Things that are wrong with the world vol. 31

In this video we see Bobby Shmurda dancing to his own music to the “delight” of the epic record staff. Bobby signed a big deal to epic and is next in line to the “it” rapper they will forget existed in a few month. I’m by no means here to bash on young Shmurda. “Hott Nigga” is , without question, the biggest song of the year and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t know every word to it. It’s just one of those songs where the stars align and, against taste and better judgement, you gotta just submit to it. Sorry, angry purists and snobs, it just is.
But this isn’t about that…this is about the video above. It’s been a long time since I’ve done anything remotely “industry” related. Probably cause I’m not really in the industry. However, when I was younger, I finagled my way into a few things here and there. A couple times getting to be a part of “listening parties”. That phrase can mean two things. One is when people get invited to a club or lounge and they play the artists new album while people get drunk. That’s the good kind and the one that makes sense. The second kind is the one we see above. It’s a small gathering in a boardroom. It’s basically a meeting but with a super awkward part where the meeting stops and every sits quietly and listen to an album, while staring at the person who made it. That person, then has to be all animated and shit, in an attempt to show all the people in the room how excited he is for his new project. It’s a very “Dance, monkey, dance!” kinda vibe. As you can tell, it’s unbelievably awkward and pretty much the opposite of how any artist would want to present his music.

This will date me incredibly (but, hey, I’m old) but I went to the listening party for Busta Rhymes first solo single “WOo-ha!”. I was pretty young at the time and honestly don’t even know how I got in there. I must have known somebody who knew somebody. So, I walk into a boardroom where Elektra records was at the time. Inside there is a divide of people. I’d say about 80% of the people were oldish white people dressed like they had fancy dinner reservations. Another 10% was slightly younger white people who were clearly actual rap fans. The final 10% were friends of Busta rhymes. They were some family, some weed carriers and a few guy who I’m pretty sure dump the bodies when shit gets hectic.
We all sat around a huge boardroom table. There was finger foods and some drinks. I think the artist gets to pick what the highlight booze will be and , that day, it was Hennessey. I’d say it’s a safe bet that it was the first time most of the people in that room tasted that particular beverage.
Everyone is waiting, chatting like it’s an office, cause that’s what it was. Finally, Busta walks in and the whole room stands up and starts clapping. It was weird as fuck. Busta was extremely gracious and handled it all like a pro. He proceeded to walk around the room and give each person in the room a huge pound/hug. This meant he pound/hugged old men, women, and his boys in the exact same way. Again, it was fucking weird. He got to me and gave me a pound like someone I had known for 20 years. He was legit excited. He had reason to be. This was his first solo album and his single was “Woo ha!”. Things were looking up for him. He sat at the head of the table next to a man I can only assume was the label head. An old white guy who clearly had no fucking idea what was going on. He said some arbitrary words to the room and passed it off to Busta. Busta way hyped. The crowd? Painfully white and kind of uncomfortable. This was not his fan base. But, he powered through. He definitely had a magnetic energy that was undeniable. Finally, it came time to play his new song. I believe it was played of a Bose stereo sitting directly in the middle of the table. We sat there as the song played and Busta mouthed along to it, occasionally backing up his own vocals. He was the only one in the room standing, throwing his rap arms out , in what seemed like he was begging for the people witnessing to just wake up. Heads bobbed off beat. His boys and family were animated and , seemingly, fed him enough energy to get him through the song. The song ended and the room applauded like they had just seen the first act of an off broadway play. I left that day feeling two things.
1)Busta rhymes is a great sport and really deserves all he has coming to him (also, the song was awesome)
2)Uneasy. A basic overall strangeness from what I had seen. I didn’t get why that had to go down like that.
Seeing this Bobby Shmurda video reminded me of that day except I’d say that Shmurda’s video is even more uncomfortable. Probably cause of the context. Busta had made a fun song that very much fell in line with hip hop of that era. 1996. As stale as the vibe was in the room, it was at least a guy doing what is basically a mid 90s version of a party rap. In Shmurda’s case, we got a 20 year old kid doing hardcore murder music for a room full of dipshit ass white people whose job is to nod their heads to whatever is “next” and be like “Oh yeah man, killer stuff!”. Shmurda is kid from Brownsville. He caught lightening in a bottle with the success of “Hott Nigga”. But, he’s still an extremely hood kid from a very fucked up hood talking about selling drugs and shooting people…to a room of shitheads with dollar signs in their eyes. These motherfuckers don’t care about music. They just see who’s blowing up on youtube, throw money at them and then forget them when the buzz dies down…which is inevitably a month or two down the line. But first, before they forget them, they must prop them up and make them dance for their money.The whole thing leaves an unsavory taste in my mouth. I’m not one to typically jump on the “Hmm…that’s kinda racist” tip (after all, white male over here!) but I can’t help but feel some kinda way watching this video. Shmurda is just doing him. He’s getting paid. Pretty sure that was the game plan. I’d bet a great deal of money he never has another hit but, whatever, all he does is cashhhh ouuuutttttt! Hopefully, he did it at the expense of every dork in that room, fakely nodding their heads to something they not only probably don’t really like but something the most likely don’t understand.
It’s moments like this I’m glad the music industry is eating itself cause , at the very least, it means this kinda dumb shit might cease to exist. And that’s a victory for us all.

Previews reviews of movies I’ve never seen Vol. 8

Who’s got time to see whole movies nowadays? Maybe 10 good movies get made a year so why waste your time seeing some bullshit when you can just watch the previews and judge it based on that? I’m here to do that for you. So, here are my reviews of these movies i haven’t seen , based entirely on their trailers. Trust me, I’m rarely wrong about these things.


