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Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Top 5 Chart, Killer Mike's Political Career Postponed, New Oakland Party "Wax Poetic"

Posted by Billyjam, June 20, 2015 08:14pm | Post a Comment

Amoeba Music Hollywood Hip-Hop Top 5 Chart: Week End 06:19:15


1) Run The Jewels Run The Jewels 2  (LP) (Mass Appeal)

2) Czarface Every Hero Needs A Villain (also in LP) Brick Records)

3) Kendrick Lamar To Pimp A Butterfly (Aftermath)

4) Slum Village Yes! (also in LP) (Nestra Music Group)

5) A$AP Rocky  At.Long.Last.A$AP (RCA)


Thanks to Daniel at the Amoeba Hollywood store for the current week's top five hip-hop album chart (CD and vinyl) that includes the brand new anticipated releases from A$AP Rocky (At.Long.Last.A$AP), and the second comic book-inspired Inspectah Deck and 7L & Esoteric project Czarface's new Every Hero Needs A Villain, which features the sick lead single "Ka-Bang!" with MF DOOM and "The Great" (see new music video below). Also under new hip-hop releases is the just released eighth studio album from late J Dilla's group Slum Village. Entitled Yes!' and available in both CD and LP, this recommended guest-heavy album from the Detroit group features such collaborators as De La Soul and Phife Dawg. The latest hip-hop top five chart also includes two not-so-new albums that are still in demand at Amoeba Hollywood. These are Kendrick Lamar's much heralded album To Pimp A Butterfly that's been out since March and Run The Jewels' Run The Jewels 2  that first arrived in Amoeba back in November, when El-P and Killer Mike dropped their long awaited second collaborative full-length. It's timely too that Run The Jewels 2 is back in the number one slot since one of its creators has been in the news this past week due to his near official entry into politics. 
 
It almost happened! For a minute it looked like Killer Mike might land a job in political office in Georgia’s House of Representatives. Anyone who has read his excellent op-eds or who has heard him speak, including on Real Time with Bill Maher, knows he would have been a refreshingly welcome voice in political office. Exactly what Killer Mike had in his sights was the state rep for Atlanta’s District 55. Guilty of tax, wire, and mail fraud charges, the disgraced and resigned Tyrone Brooks was vacating his seat in a hurry, so Mike saw it and thought to himself, why not go for it. He Instagrammed about it before the June 16th deadline but then afterwards posted a follow up to say he found out that is ineligible for this year's election. He said that he does plan to run for office in the future. He will do it too, I bet, and he is so made for the job. Always informed and engaging on current topics including all angels on race in America, education, the prison complex, militant cops, and the politics behind it all, he's got a good handle on the most important things in need of vital change in America today. I wonder if he had actually landed the political office, would he have found himself getting frustrated with the political system itself? And what about Run The Jewels and his music career?  Hopefully he would become a hip-hop politician by continuing his hip-hop career while assuming his political role.  Meantime, for a refresher on how Killer Mike really feels about Ronald Reagan as president, check out the animated music video for the R.A.P. Music (also avail in vinyl) track "Reagan" off his amazing solo release via Williams Street from 2012.


Pete Rock Readies To Release PeteStrumentals 2

Posted by Billyjam, May 10, 2015 06:00pm | Post a Comment

Legendary hip-hop producer Pete Rock, who originally came to fame in the early '90s via the power duo Pete Rock & CL Smooth, will release  PeteStrumentals 2 next month via Mello Music Group. It is the long-awaited sequel to the 2001 BBE Records release PeteStrumentals, which compiled beat-driven compositions recorded over the previous decade.

The NY-born producer has just unleashed the music video for the album track "Cosmic Slop." The video captures the producer alone in a room, lost in the music as he creates magic with his MPC. "The video just gives you a lil' knowledge on the vibes I was feeling when I was making the track," said Pete Rock who did a memorable performance and interview at Amoeba Hollywood in 2008. He described the track as a beat he designed for creating the feeling of "cruising down the highway on a very nice day or night in the summertime seeing all kinda people outside enjoying themselves!"

Considering that the late great J Dilla credited Pete Rock as his key influence it only seems fitting that the 20 track Petestrumentals 2 features a  touching requiem to Detroit's favorite son via the touching song “Dilla Bounce (R.I.P)” in which Pete Rock pays tribute to his prodigy. Petestrumentals 2 will arrive in Amoeba Music on June 23rd in both CD and vinyl formats. In addition to the brand new "Cosmic Slop" video below is Pete Rock & CL Smooth's hip-hop classic "They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.)" off 1992's Mecca and The Soul Brother.

