Coalmine Records is pleased to release the release of Sean Price & M-Phazes’ collaborative extended play effort, Land Of The Crooks. The EP contains 11 tracks, and is comprised of four original tracks, with the addition of the Small Professor Remix of “Murdah Type Thinkin,” featuring Guilty Simpson, along with all of the instrumental passes. Additional features include Roc Marciano, Billy Danze (of M.O.P.), Maffew Ragazino, Loudmouf Choir and the Dilated Junky, DJ Babu. Included on the tracklist is the “Crookapella” (track #11), which includes various scratch stems taken from the EP, in addition to the isolated drums and sound effects used on “Land of the Crooks,” as well as the song’s acapella.
“Sounds like: . . . soul music gone minimalist: All the superfluous bits stripped away and the grooves placed front and center. . . precise homages to soul’s early-Seventies glory days.” –Rolling Stone “The Bad Boys of R&B, bound to give boners.” –Mac DeMarco Hailing from Baltimore, the duo consists of vocalist Sasha Desree and producer Michael Collins. Together, they create minimal Soul and R&B stripped to its very core. Their debut 7” is out today. Listen to the single “Pains” Here. Housed in jacket made from a folded acid blotter sheet, the single features “Pains” and the b-side "Face 2 Face", which featuredin the Stones Throw documentary, Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton.
House Shoes recently started his quarterly "Flip Sessions" series where he selects a sample and producers get the opportunity to create their own interpretation. One public winner is chosen from a voting process on his soundcloud (soundcloud.com/houseshoes), and Shoes also selects a personal favorite.The people, and Shoes have spoken, and here are the winning entries, pressed up on a VERY limited run of 45's. House Shoes Presents: Flip Sessions Volume One featuring Tall Black Guy and Shash'u...
In listing the greatest albums in hip-hop history, one title never seems to stray from the upper echelons, no matter how many years pass: Boogie Down Productions' undisputed classic from 1986, Criminal Minded. Released amidst a battle between BDP and MC Shan that would redefine the New York rap landscape as it was then known, the album, which features the songs "South Bronx," "Criminal Minded" and "The Bridge is Over," captures the excitement, urgency and raw power that embodies hip-hop culture as we know it, with KRS-One's aggressive yet intelligent lyricism backed by Scott La Rock's hard-hitting, stripped-down beats. A true classic, Criminal Minded has been recognized by Vibe Magazine, The Source and Rolling Stone as one of the most important albums of all time.Traffic Entertainment Group and B-Boy Records are proud to present Criminal Minded, presented for the first time ever in a double-LP pressing with a new digital transfer from the original analog master tapes.The album is packaged in a gatefold "paste-on style" jacket, featuring extensive liner notes from journalist Brian Coleman and KRS-One, full color printed dust sleeves with vintage B-Boy Records graffiti artwork, full-color 24" x 36" poster and the bonus track "P is Free (Original 12" Version)."
In the wake of the release of A Tribe Called Quest's first album, 1990's stellar People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm, critics who had previously ignored hip-hop sat up and took notice of Q-Tip's sophisticated and unorthodox productions, and Phife Dog's party rocking but winningly self-deprecating rhymes. But the critics often overlooked Tribe's far-reaching roots in the hip-hop underground and their larger place in the history of black music in general. The Low End Theory was in many ways a conscious attempt to redress these critical oversights; it also happens to be one of the finest hip-hop albums ever recorded. From the sinuous Art Blakey samples and myth-making rhymes of "Excursions" to the joyous free for all of the epic posse cut "Scenario", The Low End Theory is a stone masterpiece that establishes Tribe's place in hip-hop's history. They draw on everything from the crowd-hyping improvisations of their early park jams, to the complex sciences of Golden Age rhyming styles. Simply put, The Low End Theory is essential for anyone seeking to understand hip-hop.
Arguably Jay-Z's finest piece of recorded work, 2001's The Blueprint is officially where the Brooklyn-born rapper became the heavyweight champ of the hip hop game. Produced primarily by Kanye West and Just Blaze and featuring only one guest appearance by Eminem, The Blueprint became Jay-Z's fourth consecutive #1 album on the Billboard 200 charts. From radio anthems "Izzo (H.O.V.A.)" and "Girls, Girls, Girls" to introspective cuts "Never Change" and "Song Cry" to diss tracks like "Takeover," the beats are consistently as extravagant as the rhymes are rich. Ten years after its original release, The Blueprint has only grown in acclaim, rightfully taking its place as a hip hop classic and one of the genre's greatest album's of all-time.
Step In the Arena is the second studio album by hip hop duo Gang Starr (DJ Premier and Guru), originally released on January 15, 1991.
With its playful wordplay, innovative sampling, and witty skits, De La Soul’s 1989 debut album, 3 Feet High & Rising, is considered a hip hop masterpiece. It is also the band’s biggest commercial success to date, with their subsequent albums selling progressively less, despite receiving high praise from critics. A measure of 3 Feet High and Rising’s cross-over appeal was the fact that it was voted Album of the Year by NME, a title better known for its taste in guitar-based music. De La Soul has influenced numerous other hip hop artists such as Camp Lo, The Black Eye Peas, and Digable Planets. They were also influential in the early stages of rapper/actor Mos Def’s career, and are a core part of the Spitkicker collective. They are the second longest standing Native Tongue Posse group, after the Jungle Brothers.The album marked the first of three full-length collaborations with producer Prince Paul, which would become the critical and commercial peak of both parties. It is consistently placed on ‘greatest albums’ lists by noted music critics and publications. Robert Christgau called the record “unlike any rap album you or anybody else has ever heard.” In 1998, the album was selected as one of The Source Magazine’s 100 Best Rap Albums.