It is REALLY hard to get movies made nowadays. Unless you got a huge star and foreign backing, you could be shit out of luck. That is, of course, unless you make horror movies. Horror movies are the opposite. All you need is a half baked idea based on a weak premise and , voila! MONEY. Why? Cause they’re easy and people who can’t make their mind up at the cineplex can be like “Fuck it let’s go see that scary movie about that creepy doll…”. Also, they’re super cheap to make, considering how much money they earn.
Now, I’m down with the genre. I grew up renting cult horror classics from the video store (yes, it was a long time ago). Good horror movies still do exist for sure. But, the majority of them are movies like what I imagine this one will be like. Nameless casts of young attractive people , being scared and killed in boring ways over some dumb shit they could have avoided. They rarely show the violence (shout out to the last Evil dead, as that fucking movie DELIVERED) and it’s mostly just people/flying furniture/children/zombie faced women jumping out at you at predictable moments. I’m not sure what this is rated but the PG-13 horror movie is a real thing and it’s pretty much the dumbest shit you could ever do. It’s like diet cake. What’s the fucking point?
In the case of, Oiuja, it’s following in the footsteps of such classics as “Battleship” and “Clue” in taking a board game and bringing it to the silver screen. I actually just read that there is talk of a Monopoly Movie in the works so, you know, hold on to your fucking seats and DO PASS GO! AMIRITE!?!?!?!
This is one of those previews that pretty much covers all the bases for you. You’ve seen this movie. Many, many times. You know how it ends…and even if it surprises you do you really give a shit? It should also be noted that this will undoubtedly be the start of a Oiuja movie franchise. Why? Cause they can and people will see it. And that’s how that works.

The boy next door

So many funny things going on it this one…I feel as though the best way to approach it would be via bullet points
1)Ohh…STEAMY! I don’t know what jamaican island J-lo went to and what native blew her back out but she has her groove back. Between this and that “Booty” video, she’s walking around like a white girl who just got back from cancun and now is thinking of growing a single dreadlock.
2)I hate to be the guy that points trivial things out but…
For one, J-lo plays the mom of a dorky white child. Umm…okay. At least teach that little prick some spanish. He needs some latin flavor, J-lo!
Secondly, the dude who plays the young high school hunk is maybe 33 years old. I know these are givens in movies but, come on…That guy looks more like someone who’s been working at a firehouse for a decade than a teenager.
3)Much like the lazy horror movie, the 80’s/90’s movie rehash for cash is a goldmine that will get green lit without a second thought. Back in the 90’s, there was a movie called “The crush” and another movie called “fear” (which is fucking awesome, btw). Add a little “Fatal attraction” and you have what we see before you. This movie is those three movies…but with J-lo and that really old kid.
I think part of the problem with these formulaic rehashes is that they don’t go the extra mile. You wanna make this movie special? How bout kick that sex scene up a couple notches and , instead of making it all corny and “sensual”, have the dude actually have sex with j-lo. Like for real, for real. Penetration and everything. They could do it “artistically”. That alone would make this movie the most talked about thing of the year. And later, when he goes nuts, how bout some real , fucked up hardcore violence? Have you seen the movie “Irreversible”? Like the first scene in that movie. Then, like that, you have taken this soulless and empty movie and turned it into a cutting edge horror/thriller that people will never forget. But, nah…let’s just play it safe. The edgiest this movie gets is that it’s hinted at that the young guy goes down on J-lo. He did that so you know he’s a bad boy. ohhhhh Kill’em!

Wish I was here

This is that movie that Zach Braff got made via kickstarter. My opinion on a millionaire getting poorer strangers to pay for his movie to be made is another topic so, I leave that alone and just focus on the preview itself.
This movie looks like a really well made parody movie in the realm of “Date movie” or “scary movie” and it should be called “indie movie”. It’s got it all! Off color jokes for the whole family, sick/dying parents, dealing with sadness, personal discovery, music that seems made specifically for these kinda movies (the thought of Zack braff’s I-tunes playlists is bone chilling), running in a desert/field while finally figuring it all out.
This is the type of movie that you see the preview for, while on a date, and the girl turns to you and says “Oh, that looks good!” and you immediately reevaluate if it’s worth sleeping with her. It’s the basic bitch of indie movies.
I don’t know what it is about Zack Braff that makes him so unlikable. His face? His kermit like voice? Or that I’ve heard he’s a total ego maniac prick in real life. Whatever it is, he’s one of those love or hate kinda actors. You know, now that I think about it, I think it’s cause he could so easily be the guy who fucked your girl and you’d be like “What? You fucked Zack braff?!? What? Why? Him?!?!!?” and the girl wouldn’t even know what to say cause she’s just as shocked and ashamed as you are.

Dracula untold

I realize this is a different take on the whole Dracula movie. So, while I am completely over and done with any movie that has anything to do with Dracula , I do see how this could be different. Truth be told though, vampire shit BEEN corny. At least zombie related stuff can be awesome and extremely gory. Vampire movies tend to be either for teenaged girls or all about some british dandy who sleeps all day and happens to need human blood to survive.
Also, why does dracula always have to be handsome and charming? You would think a pale shut in would maybe just once be a fucking dork. You know who’d make a great dracula? 80’s comedian Emo Phillips.
Look at that guy. Throw a cape and some fake teeth on him and he’s ready to go. He’ll suck your blood and be REALLY weird about it. Cause let’s be honest, Dracula was probably a total anti social loser.
As for this movie itself, you know…it looks like one of these fucking movies. Special effects, inner turmoil and probably a love story that everyone seeing it will think is completely unnecessary. This is another movie that, if they really went for it, I bet they could knock it out the park. The concept of the untold story of Dracula has a lot of room to be good. Maybe his untold story is that he’s a cutter? or perhaps he’s got a deep foot fetish that haunts him? I wanna know about that. I could give a fuck about all this other stuff though. Lemme inside the REAL Dracula, bro.

