Amoeblog

Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week Ending 02.04.12: Doomtree @ Amoeba Berkeley, Lushlife, Pep Love, Raleigh Moncrief, Homeboy Sandman, Gangrene, DJ Solomon, Azeem, and more

Posted by Billyjam, February 4, 2012 11:35am | Post a Comment
Jamoeblog Hip-Hop Top Five Week Ending 02:04:12

1) Gangrene Vodka and Ayahuasca (Decon)

2) Lushlife Plateau Vision LP (Western Vinyl)

3) Homeboy Sandman Subject Matter (Stones Throw)

4) Eligh & Amp Live Therapy At 3 ( Legendary Music/Live Up/Traffic)

5) Wiley Evolve Or Be Extinct (Big Dada)

For a change from the usual sales-based Amoeba weekly hip-hop chart this week's Hip-Hop Top Five Chart is my own personal favorite brand new and soon to drop hip-hop releases. Topping the chart is the amazing Oh No and The Alchemist group Gangrene's third and latest collaboration Vodka and Ayahuasca on Decon. Also here is the recent Eligh & Amp Live Therapy At 3 ( which gets better and better with repeated listens and the brand new Wiley
album Evolve Or Be Extinct - a double CD on Big Dada which will appeal equally to grime and hip-hop heads. Not out yet but worthy of mention It is the forthcoming Lushlife album Plateau  Vision LP, which will be released in mid April on Western Vinyl, and is sure to propel to mainstream visibility the South Philly producer/emcee/musician who made waves last year with the much buzzed about mixtape No More Golden Days. As with that mixtape, which was an actual cassette tape, this new CD album blends mid 90's underground NY hip-hop flavor with Dilla/Madlib type production values. This is the sort of well produced album that will make you want to also track down the instrumental version. It's pure pleasure to listen to and Lushlife's flow is a treat to listen to. He is also joined by several well chosen guests throughout the 11 track album including Styles P, Canadian rapper Shad, Heems of Das Racist, and ex-Titus Andronicus garage rocker Andrew Cedermark who joins him on the album track "The Romance of the Telescope." My personal favorite tracks are the throwback eigthies/nineties sounding "Anthem" and the opening "Magnolia" which, over a dreamy hypnotic backdrop and a series of well chosen samples, finds Lushlife rapping about such things as graffiti and Coney Island. This is already making its way to becoming one of my year end top albums.

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Love For Tha Sco: Hip-Hop Videos That Show Much Love For San Francisco City

Posted by Billyjam, May 12, 2011 03:16pm | Post a Comment

During the Bay Area's rich, three-decade strong hip-hop history, each city within the greater Bay Area has been fairly represented, from Oakland to Vallejo & from East Palo Alto to San Francisco and all other towns and spots in between. And with this music, more than any other popular genre, such as, say, rock, Bay Area rap/hip-hop has consistently presented an overwhelming sense of pride and recognition for its immediate surroundings. Neighborhoods or 'hoods are frequently name checked in rap songs. Listen to Bay Area hip-hop for any amount of time and you'll hear countless references or shout-outs to street names and specific blocks, to local landmarks and slang terms for areas such as "Valley Joe" (Vallejo), "The Town" (Oakland), and "Tha Sco" (San Francisco), aka "The SFC" or "San Fran Psyco" or "The 4, The 1, The Feev" etc. etc. In fact, San Francisco hip-hop in particular is renowned for displaying a huge amount of hometown pride lyrically as well as in the songs' corresponding videos.

So for this Amoeblog I've assembled ten (admittedly subjective, since there are so many to choose from) San Francisco themed rap videos that display both a love of San Francisco in their lyrics and also some great visual shots of the City by the Bay. Included is the very recently released, Dregs One directed "Heart & Soul" by Equipto featuring Mike Marshall, which is packed with references to San Francisco hip-hop artists from the past few decades plus tons of citywide landmarks (including Doggie Diner and Amoeba on Haight). "Heart and Soul" and many of the videos below include the SF Giants logo, gear or stadium shots. The SF Giants' success in 2010 brought additional pride to San Francisco hip-hop, as seen in the videos featuring SF rapper Roach Gigz below, along with San Quinn and others.