His debut LP for Definitive Jux, DJ/producer RJD2's DEAD RINGER is a deeply creative and musically poignant hip-hop record for summer 2002. Creating a raging underground listenership from a series of 45s and white labels and being the only non-MC signed to Def Jux, RJD2's talent as a DJ and as producer, to match beats and lay cult/pop gems over dusty soul tracks, is paralleled only by people like DJ Shadow and Z-Trip. However, his ability to record and marry MCs to his primarily instrumental and sample-based style is evidenced in outstanding tracks with Copywrite and Blueprint as well as his legacy with the MHz crew; at the end of the day that puts our man from Ohio ahead of his primarily one-dimensional peer group. This set will stand out as monumental for Definitive Jux, who with their first record outside of the New York MC box continues to stride toward really being definitive in their roster and catalog of independent hip-hop.
Shades of Blue: Madlib Invades Blue Note is a unique project that turns over the legacy of the esteemed Blue Note jazz label to one of hip-hop's most unique artists, Madlib, aka Otis Jackson, Jr. Madlib's ability to absorb his influences and reinterpret them in new forms makes him the quintessential artist for a project of this conception. He is considered to be one of hip-hop's most inventive visionaries. Those who know the enigmatic artist confess he is a quiet personality, but what Madlib doesn't reveal in public, he expresses absolutely in the studio – as a very prolific rapper, producer and DJ. Working diligently on music at all hours of the day, he employs any number of MC and production guises. The idea for Shades of Blue: Madlib invades Blue Note was generated by the esteemed jazz imprint and Stones Throw Records head, Peanut Butter Wolf, both of whom were inspired by Madlib's YNQ project. Shades of Blue isn't just a Blue Note cover album, it's a re-imagination of the Blue Note culture. Madlib draws from the label's music catalog, of course, but also its influence through the years, its history as a prestigious jazz house, the iconography associated with the label and its import on its own. Madlib covers some of his favorite songs from the Blue Note collection, which he cites as being influential to his development. "People say Blue Note was just a phase in hip-hop," Madlib explains, referring to the era when groups like A Tribe Called Quest and Gang Starr would sample the label's sounds. "But music is either good music or bad music and I still listen to Blue Note. I still love it." Some tracks like Donald Byrd's "Steppin' Into Tomorrow" are longtime favorites of his, and he considered their inclusion in this project as a no-brainer. On that song, Madlib gives an already funky tune a voluptuous hip-hop bump. On "Please Set Me At Ease," Madlib rigs a Bobbi Humphrey song into a groovy, soulful beat for rapper Medaphor to rhyme over. Horace Silver's "Song For My Father" was more personal. Not only has it been an everlasting favorite but he says it's his dedication to his own father, notable 70s soul singer, Otis Jackson, Sr. Shades of Blue also includes a new song, "Funky Blue Note," that Madlib conceived as his ode to his favorite era of the label – the 1960s and 1970s. "I just wanted to show my side of understanding the music and bringing the same kind of sound," he says. "That's the sound I like from Blue Note. You were just free to do whatever ideas you wanted to do." The convergence of Madlib and Blue Note on this special project transcends the legacies and reputations of both entities. It's a special convocation . Alfred Lion and Francis Wolf would be proud.
Mikael Seifu is an Electronic music producer & performer from Ethiopia. Seifu’s music is a fusion of Ethiopian folk, UK garage & his own dream brew, which he calls “Ethiopian electronic.” Born and raised in Addis Ababa, Seifu attended the French school Lycee Guebre-Mariam as a child, and went on to study music production at Ramapo College of New Jersey. His debut EP, Yarada Lij, draws from a long list of musical influences including Endeguena Mulu, Ben Neill, Burial, Zion Rebels, and R.F. 1432 R is an independent record label based in Washington DC.
With the release of their eighth 7” single, Cherries Records takes you far into the Arizona deserts with the deep, sultry sounds of live disco/funk band, Biología.With their premier Cherries release, Biología brings two four- on-the-floor jams, created from the minds of this brother & sister musical team. The A-side ‘Nite Lite’, is a bassline driven night groove, with the gospel style harmonies of Mama Kat sung over the magical guitar licks of Jomeo. ‘Too Bad”, the uptempo B-side, has you struttin’ away from that no-good lover, with swelling synth lines and pianos, double-time hand claps, and slick, funky guitar. Recorded direct to tape in two short sessions, a glimpse into the raw and powerful Biología live show is now captured on vinyl.
Now , over a month before the street date!Limited Edition, Orange / Yellow Half & Half Color Vinyl (1st pressing limited to 500 units)Fun, Unexpected & Limited Edition release from producer Damu The Fudgemunk, featuring fellow Washingtonian, MC Flex Mathews. Live From Wonkabeats Volume 1 is not an album, not an EP and not a single, but instead a spontaneous, one-take freestyle session captured on a Tascam pocket recorder. Live presents the listener with the rare opportunity to be a "fly on the wall" in Damu's DC studio. Press play and travel back to October 17th, 2011 as Damu plays live and unheard beats straight out of his sampler, while Flex Mathews kicks freestyle raps. In between freestyles, Damu can be heard loading beats from his 1.4MB floppy disks, while he and Flex crack jokes and talk shop. With or without purchase, this entire release is available for free download on www.soundcloud.com/redef along with bonus audio & video footage.
Miles Tackett, founder, producer & multi instrumentalist of the Breakestra picked up his original instrument, electric guitar, stepped in front of the microphone & recorded a new album stretching into psychedelic rock ‘n soul territory. Recorded on 8 track analog tape for warm, vintage & dirty sounds at his New Tilt studio in Highland Park, California.The new record features a psychedelic soul version of a deep in the cut David Crosby-era-Byrds song “Everybody’s Been Burned” with Miles on all instruments.
