Amoeblog

New Hip-Hop Vinyl: Sammus "Pieces In Space" (Don Giovanni Records)

Posted by Billyjam, October 31, 2016 07:30pm | Post a Comment
              Sammus Pieces In Space LP (Don Giovanni Records) [also avail on CD]

Among the new hip-hop albums on LP/vinyl to arrive into Amoeba this past Friday (10/28) is the recommended Pieces In Space LP (also avail on CD] by supertalented new hip-hopper Sammus. Released by Don Giovanni Records the powerful new album features select guest spots from such artists as Open Mike Eagle, Homeboy Sandman, and Jean Grae who join the Ithaca, NY rapper/producer and PhD student on the 12 song release. A student in the Department of Science & Technology Studies at Cornell University, Sammus (born Enongo Lumumba-Kasongo), manages to find time outside her studies (and gaming) to do shows and record some of the most intelligent and insightful, powerful new hip-hop music out there. While  Pieces In Space is Sammus first big time release with national distribution in place, she's been recording for several years now via Bandcamp and self released limited run CDs and all under the hip-hop subgenre known as nerdcore. Scroll down to see videos both off the new album and from the past four years. As we well know, hip-hop has always been a gender-unbalanced genre. But when further broken into specific hip-hop/rap subgenres, such as nerdcore, that unbalanced ratio of female to male artists is even greater. Hence why Sammus and her new album Pieces In Space is such a welcome addition to hip-hop. Generally nerdcore artists tends to be male and white, while Sammus is an African American woman. She is not the first or the only one but is among the small number of females in the hip-hop subgenre's decade and a half history. Shubzilla is a current example as is MC Random, while retired artist and the self-proclaimed female nerdcore pioneer MC Router was another.

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Long Overdue His Time In The Spotlight, Art Rap Lyrical Master Open Mike Eagle Forges Ahead With Each Unique New Project

Posted by Billyjam, September 13, 2016 09:44pm | Post a Comment

Open Mike Eagle
, whose latest project with producer Paul White Hella Personal Film Festival (also on LP) was ceremoniously launched earlier this year with an in-store at Amoeba Hollywood is a hip-hop wordsmith who transcends the genre with his clever wordplay. More importantly he is an artist long overdue his rightful time to shine in the spotlight. Yes Open Mike Eagle is well known (and rightfully respected) in underground, alternative hip-hop circles, especially in LA where the Chicago transplant came up in hip-hop over the past decade. But he is not nearly the superstar rapper that he deserves to be. He possesses ten times more lyrical skills than the average pop rapper today.  Many say that he slowly is getting the attention he deserves, especially with the new album collaboration with Danny Brown producer Paul White. His label Mello Music Group (MMG) just recently published the accompanying music video for the pair's album track "Smiling (Quirky Race Doc)."

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Hip-Hop Rap Up: Homeboy Sandman, Open Mike Eagle, ElZhi, Elucid, Aesop Rock, Mr. Lif, Ghostface Killah

Posted by Billyjam, May 16, 2016 05:20pm | Post a Comment
Hip-Hop Top Five 05:16:16

1: Homeboy Sandman Kindness For Weakness (Stones Throw) (avail as LP)

2: Open Mike Eagle & Paul White Hella Personal Film Festival  (Mello Music) (LP version)

3: ElZhi Lead Poison (Glow 365)

4:  Aesop Rock The Impossible Kid  (Rhymesayers Ent.)

5: ELUCID Save Yourself (Backwoodz)

With so much amazing music from bygone eras in hip-hop's rich history to listen back to and/or catch up on for the first time, it's easy for hip-hop fans in 2016 to ignore all the new music being made. But to do so is to miss out on some incredible ground breaking music in the still unfolding genre. Simply put contemporary hip-hop is in an incredibly healthy state right now! This I can confirm from recently listening to a stack of new albums, mostly releases of the past few weeks such as the ones listed in the above top five list. On each the production is dope,  but it is the emcees who truly blew me away. Each effortlessly display innovative forward-thinking lyrical finesse coupled with top notch mic delivery skills. 

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New Hip-Hop Releases: Drake, ElZhi, Homeboy Sandman, Dilla, Berner, Chuuwee & Trizz

Posted by Billyjam, May 7, 2016 01:35pm | Post a Comment
Top Five New Hip-Hop Albums: 05:06:16

1: Drake VIEWS (Republic)

2: Homeboy Sandman Kindness For Weakness (Stones Throw) (avail as LP)

3: ElZhi Lead Poison (Glow 365)

4: Chuuwee & Trizz  Amerikka's Most Blunted 2 (Below Systems)

5: J Dilla Jay Love Japan (Vintage Vibes) (avail as LP) [Reissue]

"Like a day spent inside someone else’s head," is how Drake's new album VIEWS  (Republic) is summed up in the Amoeba Review of the anticipated album that arrived in Amoeba yesterday. The Canadian star's first official album release since 2013's Nothing Was The Same and first full release since last year's "commercial mixtape" full-length If You're Reading This It's Too Late, VIEWS is already a bonafide commercial hit. The new album may have only dropped yesterday (as physical release but a week earlier as digital via certain outlet) but by midday Friday first week sales figures were released noting how the album was even outselling Beyonce's hugely hyped Lemonade that also arrived in Amoeba yesterday.

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Post Record Store Day Hip-Hop Rap Up: J Dilla, J. Rawls, Roots Manuva, Mr. Lif, Homeboy Sandman, Madchild + more

Posted by Billyjam, April 18, 2016 09:58pm | Post a Comment

Record Store Day 2016 (April 16th) was another popular crowd-drawing event at record stores all over the country.  Even hours before opening time Saturday morning, outside the three Amoeba locations (LA, SF & Berkeley) there were long lines of folks fiending for the doors to open to the many great RSD exclusives. All those articles we've been reading about the ever increasing number of record collectors out there proved to be true, based on the numbers that swarmed to record stores on Saturday. By 7am outside the Hollywood Amoeba on Sunset Blvd. vinyl collectors and music fans of all ages had formed a long line that snaked down Ivar Avenue and around the back parking lot, as reported here on the Amoeblog.

Similarly up in the Bay Area collectors swarmed to both Amoeba stores early in the day, as well as throughout Record Store Day. Even at 8pm Saturday evening when I stopped into the Berkeley Amoeba
store, there were still a lot of RSD shoppers crate digging in the store's various genre sections including hip-hop vinyl. Because of the fact that the DJ and records are such a central component of hip-hop music and culture, understandably Record Store Day is a very special day for hip-hop fans.  Both DJs and casual collectors of hip-hop earmark the annual date and plan ahead . As for all the hip-hop RSD 2016 releases, the most (deserved) attention-grabbing release this year was J Dilla's The Diary. The past few days I've been listening non-stop to this highly recommended sixth posthumous release from the (now) iconic Detroit hip-hop producer/emcee, and can attest that it deserves all the hype.

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