Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 08.22.14: Dilated Peoples, Souls of Mischief, DREAM Day, Independent Hip-Hop Day + more

Posted by Billyjam, August 22, 2014 06:30am | Post a Comment

Dilated Peoples "Good As Gone" (2014)

Amoeba Hollywood Hip-Hop Top Five Week Ending 08:22:14

1) Dilated Peoples Director of Photography (Rhymesayers Ent) (also on clear vinyl LP format)

2) Kendrick Lamar Good kid, m.A.A.d city [Deluxe Edition]  (Aftermath)

3)  Quasimoto "Planned Attack" / Talkin' Shit" [Picture Disc] (7") (Stones Throw)

4) Freddie Gibbs Pinata (Madlib Invazion)

5) J-Dilla Donuts (45 box set) (Stones Throw)

At the Los Angeles Amoeba Music store this week the number one album in the latest hip-hop chart is the brand new, anticipated album from hometown heroes Dilated Peoples who return after eight long years (but don't call it a comeback!) with an incredible album.  Director of Photography on Rhymesayers Entertainment, that was also pressed up on clear vinyl LP format, is a wonderfully executed work that's all tied together with the theme of photography (see the video clip below - one in a series that the group explain the meaning behind this theme). With lots of references to hip-hop and to their hometown Directors is intricately produced with layered seductive bass-lines, bone tingling beats, and engaging rhyme flows that find Evidence and company at their finest. Well worth the wait. See video above for “Good as Gone” and check out such tracks as “Show Me the Way” featuring on the chorus Aloe Blacc. Writes the reviewer: "Though it’s plenty rooted in classic hip-hop, Directors of Photography mostly avoids feeling dated with some of its more adventurous tracks. Record pops, lo-fi mics and a dark guitar lick give “Let Your Thoughts Fly Away” a terrific modern underground feel, its wicked bass comes through partway in to keep it engaging amid lyrics about “dreaming even though we’re wide awake.” And “Opinions May Vary” featuring great young hip-hop duo Gangrene is head-spinning in the best way, like riding out a bad trip and just going with it. Ditto the rest of Directors of Photography, a heavy dose of chemically altered yet classically minded hip-hop."

Dilated Peoples "Focus Found" (on their new album)

Souls of Mischief "There is Only Now (Feat Snoop Dogg)" (2014)

Souls of Mischief & Adrian Younge "Ghetto Superhero" (2014)

Dropping this coming Tuesday (August 26th) will be the new Souls of Mischief album  There Is Only Now, the anticipated new album that finds the longtime Oakland hip-hop crew team up with multi-instrumentalist, producer, composer Adrian Younge. This new concept album, which is based on a serious incident that happened 20 years ago just as their careers were going as, is self-described by the group as "much like a blaxploitation film, so there's a storyline full of love, loss, and revenge." That incident that sets the stage for the album dates back to 1994 to a near-fatal incident involving Souls of Mischief and a masked gunman who cornered them in a parking lot outside a club and shot at them.
For the concept album A Tribe Called Quest's Ali Shaheed Muhammad narrates the tale, playing the part as a DJ for a fictional Oakland radio station, while other album guests (in addition Adrian Younge and band who sound like Frank Zappa at times - check out "Ghetto Superhero" below for example) include Busta Rhymes, William Hart (The Delfonics), Scarub (Living Legends), and Snoop Dogg who cameos on the album title track - as seen/heard in the video below. Currently on a US tour on Thursday next, August 28th,  the Souls will be in NYC at Le Poisson Rouge with Adrian Younge's 13-piece ensemble Venice Dawn and ATCQ's Ali Shaheed Muhammad to celebrate the album's release.

A week later on September 4th they will be back on the West Coast performing the album in its entirety alongside Ali Shaheed Muhammed, Adrian Younge and Venice Dawn, The Pharcyde, Blu & Exile, Phife Dawg, DJ Rhettmatic, and more at The Mayan Theater in Los Angeles. And of course on the previous Monday - Labor Day September 1st - along with the rest of the Hieroglyphics collective, will be performing in their hometown of Oakland for Hiero Day 2014 which again is free and again takes place in the vicinity surrounding 95 Linden Street. More info here.

In Oakland this weekend will be a tribute Bay Area street writer legend Mike "DREAM" Francisco. The much loved artist, who was murdered on the streets of Oakland in February 2000,  may be dead fourteen years already but his legacy lives on and grows from strength to strength each year - kept alive by things like the annual DREAM DAY celebration happening this weekend. This year's fun-packed event takes place on Saturday (August 23) afternoon from 2pm to 7pm at Greenpeace Yard in Oakland with performances by Richie Rich, Dregs One, Equipto, and others, plus live painting by TDK Crew and fam. There will be food and beverages, a new TDK Shirt release, plus print Signing by VOGUE TDK, and much more. All ages. 2pm to 7pm at 955 7th Street, Oakland.

Other hip-hop events happening this weekend include DJ Craze at F8 on Folsom and 8th in San Francisco where rumor has it Qbert might join him onstage on the ones and twos, and in Manhattan tomorrow the 2014 US DMC Finals that I wrote about in this week's New State of Mind Amoeblog. Also tomorrow is Independent Hip-Hop Day in Oakland that's presented by the good folks at Hip Hop For Change. Independent Hip-Hop Day celebrates all the elements of hip-hop ("Breakers, MC's, DJ's n Graff Artists" is how they bill it) with local artists performing and battles in the four fields of the culture going on. An all ages, free event it takes place from noon to 7pm at the Oakland Terminal 2600 Union Street, Oakland, CA 94607. As part of a week long celebration of hip-hop dance tomorrow (Saturday's) BRS dance contest takes place at City Dance Studios in San Francisco between 130pm and 1130pm and covers such categories as  popping and turfing with DJ Joe B. Mixon. More info

And finally I leave you with NJ to the Bay hip-hop artist Raashan Ahmad's newest video which the emcee, who came to fame via his membership of The Mission/Crown City Rockers, while shot while on tour in Japan. "The Remedy" was produced by Katrah-Quey and features Denver's Chris Karns (the battle DJ/turntablist formerly known as DJ Vajra) on the cuts. "I trekked all over Tokyo with the director Yuki Ogura and even linked with one of the illest b-boy crews Found Nation while filming," said Ahmad of the song that is culled from his last solo album Ceremony.

Rashan Amhad "The Remedy"

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