Kxzz doesn’t want to be “Tied Down”

Emerging rapper Kxzz shares a summer love tale on his new single “Tied Down.” Over a smooth, reflective backdrop, he dives into the dynamics and emotions that come with being in love with someone while being in a relationship. He is quite honest and somber with the lyrics and delivers a heartfelt performance that everyone can rock with.

Get “Tied Down” on Apple Music, Deezer

Keep up with Kxzz | Youtube: Apple Music: Instagram 

Inf – “Anything” | MIC SESSION

East Coast based Hip Hop artist Inf stops by our DTLA HQ and drops an exclusive Mic Session performing “Anything” produced by Mac James. Follow: https://www.instagram.com/_infmusic_

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Illnes – “Straight Outta Quarantine” (Album Review)

Coming out of Santa Ana, California, Illnes is a bilingual lyricist who dedicates himself to expressing his truth to whoever will listen. This month saw the release of his latest album which is aptly titled “Straight Outta Quarantine”. This is a 13 track body of work that delivers some clean boom bap production and features from Hijo De Mata, Cable Vivo, Fred Word, Moha Umo, Alpha Ready, Salvadoreina and Cris The Kid. Let’s get into this!

“So Sick” is a stand out track that takes us through how Illness sees the world we live in. A relatable track to many as he delivers clever bars that are a nice mix of grit, depth and frankness. Hijo De Mata provides a clean assist on the hook and bridge, taking us to a nicely executed climax. Production wise, the track is simple. Melodic synths and classic hip hop drums. The slightly robotic sound scape was a nice touch!

“Now a Dayz” is the tenth track on the album and features Cris The Kid. Menacing, hard hitting hip hop production gets us started and really carries us home from start to finish. Cris is tasked with the opening and does a good job with impressive cadence. Illness comes in hard and drops some early bilingual bars in this track. Both rappers drop some slick bars and a sly little nugget at the end with that back and forth. Electric guitars to take us out and we have ourselves a dope track.

“Slashing Wanna Bees”, this track is just Illness spitting bars, heavy bars over a heavy underground hip hop beat. I’m feeling it. He is really in his element on this track. He dances all over the production with effective flow switches. His Spanish flow in the middle of the track is a true stand out. I’m not sure if I have ever heard anyone transition between languages so smoothly. Good job!

All in all this is a good body of work. Some of the production could have he’d a little more depth in them but Illness is consistent and is careful with his feature selection. If you’re into real, raw and bilingual underground hip hop music, this project is for you! Go follow Illness on Instagram: @illnesinfection

Score: 7/10

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ORIGINAL GRAVITY RECORDS: Reggae Dynamite Vol. 3 EP (Vinyl 7″)

Rating: ★★★★★ It’s another triumphant slab of explosive ’69-style reggae from the Original Gravity label as they line up four new tracks on 45 from The Regulators, Brentford Rd Soul Rebels, Woodfield Rd Allstars and a second Regulators track – this time a vocal one featuring Melbourne Douglas. You know what? The label should get someone they know to write the PR for that – oh wait – what’s this?

(PRESS RELEASE) What a’ gwaan? Ya hear that sound, nuh? That heavy, heavy monster sound, nuh?

Seen! Such booming bass warmth and glorious vintage organ riffage can only mean one thing – the release of Original Gravity Records’ Reggae Dynamite Vol. 3! This third instalment in the excellent compilation series showcases once again the label’s early reggae talent and ability to recreate that irresistible boss groove from back when the 45 was the selector’s format of choice, black and white first mixed it up on dance-floor and the moves were all about the moon-stomp or the shuffle.

On the A-side, The Regulators and singer Melbourne Douglas wrestle a Black Velvet classic into skanking beast Jamaican Velvet, rivalling the original for groove while Brentford Rd. Soul Rebels’ have the organs on overdrive for instrumental Wet Scream – a nod to both Bunny Lee and the world of MTB. Flip it over for two further instros as Woodfield Road Allstars’ break out the horns for a tribute to boxing legend Muhammed Ali and The Regulators reappear, this time with a cover of Jackie Mittoo’s Race Track which sounds like Lee Perry was at the mixing desk. Reggae dynamite indeed! (Words: Stone Monkey/ monkeyboxing.com)
(Pre-order now on Original Gravity)

League & Two Time are feeling “Gr8” feat. Jag [video]

LA-based rap duo League & Two Time team up with Jag for this mid-tempo punchy track titled “Gr8.” The track is quite engaging and showcases the rapper’s distinct styles as they flow effortlessly over the smooth trap drum grooves and moody textures laid before them courtesy of the producer Byanymeans. The chorus is memorable too and has a go-getter theme linked to it.

The performance-shot heavy visual is shot by Skeye who ensures each emcee gets their shine. “Gr8” is taken off their new project Buddha League 2.

Get “Gr8” on Apple Music, Spotify, Deezer.

Buy Merch here.

