life together, considering him having a dead-end job, etc and me moving for an awesome job was the cause of our demise. We’ve both matured a lot of made some positive life changes.

So far things are going well but I am having a lot of insecurity over the fact that while, yes, he kept in contact with me, he did have two other girlfriends. Both of which he broke up with to try to talk to me again. Obviously, the dude is hardcore crazy about me and is going above and beyond to prove that now that we are back together. I love him. My insecurity comes from the fact that while I dated around in the past 2 years, I never had a boyfriend. He actually did have these other relationships and I’m having a hard time not feeling jealous over them, even though I know I shouldn’t.

I made the mistake of Facebook creeping on them and being a typical girl, I felt pretty shitty comparing myself to them even though it’s apparent that my boyfriend wants me over anyone else. That’s part of why I decided to give him another chance, no one has ever pursued me on the level that he has. These girls were pretty though and he obviously liked them for at least a couple months. Reading their stupid posts about spending time with him was gut-wrenching. I’m aware of how dumb it was to find them on Facebook but it definitely proved that I still care deeply about this guy.

We’ve definitely talked about how in order to make this work, we both have to let go of the past. I agree, and I can forgive him for the mistakes he made in our previous relationship…but him pursuing me now (and even then) while he had two other short relationships kinda irks me.

Also, when I was dating around I had some pretty crappy experiences with guys who I liked but never liked me back on the same level. I was hurt in those situations and I find myself a little bit insecure from that, too, and basically I’m just completely overwhelmed with shitty thoughts, mostly about myself, even though this guy is being totally amazing to me now.

I honestly never thought I’d get back together with him but we ran into eachother at a store one day and haven’t stopped talking since. We’ve been “official” again for only a week though. I spent a lot of time getting over him (even though I was the one who initiated the break-up), having fun doing the single thing, did a lot of great things for myself career-wise, but I constantly felt more and more lonely, which led me to feel shitty about myself as well.

For the record, I do see a therapist now, for the past like 6 months because I realized how negative I can be towards myself.

My questions for you are:

Is this relationship worth pursuing, in your opinion? Am I crazy for liking my ex again? haha
How do I get past being insecure and jealous of his exs?

And do you think this sorta overwhelming feeling will pass? We’ve only been back together for a week.

Hmm..Could you perhaps write maybe 15 more paragraphs about this? Cause I don’t think this novella quite covered it. Just kidding but, goddamn…this is a long ass question.
Before I even answer your questions specifically, I just wanna point out that it sounds like, even though you broke up on agreed terms you’re butthurt over the fact that he was better at being single than you. He had two girlfriends and you only dealt with dickheads. But , keep in mind, you can’t gauge peoples relationship successes by what’s written on facebook walls. In fact, I’d argue that people who post corn ball lovey dovey shit on their facebook walls about new relationships are incredibly insecure. If the relationship was that good, you wouldn’t have time to post that stuff. You’d be too busy being happy and having tons of sex with that person. Now, as for your questions…
Is this relationship worth pursuing, in your opinion? Am I crazy for liking my ex again? haha
I’m normally anti-get back together with ex’s but , in this case, it seems the reason you guys broke up was not a rift as much as you moved. For that reason, i don’t see why you can’t be back with this dude.

How do I get past being insecure and jealous of his exs?
No offense but it sounds to me like this insecurity you have is deeper than just his ex’s. I’m willing to bet, when you were single, dudes sniffed that out and walked all over you. Thus your tough time as a single lady. There is no one thing you can do to get past being insecure and jealous. In both cases, you know it’s not the right thing to feel but that doesn’t make it just go away. It’s just how you feel. I would hope, one day, that you will just realize that there is no point to being jealous of his life as a single guy after you broke up. He didn’t do anything wrong. In fact, it sounds to me like he may be a needy dude who always needs a girlfriend. Regardless, what he did post your break up has nothing to do with how he feels about you. Clearly, the dude is on your jock again. Like I said, i smell wafts of a “needy/i can’t be single” kinda guy but it doesn’t matter. If you let these things that are so out of your control have an effect on you, you’ll never feel okay. Sometimes you just gotta accept what happened and let it go. If it’s too much for you to handle, then it’s not gonna work. But, just a warning, every guy you ever date will have a history that could make you insecure and jealous, if you let it.
And do you think this sorta overwhelming feeling will pass? We’ve only been back together for a week.
I would hope it will pass. That’s really on you. The way I see it, if you’re actually happy to be back with guy, you guys should be on cloud 9 right now. Especially cause it’s like a new relationship all over again. But if you’re sitting around feeling shitty about it and questioning everything and it’s only been a week? Good luck with all that. It’s only gonna get worse.