Two-time Boston Music Award winner Moe Pope and Duck Down producer The Arcitype, who has produced music for artists such as Vinnie Paz and Ruste Juxx, have come together to release a new album of original, sample-free music entitled 'My Monday Morning Music.' The Album takes the listener on a journey of beats, melodies and lyrics that range from cinematic styles, to harder, grittier beats. Along with Moe Pope, the album features a wide array of well-known artists such as Dua (Bad Rabbits), Ruste Juxx, Reks, Jake Merhmann and Chris Klaxton (Tan Vampires), Dutch Rebelle, Tea Leigh, Fran-P, and John Robinson. Moe Pope is an acclaimed hip-hop artist, songwriter, and contemporary painter, and winner of the Boston Music Award for Hip Hop Artist Of The Year two years running. His works (Including 2013's critical smash Let The Right Ones In with producer Rain) have received widespread praise from outlets such as The Boston Herald, Stuff Magazine, RadioBDC, The Boston Phoenix, and iTunes Rewind. His style of hip-hop draws equally from the alternative traditions of A Tribe Called Quest, the abstract prose of Bob Dylan, the adrenaline-soaked fervor of Bad Brains, and the eccentricities of Radiohead. The Arcitype is a producer from New York, former lead guitarist for Blues/Funk group Tip Top Deluxe, transplanted to Cambridge, MA, who has previously worked with Moe Pope as well as the likes of Scarface, Guilty Simpson, Ill Bill, Kool G. Rap, and many more. He is an alumni of Emerson College, and a mainstay of the Boston hip-hop scene, as the proprietor of AR Classic Records, and The Bridge Sound & Stage, one of the premier rap recording studios in Massachusetts. The Arcitype himself has said of My Monday Morning Music that the album "...was birthed during the making and mixing of Let The Right Ones In, and it's a different type of sound for both Moe and Myself, a more standard (while more musical) boom-bap direction than that of Moe Pope and Rain, whose sound was more derived from an indie rock inspiration."
Limited edition picture disc version of the Adrian Younge and Souls of Mischief collaboration album There Is Only Now. The sixth album from legendary hip-hop group Souls of Mischief, There Is Only Now, is a unique cinematic 90s crime tale of love, loss, and revenge. A conceptual collaboration with producer Adrian Younge and the first release on his freshly launched Linear Labs Records label. There Is Only Now sees the Souls of Mischief crew members trading bars with a cast of hip-hop and soul luminaries. Souls of Mischief and Adrian Younge have created a hip-hop album like no other. The result of a special moment for all involved, There Is Only Now proves that after two decades in the rap game hip-hop's Fab Four remains committed to the expansion of their legacy as hip-hop innovators and pioneers.
Limited LP version of the Adrian Younge and Souls of Mischief collaboration album There Is Only Now. The sixth album from legendary hip-hop group Souls of Mischief, There Is Only Now, is a unique cinematic 90s crime tale of love, loss, and revenge. A conceptual collaboration with producer Adrian Younge and the first release on his freshly launched Linear Labs Records label. There Is Only Now sees the Souls of Mischief crew members trading bars with a cast of hip-hop and soul luminaries. Souls of Mischief and Adrian Younge have created a hip-hop album like no other. The result of a special moment for all involved, There Is Only Now proves that after two decades in the rap game hip-hop's Fab Four remains committed to the expansion of their legacy as hip-hop innovators and pioneers.
Limited Instrumental LP release of the Adrian Younge and Souls of Mischief collaboration There Is Only Now. The sixth album from legendary hip-hop group Souls of Mischief, There Is Only Now, is a unique cinematic 90s crime tale of love, loss, and revenge. A conceptual collaboration with producer Adrian Younge and the first release on his freshly launched Linear Labs Records label.There Is Only Now sees the Souls of Mischief crew members trading bars with a cast of hip-hop and soul luminaries. Souls of Mischief and Adrian Younge have created a hip-hop album like no other. The result of a special moment for all involved, There Is Only Now proves that after two decades in the rap game, hip-hop's Fab Four remains committed to the expansion of their legacy as hip-hop innovators and pioneers.
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With over 8 years in and appearing on over 30 vinyl releases, Damu the Fudgemunk has built a modest following and a collectible catalog. With his latest release, Public Assembly (cover photo shot at the legendary Fat Beats record store in NYC), his label Redefinition Records decided to empower fans with a role in the selection process. Is this a greatest hits? Not quite, but a highlight reel of sorts influenced by carefully analyzed comments in Redef's social networking community, hence the LP title. Many consider, "The Greatest Hits Album" overdue, but for a man who considers "his best work has yet to be released", Public Assembly is the Fudgemunk's artist statement that brings things to date full circle. 10 full length instrumentals from various projects are consolidated into one album. Over half the featured tracks were either never released on vinyl (Hole Up and Streamline instrumentals) or released in limited quantities (Supply Intro). For newcomers, Public Assembly is the full course introduction into Damu the Fudgemunk's vast catalog. For those who have been on board over the years the record connects the dots in one sitting. Either way, with the growing expansions of Damu and Redefinition records, it's safe to assume this won't be last of their projects rallied by the people.
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KEPT RECORDS and FREAK MOTIF bring a little warmth from their oft-cold corner of the world in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with a hot new 45. This is a true funk 45: with gritty, soulful female vocals from Lady C on the a-side and beefed up brass on the instrumental flipside. Kiilin’ Me burns hot like Famous Flames, and offers a tip of the hat (crown?!) to classic KING Records releases, by taking classic, straight-up funk ingredients and cookin’ them just right. Sing-along to the A-side and get fully funked on the flip. It’s a new 45 but with a classic feel; it offers an homage to old times, and it guarantees good times once that needle hits the groove.
Dilated Peoples have released four acclaimed albums, toured extensively and enjoyed sustained success as solo artists. Now, after an eight-year hiatus, Dilated Peoples returns with Directors Of Photography, the group’s remarkable debut album under the Expansion Team/Rhymesayers Entertainment banner. Evidence, Rakaa (Iriscience) and DJ Babu’s new collection demonstrates how the group has been able to remain loyal to its signature sound, style and sentiment while adding new and dramatic artistic wrinkles to its already-extensive musical repertoire. With Directors Of Photography, Dilated Peoples shows it only improved during its hiatus, returning to a genre quick to dismiss veterans. “I think the statement we made this time around is that the three of us are still here standing, making quality Hip Hop from our hearts,” DJ Babu says. “We never chased trends and we always stayed true to ourselves. Even with the changes in the music industry and the world, we still managed to stay cutting edge and classic and, in many ways, independent. This LP is very full circle for us."