 

Keep up with Two Time |  Twitter: Instagram

Keep up with League  |  Twitter: Instagram

Rigz & Chup – “Wake Ups” (Album Review)

This is the sophomore album from Rochester emcee Rigz. Coming up as a member of the Da Cloth, the man as released a couple EPs & mixtapes in the last 4 years prior to his critically acclaimed collab album with Mooch & Big Ghost Ltd. entitled The Only Way Out at the tail-end of 2019. Then came Rigz’ full-length debut Substance Abuse a little over 7 months ago, which was entirely produced by Futurewave & became one of my favorites of last year. However to warm fans up for his upcoming album with DJ Muggs, he’s enlisting Chup for Wake Ups.

“Coconut Water” is a dense opener saying he’ll always have his foot under your neck whereas “Wipe da Timbs Off” enlists Illanoise, Mooch & Times Change for a dramatic anthem representing their crew. Rob Gates comes into the picture on “Trophies” to work in some background vocals & lyrics about proving that you actually fuck with them just before saying he’s the one who’s gonna get it for the family on the chilling “Show You”.

We have Ransom tagging along on the soulful “Da Predicament” to describe their own unpleasant situations & after the “Sobrinos” skit, Rigz jumps on top of a dreary instrumental to tell the listener to “Get Urs”. The guitars on “Let Me” are pretty epic given that he’s talking about wanting to murder a deceitful person leading into Mooch coming back in the picture to talk about how they don’t know what to say because they ain’t got to say shit for the rich “Beach Chairs in Marcy”.

Meanwhile on “Misled”, we have Rigz & Times Change pondering the value of trust over a piano & a vocal sample whereas “No Mercy Rule” with M.A.V. & Symph is a killer rap rock cut with all 3 spitters talking their shit. The song “Swole Hearted” serves as a dejected depiction of how someone can get a cold heart sometimes while the penultimate track “Throw It Away” is a symphonic plea not to waste your gift. Finally, the closer “Grateful” has a soul sample & lyrics about his gratitude.

If you loved Substance Abuse as much as I did, then I don’t see why wouldn’t enjoy Wake Ups on the same caliber. Dude continues to prove himself as one of the illest lyricists in New York at the moment & Chup really hones in on the raw production. Beyond excited to hear what he has in store with Muggs.

Score: 9/10

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Somandla Nigel , ill will and Cairo Clarendon proceed to “Take it Home”

“Take it Home” is a reflective track by Somandla Nigel, ill will, and Cairo Clarendon. The trio makes use of a somber and chilled production and peppers it with their individual rap styles with a penchant for focusing on the things that are important. The track is quite engaging with evocative lyrics and a catchy chorus to match the energy.

“Take it Home” is taken from Somandla Nigel’s upcoming EP Homeless.

Get “Take it Home” on Apple Music

Keep up with Somandla Nigel | SoundCloud : Apple Music: Instagram

Malek Kushi and Emory Forbes team up for “Death By Desire”

Baltimore hip-hop duo Malek Kushi and Emory Forbes have teamed up for this reflective collaboration titled “Death By Desire.” A laidback love-soaked track that details the dynamics of being in a love triangle and watching the love of one’s life getting the short end of the stick. The production here is experimental and has a trippy funkadelic vibe that flows perfectly with the vivid lyrical display from Forbes.

Get “Death By Desire” on Apple Music, YouTube, Deezer

 

Malek Kushi, is a musician/composer/producer from Baltimore, MD. He is a graduate of Frederick Douglass High School where he was introduced to music production and performance. His style is influenced by many genres including Soul, Hip Hop, Reggae, House, and Gospel.

Keep up with Malek Kushi | Spotify: Facebook: Instagram

Jay Gudda shares visuals for “Tragedy” [video]

Jay Gudda shares the video for his new single “Tragedy” which dives into the dynamics of life, love, relationships, and more. He employs a moody and punchy backdrop to share his tale of mixed emotions as his carefree and impassioned cadence plays center roles.

The visual has a zany off-kilter feel and mixes performance shots with trippy cinematic aesthetics and ominous motifs to match the off-the-cuff lyrics.

Get “Tragedy” on Spotify, Apple Music, SoundCloud

 

Keep up with  Jay Gudda | Soundcloud: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram

DAMU THE FUDGEMUNK (Ft. NITTY SCOTT): Four Better Or Worse Pt. 1

Imagine if a host of quality hip-hop luminaries like The Roots’ Stro Elliot, J-Live, Jazzy Jeff, Bastien Keb, Chris Dave, Corey King and more besides were given the keys to the KPM library music vaults? And imagine if, in tandem with this first project, KPM were also gearing up to release original music with a host of talented musicians, vocalists and producers as well. Well, in partnership with London-based hip-hop label Def Pressé, that is precisely what is happening with both the Def Pressé Editions/ KPM Crate Diggers and Def Pressé Editions/ KPM Originals in the offing. To wet your whistle, and to launch the first of these two series, here’s producer Damu The Fudgemunk’s Four Better Or Worse Pt. 1. The track is a gloriously jazz and psychedelia-informed bump – the first of a four part, twenty minute suite – and features featuring rapper Nitty Scott sticking the man’s attitude to race back in his face.
(Out now on Def Pressé)