Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five for week ending 02:24:12 with E-Lit
1) Lazerbeak & Edison Kill Switch LP (Fieldwerk)
We received a whole bunch of these over a week early, and sold through our entire supply of them in a matter of days! Given the extremely high quality of the product, it’s no wonder we couldn’t keep this on the shelves. Kill Switch is hip-hop production of the highest caliber, brought to you by the strongest label in instrumental hip hop Fieldwerk Recordings. Doomtree’s Lazerbeak handles side A with a surprisingly subtle approach that occasionally bursts with brilliant color, delivering his finest solo instrumental work to date. San Francisco’s own genius button-masher Edison handles side B with a much rowdier gang of beats that show off his skillful production craft, with menacing guitar jabs and gangsta bleeps that form a cohesive whole. This one’s only available on vinyl, but it does come with a digital download card that’ll get it on your computer in a matter of minutes. Highly recommended!
2) Tajai Machine Language CD (Hieroglyphics Imperium)
Souls of Mischief frontman and Hieroglyphics mainstay Tajai’s new Machine Language mixtape has naturally been doing very well in the Bay. Features fellow Hiero members Casual, Opio and A-Plus, plus a joint with The Pharcyde, all for a super cheap price of $5.98. This mix CD is just a taster of random new Tajai tracks, but should tide the Bay’s Hiero fanbase over until Tajai’s new Rap Noir album drops later this year.
3) Curren$y Muscle Car Chronicles CD (DD172)
Mysterious new (old?) Curren$y full length Muscle Car Chronicles, presented by Sean O’Connell and finally available on CD in an official digipack. I feel like this was available digitally a while ago and was supposed to drop on CD, but vanished without a trace until it suddenly appeared in a recent order. Full album of verses by that rapper you love to smoke a bowl to. Produced by Sean O’Connell and presented by Dame Dash’s DD172 label, this one’ll likely get you blazed.
4) Gangrene Vodka & Ayahuasca CD (Decon)
The new album Vodka & Ayahuasca from the Alchemist and Oh No has continued to move super well over here, proving how highly regarded both of these talented producers have become. The album features layered psychedelic production that compliments the mindfuckery of the album cover, plus guest rappers like Kool G Rap, Prodigy, Roc Marciano and Evidence. Worthy addition to Oh No and Alchemist’s respective catalogs.
5) Busdriver Beaus $ Eros CD (Fake Four Inc.)
Finally, some new material to dig into from one of the most interesting figures of LA’s Project Blowed scene! Beaus $ Eros is one of Busdriver’s most challenging pieces of work to date, and is certain to polarize people’s opinions of him as an artist. This conceptual break-up album finds Busdriver making some of the most outlandish risks of his long and prolific career, channeling distorted pop music into stuttering electronic rap compositions. Those fiending for rapid-fire hip hop verses from Busdriver might be disappointed when they hear the number of slow-moving sung songs on here, with a good chunk of the album abandoning rap music altogether for something far stranger. Repeated listens reveal a depth and honesty to the music here, but only those who appreciate hip hop on the fringe should risk the voyage. Interesting and original stuff for sure.
Thanks to my man E Lit at Berkeley Amoeba for not just supplying this week's Amoeba Hip-Hop Top Five but for also writing up the informative descriptions of each of the five new album releases above. I personally have not yet heard the Tajai release but got to cop it, especially at that nice price of under six bucks. It seems like the Hieroglyphics family is definitely on a roll for 2012 with many releases and shows for the year ahead. Tajai's fellow Hiero Pep Love is also been productive lately. His brand new Jordan Ching directed video for the song "Hip-Hop, My Friend" is among the new hip-hop videos below (scroll down a bit). From the opening crackle off a record in the video for "Hip-Hop, My Friend" from the Hieroglyphic member's anticipated soon-to-drop new album Rigmarole (on Amoeba shelves March 6th) - it is one long loving homage to hip-hop. Other videos below include (from Chicago) The Promise's "SoundCatcher" featuring Pugs Atomz and Neak with production by Mulatto Patriot - from the forthcoming album The New Deal. The other video below include the latest video for "Bully" from New Jersey-born, Harlem-based rapper Kyle Rapps' debut EP, Re-Edutainment - the Kev Brown produced loose re-interpretation of the Boogie Down Productions classic (essential for any hip-hop collection) album Edutainment.
The other video below is a promo for Fist Fam's Weekend Cult album release party at Elbo Room tonight - one of several hip-hop shows happening in San Francisco tonight. Others include DJ Shortkut and DJ Spinna spinning and Fran Boogie hosting tonight at Mighty 119 Utah St.San Francisco, CA 94103, and The Session San Francisco at Club Six with Motion Man, DJ Mind Motion, Chuy Gomez & T.C. Izlam. feat. Peach Street, Keyes, Armani Cooper, JoeyKnova plus DJ's: Koo-C, DJ SANDIA, Mighty Del Rokz, Kool DJ Dizzy, & Franky Fresh and host: G Boogz. $10., 21+ Club 6, 60th 6th St. SF CA. 21+. .
Meanwhile the Fist Fam record release party at the Elbo Room for their new joint Weekend Cult is pretty much a big Gurp City (the collective they belong to) throwdown. Should be fun with sets from
Fist Fam, Macon Beatz, Foul Mouth Jerk, Grand Invincible, Rec League, and Z-Man. But the celebration is bitter sweet since it is a going away party for Gurp City's Gus Cutty and Philo who return to their original homes in, as they say, "the magical mountains of North Carolina."
They also say that the title of their new album Weekend Cult is from "a name birthed from the mushroom addled backwood bonfire gatherings the group of friends religiously throw to pay respects to the Pimp named Chad, represents the dichotomy of moonshine sipping country folks thriving in the busy city streets of the Bay Area and signals a new beginning for the group as they drop the Fist Fam name altogether. The group sticks to what they know best on this release, a lifestyle filled with mind altering substances, late nights, and women of questionable morals while never straying too far from their southern roots."
Tonight Fist Fam will deliver their unique take on hip-hop - "psychedelic country rap tunes" as they tag their style. 9pm - 2am, 21+ $10 at door only. Elbo Room 647 Valencia Street, San Francisco.
Pep Love "Hip-Hop, My Friend" (2012)
Kyle Rapps "Bully" (2012)
The Promise "SoundCatcher" (2012)
Promo for tonight's (2/24/12) Fist Fam's Weekend Cult release party in San Francisco (2012)