Yay or nay?: This new Mobb Deep Song

Old rappers. They’re a tricky topic. On one hand, you respect them deeply and cherish their earlier catalogue. On the other, there’s always a sense of them holding onto to past glory and not really evolving. In general, I’d say there are two ways new music by old rappers go. It’s either stale and feels like they did it just to get a check/stay relevant OR it surprises you and gives you a familiar feeling that you haven’t felt in years. They are able to capture why they were so impactful in first place.
Here we have a new song by Mobb Deep. Produced by the Alchemist. Both these names , to me, are a good thing and when coupled together, even better. It’s been a while since I heard Mobb Deep together. I don’t know what Havoc has been up to but Prodigy has quietly been putting together a run of good music over the last few years. Thanks to Alchemist , who is basically the go to producer for both new and old talent still making boom bap type shit.
So, here we have “Biology”. Check it out

What do you think? Do they still have it or are they ready to be taken out back? Or, perhaps, not everything is black and white in the world and this fall somewhere between those two things. Vote and lemme know… (You can pick more than one answer, btw)

Answers for Questions vol. 210

Hi everyone. It’s that time of week AKA monday. Time to answer some more questions. You sent them and I obliged cause I’m cool like that. If you’d like to join the fun, by all means, flood my inbox with questions. Leave them in the comment section below or email them to me at All i ask is that you try to be creative with it. We’ve been doing these for 4-5 years now. There is still new ground to be broken! Find it!
Okay, here’s this weeks batch…
From reading your blog, I know you’re not a slut-shamer, ps: that term is really becoming annoying, anyways, moving on…
My perspective of your perspective as a guy is that it just makes sense to not have double standards when it comes to men’s and women’s sex lives and it’s better for all parties involved (yourself included). But have you ever been like that in your earliest relationships? Were you ever insecure/jealous or asked a gf how many guys she slept with, etc.

You’d be hard pressed to find a guy who hasn’t been like that at some point. I don’t have any particular memories of me acting or feeling that way but I’d be shocked if I didn’t when i was much younger. Society kinda hard wires us to be like that. That said, when I was 19, I dated a girl who I knew had slept with her fair amount of dudes (and was way more experienced than me) but I don’t recall it ever being an issue. If anything, I was intimidated by it cause she had some much more experience. Sadly, I know a fair amount of dudes who probably wouldn’t date a girl based on her sexual past which is pretty unfair and short sighted. Especially when you consider some of the pasts of the dudes doing that judging. Not to mention, girls who’ve had more sex are generally more fun to have sex with. Less hang ups. It’s more natural and not held up as some super special thing that needs to treated with kids gloves.
The way I see it, we’re all kinda scum bags at some point and people make situational decisions about sex that don’t really need to be judged like that. If someone is known for fucking married people or actively trying to break up relationships, that’s one thing. but if a girl simply likes having sex and does it with multiple people in a safe way? you’re a an insecure dickhead if that repels you.
I liken my feelings towards this to how I got turned off to religion. I probably always just went with the current of “Girls that fuck a lot of guys are sluts!” until, one day, I thought about it for more than a passing moment and was like “Wait..what?That’s stupid” and that was that.

The first time I heard your music a friend showed me the video for “The Music Scene” while we were on mushrooms and it blew my mind. I’m just wondering, did you have anything to do with the making of that video, and I know you don’t smoke weed but have you ever experimented with harder drugs, did you have any crazy experiences? would you take a hallucinogen if your good friend came to your house right now and said lets trip tonight! ?
I had zero to do with that video outside of giving my consent to get it made. Which is too bad cause that video is amazing.
As for drug use, I’ve never done hard drugs. unless you include ecstasy/molly. But, in general, my drug use has been limited to weed and shrooms. I don’t smoke weed anymore but I’ll do shrooms on occasion. Crazy experiences? I mean…shrooming in general is a crazy experience. Even if you’re just sitting around a house. I feel as thought telling drug stories is kinda like telling people your dreams. It’s always way more interesting to you and the other person is generally just waiting for you to finish so they can tell you their dream. So, I’ll pass on that.
As far as me doing shrooms with someone who came over and sprung them on me, it depends on the person, place and time. I’m very particular when it comes to my drug use. I like to be prepared. I’ve done them on a whim before but that was really just the stars aligning.

Yo Block, given the following options, which one would you pick and why? A) You get to fuck Emily Ratajkowski now, except she constantly farts during sex and they smell like hardboiled eggs, or B) You get to fuck Phoebe Cates in her prime, except she constantly burps during sex and they smell like anchovies.
Ohhhh….tough one. Way to ruin two of my favorite girls ever.
I’d rather have sex with Em-rata but I feel as though the farting would be harder to avoid. Like it might stain my nutsack or something. And egg farts are the worst. At least with burps, I could turn her around and project the air elsewhere. So, I guess I chose Cates. HOWEVER, I’d chose Em-Rata if we could have sex somewhere outdoors where it’s super windy. Problem solved.

When people ask you to sign stuff at shows, what’s your style? Do you do the same thing every time or do you try write a different thing each time?

I do the same thing with slight variation. I write my name is a truly terrible faux graf hand style that would infuriate any and all people who ever took graffiti seriously. For real, my handwriting is next level terrible. Always has been. Then I draw a little blockhead character. This is where the variation comes in cause his face is slightly different every time.