I’ve been listening to your music since the myspace days and reading your posts in the def jux site, etc and it seems like during your 20’s you were trying to figure everything out (music and life) and in your 30’s you got established, wifed up…

I don’t know you personally so I might be completely wrong, but it seems like I’m in a similar timeline. I’m in my late 20’s now and I’m also an artist, I enjoy my freedom, etc… I’ve been in relationships but I feel like I want to get my career working and other things cleared (taxes? shittt), before starting a serious relationship again and the rest of other things that other of my friends are already into, which sometimes makes me think that I should be also doing those things before it’s too late? I’m literally the only non wifed-up in my group of friends

How was it for you? It just happened to be like this or was it a decision that you perhaps made unconsciously? Because nobody wants to be that dude on his 40’s getting maaad drunk on a tuesday night and getting laid or not (oh, wait…)

I’d say it was a little of both. When I hit 30 I started feeling like “hmm…I should probably look to settle down a little”. I didn’t mean getting married (I’m still not married) but just kinda start being an adult for real. That said, it’s not like I was looking to wife up any girl I could stick my dick in. I definitely happened to meet the right girl and the timing was coincidental. I could have easily never met her and remained single for years after that feeling that same “I should settle down” itch. For better or worse. But, I can’t lie, there was a bug in the back of my mind subtly reminding me that I’m not 21 anymore.
That said, looking at it now, 30 seems young as shit and I honestly don’t think anyone should rush into anything unless it’s what they want.
I feel as though the pressure for men to settle down and have kids is less now than it ever was. In the minds of men, that is. Especially in big cities where there are endless single women. I can feel a difference in that pressure between now and 10 years ago. It’s like the desire to nest for men has been ruined by internet porn or something. This is actually terrible news for women in the same age range cause it fucks up to balance. Now you got tons of single girls in their mid 30’s looking for a good guy but every dude their age is either wifed up or terrified of them cause they don’t wanna be that serious and they can smell the desperation on a typical single 35 year old girl who clearly just wants to get married as soon as possible. It’s actually kind of a problem. Even worse is when guys just assume every girl they meet over the age of 30 is trying o get married and they won’t even let a casual relationship breath because of those fears. It’s really a lose/lose for all the single girls out there. It’s cold world!

I’m 24 and recently moved in with my lovely gf. I was producing and experimenting with samples, soft synths, drum loops, jamming with strangers (I’m new to my current city) etc.. before we moved in. Now that we live together it seems that almost 90% of that time has been spent on mundane errands or just plain mental and physical exhaustion. I mean, I never went to the grocery store twice a week or had to pick up birth control with the lady before, and now it seems that once i leave my menial paying 9-5, I can’t quite fit in my personal time unless it’s scheduled days in advance. My question: how does one balance adulthood with the current hopes and dreams their youth?

Living with someone is all about compromise. You’re going to have to do shit you don’t wanna do…all the time. That said, how much can one really go to the grocery store for it to be enough to feel like it’s taking all your time? That doesn’t even make sense.
Errands are errands. They don’t take that long. As for the mental and physical exhaustion, I’m not clear on where that’s coming from. you said you quit your menial job so, i assume you mean that dealing with your girlfriend is so tiring, you don’t have time for yourself? If so, guess what? You either have a shitty girlfriend or you’re a pussy. Either way, having time to yourself in crucial to any relationship. Moving in with someone should not mean that your life and desires to live a fulfilling life suddenly no longer exist. Perhaps you can talk to her about this. Explain that you need to have time every week to be creative. I can’t imagine any person , who’s not an asshole or crazy, not respecting that. I don’t know how big/small your place is but surely you can go in a room somewhere, shut the door and make music. If even doing that is a issue within your relationship, you’re in for a nightmare. I feel as though the ability to be apart from each other happily is just as important as how you get along when you’re together. Both are necessities to a healthy relationship.
So, basically, it’s on you to find time to do what you want to do. You’re 24. Adulthood’s pretty fucking new to you (honestly, I’d advise against any 24 year old living with their significant other, but that’s a different question). at 24, “dreams of youth” are still in effect. You’re still very young. Talk to me in ten years. If you’re still twiddling knobs and making bedroom music that no ones heard or cares about at age 34, then it might be time to reevaluate how you spend your free time. But now? this is when you do that and figure that shit out.

I got a trivial question for you, Block, however it involves Crocs, so you know, not so trivial after all.

Me and the girlfriend are going on vacation this september. We want hot weather, the sun, the sea and shit like that. The place that looks like the best deal for us is all good, however the beaches there are apparently pretty damn rocky. Since we both want to go to the sea and not just sit near the pool like all these fat tourist slobs that never leave the hotel, this presents a problem. In past years I’ve been on a few rocky beaches and going through all these fuckin rocks every time you want to swim is kind of a pain in the ass, especially with waves crashing on you when you try to find your footing and not look like an idiot or fall on all these rocks and shit. The few reviews I read on this place advises some swimming footwear. In the past I tried flip flops (I only wore them in the hotel room or on the beach, never on the stret), but these are kind of really unreliable in the sea and you can lose these fuckers easily when a wave catches you.

