A while back, I did a “Yay or Nay” For THIS song by Bobby Raps and Corbin (AKA Spooky Black). I ,personally loved the song and , judging from the polls, you guys did too. Since then, both artists been dropping shit here and there. For the most part, I’ve been into it. Definitely some cool shit coming out of St. Paul.
The other day someone left this new Bobby Raps video in my inbox and I’m sorta confused. I’m not sure if this is a one off , style-wise or if he’s moving on to a new sound in his career but it’s interesting. Now, I have a STRONG idea how the voting for this poll is gonna go. I know this fan base well enough to know that trap beats, auto tune and yell rapping are not what you guys enjoy. At least, the majority of you. I’m a little more lenient about that kinda thing (I’m over it but , when done well, I see the good). Thing is, on the surface, I should hate this song. It’s kind of a beautiful mess. The beat is pretty dope, and Bobby’s raps are actually awesome if you get past the autotune. Hell, I even can fuck with some of the singing parts. There’s no question it’s got an energy to it too. But, at the same time, it does leave me a little confused. Maybe that’s the point?
So, with open minds, I ask you to listen to this and tell me what you think. Be honest. Why not?
Every now and then I like to test the temperature of what you guys are feelings out there. I randomly collect 8 songs I’m fucking with and see what you like best…via the power of voting. Yes, it’s a democracy up in this bitch.
So, without saying anything about the songs or trying to sway your votes with my opinions, i present your options.
All I ask is that you give every song a chance and don’t vote based on a name or cause you assume what you may or may not like the best and don’t even need to check the rest. Also, you may vote for more than one song. Have at it…
Danny Brown-When it Rain
Ugly Frank- Bum Liquor
Bodega Bams-All Eyez off me
Your Old Droog- White rappers
Subcontractors- Throwaway Pistols
DJ JS 1 Feat Breeze Bruin, Homeboy Sandman and Kyle raps- 110 percent
Clams Casino Ft. Vince Staples- All Nite
Marv won-Monkey Business
I’m not tuned in to these streets like I once was, guys. I used to have my fingers on the pulse of what was cool and what wasn’t in rap music. Granted, that was well over a decade ago , but still…I’ve been there!
While rappers named stuff like Lil Yachty and Lil Uzi Vert exist, I certainly don’t know what they do or what they sound like (I could guess and probably be right, though). For me, the last time I had a handle on mainstream rap, guys like Jay-Z and Pusha-T were very relevant. Now, in 2016, I can’t say with 100% confidence where either of these rappers stand with rap rans under the age of 35. I liked Pusha’s last album. It had some joints. I haven’t checked for Jay with any real curiosity since, I dunno…”Roc Boys” came out. So, to see them on a song together currently is more confusing than anything. Like, is it good? It could be. Will the kids like it? Who fucking knows? So, today’s column is a check in on all that.
I present to you the new Pusha-T/Jay-Z song. Unfortunately , it’s only streaming on Tidal so I can’t embed it here. But , you can peep it in this link.
Side note, releasing stuff on just Tidal and Apple music…I get why people do it but…goddamn…making music like an exclusive country club is just the worst. Especially if you’re a miser, like I apparently am. But,i digress…
What do you think of this song? Here’s a little poll. There is a wide variety of choices so feel free to vote for more than one option. It’s a free country guys.
Last week, I did a little write up for Brooklyn’s Elucid. I spoke of him being experimental but still maintaining a NYC aesthetic, in terms of having a gritty feel that very particular to NYC hip hop, without looking backwards. This week, I was introduced to Medhane and Slauson Malone. A rapper/producer duo from Brooklyn that are actually a fantastic companion piece to where Elucid left off. The word “Challenging” is not something a lot of rap fans have a stomach for. Most people would rather be spoon fed their entertainment. Medhane and Slauson Malone do not make music that is meant to be heard in passing or booming from car speakers. This is thinking rap. This is more in tune with people like Billy Woods/elucid, The Clipping, and Rat King. Similar to those aforementioned artists, Slauson Malone can rap very well. Madhanes beats are off kilter but not at all just noisy hell. He also takes some really great creative liberites with the directions his songs go. You’re never really sure what might happen next, which is a cool feeling to have when listening to a rap song. The video that accompanies their first song is definitely one that jumps off the screen (and perhaps, might give you a seizure) but, personally, it grabbed me right away.