You’ve spoken before about the time you spent at university, but, I’m curious, what was your major and why didn’t you finish school? I’m presuming it wasn’t music, only because you’ve said repeatedly that you don’t understand the technical aspects of music theory.
I wasn’t there long enough to have a major. I went for one year to Boston university and was in a program called “general studies”. This was basically a program for people who sucked in high school and needed to get back up to speed. It was literally high school courses. The idea was to do two years there and then find a major after you had gotten back on track. It was the worst. I did that for a year and was like “nah, I’m good…” and went the fuck back to NYC.
I didn’t finish school for many reasons. For one, I’m terrible at learning. Particularly things I don’t care about. Which is pretty much everything they teach at schools. This is not something I’m proud of but it’s the truth. I thought I A.D.D. forever but it turned out I just wildly disinterested in most things being taught to me. I tried to go back to school for a little bit later in life and it didn’t take. I’m simply not that kind of mind. I’m also profoundly lazy when it comes to things that are needed to get through school. In other words, I’m REALLY lucky this music thing worked out. At least, so far.

Now that you’re touring again, I was wondering what it’s like to deal with having openers that you didn’t pick for every stop. I personally like to do some research (if needed) to decide whether or not I go early to check the opening sets. Do you do the same? Are you usually stuck there listening regardless, or do you use that time to get some food, prepare, etc? I imagine some of the acts really suck, but some could also be a nice surprise.

I really don’t pay much attention to them. If we’re talking bout opening openers. Like the local guys. That’s generally when I’m out getting food. Sometimes I’ll catch them cause I’ll be out selling merch early (This only works at shows where people show up early).
I definitely don’t do any research on them cause…well…I’m just not that thorough a guy. From the ones I’ve seen , they generally range from decent to good with a few real stinkers thrown in.
Side note, if you’re an opening act (I’m talking the guy who’s playing when doors open), a good rule of thumb is to not make the backstage your playhouse. I understand that you’re excited to be playing a show but there are few things worse that chilling backstage and the local opener comes in with 8 of his friends who then proceed to drink and eat everything in the room. That shit is rude as fuck and , trust me, a terrible look for any artist that might be watching.

Where did you get the audio sample of the people arguing in the song The Daily Routine? I’m pretty sure they moved into my building a couple of months ago.

It was from some random record I found about drug recovery. Those were all real arguments recorded from inside a halfway house. Pretty grim shit.

Ask Dr. Tony Vol. 40

Hello all and welcome to another edition of “Ask Dr. Tony”. That’s me. I’m not certified to drive a car, let alone fix peoples personal problems but I’ve been told I give good honest advice. You are strangers, therefor, I have no horse in this race. All i can do is tell you what I think is real. So, if you have any life questions, send them my way. Leave them in the comments below or email them to me at it’s 100% anonymous and no one will know it’s you. What a perfect deal for both of us!
Anyway, here’s this weeks questions…

Yo Dr. Tony,

So, there’s this cute girl who works at the coffee shop bakery near my house, that I really want to talk to. Problem is, she’s not a barista, she works in the back (I think she bakes cakes, and shit), and she’s always rushing back and forth from the bakery to the front.

Anyways, I’m pretty sure she’s at least interested, because, even though she appears to be in a rush, she ALWAYS makes lingering eye contact with me and smiles. Even when I’m not looking in her direction, I can still see her eyeing me. So, I feel like she’s giving me an invitation to talk to her, but, not the time to actually do so. And the way this coffee shop is set up, if I were to jump out of my seat, I would knock over everything around me. Not to mention the fact that she’s working and that’s super awkward, anyways.

Seriously, I’m at a loss, here. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

This is actually something I can relate to as I worked in what sounds like a similar bakery/coffee shop for like 8 years when I was younger. That behind the counter life is interesting. I will say that meeting customers and hooking up with them is never easy. For one, you’re at work. It’s bad business to just start hitting on someone who patronizes the establishment. Flirting, however, is never a bad idea (and great for tips).
However, as a customer, it’s just as tricky. If you misread her cues, all of sudden you’ve made it awkward and pretty much have to find a new coffee shops to go to. In my experience, the over the counter hook up is very difficult and takes one of the people just throwing all their cards on the table. This means, you either gotta just put yourself out there or not. You gotta casually slip her your number or tell one of the other people who work there to do it for you. Either way, it will be humiliating.
Honestly, the most ideal thing would be to run into her outside of the coffee shop. Not to be a creep about it but if you can find where she hangs out, this would speed the process immensely and not force you to throw it all out there while she’s at work. Also, seeing people like that in normal life will give you a much better idea of what she’s feeling towards you. For all you know, she’s just a friendly person who makes too much eye contact.
I recall , when I worked at the bakery, there was a cute girl who would come in all the time We’d small talk and that was it. I saw her out at a bar one night , drunk as fuck, and flirted with her harmlessly. The next week I was working, she called the bakery and asked me out. That was some bold shit. I’m saying, if a girl can do that, surely you can do the same (assuming the signs point to that being a good idea).

Dear Dr. Block

This might be a super simple issue but I need your honesty for this.
So, about 2 months ago I was with a good friend (we don’t hang around a lot but I really value him as a person, we talk about some deep issues and shit) and long story short, he told me that he liked the same girl I liked before I was about to tell him the same thing. That resulted to me shutting up and actually trying to force these two to be together for the rest of the summer. The thing is, the girl wasn’t really into my friend, the whole situation didn’t work out and she actually started talking and hanging around with me more frequently despite me being a bit more distant than usual.
Other details:
I am really into this girl. I seriously like her a lot.
All three people will live in different cities next year.
I am a decent listener + we don’t really flirt = I might just be her friendzoned psychologist or whatever.
What should I do? Should I ask my friend if he is ok with it and go for it? (I think I am for a holiday+skype kind of relationship) Should I tell my friend my whole story regardless? Should I move on?

Thanks in advance.

