Typical Cats return, the last of the great true school crews—bearers of transformed tradition, innovators par excellence, and heralds of an undying devotion to the science and magic of boom bap music. The latest installment in the TC saga is 3, their third studio full-length. It plays like a message in a bottle from Hip Hop’s timeless present to the bizarre post-physical, digital, viral world in which we live. DJ Natural’s production chops have only deepened with time, and the rugged loops of the self-titled “Orange Album” and the live instrumentation of Civil Service have melded to yield a mélange of soul, jazz, funk, roots, radical politics, and a sly refusal to bend to the dictates of current fashion. Kid Knish reprises his role as hip hop’s all-time greatest unseen crew member (sorry, Jarobi), serving up samples, historical references, and vinyl oddities for Natural to slice and serve as android slabs of production genius.
TC’s trio of MCs—Qwel, Denizen Kane, and Qwazaar—rhyme like men breathing from the soles of their feet. The basis of their legend is in full effect—crackling chemistry, unnerving flow, and true stories. The album plays like a jazz-era cutting session turned confessional booth, a stylistically freewheeling effort threaded together by moments of revelation, underpinned by fiercely focused production and dominated by stories of journey, moments of transformation, and warnings against coming catastrophe. For TC, the MC is a misunderstood figure, a musical seer, a minor prophet, and reluctant hustler, using words to outwit enemies, trump circumstances, and emerge from the belly of the beast with respect and rent money.
Highlights abound—Kane returning to his spoken word roots on “Denizen Walks Away,” Qwel giving his early battle rap classics a run for their money on nickel-plated platters like “My Watch” and “Gordeon Knock,” and Qwazaar flexing uncanny musical intuition, anchoring the record with meditative efforts on “Puzzling Thing” and “Reflections from the Porch” before pummeling tracks like “Better Luck” and “On My Square.” Although the LP is studded with solo shots, crew tracks are the soul of the record. “On My Square” opens with a flurry of horns before exploding into an array of signature styles—multisyllabic combinations from Qwel, laid-back but incisive chatting from Kane, and a classic Qwa verse full of declarations, threats, and witticisms, all cemented by a Qwel chorus imbued with requisite layers of meaning. Natural’s production evolves with each verse, sliding from Meters style guitars with knocking drums to moody keys with ease.
The first single, “The Crown” is a frenetic display of jagged guitars and style-shifting that makes it a perfect complement to the Orange Album’s classic “Reinventing.” The name, however, is something of a misnomer. TC have never been interested in being kings. They’ve been griots shouting from the village limits, stoning the village idiots, interrupting thieves, and solidifying sterling reputations as rappers’ rappers, smokers’ smokers, underground Gs, tribal chiefs. There will never be another Typical Cats. They leave the set like five men exiting a burning building, leaving wrecked stages and a catalog of classics in their wake. With their exodus, we find ourselves suddenly grown, having come of age with the culture, standing, as always, at the crossroads. With the music, we move like Gayle Sayers, howl like Magic Sam, see the city like a kid on the project bench, and mark it all down in a black book that will never close. It is what it is. Forever.
1. Intro (Cry No More) 2. The Crown 3. My Watch 4. Changing Room 5. Puzzling Thing 6. Better Luck 7. Drop It Like It's Hotline 8. Denizen Walks Away 9. The Bitter Cold 10. It's The Bomb! 11. On My Square 12. Blank Stone 13. Scientists Of Sound 14. Mathematics 15. Gil Say They Don't Knock 16. Bowl Of Tea 17. Reflections From The Porch 18. The Gordeon Knock 19. TC Back For More 20. Full Clip (For The Last Day)
• All Ages • Free Event • • Outdoor Concert • Live Performances • Food Trucks • Youth Performances • • Local Vendors • Children's Activities • Garden Installations •
This is the inaugural event for what will become an annual celebration showcasing a diversity of innovative, multicultural and local music. The festival will host Bay Area-based acts on the main stage located at the intersection of San Pablo and 17th Street, two blocks away from City Hall in the heart of Downtown Oakland. The block party is designed to celebrate Oakland, support local business, community and underground Hip Hop culture. The all-ages, free festival will set itself apart by showing a commitment to booking independent and emerging artists who live and work in the community. Recognized for fostering a unifying atmosphere while maintaining a commitment to groundbreaking music, Hiero Day is a local event with a citywide appeal and audience. The festival will remain free and accessible to all, regardless of income, thanks to generous sponsors who are recognized at the festival and in the lead-up to the event.
Location: On San Pablo Between 17th & 18th, Oakland CA
Hiero Day Line Up:
Hieroglyphics Blackalicious Planet Asia Equipto Moe Green Kev Choice Z Man Honor Roll DJ DSharp
Mercury Retrograde, the new full-length album by Beatrock Music's own 6Fingers and his longtime collaborator Topkat, is now available! With noteworthy features by artists such as Del the Funky Homosapien, Bambu, Exile, Johaz, Rocky Rivera, Moe Green, Hopie, Do D.A.T. and more, this album promises to entertain.
L.A. Rapper Eternal Swyft Score Big w/ "Plan B" Mixtape
Courtesy Yo! PR.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- Los Angeles born rapper Eternal Swyft takes you on a journey that sees and experiences many different issues from all walks of life on his debut mixtape, "Plan B". The project overall has a conscious, self-reflecting, and inspirational theme to it -- something rare to find in today's Hip-Hop game where money, cars, drugs, and women plaque rap music. Only once in a while someone comes along and creates music that is filled with truth, integrity, and has meaning and depth to it like Eternal Swyft is offering with "Plan B".
Spearheaded by Eternal Swyft's hit single "The American Dream", his mixtape "Plan B" was positioned at #23 on DatPiff's toplist for the most popular mixtapes last month, outranking Hip-Hop stars such as Yelawolf, OJ Da Juiceman, Trick Daddy, Lil B, G-Unit's Tony Yayo, Azelia Banks, Honey Cocaine, and Teairra Mari. Scoring impressive results with over 32,000 Views, 25,000 Streams, and more than 10,000 Downloads, "Plan B" is Eternal Swyft's most successful work to date.
Known for his raspy voice and distinguished lyrical ability, Swyft's first single, "The American Dream", received heavy radio airplay in the United States and charted in the Top 40 for Satellite, College, and Internet radio. The music video received international love when it was aired on one of Europe's biggest and most popular music TV networks, iMusic1.
On a powerful course to break the stereotype of gang banging and drug dealing that are so commonly associated with West Coast Hip-Hop, Swyft's musical sound and lyrical content has been compared to Hip-Hop artists such as Lupe Fiasco, J. Cole, and Jay Electronica.
Eternal Swyft's "Plan B" is Hip-Hop at its best! The project is intriguing and inspiring its listener to examine the world in a more meaningful way.
Audio: Black Rob f/ Trife & Cyrano - "Clips & Magazines"
Courtesy A Robb.
In 2005 Jemal Mosley started managing Black Rob's career. In 2010 he parted from Bad Boy, and signed to independent label Duck Down Records, and is working on a new album titled Game Tested, Streets Approved due to be released July 26, 2011. Black Rob also started his own independent label, Box and One with Jemal Mosley. His first artist off the label will be Ray Diamondz.
Black Rob is back with a brand new single titled "Clips & Magazines" featuring New Jersey rapper Trife & NC native Cyrano Sinatra. This flamer is produced by Centric and is a sure banger for the streets.