So for the first time in my non-Crocs wearing life, I am considering buying shitty, cheap Crocs-type of things for the sole purpose of commuting from the beach to the sea. Obviously, I am very conflicted. Crocs are embarassing and shitty and make you look like an idiot, but at the same time so does falling on some rocks or walking like you’ve just learned to make your first steps when you submerge/emerge in/from the sea. Everything else about that vacation deal is great, so I don’t plan to go anywhere else, but I find myself in a comfort vs bad looks kind of situation.

If you were in my predicament, what would YOU do? Would you just do what I usually did and stumble your way into the sea like an idiot, or would you say “fuck what anybody thinks, Crocs seem to be the best solution for my problem”? Would you recommend me some other cheapass “beach footwear” that I am unaware of but would work better? HELP ME.

Listen, I’m the biggest asshole on earth when it comes to judging people for their open toed shoe game. This has been established. That said, I’m not hitler. Crocs exist for a reason. They’re comfortable (so, I’ve been told) and can be worn in certain situations, guilt free. No one rocks crocs cause they think they look dope. They wear them cause of how they feel.
You’re going on vacation. Vacation is all about saying “Fuck everyone, I’m chilling”. What better time to buy a pair of terrible looking shoes and wear them in a foreign country like “WHO CARES!?!?!”? ESPECIALLY if you plan to only wear them to and from the beach. That’s literally the best use one could ever have for crocs (on duty nurse’s excluded). So, have no shame. Buy those atrocities. Wear them with pride. No one can judge you for that. Just make sure to never ever wear them out socially when you get home.

This week in ridiculous rap: Maxitronix

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I’ve done a handful of these “This week in ridiculous rap” columns before. Typically it’s some over the top crazy thugged out shit or some generally embarassing cornball shit.This week, we have something that pretty much broke my brain. The phrase “this is why we can’t have nice things” pops in my head while viewing this video. It makes me think about the forefathers of rap music, creating a genre of music without really being aware of their own influence at the time. Years later, they could look back with great pride and think “holy shit, look what we helped start!”. Hearing Rakim for the first time or listening to “Low end Theory” when it dropped, with the look on their face like a proud father.
Then, something like this comes along and I bet they’re like “What have we done!?!?!” *commits hari kiri suicide*
It’s hard to find words for this. This is outsider rap made by someone who’s an outsider to the outsiders who also lives in Australia (or New Zealand). It’s just…wow. Just watch…

I know, right?
So many questions.
How can something be so futuristic and so much like a caveman at the same time? How can a rapper dress like an off duty magician?
And finally, has Epic met his match? Who’s Epic, you say?
Oh, lemme show you.

i can’t honestly say which one is more insane but the fact it’s close speaks volumes.
Carry on my wayward son.

Shout out to 907 from the philaflava board for putting me on to this guy. Amazing stuff.
If you know of a rapper that makes your brain hurt in a bad way, lemme know. Email me at and tell me all about what the bad man did to you.

Answers for Questions vol. 201

Hello and welcome to another edition of “Answers for questions”.
It’s that thing where you ask me anything and answer it. A concept as old as time itself.
Anyway, if you’d like to participate, it’s extremely easy. Either leave me a question in the comment section below or email it right to me at
It’s all anonymous and the more creative you get with the questions, the better.
Here’s this weeks crop.

How much makeup is too much makeup?

I’m one of those guys who barely notices when a girl changes her hair color, let alone puts on make up. But I will say that I think if you’re wearing enough make up to the point where I notice it, it’s probably too much. As a man who has no business talking about make up habits and very little understanding of all things make up related, my understanding is that it’s best when used lightly. Simply to accentuate certain features and hide others. No one needs to go all Kim Kardashian and have her face look like it just rested in a bowl of tobacco spit for 4 hours. In general, I’m a “moderation is key” kinda guy an that should definitely be applied to make up as well.

Have you ever had a vivid sexual dream about someone that you frequently interact with in real life (who you aren’t sexually attracted to) …and you forget all about it until you see them in person the next day… but then you remember said dream and a sudden rush of weirdness washes all over you???

I honestly haven’t had many vivid sex dreams in my life that I remembered. I’d say a more applicable version of this would be when I’ve been jerking off and a random girl I know that’s I’m marginally attracted to slips into my mind. That’s always a bug out. Though, it doesn’t really carry over into any awkwardness when I see them. It’s not like they know about it. Also, it will make me think “hmm…maybe i kinda wanna have sex with that girl and i never noticed…”
A real boss move would be to tell them and just make everything totally uncomfortable between us. What girl doesn’t wanna hear she was an unexpected guest in a guys random masturbation session?

Who looks the best in their glasses?

2012 BET Awards - Arrivals



It should be noted that I do not and have never owned a pair of glasses of any sort in my life. So, you know, this isn’t exactly my specialty.
My Vote goes to T-Pain. I’m a simple man and those subtle yellow frames are the only pair, of the three, that don’t scream “somebody! Please look at me! I’m famous and , because of that, have been given cart blanche to look like a dickhead!”
Flo-rida’s are the worst. Those are sunglasses Chris Tucker probably wore in the “Fifth Element”. 2-Chainz hat/sunglasses combo is atrocious but at least he kinda looks like Sly Stone in some really abstract way.