You need to walk up to him, put your hand on his shoulder and say “Listen man, your bitch chose me”, and walk away.
just kidding. But wouldn’t that be amazing?
This is tough. It’s a shitty situation to be put in entirely cause he mentioned the girl first. If he had waited and you aid it first, none of this would happen. Funny how that works. Anyway, I’m a fan of just taking a deep breath and discussing it with your friend like a fully realized adult. He tried and failed. You allowed and even serviced that failure. If he’s an even remotely decent person, he’ll understand. If he gets all salty and this effects your friendship, he’s petty bitch and will need to just get over it. Men laying claim on women they are yet to even know to be possible matches is corny to me. Dating is a very “every man for himself” kinda thing. Sure, you don’t wanna step on peoples toes if they’re obviously hooking up but to take yourself out of the running cause the other dude simply likes her? It’s a nice thing to do (and you did the honorable thing by falling back in the first place) but it’s not part of the game.
It should also be said that, if you had any concrete idea that this girl was into you, it would justify this whole thing much more. From the sound of it, you’re taking a risk even trying. You guys don’t even flirt? That’s fucking weird. You’re really swinging for the fences trying to convert this crush into something more but, hey ,if that’s what you want to do, might as well see what happens. Maybe you’ll strike out too and it will bring you and your friend even closer because of it. Brothers in failure.

Dr. T,
Long story short, after I graduated college, I lost touch with all of my friends. It’s been a while and I don’t really see us ever hanging out again. I have a girlfriend and she is my best friend but I also really need some guy friends. Like bros who I can talk about bro stuff with that a gf won’t always understand. My questions is, how does a guy in his 20s meet dudes to hang with and how do you reach a point in hanging where you can share bro-feelings (different than actual feelings, you know?)?

This may be the first time someone saying “long story short” actually delivered on the promise. For that, I thank you.
Hmm…I gotta say, I find it strange when anyone doesn’t have friends of their own gender. How does one lose touch with every one they know from high school and college? I still have friends I know from grade school and little league and I’m nearing 40. I suppose you moved away and that was that?
This is tough cause girlfriends and friends are different things entirely. It’d be nice if they weren’t but they are. You 100% need buddies. Not just for the outlet of human experience but cause it’s gonna be hard to have a healthy relationship when the only person you interact with is your girl. That’s just begging to be a co-dependant relationship. It’s also gonna give you a serious lack of perspective on things. We all need multiple outlets.
Now, your question is pretty much the story line to “I love you, man”. I can’t really say there’s a clear answer here. Join a sports team? Bar league softball maybe? I don’t know what you’re into but take an interest you have and seek out like minded people. You like video games? Go find some video game nerds. You like reading? find a book club. you’re a drinker? Find a local bar and immerse yourself in it. Basically, find a hobby that enables you to be social and take it from there.
I gotta admit that this is a really hard question for me to relate to. I’d lose my mind if I didn’t have multiple friends outside of my girl. And Im sure she feels the same way. It’s very crucial. You need to live your own lives.

Do you ever dream with any of your exes? Whenever I do it’s always with the same ex and it’s fucking weird now. I don’t dream with any of my other exes just him.. I dated him my sophomore year of high school for like two months. I was his first girlfriend, really liked him. We broke up tho cause I was a shitty girlfriend to be honest. Years after though we kept cool. We’d talk to eachother on facebook n stuff. Hung out with him, maybe a year or two ago and it was super awkward, I was super quiet, we didn’t really talk and we haven’t talked since ha! I seriously don’t know why outta all my exes I only dream with him. Its starting to freak me out, at first it was like “aw” now it’s just plain weird haha. What do you think it is?

Sadly, I rarely remember my dreams so my ex’s don’t really come into play.I’d say they more pop up during random daydreams. Like, a memory will flash into my head then disappear. Stuff like that.
I’m not a dream specialist (obviously) but maybe this guy keeps popping in your head cause you feel guilty about things went between you guys. You claim to have been a shitty girlfriend to him. Maybe that shittiness left a mark in you for some reason. I mean, the obvious answer is that you still have feelings for him on some deep seeded level but I don’t know. You see like you’re not exactly pining for the guy. He might just represent that era of your life and , for some reason, your brain keeps going back to it. Or, maybe, you guys never closed the deal sexually and your brain is telling you to call him up, have an awkward convo with him, meet up and have even more awkward sex with him. You never know! Try fucking him and see if the dream stopped. Worse case scenario, you have some bad sex. Life goes on.

Demo Reviews Vol. 58

Hello and welcome to another edition of demo reviews. it’s been a few weeks but I’m back in the depths of hell.
Before I get into the regular business, I just wanted to make a public service announcement pertaining to this column. Over the past month, i’ve gotten a handful of complaints ,from people who submitted music, about the harshness of the reviews. Mainly, the issue is that I’m not giving enough constructive criticism or telling people how to improve their music. Well, to those people,I need to explain something. “Demo reviews” is for entertainment purposes. At no time have I ever said this was a workshop for bettering peoples music. I’m not a teacher. In fact, my opinion is a shitty one to take in the first place. It’s for that reason, when I open submissions, that I warn people. I tell them “If you’re prone to getting butthurt about things, this may not be the right move for you”. I’m not here to pull punches. I’m here to give my honest opinion. An opinion, I might add, that has clear likes and dislikes. I’ve been doing these for 3 years now and this month is literally the first complaining I’ve ever gotten. so, as to nip that right in the bud, I say this: Stop it. I don’t wanna hear it. You submit your music to me, you’re opening yourself up for criticism. That’s the point of this entire thing. I realize that we all think what we make is special and above judgement but it’s not true. Trust me, I know. i’ve been putting out music for 15 plus years and have been shit on the entire time…just like everyone else who does music. So, if you’re a person who’s demo i have reviewed unfavorably, I’m sorry but I’m also not sorry. Don’t take it to heart. i’m just one guy and i like what I like. My opinion is no more credible than you’re homeboys except I don’t know you so I can say what I really think. Also, learn to take the good and the bad. Don’t be that broken artist who only hears the negatives and overlooks the positives. That’s just short sighted and on some “woe is me” shit. Ain’t nobody got time for that. That’s all. Basically, stop complaining when you get what you ordered.
Anyway, demo reviews work like so…you send them, I review them. I write a small blurb about my thoughts and then arbitrarily review them from 1-10 in these categories:

That’s it. Simple stuff. Also, i’m not accepting demo submissions right now so don’t send them. When i need more, I will let you know.
This weeks got some good stuff in there, so that’s nice. Let’s check it out. and vote for your favorite at the bottom.