Here we find the highly anticipated second release from the dynamic duo SPOX PHD.“Chicken Scratch” displays emcee Oxygen’s masterful lyricism showcasing a barrage of crafty, rapid fire word play with Dj Spinna cutting up doubles of an obscure chicken clucking drum break. That’s all. Very simple formula. Quite reminiscent of an early 80’s park jam, but with a modern edge.The B-side “Actual Fact” is reminiscent of a short feature film from 2 of hip hop’s elite directors. With mc Apani B Fly making a guest appearance, this is an honest compact testimony from Oxygen reflecting on his life story and crossroads he’s confronted over the last 2 decades. There’s no debating his veteran status and this song offers some insight to aspiring artists and listeners who’ll relate to the daily effort of being true to who you are when your environment doesn’t always promote your agenda. Spinna provides an instrumental thick in texture opening with syncopated piano chords and punchy drums as the foundation for his signature accompaniment from multiple sound sources. Listeners should note the use of the rolling kick throughout the drum sequencing. This resumes comfortably where their last 7” left off and must have for fans of authentic NY hip hop.
formed The Relatives in 1970. While dedicated to spreading The Word, the new band would have what West called a "street sound" as a response to the increasingly funky music of black America. Two younger members of The Relatives, Rev. West's brother Tommie and guitarist Charles Ray Mitchell, we're very much under the influence of Eddie Hazel and Funkadelic when they cut the unparalleled Psychedelic Gospel burner, "Don't Let Me Fall." "Don't let me fall, I've been as far as I can go," explains Rev. West of the the song's plea. Self-released as a tiny batch of 45's in the early 1970's -- and nearly impossible to find today -- this is the first time "Don't Let Me Fall" has been reissued on 7-inch. In 1975, The Relatives went into the studio of legendary Texas engineer Phil York with a reinvigorated line-up and a new set of songs. From this inspired recording session came "Leave Something Worthwhile." Featuring a powerful group vocal soaring over Earnest Tarkington's funky drums and Zebbie Thomas' guitar licks, it's hard to believe this track sat unreleased for over 30 years. After years of requests that "Wor thwhile" be pressed as a 45, Ever-Soul is proud to release it here for the first time on 7-inch.X
Second release from P.V., following his debut album Indra. Palace is a concept record with "the palace" symbolizing a corridor of music – a wall of sound. Each track in the Palace is a different room, all fitting together, filling the halls and painting this estate with sound.
Tape One features rare and unreleased instrumentals, recorded directly from K-Def’s original demo cassette and pressed to vinyl.All cultures leave behind relics, proof of their existence and impact on subsequent individuals and communities alike. When found, these artifacts provide not only an insight into the past but a foreshadowing to the present day. Such is the case with K-Def’s latest beat tape unearthed from a time now considered “golden.” Granted, Hip Hop may only be in its adolescence, but a finding cassette tape that is more than 20 years old is quite a discovery. On “Tape One,” you can hear beats and programming that could compete with tracks by Pete Rock, Premier, Large Professor and others in K’s peer group. That being said, it’s equally understandable how the legendary Marley Marl was captivated by the burgeoning producer’s talent and tapped his skills as a sonic bridge, a necessary link, from the “old” sound to the “new.”Like any similar recording of this period, the sound quality leaves something to be desired, but herein lies beauty of this relic. K’s beat tape embodies a time capsule of breaks, chops, samples, and vintage bit rate grunge that so many producers currently attempt to capture, attempting to relive a bygone era. K-Def was displaying the ability, the talent, and the prowess that would contribute to his staying power in the new millennium. If this beat tape is comparable to K’s version of inventing the wheel, then his new material is on par with space travel. One sees the progress of a producer, a composer representing a composite of his life’s experiences as evidenced in this early recording. Years from now, the audio archeologists will delight in piecing together the subsequent artifacts of this evolving artist. The innovation continues...
Zackey Force Funk was born into this wild world in Tucson, AZ in 1974. In and out of prison since the age of 17, ZFF began producing on pirated software his brother gave to him once he had given up a life crime to focus on writing tunes and raising his family.First discovered by Kutmah back in the golden era of Myspace, Zackey’s signature “Force Funk Sound” swiftly grabbed the attention of a number of formidable producers. Collaborations followed shortly after with the likes of Salva, Lazer Sword, Lorn, Baron Zen, Daedelus and B. Bravo, as well as forming the group Demon Queen with Tobacco. As these tunes were scattered across various labels, finding their homes on their respective collaborator’s projects, ZFF continued to hone his style, delving deeper into the psychedelic future funk realm of which he has created for himself. The fruits of his discipline all add up to his forthcoming debut LP entitled ‘Money Green Viper”, to be released in July of 2014 on LA based collective Hit+Run.‘Money Green Viper’ plays as a scrapbook of late night joyrides, fast women, demonic visions, real rap rituals and the ever-present pursuit of infinite paper. All of these tales are woven over dust ridden, boogie and funk influenced beats with Zacky’s beautifully haunting vocal stylings as our tour guide. Productions are laced from an appropriate cast of sound architects from across the globe, including Max Kane and Teeko, XL Middleton, Jellphonic, Cupp Cave, Tom Noble, Mike Gao, and of course ZFF himself. Having recently transplanted from Tucson to LA, it seems only natural for the year of the Force Funk Sound to be upon us. ‘Money Green Viper’ serves as the initial full length transmission of a fantastical mind that has many more stories to tell. We await the dark doctrine with open eyes, ears and hearts.
The first series of the CULT CLASSIC teal vinyl sold out real quick! Don’t miss out on this very rare 2nd pressing of the RED Cult Classic vinyl, this will sell out fast. Following Detroit native Denmark Vessey and Quelle Chris’ album Slutbag Edition Denmark teams up with fellow Midwest producer Scud One for their debut album “Cult Classic.” Denmark Vessey has worked with artists such as Danny Brown, Snoop Dogg, Denaun Porter (D12), Guilty Simpson, Black Milk, Quelle Chris, Exile, Blu, Fashawn, Aloe Blacc, and Dwele.The album features guest appearances by Guilty Simpson, Exile, Quelle Chris, and Blu.
