Abby Power uplifts our spirits on “Count Blessings”

UK emcee Abby Power reflects on the intricacies of life on her new single “Count Blessings.” She once again teams up with her longtime collaborator Frances, The Mute who crafts a soulful backdrop for her.

The somber aesthetic is pronounced by Power’s emotive and evocative lyrics that dwell on everyday struggles and how we all try to find a way to pull through them. From job, relationship and economic issues to self-doubt and more, Power runs through the gamut and concludes with the eternal message of just counting one’s blessings regardless of the madness surrounding them.

Keep up with Abby Power | Soundcloud: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram

J. Vybe – “Break Free” Ft. Ariano (Video)

Riding the momentum off his new single “Break Free”, J. Vybe drops a powerfully emotional video for the track.  Directed by SceneSmart and shot at Lake Gardner in Amesbury Massachusetts, the video brings you closer to the face behind the thought-provoking lyrics of J. Vybe. While some might have chosen a darkened landscape to match the song, this video delivers light and hope as an antidote to pain that lies in the shadows.

Produced by Southern California’s very own Ariano, “Break Free” is a dark and intensely moody track, allowing J.Vybe to channel vulnerability into deeply honest lyrics. Following a wild year of uncertainty, “Break Free” is a perfectly timed plea to break out of the darkness and into the light. It’s a brooding joint with a ghostly feel, yet J. Vybe’s lyrical prowess gives it a triumphant edge.

Born and raised in MA, fresh emcee J. Vybe has been releasing his brand of good Vybe music over the past few years but his new single “Break Free” appears to be turning point in his career, both sonically and lyrically. Make sure to follow him on Instagram @j.vybe.

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Witch Prophet’s “Musa” gets a Remix featuring Stas Thee Boss

Queer Ethiopian/Eritrean, singer-songwriter, ‘Witch Prophet‘s song “Musa” gets a revamp courtesy of SUN SUN and featuring emcee Stas Thee Boss. The jazz-infused track is eclectic and ripe with layered sounds and a solid groove that merges perfectly with Witch prophet’s enchanting melodic runs and Stas Thee Boss’s fiery cadence and vivid lyrical imagery.

Keep up with Witch Prophet | Soundcloud: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram

Trap Rabbit x The Bul Bey x Unown – “Hissy”

This is a collaboration between alt-jazz production duo Trap Rabbit, producer Unown, and rising Philly MC The Bul Bey. The lyrics to this track were written the day after the failed American insurrection in January 2020. They grapple with current events and social media culture.

 

This is a collaboration between fusion production duo Trap Rabbit, producer Unown, and Philly MC The Bul Bey. The lyrics to this track were written the day after the failed American insurrection in January 2020. They grapple with current events, anxieties, and culture. The words and flow are unsettling, complimenting the instrumental.

The foundation of the instrumental was and improvised and chopped up live set by DJ Unown and Trap Rabbit, similar to their previous release together, The Cook Up Vol 1.

Rapper-songwriter The Bul Bey tells the authentic story of Philadelphia native meets global citizen. With the optimism of a school teacher, the honesty of an Imam, and a lexicon only a Philly Bul could truly comprehend, the playful Hip Hop wordsmith’s bouncy bars elevate the bright sides of working class life.

 

 

“Stop tryna get me to dance/ when they killing us/ I’ve got a strap in my hands/ and I’m Pulling Up”

The instrumental was made using samples from a live improvised performance by Trap Rabbit. They were chopped by DJ Unown and then further produced by the duo.

Recorded, Mixed, and Mastered at Treacle Mine Studios in Philly, PA by Michael Cumming (Sun Ra Arkestra, Hilary Hahn, Jim Cunningham)

Trap Rabbit is a collective of Philadelphia and New York-based musicians that produces music referencing a menagerie of influences including piano trios, indie songwriters, psychedelic rock, experimental hip-hop, and niche 70’s funk and soul from around the world. Founded in a basement on the outskirts of Philadelphia in 2015, its members include studio rats, touring session players, ivy-league snobs, conservatory grads, high school drop-outs, DIY legends, pop junkies, jazz enthusiasts, and hip-hop aficionados. Their achievements are similarly varied, including international tours, academic awards, and collaborations with Grammy-winners and platinum record holders.

Trap Rabbit is a collective of Philadelphia and New York-based musicians that produces music referencing a menagerie of influences including piano trios, indie songwriters, psychedelic rock, experimental hip-hop, and niche 70’s funk and soul from around the world. Founded in a basement on the outskirts of Philadelphia in 2015, its members include studio rats, touring session players, ivy-league snobs, conservatory grads, high school drop-outs, DIY legends, pop junkies, jazz enthusiasts, and hip-hop aficionados. Their achievements are similarly varied, including international tours, academic awards, and collaborations with Grammy-winners and platinum record holders.

