Friday, May 6, 2011

Nujabes

Jun Seba aka Nujabes (new-jah-behz, which is his real name backwards) is a Japanese hip-hop music producer. He is known for cool jazz influence, often using samples from artists like Miles Davis. In addition to collaborating with Japanese artists he has also worked with Americans such as Five Deez, Fat Jon, and Cyne. Unfortunately, Nujabes passed away on February 26, 2010 after being involved in a serious car accident in Tokyo.

In my opinion, Nujabes might be on of the best producers of my generation. Most of the music he makes incorporates a jazz sound which blends with the artists featured in his music. Here is a sample of the lyrics Nujabes and Shing02 came up with in the song "Love Sic"

"Lovesick like a dog with canine sensitivity
Developing this new theory of relativity
Connecting our souls resting in captivity
Positive live sacrifice what it is to me
Our history, only a quarter of a century
Reality, sitting on the shoulder of out chemistry
See ain't no mystery, the colors that we mix will set the mind free
Let the blind see beyond harmony"

The only way to have a clear understanding of how Nujabes sounds is to take a listen for yourself. If there is one artist on this blog that I would recommend you listen to it would be Nujabes. Check out Feather before you miss out on great music.

Let me know if you feel the same way about Nujabes.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Larue


Larue has done numerous shows on the west coast with names such as Mr. Lif, Del the Funky Homosapien, and Souls of Mischeif. His style has been quoted to be, "Grown and Sexy but Gutter". He has a west coast flow with lyrics about life and his past experiences during the 8 years he spend in the U.S. Army. Two good examples of this are the songs Rise Up and I'm A Soldier. Larue has the rare ability to paint a picture with words, which you will notice on your first listen.


Check out Larue and his new video for Not Like Me off his latest album, "Saturn Returns". It was directed by Terrance Creighton and features himself with cameos from Marcus D, Rising Son, and John Crown.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Think Differently Music: Wu-Tang Meets The Indie Culture

For all you Wu-Tang and Underground Hip-Hop fans, this ablum was made for you. The reason I bring up an album that was released in October 18, 2005 is because it includes collaborated tracks by Wu-Tang Clan members, affiliates, and underground hip-hop artists. This album gives you a true feel for how underground artists sound and how they can make it to the "main stream". Dreddy Krueger produced this album and did a great job of mixing the Wu-Tang sound with these new and old artists alike.



All the songs on this album are bangers, but "Give it Up" with R.A. Rugged man and J-Live stands out to me. R.A. comes in hard with a sick flow, while J-Live kills it with metaphors. Both these artist are by no means "new" or "up and coming" but they both claim to be, and are, underground with a raw sound.


If you like this song, Wu-Tang, or Undergound Hip-Hop make sure you pick up this album that seems to have slipped through the cracks. And make sure to leave me a comment of an album or artist I should check out.


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Grieves

Benjamin Laub aka Grieves is the definition of determination and hard work. In 2003, Grieves moved into a Seattle apartment with nothing more then a bed, tv, and his MPC 2000XL. He spend hours a day on his MPC creating beats and writing songs. Soon enough he found himself performing in small clubs and venues. He used these funds to support his own tours and the release of his first LP, "Irreversible".





By 2008 Grieves had partnered with Budo, an established local producer, to help him develop his second full release, "88 Keys and Counting". In 2009 Grieves signed to the Minneapolis based label Rhymesayers Entertainment where he has worked on and released "The Confessions Of Mr. Modest". This album features P.O.S and the Cunninlynguists.




Grieves's music often is about heartbreak, pain, and self-truths. He says he writes these songs to deal with his problems and harmful events of his life. This makes his music easy to relate with and understand. But Grieves is not all about doom and gloom. His live shows are energetic hip-hop performances and Grieves shows off his skill of music by using multiple instruments on stage. He also has great humor which really comes out during a live performance. I would recommend checking out a show if you have the chance.



Here is a song from Grieves to get you started, off his newest album "The Confessions of Mr. Modest"-Ghost Ship. Please check out all 3 of his albums and let me know which one you feel is his best.




