Amoeblog

Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 04.04.14: CunninLynguists, Kev Brown, 9th Wonder, Zion I, Slum Village, Mobb Deep, DJ Shortkut

Posted by Billyjam, April 4, 2014 10:08am | Post a Comment
       


Amoeba Music Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five: Week Ending 04:04:14


1) Freddie Gibbs, Madlib Pinata (Madlib Invazion)

2) CunninLynguists  Strange Journey Volume Three  (MRI)

3) 9th Wonder Jamla Is The Squad (Jamla Records/Empire Dist)

4) MindsOne & Kev Brown Pillars (Ill Adrenaline/Fat Beats)

5) Mobb Deep The Infamous Mobb Deep (Infamous Records)

Thanks to E-Lit at the Berkeley Amoeba Music store for running down all the new hip-hop releases this week that include the latest from North Carolina super-producer  9th Wonder Jamla Is The Squad on his Jamla Records label. Jamla is the Squad is a compilation featuring the singles "Be Inspired," "No Competition" and "15 Minutes of Fame" and, in addition to Jamla acts, showcases guest features from such non-label talents as Pete Rock, Phonte, Talib Kweli, and BJ The Chicago Kid. Real good album worth picking up as is the brand new one from Maryland  emcee / producer Kev Brown with MindsOne Pillars on Ill Adrenaline via Fat Beats that features such underground burners as "Equinox" (see music video below).

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Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 03.07.14: Talib Kweli, ScHoolboy Q, Verbal Kent, Smif-N-Wessun, J-Dilla, DC Comets + more

Posted by Billyjam, March 7, 2014 12:44pm | Post a Comment
ScHoolBoy Q "What They Want (Explicit) (feat. 2 Chainz)" (2014)


Amoeba Music Hollywood Hip-Hop Top Five: Week Ending 03:07:14


1) ScHoolboy Q Oxymoron (Interscope)

2) J-Dilla Donuts [8 x 7" Box Set] (Stones Throw)
 
3) Childish Gambino Because the Internet (Glassnote)

4) Talib Kweli  Gravitas  (Javotti Media/Fat Beats)

5) Kendrick Lamar good kid, m.A.A.d city (Aftermath)

In the number slot with a bullet at Amoeba Music this week is the brand new ScHoolboy Q album Oxymoron care of Interscope Records who will be unleashing a vinyl version of the album in a few weeks (pre-order Oxymoron LP version here). This phenomenally successful new major label debut album from ScHoolboy Q, that also bowed at number one nationally on the Billboard 200 charts this week, follows up two extremely well received indie albums from the talented young hip-hop artist: 2011's Setbacks and 2012's Habits & Contradictions - in addition to his 2012 collaboration project with The Alchemist and Danny Brown, Flight Confirmation.  Q is down with Kendrick Lamar and along with the the good kid, m.A.A.d city artist (the 2012 release that is still charting at Amoeba) he is also signed to Top Dawg Entertainment who made a joint-venture deal with Interscope Records to release this first No. 1 for Top Dawg. The lead single “Collard Greens” that dropped mid 2013 features Kendrick Lamar while 2 Chainz cameos on “What They Want" (see new video above), and Tyler, the Creator guests on “The Purge.” In the review of this album Amoeba.com praises  ScHoolboy Q for being, "commercial and weird at the same time, but ScHoolboy Q makes it work with flying colors."

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Album Picks: St. Vincent, Schoolboy Q, Beck, Wild Beasts, Neneh Cherry

Posted by Billy Gil, February 25, 2014 10:30am | Post a Comment

St. Vincent - St. Vincent (LP or CD)

st. vincent st. vincent lp amoebaSt. Vincent’s absolutely breathtaking new album begins, as Annie Clark’s previous albums have, like some unearthly musical. Clark seemingly touches down from another planet, asking “am I the only one in the world?” on opener “Rattlesnake” amid all manner of alien guitar and strange percussive squelches. “Birth in Reverse” similarly paints a vivid picture, starting with the lines “Oh what an ordinary day …  take out the garbage, masturbate.” “Birth in Reverse” explodes into an extraordinary, paranoid chorus of restless glee. Clark’s way with words has never been more cutting, as on “Prince Johnny,” which manages to be strikingly specific while keeping its deeper existential meaning vague (“Remember that time we snorted/That piece of the Berlin Wall you extorted?” is her best rhyming couplet yet.) Even her ballads bite—“I prefer your love to Jesus” is a thoroughly loaded line repeated on “I Prefer Your Love,” giving depth and conflict to what’s on the surface a beautiful, Kate Bush-inspired love song. Musically, Clark employs everything from decaying choruses (“Prince Johnny”) to hip-hop synths (“Huey Newton”) to Prince-esque atonal funk (“Digital Witness”), but it’s a remarkably cohesive listen, as though each element has been thoroughly considered and sanded down to perfection. As implied by naming her fourth album simply St. Vincent, it’s an album that seems to be about truly knowing oneself—or the thrilling discoveries that come with a lifetime of seeking that knowledge.

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Weekly Roundup: Widowspeak, Schoolboy Q, Crocodiles, Youth Code, Mikal Cronin

Posted by Billy Gil, October 3, 2013 05:51pm | Post a Comment

Widowspeak – “Calico” – preorder The Swamps

widowspeak the swampsWestern (in sound and location) duo Widowspeak have a new EP due Oct. 29 called The Swamps, following the excellent Almanac LP, released earlier this year. “Calico” digs deeper into their sound, moving leisurely with dusty guitars until Molly Hamilton makes the titular refrain something of a cryptic mantra over an insistent pulse. The band also has debuted the brisk “True Believer” from the EP; you can pick that song up already on Amoeba.com. They’ll be at L.A.’s Echo Oct. 16 and S.F.’s The Chapel Oct. 18 with Pure Bathing Culture.

 

Schoolboy Q – “Banger (MOSHPIT)”

schoolboy qL.A. rapper Schoolboy Q has unveiled another new track—there’s no word yet if this will be on his upcoming Oxymoron album, the followup to last year’s excellent Habits & Contradictions, which as of yet has no tracklist or release date—but it’s as hot as anything he’s put out so far, sorta dark but not really creepy, like a party track you put on to take things to the next level. Those “boom shacka lackas” are taking me back to NBA Jam right now.

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My Top 50 Albums of 2012

Posted by Billy Gil, December 17, 2012 07:24pm | Post a Comment

50. Purity RingShrines

purity ring shrinesPurity Ring make Cocteau Twins­-style dream pop by way of Salem’s hard-hitting witchhouse on an album more notable for its smooth blending of related genres than for its actual songwriting, but they’ve got a sweet sound nonetheless.

 

 

49. Cold ShowersLove & Regret

Cold Showers Cold Showers’ short and sweet debut heralds the arrival of a great new L.A. band, beaming shoegaze guitars over darkwave synths and goth-style vocals. (Read my review of Cold Showers' show here.)

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