Clearly, this isn’t rap music made for everyone but it is made for a specific type of fan. I feel that may be right in the wheelhouse for many readers of this blog so I’m curious what you think. Before casting judgement just off the video, I’d advise downloading the album and giving it a listen cause the video doesn’t portray the group entirely how they are.
Let’s play a fun game. Below are 8 random songs. I enjoy them all on varying levels. Some are great, some are just okay. Some are very serious, some are funny. They come from all different regions and the genres of rap vary from NYC underground to southern mainstream to west coast gangster shit to straight up comedy rap. I’m curious what you guys think.
This kinda thing is always interesting to me cause i’m pretty sure I know what way you guys tend to lean, when it comes to music taste but, hey, sometimes you surprise me.
Which of these songs do you like the most?I’ve made a poll below the songs, so please vote. in fact, you can vote for as many of these as you want cause i understand picking just one might be hard.
I always enjoy doing these polls to get an idea where the readers tastes fall at the moment. Sometimes you guys surprise me, other times, you fall right into my trap. So, without any leading or angling, I present some songs for you to check out. Please try and check them all before making your vote. Cause that’s democracy. In Fact, VOTE FOR TWO SONGS. Just to keep it interesting.
(I fully expect Schoolboy Q to run away with this and probably shouldn’t have even made it an option but I’ll be curious to see what comes in second place)
When you think of North Carolina, hip hop doesn’t exactly jump into your mind. Sure, there have been some acts from there over the years (Petey Pablo was repping very hard for them when he was swinging shirts around like a helicopter, J-Cole, and few others I’m forgetting right now) but, in general, it’s not exactly a hub of rap music.
Well$ is someone I recently heard about. He’s a young rapper who is an interesting mix between old and new. He’s not oblivious to new musical leanings but also takes from an older sound that might actually appeal to all you grumpy old school only types. Whether or not this will translate to popularity or success for him remains to be seen but he’s certainly got a lot of potential.
Here’s a profile Complex did about him for some more background:
About 25 years ago you could look at someone and tell exactly what kind of music they listened to. Like “oh , look..that person listens to Phish” or “that person is a backpack rap fan” or “that person loves heavy metal”. While certain extremes of this still exist, the world as we know has become far more homogenized. That white nerd you would assume who only listens to banjo music knows every word to the newest Kevin Gates mixtape. The defining lines are as blurry as ever. In no genre more than rap music aka hip hop (for all you weirdos who think they are two different things).
Now, I think I have a handle on what I expect from the people who read this blog. After all, you’re very likely here cause you like my music. This automatically makes me assume you like some weird underground rap and/or beat music. More often than not, when I do my “Yay or Nay?” section, it’s me trying to check the temperature out there. Personally, I like all sorts of shit. Shit you guys often hate but , at the same time, I try to expose people to something different in a more palatable way. I know a fair amount of you hear triplet high hats and immediately zone out. That’s too bad. Or if autotune is used in any way, that song immediately sucks. Or if the rapper is talking about selling drugs and shooting people. I get it but I’ve always contended , within all these tiny sub genres of rap, there are always a few jewels. SO, today, I’mma take a test. I picked 8 different sub genres of rap. Each song is an example. Now, I’m in no way saying I love all these songs. In fact, i think some of them are pretty half assed. However, I wanna get a read on where your head is at. So, at the bottom, there will be two polla for you to vote for your favorite. One to vote for your favorite song of this particular bunch and the other to vote for the type of rap you typically find yourself drawn to. I’m curious.