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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Elemental Zazen

Zazen has shared the stage with Immortal Technique, Kool Keith, Mr. Lif, and many more. He is Originally from Boston but has lived in many states and even over seas in his life. He is currently living in Seattle working towards his PhD in Sociology. Zazen has been though a lot during his relatively short life, from the death of a close family member, a devastating house fire that took all his possessions, to brain surgery to remove a tumor.



Just stumbled upon this little gem by Elemental Zazen "Nothing To Lose But Change". I have been playing this CD on repeat all week and thought I would share it with you all. It includes guest appearances from Canibus, Fashawn, Gnotes and Jean Grae, Elemental Zazen's new album features production from Jake One, Kno, M-Phazes, Blue Sky Black Death, J.Ferra, Metaform, and Eligh.




This CD has intricate rhymes, dirty drum beats, live instrumentation, and an old-school aggressive flow. I think the production from Jake One, Eligh, and Kno are spot on. After you listen to the song Hollow Hearts check out the whole album and let me know if you got the same vibe I did. Listen to Hollow Hearts featuring Canibus.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Sadistik


At only 23 years of age, Sadistik is quickly becoming one of the best underground hip-hop artists. Sadistik is one part Slugs and one part Marshall Mathers, with a unique style. By the time Sadistik was 22 years old he had already released his first album "The Balancing Act" working with already known artists Mac Lethal and Vast Aire. If you listened to this album, you will find it really takes off 1/3 of the way in. Sadistik's lyrics feel dark and cold yet meaningful. This is not a CD that will hype you up or cheer you up, rather it is more for those times you are alone and want time to reflect. Make sure you pay attention to the deep poetic sounding lyrics throughout this whole album. If you just listen to one song off this album make sure its "Writes of Passage".


Here is an example of the poetic lyrics Sadistik uses during this album:


But I gave in to all my fears instead

The only thing that ran more then me (were the tears you shed)

When you told me you cut inside ya flesh

You're depressed and you'd rather die instead

I could feel my heart tear to bits

(The first time Ive cried ever since my parents split)

And I knew, there was no you and I

I kissed you goodbye, it felt like suicide

-"November"


"The Art of Dying" is Sasistik's most recent release. Kid Called Computer helps to produce this album and he doesn't miss a step. Much like The Balancing Act, Sadistik displays his emotions throughout the album with a unique swagger.


If you are looking for something different from the norm with a deep poetic and intense flow, these albums are for you. Please don't sleep on Sadistik, if you do, you'll regret it!


Let me know what you think of Sadistik

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Salim

Salim (Saleem) was born and bred in Baltimore and has opened for groups such as Talib Kweli, KRS1, Rakim, Slick Rick, Wu-Tang, Little Brother, and De la Soul. Saleem says he is influenced by Public Enemy, The Roots, and even Stevie Wonder. Salim's objective is "Bringing a balance back to hip hop" which he has accomplished through his music. He mainly preforms in the Baltimore/D.C. area and his fan base is growing.

I learned about Salim during a De La Soul concert at The Rams Head in Baltimore last summer. He was the opening act at this concert and made more then an impression. He rocked 4 songs and genuinely seemed happy to be there. After his session was over, he set up a post where fans could meet him and purchase a record. I personally talked with Salim and he thanked me for not only supporting him, but for supporting hip-hop. He was very please to see the support the crowd gave him, as people were chanting his name during other sub-par performance's.


One of the main reasons I like Salim's music is because he has a real feel about him. He is not rapping about fame and money, but rather where hip hop has been and where it is going. He even has songs about the present day. He has a refreshing flow to all of his songs that can't be ignored. There is a reason he has been described at the "embodiment of hip hop's evolution" and you should check him out for yourself.


Here is a live sample of what Salim is about, from his newest record, "Live Free or Die Trying". I also urge you to listen to "Hood Rich" and "I EMCEE" from his first album, "Hip Hop Revisited". Let me know what you think.
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