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Hip-Hop Rap Up 03:25:11: Zion I & The Grouch, Pharoahe Monch, Equipto & Mike Marshall, DMC 2011, E-40, Azeem

Posted by Billyjam, March 25, 2011 02:35am | Post a Comment

Zion I & The Grouch "Rockit Man (feat. Silk-E)" (2011) - this week's #1 @ Amoeba

Amoeba Music San Francisco Hip-Hop Top Five Week Ending March 25th, 2011

1) Zion I & The Grouch are Heroes in the Healing of the Nation (Z&G Music)

2) Pharoahe Monch W.A.R. (We Are Renegades) (W.A.R. Media/Duck Down Music)

3) Equipto & Michael Marshall Keep it Movin' 2 Love Changes-Solidarity Records

4) Raekwon Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang (Ice H2O Records)

5) Lupe Fiasco Lasers (Atlantic Recording Corp).

Thanks to Luis for this week's Amoeba Hip-Hop Top Five for the San Francisco store where the highly recommended new Zion I & The Grouch's latest collaborative album Zion I & The Grouch are Heroes in the Healing of the Nation is number one after only hitting Amoeba Music's shelves on Tuesday (March 22nd). A sequel to Zion I & The Grouch's similarly themed, successful 2006 collaboration, Heroes in the City of Dope, this latest teaming of hip-hop talent even surpasses that critically acclaimed release. Joining producer Amp Live and emcees Zumbi and The Grouch throughout this release are such guests as Fashawn, Casual, Mystic, Brother Ali, Eric Rachmany, Freeway, Roy Ayers, Jacob Hemphill of Soja, Eligh, Codany Holiday, The R.O.D., and Silk-E, whose soaring vocals elevate the single "Rockit Man," as seen in the brand new video above.

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Hip-Hop Rap Up 01:28:11: True Skool, Verbal Kent, Talib, JayLib, $hort & 40, Azeem + More

Posted by Billyjam, January 28, 2011 09:00am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Hollywood Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 01:28:11


1) Madlib Medicine Show #11: Low-Budget Hi-Fi Music (Stones Throw)

2) Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam)
 
3) Nicki Minaj Pink Friday (Cash Money/Universal)

4) Ghostface Killah Apollo Kids (Def Jam)

5) Cee Lo Green The Lady Killer (Elektra Records)
 
This week's Hip-Hop Top Five Chart from the Hollywood Amoeba store comes to you at this generally quiet time in the music business right before all the new year's first crop of releases drop. Hence, we have many of the same titles from the past few weeks represented here, including the unstoppable Kanye West, Nicki Minaj (whose new video "Moment 4 Life (feat Drake)" premiered yesterday, Wu-Tang Clan's super-gifted Ghostface Killah, and Cee Lo Green. Cee Lo Green had a most successful and high profile past year and it looks like 2011 will repeat that pattern for the artist, who first rose to fame as a member of the Goodie Mob and then as one half of Gnarls Barkley (with Danger Mouse), and who enjoyed phenomenal global success in 2010 with the song "Fuck You" from his current album The Lady Killer. Cee Lo has been busy performing and recording including, as reported in the past week, a duet with controversial UK singer Amy Winehouse. The track will likely will appear on her comeback album slated for release later this year. According to the UK magazine NME, "The two recorded the song when Green visited Winehouse's house in St. Lucia."

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MISSION DISTRICT CELEBRATED IN BEN STOKES' ANIMATED AZEEM VID

Posted by Billyjam, March 4, 2009 01:21pm | Post a Comment

The brilliant, Ben Stokes-directed video above for Azeem's Air Cartoons' album track "Latin Revenge" (on Oaklyn Records with music production by DJ Zeph) takes place in the Mission District of San air cartoons azeemFrancisco. Inspired in part by Terry Gilliam's work and also by Azeem's music, the animated piece also puts a spin on the role of how police are perceived in society. In the video Azeem gains popularity as he peruses the streets of the Mission (eventually becoming a King Kong-like menace) as meanwhile a host of local neighborhood characters take notice. The police in the video are described by the maker as "enablers and cheerleaders."

I called up Azeem the other day to ask him what he thought about the new video. "It made me a fan and it's my video," he laughed, adding that, "All I can say about that video is that I can really almost take no credit for it. I just made the song. Like you and anyone else, I am fan of the video and I am amazed at the level of artistry that it incorporates." The video's animation was done by Ben Stokes (the video's producer/director) with additional animation by Patrick Siemer, who drew from the thousands of still photographs they shot, then cut up, mixed and matched, and then painstakenly animated using After effects.

Ben Stokes, also a part of Tino Corps, D.H.S.,, &  Meat Beat Manifesto, has been professionally making music videos for about 20 years. The Mission District, San Francisco-based Stokes started out doing videos back in 1990 in his native Chicago where he began directing & producing a lot of the pioneering hometown WaxTrax industrial music artists' videos such as Ministry and the Revolting Cocks.

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