How big of a bitch am i for getting salty that buying a vinyl copy of a newly released album from the artist/label doesn’t automatically include a digital download of said album? In order to get both versions, there is a price that essentially includes the cost of buying the digital version alone combined with the cost of buying the vinyl version alone, with a couple dollars knocked off. (i feel compelled to qualify my frequency of buying music, but whatever, it shouldn’t matter, in general i feel like that’s kind of a poopey deal, and kind of stings of pretentiousness. But that could also just be the smell of an artist trying to survive on their art)

I mean, you can always just illegally download the album, right? That’s still not hard to do. I do think that putting a digital download in vinyl is the right thing to do but not every person/label even remembers to do that. in fact, you asking this very question just reminded me that I should probably do that when I release my new album on Vinyl. Imagine if I didn’t have a blog that had an answers and questions segment! I would have 100% forgot. So, in a way, thanks!

What is the state of hip hop right now in your opinion? dying, thriving, what.. in 2014
So, people are still concerned over the state of hip hop? I can’t believe that’s still a thing. We’re so far past keeping any element of the “culture” intact that questions like this are basically comical. There is no “state of hip hop”. It simply exists for better or worse. It’s not like it’s ever going to just stop. There is good hip hop and bad hip hop. It’s always been that way. On a pop level, it’s pretty atrocious and rappers who are seemingly disabled have never been more popular but, at the same time, lyrical miracle underground rappers are just as boring. The bright side is that there will always be a handful of good rappers making good music. Some are creative and finding newer ways to express themselves and others are more traditional but just have the talent to simply rap well and keep things interesting.
Either way, anyone over the age of 30, sitting around worrying about “The state of hip hop” has got their priorities all fucked up.

What do you like better – the smell of your own armpits or the smell of your farts?

My armpits don’t smell, in general. But, when they do, it’s not a smell I love. My farts however, are terrible and I love them. Sure, they may one day be the reason I’m found dead in my bed with scissors sticking out of my chest at the hands of my girlfriend but, man, my own farts? Excellent and terrible. Who doesn’t love basking is their own farts? Savages, that’s who.

What season do you think is your busiest, in terms of your occupation? When do you think you have the least free time – summer, fall, winter or spring?

Fall is generally the busiest for me cause it’s when I do my most touring. Winter/early spring is a close second for the same reason. I dunno if being on the road makes me “busy” in the sense you’re asking cause it’s not like I’m creating music. In fact, creatively, it’s one of my least “busy” times. But I’m “working” the most. I’d say, creatively, I tend to make the most music in the beginning of winter. I’m usually just back from the road and somewhat inspired. Being on the road will do that to you. Summers too. The thing about the summer is that the only shows that exist are festival shows so I have tons of free time. It’s technically a great time to make music. Only problem is, it’s summer and I’m always trying to be out and about when I can so sometimes that takes over a little.

Rogglecast 21- Bump and Whine


This week, Rogglecast finally turns 21. In honor of that, Pollyne gets her buzz on while we discuss topics such as the ice bucket challenge (that neither of us know much about), read a sweet poem from a dedicated listener , as well as go deep into the mind of a dating guru who is gonna help Pollyne find love/destroy every possible relationship she might have looming. It’s fun.
As always, check it here, download it. Like it. Or you can go to I-tunes and subscribe. Whatever makes you happy.

Defending My Tweets Vol. 10

I really wish I could change the name of this to “Discussing my tweets” but I feel as though it’s too late. I’m no longer really defending anything. More just expanding. Whatever it is, it’s a way for me to get a nice rant off/explain myself in detail that 144 characters simply cannot cover. It’s like the emotional equivalent to releasing the top button of your pants after eating way too much food. Gotta let the boy breaaaaaaaaaath.