Artist:Furbie Cakes
Song: Vacation Trees

This is pretty good. It’s an interesting mixture of instrumental hip hop with a slight trap drum edge. The song evolves very nicely and I’m impressed with the attention to detail. Very solid, altogether.
Production:7.5 out of 10
Listenability:7 out of 10
Originality:5.5 out of 10

Song:Where I’ve been

I got a few problems with this one. For one, it’s not a song. It’s a beat. There’s no major changes in it and it just kinda goes on in the same way with minimal movement. Secondly, I’m not a huge fan of sampling well known songs. That’s just me but I always think it’s lazy (unless you do it specifically to flip that song on it’s ass). Thirdly, and this is some nitpicking techy shit, I’m listening to this in headphones and the pan on the drums is weird. Kicks are to the right and snares to the left. It’s not that big a deal but I’d say maybe pull them both a little more towards the middle in the future.
Otherwise, it’s not a poorly made beat but it’s pretty uninventive al around.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
Originality:2 out of 10

Artist: Jack Wilson MC
Song: Gargamel

This is solid. Nothing mind blowing but all it’s parts are working nicely. The rapper is good. Can’t say i’d seek out more of him but he certainly is holding up his end. The beat is cool and has a perfect vibe for rapping on. I don’t love the key change sounds a bit clunky though. I appreciate the attempt though.
Production:5.5 out of 10
Vocals:5.5 out of 10
Listenability:5.5 out of 10
Originality:5 out of 10

Artist: Prince Naeem
Song: Written me off

I kept waiting for something else to kick in the beat. That little teaser bassline has a real blue ball effect. Otherwise, the beat is okay. Minimal in a not great kinda way.
As for the rapping, he’s fine. Definitely has a good presence. He also sounds very high. Which makes sense considering the hook is something only a high person would make. I’d advise against editing that down a bit. No one needs to hear that for 12 bars in the beginning of the song. 4 bars is enough.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Vocals:5.5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
Originality:4.5 out of 10

Artist: Wonge
Song: Wonders

I’m a sucker for some well executed big band samples. It’s actually really hard to sample that stuff and not have it sound like Zoot suit riot. The beat has a lot of promise. I get that it’s on purpose but I woulda loved some drums to come in and maybe even a switch up. But, as is, it’s cool. It just coulda been much more than cool.
The rapper is good. I like what he’s saying and his flow is tight. His voice sounds a hair uncomfortable but that will get better with time.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Vocals:5.5 out of 10
Listenability:5,5 out of 10
Originality:4.5 out of 10

Artist: Dirty Porcelain
Song: The chase

Okay, so this is a tough one to review cause there is tons of potential in here. yet this is just kinda sloppy and misses at moments. I get that the samples and drums are supposed to sounds choppy but it doesn’t sounds quite right. There’s good choppy and there’s unrefined choppy and this leans more towards the unrefined side of things. There also a change around the 1:05 mark that is ,tonally, a little questionable. Outside of that, I like where this producers head is at and think he/she could get really good down the line.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:4.5 out of 10
Originality:5 out of 10

Artist: Alan Ward
Song: Glitch Spin

I just see the word “Glitch” in a song title and I think “ughh…here we go…”. That said, this is not what that word makes me fear. It does take FOREVEr to get anywhere remotely interesting. When the synths drop around halfway, it’s the first moment of “Oh, this might be a song”. Then they vanish and some quiet flutes come in. I dunno. This just seems kinda bareback and unfinished. even with the arbitrary bassline flip at the end (which is the best part of the whole song and might as well be it’s own song, to be honest)
Production:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:4.5 out of 10
Originality:4 out of 10

Artist: Cognitive Genesis
Song: Blame me

Nope. Sorry. Nope. It’s not even your fault, dude. This just isn’t ready on any level. It’s recorded in a mine shaft (or on garage band using the laptop mic). The beat is a mess off bad sounds and kind aimless. The rapper might be good…i can’t tell. The mix makes him sound like a mumbler. At points I hear decent flows pop in but, in the same way, I hear just parts that get pretty sloppy.
Production:2 out of 10
Vocals:4 out of 10
Listenability:2 out of 10
Originality:3 out of 10

Artist: C Money Burns
Song: High Tracking

This is the kinda thing that, if I was in a car, and someone played it for me, I’d be like “That’s pretty cool!” but never wanna listen to it on my own. It definitely speaks to my 1980’s sensibility. Its well made and I could see girls loving this shit. Can’t really diss it on any level, unless it’s all just one song sampled and looped at different points. In which case, it’s still fun just far less creative.
Production:6 out of 10
Listenability:6 out of 10
Originality:5.5 out of 10

Artist: SMRT
Song: Buzzsaw

I’m old, man. I hear this an recognize the rap skill but I can’t help but just hear someone aping what’s popular right now. Even down to how he presents his name and song title. That said, it’s not badly done at all. all the parts work for what they are. The beats kinda annoying but it’s well made and the song, in general, is mixed nicely. It’s just so clearly riding wave , it takes away from it for me a bit.
Production:5.5 out of 10
Vocals:5.5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
Originality:2.5 out of 10

So, What do you think?