Between Kev Brown's lo-fi acoustic grooves and Raw Poetic's high-speed rhymes, there is a synergy being realised. Come summer, the two will release their collaborative LP Concentrated Maneuvers on Redefinition Records.Concentrated Maneuvers is a concise collaboration between the legendary underground producer, Kev Brown (De La Soul, Busta Rhymes, Minds One, Diamond District) and the ever adaptable MC, Raw Poetic (member of Panacea, RPM and frequent collaborator of Damu The Fudgemunk & K-Def). The album is presented as two halves: Side A features a collection of vocal tracks, consisting of several short songs by Raw Poetic that cover a great variety of subjects. Side B, the instrumental side, features all of the instrumentals.Stay tuned for more music from Raw Poetic on Redefinition including full length albums produced by Damu The Fudgemunk & K-Def.
Electric Cowbell Records is proud to announce the release of No Discount, the second full length album from Brooklyn psychedelic afrobeat band, Zongo Junction. Exploding from the center of New York’s vibrant afrobeat scene, Zongo Junction electrifies dance floors wherever they perform. Packed with four horns, and a five-piece rhythm section, audiences can’t help but move no matter where the band is playing. If the Talking Heads produced a Fela Kuti record of Sun Ra’s music, the product would probably sound something a lot like Zongo Junction.In an industry where it has become commonplace to watch bands perform with laptops & backing tracks instead of live musicians, Zongo Junction takes the stage 9 strong. The Village Voice describes their live show as “Sheer energy with the force of a tractor- trailer that roars with power and noise” while the SF Chronicle says that “Zongo Junction plays its own fractured version of Afro-beat and generates an unstoppable groove when it takes the stage.”The music on No Discount, which was produced by Mikey Freedom Hart (Sinkane, Albert Hammond Jr, Bleachers), embraces the individual members’ interests, from Dirty Projectors to Albert Ayler, Wu Tang to Meshugguh. At its core, you will find the addictive West African grooves that are the foundation of Zongo Junction’s music. No Discount will be available worldwide on limited edition 150 Gram white vinyl, CD, and for digital download.The album was recorded to 24 track, two-inch tape at The Bunker studio in Brooklyn NY, then disassembled and polished, piece by piece, by producer Mikey Hart, over a year-long mixing process. It was mastered by all-star engineer Brian Lucey (The Black Keys). Featuring swaths of analog electronics, hairpin rhythmic turns, and elaborate statements from a powerhouse 5-piece horn section, the band has become impressively adept at nestling entire sound worlds on top of authentic afrobeat grooves. The result is one of the most sonically intricate, and infectiously danceable recordings imaginable.
Jonwayne had the simple idea of releasing a few underground tracks on a cassette when he first signed to Stones Throw. He wanted to simply call it Cassette, released only on tape, designed by Jeff Jank to look like a pack of Marlboro cigarettes – no CD, no vinyl, no digital.Little did we know we’d have lawyers for the western world’s largest cigarette company kicking down our door when the tape came out claiming trademark infringement. Actually, it was thrilling that they even cared, and it presented a nice match for two things going out of style: cassette tapes and lung cancer.Just as the original Cassette was forced out of print, Jonwayne came back with Cassette 2. Again, tape only. Steering clear of any possible trademark issues, we packaged this one to look like a can of Coke.A few months later came Cassette 3, possibly the best of them all. Designed in the style of a 1st generation iPod, copies were handed out at the local Apple store. Some of the Geniuses had never seen a cassette.Jonwayne went on to release his ambitious debut album Rap Album One, our stock of the remaining Cassette 2 and Cassette 3 has run low, and the lawyers have gone away.We always wanted some of these tracks on vinyl, so Jon picked some of his favorite tracks from the series. We’ve remastered them all, pressed them onto a thick slab of 180-gram wax, and packaged it in a giant cassette sleeve. The record features co-production by Mndsgn on “Altitude,” and features MCs Jeremiah Jae, Oliver the 2nd and Zero. Mastered by Daddy Kev. Design by Jeff Jank.
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A mystery to most, Darondo records are high on the wants-lists of many collectors. He is spoken about in hushed-tones by other Bay Area musicians. Back in the day he was seen cruising around town in a white Rolls Royce (with a “Darondo” license plate). He opened-up for James Brown and lived a colorful lifestyle hanging with folks like the notorious Fillmore Slim. Take a listen to these tracks, released for the first time together on an album, and you may agree that he could have been the next Al Green or Sly Stone. But about 25 years ago Darondo disappeared.