In the past, Trap Rabbit has been fortunate to share the stage with artists such as Mark Giuliana and Taylor McFerrin, and to work in studio settings with producers like Phil Nicolo (Lauryn Hill, Bob Dylan), and Eric Bazilian (The Hooters, Cyndi Lauper).

In addition to producing original music for themselves and others, they also make commercial music for sync libraries, apps, and audio books, and podcasts with their production studio, Treacle Mine Recording.

DJ Unown is a Philly-based, DC-bred producer. He currently produces hip-hop instrumentals and plays in Oddisee’s live band.

Photos by Quincy Stallworth*

Get it on all DSPs here.

Keep up with The Bul Bey | SoundCloud : Facebook: Twitter: Instagram

Keep up with Trap Rabbit | SoundCloud: Facebook: Youtube: Instagram

Zion I & Deuce Eclipse – “Back To Life” (Video)

Oakland, CA emcee Zion I presents the music video for “Back To Life”, his new single out now on Boddhisattva Music. Zion trades bars with fellow Bay Area emcee Deuce Eclipse over a track produced by California beatsmith Vinroc. Zion I has brought his brand of conscious genre-blending hiphop to over two dozen releases spanning two decades, collaborating with the likes of Linkin Park (stream “Plc.4 Mie HædAmp Live”) and Black Thought (stream “Come Together”) and K. Flay (watch the music video for “Coastin”), and performing at Coachella and Rock The Bells. “Back To Life” comes on the heels of Zion’s previous single “2 Eyes” (Spotify). He says his new song “signals the emergence from pandemic life to some degree of ‘regular’ existence. As artists we thrive from interacting and being inspired by one another, so this is an important process in staying connected to who we are.”

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Marcey Yates and Xoboi find peace within a “Shitte Dae”

Marcey Yates and Xoboi’s new single “Shitte Dae” is a somber, reflective piece that dives into keeping a positive mindset when things around you are crumbling.

The track is ripe with a somewhat trippy synth, moody texture, and punchy drums to match the evocative lyrics and impassioned performances. The track also features JaKeen Fox.

Stream “Shitte Dae” on all DSPs here.

Keep up with Marcey Yates | Soundcloud: Facebook: Twitter

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)

JSTAR: One Time For Your Mind (JSTAR Under Arrest re-rub) Free download

Jeez – it seems like forever since there was a free download to post about on monkeyboxing but here one suddenly is – and what a one – from JStar no less. Back in the day before DJ Maars and Tom Showtime appeared on the reggae hip-hop mashup scene, there were JStar and Shepdog who practically wrote the guide book on the subject. And now here is JStar returning to that arena with a massive tribute to Blackalicious/ Quannum rapper Gift Of Gab who sadly passed away last month. This splicing of the acapella for Motion Man and Gift Of Gab’s 2006 cut One Time For Your Mind, is a timely reminder of just how tight Gab was on the mic – now over a heavyweight reggae groove from Mungo’s Hi-Fi. Cop it below and reflect on the rap talent.

Noha Saré shares gripping visuals for “ALL” [video]

Rising Amsterdam-based alt-pop/ R&B artist Noha Saré caught our attention with the visuals for her single “ALL.” A pop/soul-infused track that showcases her unique melodic runs and evocative lyrics that dives into the dynamics of love and self-healing. She reflects on being caught in a toxic relationship that she finds difficult to escape from and finds other ways to cope with the situation through cynicism and ridicule. It’s quite unapologetic, bright, and heartfelt all at once. The track is produced by Tom Bachmann and Marius Koch.

The visual is expressive and blends different running motifs with engaging performance shots and exotic set pieces that keep viewers locked from start to finish. The visual is directed by Puck Litaay (director) and Noha Saré herself.

Born in Amsterdam and raised by parents who are both artists, Noha Saré grew up surrounded by art. From an early age, she and her brother Marius (who is a multi-instrumentalist and composer) started to perform and make music together. They collaborate on songwriting and Marius co-produces her music together with producer Tom Bachmann. Over the last years, an inspiring collaboration and strong friendship have evolved between the three of them.

Photography is by Kick Van Doorn.

Get “ALL” on SoundCloud

Keep up with Noha Saré | Soundcloud

Fabich’s “Summer 21” is pure summer vibes on wax

Producer Fabich taps into the summer spirit with this warm horn-driven jam titled “Summer 21.” He blends warm textures, catchy retro-vocal melodies, and throws in some heavenly trumpets courtesy of Lahos.

The result is a bouncy, summer jam that reminds listeners of the sunny beaches, cold drinks, and beautiful ladies in bikinis.

Get “Summer 21” on SoundCloud .

 

 

Keep up with Fabich   | Soundcloud: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram