Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week Ending 08.17.12: 2 Chainz, Dopestyle, Nas, La Coka Nostra, Ron Artiste, Has-Lo + more

Posted by Billyjam, August 17, 2012 07:07am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Hollywood Hip-Hop Top Five Week Ending 08:17:12

1) Nas Life is Good (Def Jam)

2) 2 Chainz Based on a T.R.U. Story (Def Jam)
3) Nas Illmatic (Columbia)

4) Aesop Rock Skelethon (Rhymesayers)

5) Nas Life Is Good Deluxe edition (Def Jam)

Nas rules everything around him this week at Amoeba Hollywood where life is good for the legendary Queesnbridge NY artist. The emcee once known as Nasty Nas' latest album Life is Good on Def Jam is both number one and number five on the SoCal store's latest Top Five Hip-Hop Chart. The latter entry is the Life Is Good Deluxe CD edition of Life Is Good which boasts four bonus tracks over the regular version. Note that there is also a Life Is Good LP vinyl version (it has exact same 14 tracks as regular CD version) available of this tenth studio album by Nas with featured appearances by Rick Ross, Mary J. Blige and the late great Amy Winehouse. On top of this Nas' landmark 1994 critically acclaimed debut Illmatic has re-entered the chart where it is on the number three slot this week. The other two chart entries are 2 Chainz Based on a T.R.U. Story on Def Jam from the Playaz Circle rapper formerly known as Tity Boy,(see his new video for album track with Nicki Minaj cameo down below) and Aesop Rock's much heralded return after a five year hiatus with Skelethon on Rhymesayers Entertainment which is also available from Amoeba in LP/vinyl format. 

Meanwhile anticipated upcoming releases include the Murs and Fashawn collaboration This Generation (what I''ve heard sound great!) which will arrive, via Duck Down Records, in Amoeba Music on Tuesday September 25th. The Beatnick and K-Salaam produced 12 track album will feature such songs as "64’ Impala," "Peace Treaty," and "Slash Gordan" with features from Adrian and Strong Arm Steady's Krondon. Another recommended new release (out this week) is from a collaborative project known as Ron Artiste that features two hip-hop artists you should already know/like. Scroll down to peep the lead video and more infor on this album as well as a series of other videos for new or recent recommended releases that include the hot new second album from La Coka Nostra.

La Coka Nostra “Creed Of The Greedier”  (2012)

Above is the brand new video (it dropped two days ago on Wednesday) from La Coka Nostra for “Creed Of The Greedier” - another on-point track off their second and latest album Masters of the Dark Arts which has been doing well at Amoeba and on a national level since it dropped recently. “As conceptually and musically dark as this album appears to be, there's also a flip side layer to it that you may not notice until you listen to it a few times. Masters Of The Dark Arts is a storm before the calm and a celebration of the good things in life that can only be achieved by walking directly into the heart of darkness and facing your inner demons head on," said Ill Bill of the project's new outing. This time, you may have noticed, that the group’s line-up no longer includes Everlast who reportedly left due to personal reasons. No matter though since the group still boasts some of today's best talent including Boston rapper/actor Slaine who said of the new album: “I think we approached Masters Of The Dark Arts with a chip on our shoulder and really took it back to our original mission of hardcore hip-hop amidst all the circus bullshit that is so prevalent in the current landscape of the genre. We are aware of the perception that somehow the group has suffered a loss we can’t recover from and in response we made an album that is the most conceptually focused and hardest hitting soundscape in the group’s history."

La Coka Nostra are among those performing in upstate New York this weekend at the third annual unique music and arts Bella Terra Festival that takes place on the grounds of Gardner’s Farm in Stephentown, New York located between Albany, New York and The Berkshires in western Massachusetts. While that setting may seem reminiscent of Yasgur's Farm (Woodstock, NY) and while the main headliner SuckerPunch is a jam band (one of several) and the vibe of the fest (itself a benefit for Berkshire schools) is distinctly hippie/jam themed  ("a positive and progressive outlook and lifestyle, grassroots organization and activism, consciousness and creativity, self expression through artistic mediums, and the pursuit of a holistic existence that balances body, mind & spirit" is its own description) there is a ton of great hip-hop on the bill this weekend.  As well as the aforementioned La Coka Nostra that includes DJ Rob Swift, Masta Ace, Malik B of the Roots crew, DJ Klever, and Dead Prez. For more information on the festival that kicked off last night click here.

Ron Artiste "Ron's Theme (feat Edo G.)" (2012)

Ron Artiste is the duo of Roc C & Chali 2na and, as Chali states in the above video for the single "Ron's Theme," they are not a group but "a mind state." Ron Artiste, which draws inspiration for its name from B-Ball great Metta World Peace, is also the next project from Roc C's Kash Roc Entertainment imprint. The two previously collaborated on "Bar Catchers" on the Stoned Genius album which paved the way the full collab project Ron Artiste which dropped this week. As well as Edo G., who appears in the Soul Professa produced "Ron's Theme" above, other album contributors include King Tee, The Alchemist, Krondon, Oh No, Rapper Big Pooh, Lee Bannon, LMNO, Tristate, Casual, and IMakeMadBeats. The album arrived in Amoeba this week.

Emcee Dopestyle "NItefall (An Insomniac's Love Letter To The Night)
DJ Zentro U.K. In Vitro remix" (2012)

Bay Area's always innovative Emcee Dopestyle continues to push the envelope with one of his 2012 video offerings - the video for his "NItefall (An Insomniac's Love Letter To The Night)" - the DJ Zentro U.K. In Vitro remix of which he says as an explanation that, "During the day I've become a day-walking zombie counting the hours, minutes, & seconds until the Night comes upon us. When the Nitefalls...the synapitic charges in brain increase, endorphins kick in, & all at once...I feel anxious & calm. All my creative pursuits are concieved at night in a mutually supportive & nurturing relationship between her (Night) & myself. I like the winters better because it gets darker sooner."

Has-Lo "Inherit the Stars (Paten Locke remix)" (2012)

Above is the brand new animated video for the latest release from Has-Lo; "Inherit The Stars" - the Paten Locke remix - which is one in a series of inspired visuals to accompany tracks from his debut project and remix project.  The video was made by Nathan Hunter whose goal is to create animation that plays like a “mental MRI” and the track is available on Conversations B, Has-Lo’s remix project of his still debut In Case I Don't Make It.  Note that coming this fall Mello Music Group will the album  In Case I Don’t Make It will be finally released on vinyl when it will be available at Amoeba.

WARNING Explicit: 2 Chainz "I Luv Dem Strippers (feat. Nicki Minaj) " (2012)

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Ron Artiste (1), Dopestyle (9), La Coka Nostra (4), 2 Chainz (7), Nas (26), Has-lo (2)