World famous Jazz- Hop Producer, Teacher, DJ, Emcee, and independent music Executive, J. Rawls releases his final solo album, The Legacy. The album is already creating a buzz on some of music’s most well known and highly respected media forums. “The Rest of My Life” is the first single and from there the album overflows with positive energy all the way to the bonus track, a follow up to 2011’s critically acclaimed “The Hip Hop Affect”The ambitious title of the album proves legitimate as it genuinely lives up to the word’s definition. With this album, J. Rawls melodically reminds us of what is essential. After all, a legacy is not only what you’ve earned but also what you’ve learned.The Legacy is produced entirely by some of Rawls’ favorite producers. This unique element affords the audience an opportunity to enjoy pieces of what Rawls has picked up along the way, during his world tours and since officially beginning his music career in 1998. This album also takes J. Rawls full circle and back to the place in time where he first fell in love with music, “I started out in Hip Hop beat boxing, moved on to rhyming, until I discovered samples and started making beats.” The lens that The Legacy album provides is a view of Rawls’ life up to now from a generational perspective. The album fully includes J. Rawls’ diversified musical portfolio, his knowledge and love of global music and his widely assorted selection of beats, tempos, lyrics and artistic expressions.For Rawls and his loyal following The Legacy album is the residue of a musical life well lived. And with notable works already contributed to some of Hip Hop’s most influential artist including; Mos Def & Talib Kweli, The Beastie Boys, Masta Ace, and many others this album is by no means the end, but instead the beginning of the next edition in what has become the soundtrack of his life and continued legacy.Don’t expect The Legacy to leave you in a resolved place. The sounds are fresh and tracks like “Rio” leave a strong and spicy aftertaste. The album is full of flavor and will only keep J. Rawls’ fans wanting more of what their ears just tasted. But, there are no more plans for any solo J. Rawls releases. Rawls will continue to produce, and focus on his label, Polar Entertainment and its burgeoning roster.By releasing The Legacy, Polar Entertainment ensures that the musical gift J. Rawls has carried during his career is established. The Legacy album brings together and solidifies Rawls’ musical contributions and provides the platform for it to have the meaningful and long lasting effect it has earned.“There comes a time in a man’s life when he begins to reflect upon the things he has accomplished and how he will be remembered. The time is yours now. I see in you all the possibilities of the future. Leave a mark on this world; define Your Legacy”
So Unreal is the stunning debut album from Dutch singer-songwriter iET. Produced by legendary GRAMMY® award winning engineer Russell Elevado (D’Angelo, Erykah Badu, Jay-Z), the album was meticulously completed over a 5-year period, with sessions in Rotterdam and Cologne, performed by a small family of musicians and painstakingly mixed on analog tape, resulting in an mesmerizing debut effort.
With their fourth album Beats, Rhymes and Life, A Tribe Called Quest manages to be one of the few hip-hop acts to successfully age by pushing both their music and their lyrics into new directions. Stylistically, the record is closest to its immediate predecessor, Midnight Marauders, in the sense that the group's jazz-rap fusion are downplayed and the beat stays surprisingly hard throughout the album. What distinguishes Beats, Rhymes and Life from Marauders is a deeper sense not only of eclectism, but of spirituality and maturity. Shortly before the album was written and recorded, Q-Tip converted to Islam and the religion's ideals are an undercurrent in nearly every track on the album. But what really stands out is Tip's unease with the transience of the youth-oriented hip-hop scene and his own urges to settle down. Unlike most rappers, he confronts these feelings in the music, by writing lyrics and helping to create music that illustrates the contradictions of growing old with hip-hop. And by tackling the issue head-on, A Tribe Called Quest sound fresh and suggest that it is possible to sustain a career in rap as you approach a full decade of recording, after all.
Though the abstract rappers finally betrayed a few commercial ambitions for Midnight Marauders, the happy result was a smart, hooky record that may not have furthered the jazz-rap fusions of The Low End Theory, but did merge Tribe-style intelligence and reflection with some of the most inviting grooves heard on any early-'90s rap record. The productions, more funky than jazzy, were tighter overall — but the big improvement, four years after their debut, came with Q-Tip's and Phife Dawg's raps. Focused yet funky, polished but raw, the duo was practically telepathic on "Steve Biko (Stir It Up)" and "The Chase, Pt. 2," though the mammoth track here was the pop hit "Award Tour." A worldwide call-out record with a killer riff and a great pair of individual raps from the pair, it assured that Midnight Marauders would become A Tribe Called Quest's biggest seller. The album didn't feature as many topical tracks as Tribe was known for, though the group did include an excellent, sympathetic commentary on the question of that word ("Sucka Nigga," with a key phrase: "being as we use it as a term of endearment"). Most of the time, A Tribe Called Quest was indulging in impeccably produced, next-generation games of the dozens ("We Can Get Down," "Oh My God," "Lyrics to Go"), but also took the time to illustrate sensitivity and spirituality ("God Lives Through"). A Tribe Called Quest's Midnight Marauders was commercially successful, artistically adept, and lyrically inventive; the album cemented their status as alternative rap's prime sound merchants, authors of the most original style since the Bomb Squad first exploded on wax.
In collaboration with Uncle Howie Records – we present the 360-degree story of Non Phixion’s 2002 debut album The Future Is Now (Limited to 800).The Future Is Now Premium Edition Includes:- 2 CDs, containing the original album vocal versions and instrumentals- Three 7-inch singles featuring original 12-inch artwork: “Black Helicopters,” “Drug Music,” and “Rock Stars”- An 80-page, hard-cover liner notes book featuring dozens of group-sourced photos and archival images, and in-depth interviews with all group members by author Chris Faraone- Full reproduction of the group’s press-only sampler cassette from 2000 (with early singles, demos, freestyles and promos): “The Past, The Present and the Future Is Now"- Expanded artwork from Mear One’s original album visualsBy the time Non Phixion’s now-monumental debut album hit in 2002, the group had been on an intense and labyrinthine journey, considering that they had originally formed in 1995. At the same time, it was somewhat fitting for a group that was as explosive and unpredictable as they were talented. But no matter how The Future Is Now had come about and what path they had taken to get there, rap fans jumped on the album at the time, and still revere it to this day.Featuring MCs Ill