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I’m not a person who typically remembers my dreams. In fact, for years, I thought I simply didn’t have them cause I’d wake up out of nothingness. The rare occasions I do dream, it’s typically something so real to life that I question if it actually happened. Like “Wait, did I just dream I did my laundry or did that really happen?” *look over at my full hamper* “ah, it was all a dream…”
So, the other day, I woke up to a dream where all that I can clearly recall happening was Miley Cyrus dying. Like i said, my dreams tend to deal in things that do or could happen. While I don’t think Miley is really going down that path (I’d argue she actually does most of her drug talk for show and is actually an incredibly shrewd business woman) it’s also not out of the question. Shit happens. Famous people die all the time. So, like the tweet says, my first thought waking up was “Ughh, twitter is gonna be the worst today”.
Now, I meant this in a few ways. The first being how annoying my timeline would be. Facebook too. Just endless Miley videos. Probably a bunch of her from that “backyard sessions” series she did before she became all edgy where she sings classics and show that she is, in fact, very talented.
Pretty much anytime anything major happens, it envelops all timelines. This could range from something as serious as what’s going on in ferguson right now , to ice bucket challenges to Nicki Minaj dropping a new video. Regardless of what it is, it’s everywhere and you cant avoid it online.
Another reason it would have been a bummer is cause of what I like to call the “Anna Nicole Smith effect”. This is when someone who mass amounts of people shit on publicly dies and , all of sudden, they are an angel. An hour before they died they were a drug addled whore who was a shitty mom but, all of a sudden in passing, all is forgotten. The recoil on Miley’s death would be nauseating. Not just from the normal people…but from the celebrities. People who publicly shit on her would be somewhat forced to at least acknowledge their past statements. You think Lorde wouldn’t write a heartfelt tweet about her? She would.
Basically, the “ughh” I’d be feeling would be both a testament to how full of shit everyone is when it comes to famous people/strangers passing away. It would also be a testament to how social media has made the loss of life so trivial. At least to a prick like me who’s most pure first thought is how his own social media experience is gonna be compromised for a day and not the actual reality that another human being died. So, what I’m saying is , i’m a shitty person. Just do me a favor and forget all about that when my time comes.

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Beach season is coming to an end and I’m good with that. I’m not a beach guy (pools all the way). I’m not really a nature guy, in general. I find my comfort zone atop concrete. That said, over the last year, I’ve felt my stance on this soften a bit. I can’t say I’ve been dying to go to a beach but the idea has made more sense to me lately than it ever had in the past. Maybe it’s me getting older and realizing that “chilling” is an legit activity. But then there’s a problem…people and their fucking cameras.

One of the best parts of beach season, for men who are creeps, is the endless flow of bathing suit pictures that pop up on instagram and facebook. Hey, you know those girls who you’ve never gotten to see naked but always wanted to? Well, here they are…basically naked. For me, that is the upside. The downside of this would be if the camera’s got turned on me. If/when i go to any sort of place where swimming occurs, I have to establish a “no camera” rule. I’m simply not ready for prime time. My skin a shade darker than a piece of paper and , while I’m not a fat person, I’m also not exactly buff. I’m basically as pale and average as can be. The problem is that I’m also vein enough to not want that blasted over every social network I’m on. I feel as though people can’t wait to get pics of other people looking slovenly and upload them on facebook as soon as humanly possible. I don’t play that shit. I will not be your mark. You can say it’s all in good fun and “Who cares?” but I know this game too well. You come home from a trip to a place where swimming occurs and there are like 30 pictures of you tagged on facebook looking like a slightly hairier version of a white whale.
I realize that we live our life through our phones now. People go to shows and watch them through their phones. Facetime pops up out of nowhere and , all of a sudden, we’re video chatting instead of just talking. My nose is just as buried in my phone as anyone else’s. But, sometimes, we need to take a break. I’d say we should do that to just chill and enjoy life but, really, I just need you to put that fucking camera away while I float around this pool like an overfed manatee. Okay? Great.

Screen shot 2014-08-21 at 9.48.48 AM

The transition from boyhood to manhood is a beautiful and complicated thing. Less beautiful and complicated is the transition from Manhood into “misterhood” or “sirhood”. This is when young people no longer recognize you as an equal and simply see you as an adult. I’d imagine to some, this feels great. There’s a certain respect one garners by being the older, wiser person. However,if your mind is still like that of a 25 year old, then it’s a bit of a blow to your soul.
I play basketball at the YMCA near my house. It’s full of all sorts of people. Old, young, my age. The majority are usually teenaged boys AKA the dumbest human beings on earth. It’s really a daily glimpse into our future every time I play and, let me tell you, things are not looking good. Gone are the days of children who respected (and feared) their elders. Now we got 8 year old kids ready to fire off a “go fuck yourself!” to a full grown man without hesitation. When i was a kid, that would result in a grown man putting his hands on a child in some fashion and everyone around would be like “Well, he’s gotta learn sometime”. But, obviously, no ones trying to catch a case over some 8 year old at the YMCA so those days are long gone. My point is, these kids are fearless and have no respect for anyone. So, as an older guy, this can be frustrating. Like I said, I still feel 25 year old in my mind. I’m up on new shit. I’m aware of what’s going on. I know what the “Shmurda dance” is, guys! But it’s a sobering reality check for guys like me when an 18 year old kid calls you “mister” or “sir”. Like “Hey, mister, can we use your ball?”. It feels like tiny dagger in my heart that, with each stab, ages me at an accelerated rate. It’s a sign of you no longer being on the level. And it’s not even these kids doing it on purpose. It’s actually them being respectful for once in their lives. They’re talking to you like the adult that you are. The separation of generations is never as clear to me when that happens. I might as well buy some dockers, have 4 kids, speak in detail of 401k’s and start wearing flip flops everywhere cause that’s my reality. At least in the eyes of teenagers everywhere. *sigh*
I’m still a “dude”, “bro” or “son” in my heart though.