Yay or Nay: Remy banks

I’m not gonna lie, I literally found out about this dude yesterday when Earl Sweatshirt Tweeted about him. So, let me start this all off by saying I don’t know much about him. I know he’s down with Queens based collective “Worlds fair” , who’ve been putting out solid music for a while now. But, outside of that, all i can say is that the song Earl posted is kinda my shit. So, with that as my guide, I looked into more music by Remy banks. Turns out he’s got a bunch of it. It’s definitely more laid back than I expected and he’s a fan of weed. Not that those things are a bad thing at all, just an observation. Now, this is just a guess but I feel as though the first song posted (that’s the one earl tweeted) is newer and , in general a better look at where he may be going stylistically. If so, I’m all for it. Not that the other shit is bad or anything but that new one…it’s just seems more developed. Either way, I’m feeling his stuff.
So, I’m curious to see what you think.

What do you think?

Answers for Questions Vol. 209

Helllloooo guyz. Welcome to another edition of “Questions for answers”. You ask, I answer. Simple. If you’d like to ask me anything, go for it. Email questions to me at or leave them in the comment section below. Just try your best and be creative. If your question feels like something everyone would ask me, skip it and gimmie something I can work with. The more weird, the better.
Let’s get into this weeks batch…

not that it’s your fault or anything, but I seem to have reached a place of musical despair. I’ve been playing most of my life, and been listening to Hip-Hop for over 10 years. I play more than 5 instruments, make beats on my MPC 1000, sing, and freestyle. I know I’m good, and I love the music I create. Yet certain life events over the course of the past few years (namely heartbreak and being chronically underemployed broke, and depressed) have left such a bad taste in my spiritual mouth that it’s even soured the once-sweet flavor of creating music! Despite my best efforts, practicing or even just making music for the hell of it seems like some awful drudgery that I never have time for. Have you ever encountered this type of roadblock and if so, how were you able to get past it and rekindle the flame?

I just wanted to point out that “listening to hip hop for ten years” cracked me up…Since 2004!!??! Whoa bro!, you’re a veteran in this shit!
I’m so old. Jesus.
I’ve always felt creativity goes in waves. I’ve certainly hit walls where the last thing i wanted to do was turn on my sampler and make a beat. Then, a month later, I’m feverishly making 4 beats a day. A lot of times , being around certain people will kick start you back up. Seeing someone be creative around me , often makes me wanna get back in the lab just off the basis of their passion for what they’re doing. Or, Sometimes, I’ll come back off tour and just really wanna create new shit.
I would say “Don’t force it” but, honestly, sometimes you gotta just start making some bullshit just the get the ball rolling again.
I’d imagine it’s like getting into an exercise routine. At first, it’s gonna suck but eventually you’ll get in the swing of things and need to do it like your life depended on it.
All that said if you lose the passion, you lose the passion. It sounds to me like other things in life are getting you down and it’s just reverberating into your desire to make music. Maybe you need to get the rest of your life back on track before you can really focus on making new music. Some would take that pain and sadness and apply it to their music but we’re all different so, you know, just do what works for you.

I enjoyed you giving away the free music the other day. I was pleasantly surprised to notice you’d done production for some early Mac Lethal stuff. Being a fan of you both, it was cool to check that stuff out. Did you produce anything else for Mac Lethal? Were you hanging out in the same place, or was the collaboration done long distance? How did those sessions come about, and are you actual friends in real life? Do you still listen to him, and do you like his youtube stuff and newer music? Like, if he plays a show in NYC, do you try to check it out? Would you still be down to work with him, if he hit you up? Just wondering. Also, who else would you really like to produce for, if it were up to you? Doomtree? Jean Grae? Riff Raff? Mainstream, more commercially viable rappers? I know this is on some rap-nerd shit, and maybe the type of questions that you’ve answered too much or annoy you, but I’d be interested in hearing your answers.

I worked with Mac back in the early 2000’s. We met over email and he bought two beats from me. That was all we ever did though. I’ve met him in person once (at scribble jam in 2001 or 2002, I forget). The collabo was done entirely via mail and email.
I’ve been peeping his youtube vids for a while and it seems things are going really well for him, which is cool. He’s always been a nice dude and working with him was fun. I would work with him again for sure , if he hollered.
As for other rappers I would produce for…there are tons. Pretty much anyone I’m listening to at the moment. Underground rappers like Michael Christmas, homeboy Sandman, Your Old droog, Ratking, Shirt, Vince Staples, Earl etc…
On a more mainstream level, I’d love to do some shit with Gunplay (it’ll never happen but that would be awesome), Freddie Gibbs, Pusha T and Mystikal.

So you’re deserted on an island, who would you rather be stranded with: Mila Kunis, Bob Saget (he has an iPod that never dies and has eversong ever on it), or Bill O’reilly and his family (Bill can hunt with his hands like no other)?

Mila Kunis by a landslide. How is this even a question?
I think, if I were stranded on an island, my desire to survive would overtake my desire to hear music. Also, Saget is fucking annoying and not funny at all.Making small talk with him for years and trying to play the music I wanna hear would be worse than sitting in silence.
And, clearly, even if he’s a great hunter, ain’t nobody trying to hang with the Bill O’reilly family.
I’m sure Mila and I would figure something out. Or not…and We’d die but, hey, maybe that’s better than living on a deserted island for the rest of my life.

