Friday, December 24, 2010

LCD Soundsystem

Not easy to pick a favorite track from This Is Happening but you can't lose with "I Can Change". James Murphy and company easily dropped one of the best albums of the year.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Janelle Monae

Her album The ArchAndroid is something you need to check out - Extraspectacular...

Monday, December 13, 2010

Out of the Blu

Blu and Exile: "Seasons"

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Walkmen

The Walkmen play an intimate performance of "Torch Song" from their new album, Lisbon.

I've listened to Lisbon many times over but this tune has got me in a headlock.

If I had known the graceful song I should know
To slow down all the madness
I would have sung a whispered melody
To calm you and keep you close

But I don't know the tune
It's a burden on my sorry soul
I don't have a clue
It's a weight upon my empty skull

If I was sound asleeping
Fall into a dream
The night time, still and restless
It's all wrong for me

I don't know the tune
It's a burden on my sorry soul
I don't have a clue
It's a weight upon my empty skull

The Walkmen have become one of my favorite groups over the years.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Weldon and Coltrane

Weldon Irvine's "Here's Where I Came In" is up there with John Coltrane's "After The Rain" in it's soul stirring majesty.

Both are equally disarming. If longing has a sound...

Friday, November 19, 2010

The Marcberg Reloaded

Roc Marciano is set to follow up my favorite album of the year Marcberg with Marcberg 2.0.

What makes Roc Marci so great? It's simple - beats that crack-a-lack and rhymes of the gulliest proportions.

I have fully recognized...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Groove Merchant's 20th

The Groove Merchant is celebrating 20 years with the release of this compilation.

Truly, a California state treasure.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Heavy Rotation

Very heavy rotation...

Kanye West can put out some really corny shit but this recent leak, "Devil In A New Dress" (Prod. by Bink!), is magnificent.


Sunday, August 01, 2010

The Rain Song: Led Zeppelin

This song is amazing on so many different levels...

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Champion Sounds

It's been a minute but I've got some very quick and random shots to fire:

First off, Robbie's been outdoing himself with his "searching for the perfect remix" posts. Non-stop bangers from Da Beatminerz, Large Pro, Buckwild, and DJ Premier.

I think Jay-Z cameos are a mixed bag but his verse on Drake's "Light Up" is impressive. He's not saying anything new as usual, but I appreciate this line: "Drake, heres how they gon come at you/ With silly rap feuds/ Trying to distract you/ In disguise in the form of a favor..." The beat is a doozy too.

I didn't think I would like Curren$y (anything coming out of the dirty south doesn't do much for me), but his Pilot Talk album is solid - almost entirely produced by Ski Beatz.

Soul Sides, again, consistently delivers the classiest slices of soul/funk/latin treats. His Summer Songs series is back in fully swing as well. Hands dlown, my favorite site.

Angry and his Q&A with the Golden State Warrior's newly acquired shooting (?) guard, Palo Alto's own, Jeremy Lin.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Band Of Horses

Band of Horses' Infinite Arms is on heavy rotation right now and "On My Way Back Home" has got me something aweful.

On my way back home, by chance I thought of
All my favorite songs, where I'd gone wrong
The only words that I could think of
I'm pissing my life away in the form of a song
On my way back home

Every step, a victory it was
I was cheating death, just in time I woke
My memories start to wander off
Come to me, the remembrance of
On my way back home

I came in this way and here now I'll stay
If the unknown have to wait one more day
There's often times that it comes out wrong
But luckily I, I got a mind to know
On my way back home

Side note: I'm really taken by their album covers - simple yet quietly exquisite.

Everything All The Time

Cease To Begin

Infinite Arms

Saturday, June 05, 2010

"I'll give you somethin to remember like the Alamo"


"Rhymes Like Dimes" live.

One of the greatest Doom cuts ever recorded.


I thought I had a mental grip on Doom lyrics but Mos Def must have an exceptional memory for verses.

"After that they couldn't find a villain like Scooby"

Bonus Mos Def Lyrical Memorization Skills -

He reanimates Black Thought's "75 Bars" effortlessly - crazy.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sweet Disposition

I caught this performance of The Temper Trap on 2009's Live Abbey Road on Showtime the other night. Great song in a "Coldplay-ish" kind of way.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Red Cafe

Red Cafe - Heart and Soul of New York City by K1X from K1X on Vimeo.

I don't know much about Red Cafe. This is actually the only track of his that I have and it was on my regular rotation for most of last year when I discovered it. The track is now accompanied by this video. I could probably have a separate blog dedicated to Pete Rock's prolific body of work. I only bring up the PR because he produced this track and it's a testament to his impeccable ear and ability to churn out a diverse pallete of sounds. For some reason, I hear Sade crooning to this.