Demo Reviews Vol. 54

Hello and welcome to another edition of ‘Demo Reviews”. This is where you, the readers, send me your music to critique. Why? I really don’t know. I think people assume any press is better than no press and, somehow, this qualifies as “press”.
I’m trying something a little different this week. Instead of reviewing 10 songs, I’m going with 8. Honestly, I don’t think most of you listen to all these every week anyway so I figure making the task easier will benefit us both. It allows us to focus more on the tracks and also allows me to not have to listen and review 10 demos.
If you wondering about submitting music for this column, I’m not currently accepting submissions. When that time comes, I will announce it and open the flood gates. Until then, please don’t send me your demos cause I won’t even open the emails. We need order and my stupid rules are the only way to keep this thing civilized.
Anyway, the reviews work like so: I write a paragraph or two about the songs then review them on a scale of 1-10 in these categories:

I can’t stress enough how unimportant the number ratings are but i know how much people like quantified ratings so I oblige. Let’s get into this weeks batch. It was not an easy one for me.

Artist:Ben Lowder

This is music that gets made when someone has been alone for too long. On one hand, it’s pretty pretentious but, on the other, there’s probably a girl out there that will hear this and maybe be impressed.
The rapper is verbose but his flow isn’t really a flow and his voice is abrasively white. Lyrically, there are moments where I was like “ah, that’s interesting” but way more moments of “what is the dude babbling about?”. That might just be me being dumb but, in general, the only way I can stomach raps like these is when they’re delivered by a dope voice in a highly efficient flow.
Beat-wise, I actually think it’s kinds interesting. I don’t love the track but it’s original and it’s lo-fi quality was clearly done on purpose and worked decently well. I’m more impressed by the way it’s made than then music itself.
Production:5 out of 10
Vocals:3 out of 10
Listenability:3.5 out of 10
Originality:5 out of 10

Song: Beautiful

Is this a remix? i feel like this a remix of some song I’ve never heard. Lemme google this…be back in one second.
Okay…Nothing solid turned up and, while I do await someone correcting me in the comments , I’m gonna treat this song like it’s 100% original content.
Okay, well, obviously this is impressive production quality. It’s pop music. Say what you will about pop music but it’s harder to make than most people think. As a song, it’s corny and heavy handed but, like I said, it’s pop music so that’s the point. So, on one hand, it’s crafted better than anything I’ve ever done and to that I tip my hat. On the other hand, I never need to hear it again. BUt I’m also a 37 year old rap guy and not a 16 year old girl so , obviously, I’m not the target audience. This is a tough one to grade cause , when something is both really well made but also so far out of my interests, how can you really judge it fairly?
Production:7.5 out of 10
Vocals:4 out of 10
Listenability:4.5 out of 10
Originality:4 out of 10

Artist: Eko Le Scarifie
Song:Fuck the pain away

Okay guys. I might have to set a “No rap that isn’t in english” rule. Not cause I think it’s terrible (though, admittedly, it’s not for me) but cause I have no idea what the fuck you are saying and , if I can’t understand the words, how can I truly review the song? It leaves me basically telling you if I like gibberish or now. Here’s a hint: Not a fan of gibberish. What i can review , however, is the beat.
This beat isn’t very good. It’s strange, which is nice, but it’s all over the place and just too much.
Production:4 out of 10
Listenability:4 out of 10
Originality:4 out of 10

Artist: Dyslexia and sik sense
Song: Prescriptions Feat. Whyze oner

It kinda surprises me that people still make rap like this. This is some 2002 backpack demo type shit. I used to make this kinda stuff with my friends in the 90’s. It’s funny cause, while rapping of this nature is technically more “Advanced” stylistically it’s also extremely dated at this point. The rapid fire flow and the over done voices/white dudes rapping fast. It’s pretty much the musical equivalent of chubby white dudes with goatees and oversized fitted hats.
These guys can rap decently enough though. The second guy, in particular, can flow really well. It’s just this kinda rap doesn’t ring any bells with me anymore.
That said, I like this beat. It’s simple but effective. Good mood to it. I’d hope there would be more changes to it but that’s really my only complaint on that end.
Production:5.5 out of 10
Vocals:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
Originality:2 out of 10

Artist:Fugitive 9

Jesus, is it mystical magical rap week? It’s like all the colors of the complex rap rainbow on show. Much like the demo above it, it’s just dated. This is more on some “barz” shit so it’s actually more interesting to me. Kinda. It’s just dudes rapping…and LOTS of dude. This song has like 40 rappers on it. some are better than others. Some shoulda probably been left off the track. None stick out too far either way. I’m not mad at this song, but I’m also not excited by it either.
It just is. It’s like a buddhist.
The track is just kinda there. It doesn’t ruin the song but it doesn’t add much to it either.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Vocals:5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
Originality:4 out of 10