Bill, Goretex and Sabac [Red] with DJ Eclipse, Brooklyn’s Non Phixion made their first waves as a group in the mid-1990s with the indie singles “Legacy” (1996) and “5 Boros ” (1997), released on MC Serch’s Serchlite Music. They fit perfectly into an era in New York City that had produced not only the Wu-Tang Clan, M.O.P. and Mobb Deep, but also underground firebrands and peers like Company Flow and the Arsonists. Aggressive, brazen, intelligent, and never predictable, they were impossible to ignore. Not-to-be-missed live shows helped to build their legend and fanbase throughout the end of the ‘90s.As Chris Faraone explains in the set’s ridiculously comprehensive liner notes book (featuring interviews with all four group members):Non Phixion inspired fans to simultaneously deploy their smarts, bang their heads, and throw a fist. With their small but lauded body of collective work, Ill Bill, Sabac Red, Goretex, and DJ Eclipse introduced hip-hop to a unique brand of intelligent thuggery that looked past convenient enemies, and brought heat to the terrorists in government and beyond. From the group’s formation in the mid-90s, to their breakup more than a decade later, Non Phixion kicked conspiratorial science that rings even truer now than it did before the aughts …Looking back on factors that contributed to Non Phixion, it’s clear that the group set itself aside by packing a distinctively hard edge, and by tapping into a seismic range of influences – white poverty, thrash metal – that most rappers avoided. As a result, they attracted a diverse scrum of legionnaires – hip-hop fans with hardcore sympathies, bloodthirsty political animals, wordsmiths, goons, gutter kids, and even highbrow herbs conducting graduate analyses.After the initial buzz in the wake of their early singles, they were signed to, and subsequently parted ways with, both the Geffen and Matador labels in the late ‘90s and early 2000s. After those experiences, Non Phixion decided – in true and appropriate indie fashion – to go for self. The Future Is Now finally hit in 2002 on the group’s Uncle Howie Records, to fanfare appropriate for one of the ‘90s underground hip-hop movement’s most impressive and hardworking crews.In addition to new songs like the singles “Rock Stars” and “Drug Music,” the album also included previously-heard tracks from the group’s journey: “Black Helicopters” and “If You Got Love” (both from 2000, originally singles on Matador). Considering the mix of abrasiveness contained therein, the fact that the album went to #65 on Billboard’s “Top R&B / Hip-Hop Albums” chart that year was an impressive feat.Production on the album matched the MC talent perfectly, with tracks by Bill’s brother and Uncle Howie label-mate Necro, with additional work by an array of legends, including DJ Premier (“Rock Stars”); Large Professor (“Drug Music,” “It’s Us,” and “We Are The Future”); Pete Rock (“If You Got Love”); and JuJu from the Beatnuts (“Suicide Bomb”).With more of a decade in the rear-view mirror, The Future Is Now Premium edition is the perfect way for diehard fans to finally hear the stories about the forces that made – and eventually tore apart – Non Phixion, and how The Future Is Now came about. Those engaging tales are brought to life even more with the physical specimens provided on vinyl, CD, cassette and the printed page, bringing fans back to an age before iTunes and YouTube, when hip-hop devotees were won over gig by gig, single by single, and radio show by radio show.
On the crime-infested east side of Lost Gates CA, there is a vinyl pressing plant whose brochure says, “we will do anything for a price.” Back in the 70s & 80s, they specialized in private press porno soundtracks, but these days Madlib is their only customer. Stones Throw took them a couple Quasimoto tracks and a drawing or two, and here’s what we got: a custom-shaped record, half picture disc, half clear, thick vinyl. One side is Quasimoto’s “Planned Attack” from the album Yessir Whatever, and the flip side is the previously unreleased “Talkin’ Shit,” a short track with Lord Quas doing what he does best. Both tracks are produced-by and featuring Madlib. Pictured below is the front, family-friendly side of the vinyl. The backside of the record, the “x-ray” portion, show’s Quasimoto disgusting insides. Artwork by Jeff Jank.
Traffic Entertainment Group and B-Boy Records are proud to present one of the most influential and original albums in music history: Criminal Minded by Boogie Down Productions in a never before released form. One of the most legendary releases in the history of music is now available as a unique and collectable 7” box set. The entire original album is included across five 45s, housed in a durable box lined with two versions of the B-Boy Records logo. Each 45 is enclosed in a mini replica of the B-Boy 12” jacket.A true classic, Criminal Minded was included in Vibe Magazine’s 100 Essential Albums of the 20th century. KRS-ONE's combination of street slang and Webster’s dictionary knowledge backed by Scott La Rock’s hard hitting, minimal beats helped set this album apart when it was originally released in 1986. With this now-classic debut album, BDP's hardcore stylings helped to redefine the New York rap music scene. Criminal Minded elevated the standards and proved that rap could be a dynamic and consciousness-raising medium. Since its release, KRS-ONE has gone on to become one of the most prolific and critically-acclaimed artists in Hip Hop history.This deluxe 7 inch box set is a new chapter in the storied history of one of recorded music’s genuine treasures, Criminal Minded.
"A man fell in love. Then, the world was destroyed by an ever-growing nothing in the sky." Through previous outputs, we’ve come to know L’Orange as a painter who only paints in dark shades, mixing in samples from a bygone era. The Orchid Days echoes with the harbingers of inevitable change. Love is not only a theme in this record, it might just be the pattern. The Orchid Days seems to be L’Orange’s most revealing effort yet. “Eventually” will hypnotize you with feelings unrequited, “A Spring Like You,” will hold you with a longing for things as they were in another life long-forgotten. “The Orchard” will numb you with its falling beauty, and you’ll know that she’s worked you over, and you won’t even care anymore. And all this is just the first of many courses that The Orchid Days puts forth. With each successive listen, notes of terror, wonder, paradise, oblivion sing in the shadows.
The fourth studio album by Outkast - released in 2000 on LaFace Records. Features: B-Real (of Cypress Hill); BackBone; Big Gipp (of Goodie Mob); Big Rube; C-Bone; Cee-Lo (of Goodie Mob); Eco; Erykah Badu; Gangsta Boo; J-Sweet; Khujo Goodie (of Goodie Mob); Killer Mike; Sleepy Brown; Slimm Calhoun; T-Mo (of Goodie Mob) Production: Carl Mo; Earthtone III; Organized Noize
The third release from the hip hop star. ScHoolboy Q enlisted collaborators such as Kendrick Lamar, 2 Chainz, Jay Rock, Tyler The Creator, Suga Free and Kurupt among others. The album's production was handled by high-profile producers such as The Alchemist and Pharrell, as well as others, including members of Top Dawg Entertainment's in-house production team Digi+Phonics.Deluxe edition includes three bonus tracks.