Anyway, the PR continues to stay winning.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


I admit that I was never really into Guru as an MC. I didn't follow much of his work post-Gang Starr and thought that his Jazzamatazz series was a mixed bag.
For whatever reason, his output with DJ Premier was potent and I can't really put my finger on why the duo worked so well together, or how they managed to put out banger after banger. Guru and Primo were simply meant to put out music together. The dissolution of the group was a tragic thing.
The sobering news of Guru's passing had me thumbing through my mental catalog of his best material and these jumped out at me:
"Skillz" - From Gang Starr's final album together The Ownerz. It's the crispest I've ever heard Guru and his lyrical work and cadence over Premier's amazing track is just ridiculous. Guru kills it on this.

"Above The Clouds" feat. Inspectah Deck - One of the greatest Gang Starr tracks of all time, from The Moment of Truth. Guru again delivers and manages to keep up with INS, who drops quotable after quotable on this. And DJ Premier, what more can I say.

"The ? Remains" - I always loved this for Premier's minimalist approach for the track. But Guru's distinct vocal tone and stream-of-conscious flow give this track a heightened effect.

I could go on but Matthew Africa put together a treat that does the Gang Starr catalog justice.


Oliver Wang's Keith "Guru" Elam LA Times obituary.

DJ Premier speaks on Guru

Peter Rosenberg and Cypha Sounds discuss the validity of Guru's supposed "last official statement" to the masses on Hot 97 (courtesy of Nahright). I've followed some of this story when news broke about Guru's cardiac arrest that ultimately lead to his coma and that Solar dude just comes off as a very sheisty individual.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Record Store Day

In honor of Record Store Day (which was yesterday), I offer up a couple of goodies from one of my favorite soul/funk LPs - Eddy Senay's Step By Step (Sussex, 1972):

Peep his outfit as it befits the sound of this superbly funky album.

Here are two of my favorites:



The Ocean Blue

I'm really going heavy on the flashbacks here. I've been in the process of organizing my records and going through boxes of my old cassette tapes and pulled this jewel out. The Ocean Blue's self titled debut was one of my favorite albums of 1989. Consider how many classics were released that year (my senior year in high school coincidentally) - The Beastie Boy's Paul's Boutique, De La Soul's 3 Feet High & Rising, The Cure's Disintegration, The Red Hot Chili Pepper's Mother's Milk - the list is endless. I'd slide this album into that list.

The Ocean Blue was an album I discovered on the strength of the first single "Between Something and Nothing". The album itself unfolds as a very consistent collection of great songs, well produced with no filler material - a solid listen from beginning to end. I'm not saying this album was revolutionary in any way or was ahead of it's time. Not one song really blows by hair back like that. The songs just carry a kind of endearing quality that still resonates with me whenever I listen to them. That's a mark of great album.

"Love Song"

"Frigid Winter Days"

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Furs

The Psychedelic Furs' "Love My Way", from their 1982 album Forever Now, is another one of those indelible early 80's tunes that I always go back to. Richard Butler's vocals had that languishing, eery British drawl that gave this song an extra dose of melancholy.

They then followed up Forever Now nicely with 1984's Mirror Moves which boasts "Heaven", "Heartbeat", and "Ghost In You". There were so many great modern rock songs from that era and "Ghost In You" stays amazing. Again, Richard Butler's distinct vocals really carry this tune - classic material here.

All of the Furs best hits are packaged nicely in 1988's compilation "All Of This And Nothing".

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Duck Down!

from PRO KEDS on Vimeo.

15 years strong for an independent Hip-Hop record label is remarkable. Just hearing Buckshot run down the list of artists set to drop projects on Duck Down Records is something to get excited about.

A Smif'n'Wessun album produced entirely by Pete Rock? I'm speechless man.

Monday, April 12, 2010

RZA and iDrum

With this app I'm now SZA.

Saturday, April 10, 2010


This is a perfect album. New Order's Substance 1987 never leaves my playlist because there just isn't a bad song on this compilation. The album is a collection of 12" inch versions of the band's singles and B-sides. I believe "True Faith" was the only original track that was recorded for this release.

Substance basically served as the soundtrack to my early high school years and sits atop the list of my favorite albums of all time. I still own the cassette I first bought, and I own the vinyl and CD versions. Suffice it to say, I really like this album.

If you were to hold a gun to my head to give you my favorite track... way of Joy Division

Today, it's the best song of all time.

Bonus: Radiohead agrees.

Rooted In Dilla

The Roots pay tribute to J-Dilla by putting together a mix of well executed Jilla covers. This material appears to be dated by a year or two but ?uesto decided to throw it back out to the masses.
Understatement: ?uestlove and Co. are amazing. There is no doubt that The Roots are one of the greatest bands in any genre. It's just too bad that Black Thought didn't jump in on a few of these gems.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

New Badu

I've been spending some time with Erykah Badu's New Amerykah Part 2: Return of the Ankh. I'm enjoying this one more than it's predecessor which took some time to grow on me. It's clear that Badu took her time to craft a very well produced album.