Artist: DJ Rapevan
Song: Dictate Feat.Citizen Smith 1 and Citizen Smith 2

So this song is recorded much worse than any other demos we’ve heard this week but it’s got something about it that , to me, stands out. I don’t really care for the beat that much on it’s own but it works within the context of the track.
The first rapper has a good presence. His voice is good and he’s not trying to sound like anything but himself, which is appreciated. The second guy is less successful.
Also, DJ RapeVan is an ill name.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Vocals:5.5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
Originality:4 out of 10

Artist: K.A.V.
Song: Soul station

This rap style is very old. I’m talking like 1989. It’s crazy cause it’s mixed with production that’s fairly current so it sounds…well…bizarre. It’s like a 18 year old made a beat and let his 45 year old dad rap on it. I can’t even tell if the rapping is bad. It’s just a very dated sound. This song is confusing but also strangely listenable.
Production:5.5 out of 10
Vocals:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5.5 out of 10
Originality:5 out of 10

Artist:Bloodshot Pyramid
Song:Every Level Larger

Is this what the kids are listening to nowadays? I’m way too old for this kinda shit. I’m sure, blasting in a club, on molly this will be a fingerbanging anthem but I’m not that guy.
If I can step back from my disconnect with this kinda music and just look at it from a strictly music perspective. It’s got some cool parts but it’s also kinda boring. Still, it’s made well so that’s something.
Production:5 out of 10
Listenability:4 out of 10
Originality:4.5 out of 10

So, what do you think?

Yay or Nay: Michael Christmas

I think about 6 months ago (or more) someone linked me to this guys music. I peeped it, liked it then forgot to follow up on it. That’s kinda how the cookie crumbles sometimes , I suppose. Well, it’s over half a year later and I’m happy to say I have rediscovered Michael Christmas. From what I hear, he’s a boston based MC who now lives in Brooklyn. Stylistically, the best way I can describe him is “likable”. He can rap very well, he’s funny, he’s got a good voice and has good taste in beats. But beyond that, he’s one of those mc’s who has a personality that shines through his music. it’s like listening to your buddy rap, if that buddy happened to be a really good rapper. I was torn as to even do this “yay or nay”, cause, to me, this is clearly a big “yay” but , who knows? I’m sure some of you pricks can find a reason to dislike anything. So, i’mma let you have your say in it as well. After all, this is a free country and your voices need to be heard , right?

Here’s his full album “Is this art?” streaming
So, what do you think?

Answers for Questions vol. 200

Wow. 200 of these. How? why? It amazes me you people still send me questions and for that, I’m grateful. If you’d like keep this party going, send me your questions to or leave them in the comment section below. Get weird. Get creative. This is for entertainment so a boring question isn’t helping anyone.
Also, this might be a good time to thank everyone who has submitted a question over the years. Without you, I’d be doing a little less with my monday mornings and for that, I want you to know you’re appreciated.
Anyway, let’s get into this weeks batch.

views on public crotch scratching?

Listen, sometimes a person has an itch that needs to be scratched. I think protocol for doing it in public is to be as quick and nonchalant as possible. You can’t be digging around in your underwear for too long before it starts looking like something else. It’s similar to scratching/picking your nose. If you do it too long , with too much zeal, people are gonna think you’re picking instead of scratching.
Personally, when i have an itchy crotch, I do my best to just knock it out with one movement and I try to make it look like an adjustment, rather than a full on scratch. Ideally, I’m just trying to not be that guy on the train with his arm down his pants to his elbow, vigorously “scratching”. Pretty sure you can get a ticket for that. In fact, depending on who’s sitting near you when you do it, you might get put on a list and have to tell everyone in your neighbor hood about how you can’t go within 50 feet of schools. Not a good look.

So what’s the best way to get in contact with talented producers and find the right beats? I need real good production and not “youtube-beats”. Do you have any advice when it comes to searching for the perfect sounds fitting my concept and where to look/get in touch with people? I don’t mind spending money if it means I’ll get the real deal.

I really don’t know. I’ve never needed beats. I’d imagine soundcloud would be a great place to find talented people willing to working with strangers. If you’re speaking on more established people, you probably will have to go through their management. That’s how I’ve always done it. A great way to get ignored is to hit up established artists via twitter or facebook. Pretty sure that’s worked maybe .0000293281% of the time so ,if i were you, I’d skip that.
You know what might me a good way to do it? Go through my old demo reviews and look for a guy who makes stuff that fits your interests. Hit him up and take it from there. I see that working way better than just seeking out some guy you’re a fan of and over paying for his throwaway tracks. You gotta find a person who’s at the same level as you and who has the same hunger. Preferably, someone willing to work with you for free cause neither of you have anything to lose.