Muddy Waters is the third studio album by Redman (released in 1996 by Def Jam) and features Jamal (of Illegal), K-Solo, Keith Murray, Method Man (of Wu-Tang Clan), Napalm, and Rockwilder.Producers: Erick Sermon (of EPMD), Pras (of Fugees), Redman, Rockwilder, Te-Bass Productions, Ty Fyffe
The last of hip-hop's great party albums, Whut? never had to take itself too seriously and Redman made sure you didn't either. His weed-fueled rhyme-flow sizzled on the album's many P-Funk inspired tracks (courtesy of EPMD's Erick Sermon), and many songs ("Time 4 Sum Aksion," "Rated R"), jumped with an energy that tore the roof off and burned the house down. But more than just churn out bouncy club anthems, Redman showcased a wit ("How to Roll a Blunt") and laid-back flair ("Tonight's the Night") that helped plant his foot as one of hip-hop's most vibrant MCs. --Oliver Wang
Following a busy 2013 that saw them playing shows with acts as diverse as GZA, Death Grips, King Krule and Trash Talk as well as collaborating with legendary photographer and filmmaker Ari Marcopoulos, RATKING are ready to announce their debut album So It Goes. The album finds the group perfecting the balance between the raw, unbridled energy of their live set and the warm soulful, golden-era hip hop that the members grew up on, aided in large part by engineering from Young Guru (Jay-Z, The Diplomats, Notorious B.I.G.). Due April 8th via Hot Charity, So It Goes is a portrait of modern day New York City painted over the course of its 11 tracks.
Modern Vintage is the new collaboration album from veteran emcee John Robinson (aka Lil Sci of world renown Hip-Hop group Scienz Of Life) and prolific drummer, composer, producer and band-leader Pat Van Dkye (aka PVD). John Robinson and PVD originally met at a show in 2008 and since then their chemistry has grown organically and has developed into the duo performing many formal shows together at venues like SOB's, Blue Note NYC, LPR and others around the NY-NJ Tristate area.Modern Vintage spells out the approach in which this album was made from front to back: The music was composed with a combination of modern technology software mixed with vintage synths and outboard gear, all blended seamlessly with live instrumentation being the foundation. The lyrics and concepts were all spontaneously crafted in the studio, session by session, by letting the soundscapes speak to the lyricist similar to how vintage recordings of the 60's & 70's were created."I took a much more structured songwriting approach to the lyrics on this album; my goal from the beginning of making this record was to take advantage of the fact that I am working with PVD- a composer/musician and not just a beat maker/producer, which definitely makes this record different from my other releases. This one is for all the true music lovers worldwide" says John Robinson.PVD states "making this record was a dream come true. From the very first session, we set out to craft quality songs that capture a cohesive vibe and feel good. In many cases, JR was writing to merely a sketch of what actually ended up on the record. It felt great to work with an artist who trusted me enough to lend his talents to the music not knowing where I would take it sonically. Live drums, keys, guitars, horns, and synths give this record a distinctly human feel that is present in all of my favorite records, old and new. A modern-day true Hip-Hop record, grounded firmly in the traditions of jazz, funk, and soul music."
For almost 45 years a complete album by Vic Pitts & The Cheaters has been forgotten, waiting until now to be released. In the late 1960s, Vic Pitts & The Cheaters were one of Milwaukee’s top R&B bands. They had their own TV show (for 3 years), played some of the city’s biggest clubs, and backed up big name acts. Between 1969 and 1970 they recorded over a dozen songs with producer Andre Williams at Chess’ Ter- Mar Studios in Chicago. The results show why they were such a popular live act; some tracks reveal their roots as James Brown fanatics, others relate the happening sounds of Sly & The Family Stone and Chicago’s first record. Highlights include an early instrumental version of their sought after “Loose Boodie,” a funky cover of Herbie Mann’s “Comin’ Home Baby,” and a soulful reimagining of Neil Young’s “Down By The River,” among many others. But, as misfortune would have it, the album never saw the light of day.Van Patterson, guitarist with the Cheaters, recalled the fate of the album. “Andre Williams wanted us to cover ‘River Deep’ and use it as the lead single for the record.” Williams saw an opportunity, as the song clearly had hit potential - it had reached #3 in the UK charts - but no one had made noise with it in the US. The Phil Spector produced Ike & Tina Turner single was originally released in 1966 and barely cracked the US top 100. In the months that followed, the “River Deep-Mountain High” album was abandoned and Spector went into retirement. Fortune was not on the Cheater’s side, though. In late 1969, after they recorded “River Deep,” Spector and A&M released the “River Deep-Mountain High” album for the first time in the US. According to Van, the Cheater’s plans lost momentum at that point and before long Andre Williams took off for California and their album was never released. Over time, the band forgot the tapes even existed. To respect the karmic power of “River Deep” - it both derailed Phil Spector’s career and the Cheaters’ album - Secret Stash has omitted the track from the album.
It was the annual Charles Bradley memorial day BBQ throw down, when Charles finally introduced LaRose Jackson to Tommy. “Tommeyy! This is the lady I was telling you about. You gotta hear her sang!” To which LaRose said, “This is the guy you were talking about? He don’t look like no funky producer to me. He look like one of them rock & rollers.” Well, our friend TNT invited LaRose and CB back to the old Dunham Sound Studio and set out to prove just how funky he could be. “What if I told you that curly haired dude over there was the baddest dr ummer you ever heard?” asked TNT to Rose. “Him? You guys are weird.” The duets that unfolded that night are on this seven-inch piece of wax: Two instant funky pizza party classics. Dig it. #pizzapartyfaceplant
Es-K (Essential Knowledge) was born in Holland, raised in Kansas City Missouri, and currently lives in Burlington Vermont. You may know him from his Spontaneous Grooves series on Cold Busted. Serenity is his first album and features A.G. of D.I.T.C, General Steele, MC Dialect, C-Rayz Walz, Charmingly Ghetto, DJ Grazzhoppa, Central Parks, Maw-, Chel Strong, K. Sparks, Fish Grease, M-Dot, S.Dub, Chromadadata, and Mike Gerbino