I'm especially fond of "Fall In Love (Your Funeral)" where she channels B.I.G's "Warning" for the hook. Kareem Riggins on the track.

And the album artwork, like Part 1, is superb.

Bonus Badu:

By now you've probably heard the hoopla regarding her video for "Window Seat". I don't have much of an opinion on it. I just didn't realize that her ass was so massive.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

"Bill Groundhog Day Ghost Bustin' Ass Murray"

Unfortunate that the rest of Jim Jarmusch's Coffee and Cigarettes (2003) wasn't as entertaining as this scene. Bill Murray can pretty much command any scene, dude is brilliant.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Roc!

...Marciano that is.

I haven't dropped a post in while (Big Tiny needs much attention these days), but I've been waiting for this one for a very long time.

It's coming April 20.

Sleep at your own risk.

Bonus update: The Unkut Marcberg album review

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Radiohead Live From The Basement

Live From The Basement is a fantastic, intimate Radiohead performance. "The Gloaming" bit by Yorke is wicked. He's got the spirit of an MC. What really differentiates this live version from the original album cut from Hail To The Thief is the bassline and live drums - an infinite improvement from the original.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Check out the Stussy J-Dilla documentary series dropping here.

It's always a treat to hear stories about J-Dilla from his peers. It goes to show just how far reaching his music was and how much his music affected people.


The J-Dilla lost interview

Sunday, February 07, 2010

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

Gil Scott-Heron's first recording in 16 years.

I'm New Here drops next week via XL Recordings but you can check out the stream of the entire album at his website.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Scattered Shots

I come across some very cool sites once in a while and this (food for the right side of my brain) is one of them. Animation is his occupation... Pixar stays winning.
This (snacks for the left side of my brain) is another. Now I wouldn't go so far as to say that Adrian Peterson is a "liability" to his team per se. But he sure was vs. the Saints D.
Oddisee's got a site. And a very good one.
R.I.P. Howard Zinn, the people's historian. The People's History of the United States is indispensible.
I caught a very interesting interview with John Mannion, Urban Youth Culture Photographer (?), on KPFA's Hard Knock Radio the other day. Pretty good stuff.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Great Dat X

There's a steady stream of Hip-Hop sequels on deck to hit the masses. You already heard the Blueprint 3 (Mr. Knowles) and Cuban Linx 2 (the Chef). The War Report 2 (CNN) and Doe or Die 2 (AZ) are coming soon. Who's next?...
Sadat X is poised to drop the sequel to his stellar solo debut Wild Cowboys (you guessed right), Wild Cowboys 2. If this track is any indication of how the rest of the album is going to come together (and it never is with sequels)...holy shit! Tony Touch premiered this on his Shade 45 Tony Toca Tuesdays show the other night.
This is why Pete Rock is my hero - the best, not even a question.
"Turn It Up" - Sadat X feat. Pete Rock
(Seent at Nahright)

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Is Hip-Hop Criminal Minded?

Check this excellent documentary on the legal/artistic implications of sampling.

PBS stays winning.

(spotted at Miss Info)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


From the absolutely catastrophic earthquake in Haiti to the deaths of Willie Mitchell and Teddy Pendergrass, two of souls undeniable greats, it's definitely been a very somber way to start off 2010.
It's been stormy all week. I haven't seen or experienced wet and windy weather like this in a long time. Thankfully, there's been a slew of new music I've come across so far so I've managed to weather this storm with a calm. Some to consider:
Vampire Weekend: Contra - Not as good as last year's Vampire Weekend but who cares? "Diplomat's Son" is fantastic, in all it's electro-bleepness. Does the description "tropical" make any sense?
Method Man, Ghostface, & Raekwon: "Our Dreams" - Will The Wu Massacre be any good? If it even comes out? This cut isn't what I expected to be the first to leak from their collabo but I'm not complaining. I understand what they're trying to do with the "Ice Cream" approach (minus RZA's icey touch). New Wu is always welcome.
R.I.P. Willie Mitchell - He produced any Al Green album that was good. He was pretty much the Memphis sound behind Al Green's most endearing tunes. He's been sampled a bit too, but you already knew that.
R.I.P. Teddy Pendergrass - I only discovered he was a member of Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes after I became familiar with his solo hits. "Turn off the Lights", "Come Go With Me", and "Love T.K.O.", all "syrupy lovesong" classics. But man, his stint with Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes produced this uber-burner (and talk about "syrupy lovesong") - "I Miss You".