If you were in a different position and had to make ends meet, which of the following nyc jobs would be the least appealing to you:

A) Telemarketer
B) Weed Delivery Guy
C) Sidewalk Petitioner (many ppl think that they’re volunteers, but I’m quite certain they’re paid)

C by a landslide. Not only is that humiliating work, those people are some of the most annoying people on earth. Not only are they relentless but they are smug and they also use guilt to force your hand. Like , I’ll be walking down the street , going to get my lunch, and they’ll be like “Do you support gay rights?!” Well…yeah…of course…but I just wanna go get my lunch. I don’t wanna be on a mailing list and i don’t wanna donate money to a stranger on the street cause he has a clipboard. But if you say “nah”, you look like an asshole. They also sometimes do that thing where they’ll walk up to you and shake you hand like they know you. That’s the worst for me cause I often forget that I’ve met people (especially at shows and stuff like that) and I end up wracking my brain trying to remember who this person is. Turns out they’re a total stranger who’s way too comfortable with his job of annoying people. There are literally dozens of streets near where I live that I no longer walk down during the day specifically to avoid dealing with these people.
Side note, aside from the danger of being arrested, being a weed delivery guy seems like it might be kinda fun.

I was wondering what equipment you listen to music on? I consider myself an audiophile and without my high end headphones I could not explore and enjoy all of the subtle nuances in your music and others’ music. What are your thoughts on sound quality in general?
I’m not an audiophile at all. Not even close. I listen to music on some decent bose speakers and my Ipod headphones are some bullshit sony ear buds. I feel as though, coming up in an era where a lot of what i listened to was third generation cassette re-recordings off of radio shows set the bar pretty low. I love a good sound system but I don’t generally listen to music that loud anyway. The only team it really matters is when I’m mixing something of mine, but other than that, I’m pretty lo-fi in general.

What is you male take on some recent women’s fashion trends? Specifically: high-waisted shorts and maxi (floor length) dresses and skirts. I’m in my early 20s but I can’t get down with wearing either of these, even though they are popular among my peer group. When I wear either, I feel way too much like my mom in the 90s. I don’t think either are particularly flattering either, I swear I’ve never met a guy who likes those high shorts haha. What do you think?
To add to that also: What has been your favorite and least favorite fashion trend(s) over the years. For men or women. And, yes, I understand this is probably coming from a dude who isn’t big into fashion and your opinions on women’s clothing are probably whatever is the most “sexy” or “attractive”.
Like all men, I’m not a fan of the high waisted shorts/pants/jeans. It’s as if you ladies sought out the least flattering style of pants and all agreed to make it a thing. Not only do they make even a fit girl look like she has a slight gunt, they also ruin perfectly good asses. It really boggles my mind that any girl would want to look like that.
The maxi dress thing is new to me. I’m not even clear what it is but , in general, if I see a girl with a skirt down to the floor, I assume she’s an orthodox jew or something. That said, those don’t bother me as much cause, honestly, I don’t see them as often as the high waisted pants craze.
Take this all with a grain of salt though cause I’m a guy who truly misses the low rise jean era so, clearly, my fashion sense isn’t ruled by class. I realize how corny those pants were but, goddamn, they were the most boner inducing pants prior to girls who wear leggings and nothing else.
As favorite fashion things…girls in leggings/yoga pants are my #1. Sorry. I know that’s like being a yankee fan not from NY but it is what it is. Male fashion? I don’t fucking know. I’m a middle of the road, never wear anything flashy kinda guy. so I’m a fan of anything that isn’t “extra”. I like plain shit for men. I think when men try too hard with fashion, they look like assholes. “caring” in general, if respect to male fashion, is not a good look in my opinion.
Least favorite fashion things…I already got into the high waisted pants thing but another thing girls have embraced recently are some raggedy ass huckleberry fin jeans. Like dumpy jeans with holes in the knees. It’s like the new sweat pants of something. Well, it looks like shit and might as well be a potato sack. Not a fan of that. You’d look better in male dockers. As for guys, anything flashy is wack to me. The super skinny jean craze has passed, and that’s a relief cause that was truly awful for everyone involved. I don’t even wanna be able to see a dude dickhead print in public. and , of course, any open toed shoe on a man in any urban setting is completely unacceptable.

A year from now I should be spending a couple months in Brooklyn Heights. With you being such a NYC aficionado, I’d figured I’d ask you. Do you have any experience with the area? Anything I should be sure to check out? Anything I should stay away from? Also, as clique as it is, any tips to not stick out like a sore thumb (as a non-New Yorker)? Any other parts of the city, not to far from that part, that are must-see? Sorry, I know you are looking for more weird, interesting, out-there questions but I’m curious.

I honestly haven’t been to brooklyn heights since high school. It’s a quiet and very wealthy neighborhood. Probably one of the “nicest” hoods in all of Brooklyn. I’d guess there is tons of good food there but, like I said, I haven’t been there in over 15 years. Just know it’s safe and being an out of towner won’t stick out much there. I’d imagine, at this point, it’s pretty much all wealthy professionals who have kids and have lived in NYC for less than 10 years. You’ll fit right in.
To be honest, I am not a Brooklyn aficionado on any level. I’m familiar with , like, 3 areas and that’s it. If you got Manhattan questions, I’m your guy. But Brooklyn is a place I’ll still get lost in if I get off on the wrong side of the train.