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Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Community Skratch Games, PRhyme, Common, Shing02's The Divider, J Dilla RSD Release, De La Successful, Jay-Z

Posted by Billyjam, April 2, 2015 09:01am | Post a Comment
Now in its ninth year is Ireland's Community Skratch Games - the annual DJ battle that takes place at the Bierhaus in Galway each Easter weekend - that began as a fun alternative to the more serious minded DJ battles like the ITF or DMC. In fact its Sex Pistols styled slogan for one early year boasted Never mind the DMC's...Here's the Community Skratch Games!

The Community Skratch Games began in 2007 with no real long term plans, merely a desire to show love to the skratch art of turntable manipulation for the small niche of skratch fanatics in Ireland as well as raise awareness of hip-hop DJ culture to those not fully aware of turntablism as a musical art.

In addition to its fun battle (for which the champion won, not a corporate prize such as some sponsored company's mixer, but a bag of meat - yes as rashers (Irish bacon), sausages, steaks, and pork chops - donated by the local butcher) the Community Skratch Games, which has continued each year growing from strength to strength, a variety of workshops and showcases. Or as chief organizer Jimmy The Hideous Penguin called it in a 2009 Amoeblog interview  "a barrage of funk, hip-hop, electro and sweaty dancing folk." At that same time the DJ/producer and member of Ireland's incredible Vince Mack Mahon DJ crew, who oversees the spinoff Community Skratch Music record label, noted that the advantage of holding the annual Community Skratch Games in Galway versus the large Irish city of Dublin was that, "It's easy to be noticed in a small city. There are lots of great skratch DJs in other parts of Ireland too. I'm not sure, it's easy to do your own thing in Galway. In bigger cities I think people lean more towards fitting in or suiting other peoples' needs."

This year's Community Skratch Games will take place this weekend - Saturday and Sunday April 4th and 5th at the Bierhaus - and feature a grip of amazing talent including Naive Ted, Danny Deepo, DJackulate, Handsome Paddy, Johnny Doobs and many more with host Ray Wingnut (look for his Amoeblog interview next week here). A few weeks ago I was over in Galway, Ireland visiting Jimmy Penguin who was already very busy getting ready for this weekend's ninth annual event. I asked him what makes this year's Games different than previous years? "It gets bigger and better every year with more and more new delighted faces and dropping jaws. It's great to see people getting involved year after year," he said adding that, "As always the highlight this year will be the Community Skratch Games freestyle Battle Royale." Click here  and/or see flyer above for more details.

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Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Earl Sweatshirt, L'Orange & Jeremiah Jae, Rapper Big Pooh, CRAYONE & Dregs, The Jacka + more

Posted by Billyjam, March 27, 2015 10:35am | Post a Comment

Among the brand new releases to arrive at Amoeba this past week is Words Paint Pictures by Rapper Big Pooh care of Mello Music Group who continue their flawless streak of releasing hip-hop that matters amidst so much pablum out there. This nine-track release features a bunch of collaborators including Ras Kass, Erik Blakk Soul Keith, Marv One, Apollo Brown (who did production for the lead single "Augmentation") and super producer L'Orange (who does a remix of "Augmentation").

Fellow fans of L'Orange, who I am a major fan of and last interviewed here on the Amoeblog in May of 2014 when he dropped his amazing Orchid Days, will rejoice to know that he is soon to unleash another album. Unlike Orchid Days when he paired up with various emcees, he will collaborate with just one mic wrecker this time, the Chicago wordsmith Jeremiah Jae (who many may know from the Dirty Collections 7" single series he has released via Warp Records) with whom L'Orange recorded the upcoming The Night Took Us In Like Family that will be arriving in Amoeba on April 21st.

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Two New Exclusive J Dilla Releases Out April 18 for Record Store Day

Posted by Amoebite, March 20, 2015 11:42am | Post a Comment

J  Dilla

Among Record Store Day's usual crop of fancy reissues and rare, previously unreleased tracks, standouts include two new 7" releases from legendary hip hop producer J Dilla

J. Dilla Fuck the Police Record Store Day
 

The love and obsession for Dilla's work is unparalleled in the underground world of hip hop. J Dilla is and was a rare gem of a musical icon whose work influenced artists from all areas of the industry. Producers from Kanye West to Madlib will tell you Dilla was the best at capturing the right drum sound. Any time a collector can get their hands on some rare Dilla, it's always a big deal. Dilla's oeuvre was made for vinyl. 

Nine years after the beloved producer and rapper's untimely passing, the Detroit native's classic, long out-of-print single "Fuck the Police" is being reissued as a badge-shaped 7" picture disc. Remastered from J Dilla's original mixes, the single is being put out by Pay Jay Productions, an imprint revived by the Estate of James Yancey. Originally released as a 12", the forthcoming 7" will be released backed with the instrumental track "Funk the Police." The picture disc comes in a Japanese-style clear plastic sleeve suitable for display.

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