So let’s see the nominees:
Let’s start it off real safe:
Rebels of the grain- Harvest season
This is some true school boom bap shit. Nice loop, tapped out drums that are east coast influenced.
It could be accused of being derivative and boring but it’s also holding onto the essence of what got a lot of people into rap in the first place.
Fredo Bang- Thuggin
This is some straight southern (new orleans) thugged out shit. Not quite trap though. This kinda stuff is generally local and doesn’t have a far reach but the people who fuck with? they fuck with it HARD.
DP- The Burial
This is some hardcore east coast shit (I honestly don’t know where he’s from though). It’s along the lines of Pusha T. Samples and more synthetic trap type drum sounds. This is a dude who still cares about his bars but isn’t one of those #barz rappers. He’s too busy talking some street shit to throw battle references in there.
Gruff Lion- Clock oven
He were get a little weird. underground rap weird. The beats are strange and the rapping is atypical. The type of thing you either love or hate. It’s abstract rap for the next generation.
Lil Bibby- Ridah
This is some street trap shit. Guns guns and more guns. Not sure where he’s from either but it could literally be from anywhere in the US.
Young Jake- Datamosh
Who could forget weirdo blog raps? Stuff that tumblr’s bust nuts al over. It’s aware art school types who understand the current status of rap as we know it. The type of shit that people who dress cooler than you fuck with and you’re like “what is this shit?”. It always is kinda infuriating but then you find yourself watching it a few times. so it’s got something.
How bout some straight up west coast gangsta rap? It still exists and it still has that feelings that so damn specific. I don’t know if it’s likely someone from outside the west coast will mess with this but it’s nothing if not authentic
This could be cheating cause this song is a hit but it falls into a weird category. It’s popular rap. It’s trap. It’s cosigned by Kanye. It gets compared to future. But, you know what? This dude can rap. I tweeted the other day that if you put some sample heavy beat under the part when he actually starts rapping (around 2 minutes in) it could sound like a project blowed song from the mid 90’s. So this guy is a curious case to me.
I’d like to preface these polls by saying there is more to rap than just these styles. I’m more just curious where these particular types of hip hop land with the reader shit. I mean, i won’t lie, i can kinda guess where this is going but you never know…you guys have surprised be before.
So, what song if your favorite of this bunch?
Every now and then, there are periods of time when a ton of good music seems to pop out of nowhere. Months can go by, with me listening to the same shit I had been forever then, all of sudden, a whole new crop of songs and albums for me to dig my teeth into appear. Not gonna front, soundcloud has really upped the ante on this cause it seems like artists I check for release a new song for the hell of it every month or so.
Anyway, I often like to take the temperature of what you guys are fucking with. So here are 7 songs I’ve been fucking with (many of the artists are favorites of mine you should be very familiar with if you follow this blog), in both video and soundcloud form. I’m curious what you like the most. There’s a poll after the songs and I know how much people like voicing their opinions online. Well, now is you chance. Peep them and lemme know.
Wiki-Livin’ with my moms
Shirt-Queens to Hollywood
Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire-Gold mouth piranha
Michael Christmas- Look up/save the day
Your old droog-Basketball and seinfeld
Fresh daily Feat Homeboy sandman- Bodybag
While I like doing a good old “Yay or nay” with you guys, let’s try something a little different today. What we have here is two artists I know nothing about. I don’t know where they’re from, I don’t know if they’ve released other music, I don’t know how old these songs even are. I could do some research pretty easily but that wouldn’t be like me, now would it? Regardless, I do find something interesting about both these songs and I think it would be interesting to see what you guys think. Partially cause I wanna know but also to get an idea where your heads are at. These are two very different styles of rap. First off we have Da$h with a song called “Hello”
It’s a sloppy, very high/drunk kinda song. He even seems to be totally wasted in the video itself. But, it’s got something.
The next video is DP with “Jabar”
This is more straight forward. Kinda reminds me of the CLipse a little. Even the beat. Far less abstract and much more focused than the Da$h video.
So, what song do you like more? Feel free to elaborate in the comment section.