This is an elaborate confession leading up to a simple question: I am a grown man and I piss sitting down about 90% of the time. Here’s my reasons/explanation for how this came to be: (1) I am almost 6’5″so it’s a long way down which requires more clean up than your average man, I’ve lived with a few women in my life and they tend to complain if there’s a mess (2) I drink really heavily and nightly I always have, this contributes to the first problem as my aim is impaired so there’s more clean up, also by the end of the night standing for an extended period of time can be a chore in itself (3) I HATE using public urinals, even when I’m drunk there’s nothing more uncomfortable than standing a foot away from another dude with our dicks out and it’s completely silent. I think all public restrooms should have Slayer blasting. (that would also help me out as I’m not really into listening to dudes taking a shit) So I get what they call “bashful bladder” (which makes it sound extra pussy), I know a lot of dudes get it at the urinals cuz I’ve even done the stand off/game of chicken: where I know the dude next to me is having the same problem and he just flushes and leaves without urinating, (boom, I won) now I get to piss in private…shitty game. So I’ll usually use a stall to piss or my favorite is at some of my local bars they have the single bowl ladies’ room with a lock on the door, I usually know everybody so no one gives a fuck, but every once in a while a girl gives me a shitty look when I come out and I’ll make a snarky comment like “sorry, I thought the picture on the door was a dude with baggy shorts.” I’m pretty open about this subject and people in bars even enjoy when I break down why I “pee like a girl.” (being really tall and covered in tattoos add to their amusement I think) So what’s up Block? You ever get bashful with your bodily functions, or are you an “anywhere anytime” guy?

Hmm…If this were about shitting I would understand. Hell, if this was about peeing in those places that the urinals are just troughs I’d be like “No doubt”. But all your reasons for pissing sitting down are kinda weak. I mean, you’re 6’5”. You really think those extra inches of height make it that much more difficult to do what EVERY MAN on earth does? I think the key here is the drinking. You get shit faced and piss all over the place. Every time I’ve walked into a public bathroom and see piss everywhere and wonder “What savage did this?”. You are that guy. Just do people a solid and flip the seat up.
As for the shy bladder thing, I get it. That’s not uncommon. And , really, if you’re more comfortable peeing sitting down, do it. It’s your life. Don’t let me or anyone else tell you how to evacuate your bladder. But, also, accept that people might clown you for it. Whatever though…you’re 6’5” and covered in tattoos. I’m sure people will let it slide just on account of that.
As for me, I can pee anywhere. I’m not crossing streams with bro’s but if there is a urinal or a quiet street and I need to go, I will go. I’m a little more selective with #2’s. Touring has forced my hand a few times but, ideally, I try and not shit in most public bathrooms…cause guys like you are out there pissing all over everything.

You were living in Manhattan during the late 80’s, right? How true to the yuppie culture is American Psycho?
I was but I was also pretty young. Can’t say I was paying much attention to yuppies back then. That said, from what older people have told me, it seems somewhat realistic. I would actually argue it hasn’t changed much except the hedonism is less out in the open. Wall street is still packed with super rich, young assholes who do coke and fuck tons of low life women. The difference is now the clubs and restaurants are different but it’s all the same shit.The dip shits who buy Bottle service at clubs have always existed in some form or another.

on the cover of “Interludes” there is a partially cut-off poster on the wall stage right from the TV set. You can see the letters “ilkins”, a basketball goal, what appears to be half of a car, and then “alley”. Since the artwork seems so specific, is this based on a real poster and if so- on what?

It’s a dominique Wilkins poster from the 80’s and , yes, it was real. He was my favorite basketball player when I was growing up. Hell, he’s to this day my all time favorite player.

Was Forest Crunk meant to be an instrumental song or was it created with the intention of Aesop rapping over it? Can you explain the back story behind it not having any lyrics?

It was just a beat. Aesop was making the Daylight Ep and he wanted an instrumental interlude. My memory is foggy but I feel as though he was working on one of his own and wasn’t liking it. I was sitting on the Forest Crunk beat and played it for him. He liked it and added it to the album. There was definitely never an intention to rap on it though. It was also my first real “instrumental track” I ever made. It was the song that popped the idea in my head that I could maybe make instrumental music.

DId Sir Jarlsberg make the craziest posse cut of all time? Yup. He did.

So, my old friend and former Party Fun action Committee partner , Jeremy Gibson, has been doing a character known as Sir Jarlsberg for a while now. If you’re unfamiliar, it’s hard to explain. He’s a rapper/minstrel/entertainer from the days of yore. He raps about things like going to the market, the beauty of rivers and various dance steps. His first album , “Hark thou” was pretty much the “Low end Theory” of Medieval hip hop. His new album “Come Hither”, drops in a few weeks and he just leaked a song off it. This song…wow. I can honestly say not rap posse cut has ever featured such a wide variety of talent. Aside from his rapping chums (Dj Forlorn Maiden, Mingus, Sir Richard, and The Steed this song also features the likes of Lateef the Tru Speaker (Lateef), me (as the gnome), Aesop rock, Kimya Dawson , Baby Dayliner and Jeremy’s father Jon Gibson (who is a highly regarded wind instrument player who’s played with Philip glass and others for years). That’s a pretty fucking crazy line up.
Also, I did the beat and it’s silly as fuck. So, check it out…

I’d also say that, if you live in the NYC area, come see Jarlsberg’s live show cause it’s absolutely insane. I’m serious. It’s impossible to not have fun. It’s at Union pool in BK on October 29th.
If you’re curiosity is peaked, check out some older videos/music of Sir Jarlsberg’s right here:

Rogglecast 24- Loosening the jar

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This week, Pollyne and I are joined by a special guest, Aviva Yael. She’s a writer, blogger and known person about town. We play a game of “Fuck/Marry/Kill”, give Aviva the Guest survey and discuss poor dating instincts. We also get to hear Pollyne speak Portuguese , which sounds pretty cool and funny at the same time.
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