BLPR: Fredro Starr from the legendary rap group ONYX has returned with his 4th solo album "Firestarr 2" the follow up to his 2001 classic "Firestarr". Fredro is usually known for his grimy rap style with ONYX, but "Firestarr 2" delivers a smooth and toned down flow. Check out the exclusive "Fire Starr 2" video movie introducing various tracks of the album in a visual form.
Audio: Ralph Johnson f/ Gary Bias Siedah Garrett & Verdine White - "Aura"
GM&E: Ralph’s songs have been sampled by Jay-Z (“Song Cry”), Keyshia Cole, Ghostface Killah and The-Dream and he has written and/or produced for many artists from The Temptations to Howard Hewett, Phiip Bailey to George Duke, and the list goes on from there.
DMV: DC artist ADASHMDA just dropped his new single on us "Lil Do You Know". The song has been receiving a great response since its premiere on DMVLIFE.com. He goes in on the track, spitting real bars on a track that is ready for the clubs and the streets!
"An "aphorism" is a concise sentiment of a core value or principle such as "quality over quantity," and to "aphorize" is to spout numerous aphorisms. Neither of these definitions comes close to explaning "Ephorize" though, the third studio album from Elizabeth Eden Harris better known as CupcaKKE. Urban Dictionarycomes closer to nailing her down simply by changing the A to an E with the definition "to have complete influence over." That sounds about right. Ever since her first video "Gold Digger" went viral five years ago CupcaKKe has become a highly influential female rap star, taking the template laid down by Lil' Kim andTrina before her and cranking it up to 2 Live Crewlevels. She's unapologetically frank about sex and encourages fans to be sex positive -- another term that may need definition for some readers. It means being open and progressive about sexuality and including all kinds of healthy sexual relationships in that discussion: gay, straight, transgender, bi, et cetera. I'm not the most qualified individual to break it down further than that so I'll point you to other resources if you want to know more. The point is CupcaKKe hasbecome a cultural icon to many people who feel that they don't have a voice or representation. That's why songs/videos like CupcaKKe's "LGBT" off her first studio album were important then and even more important now in the current right wing reactionary conservative political climate we're living in."
Kwest Tha Madd Lad :: This Is My First Album :: American Recordings ** RapReviews "Back to the Lab" series **
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon
"This is one of those rare albums that could have been a Back to the Labreview TWICE over. The original edition of Kwest Tha Madd Lad's aptly named "This Is My First Album" came out back in 1996 on American Recordings, originally known as Def American when it was started by Rick Rubin. It got a re-release back in 2013 as "The Deluxe Edition," adding seven new tracks - mostly instrumentals and remixes along with a new song called "Traumatized." For the purposes of this review I'm going to be talking about the original version I still own, but if you're interested and click on the album cover it will take you to the deluxe joint on Amazon. It's cheaper to come by and includes more so you might as well go for the lower cost upgrade. You won't be able to glean too much information from Kwest by the traditional methods like Wikipedia, so to tell you the story I'm going to take you on a trip down memory lane. For a few years in the 90's I had ambitions of being a disc jockey fueled by easy access to working at college radio stations, and I was so eager about my hustle I volunteered to do just about anything including taking on made up titles like "director of urban contemporary." That was a glorified name for opening up all of the free promo records that were mailed to the station, crossing out the songs we couldn't play due to their profanity, and calling labels to ask if they'd hook us up with radio edits and twelve inches. The height of that inglorious job may have been when I got the moxie to call up Duck Down and wound up speaking to Dru Ha or Evil Dee (God's to honest truth I can't remember who answered the phone, it was one of the two) and hearing the shocked reaction that a college radio station in Iowa wanted their joints."
"Los Angeles rapper Frost released two volumes of "That Was Then, This Is Now" in the middle of his still unfolding career. Not long after his son Scoop DeVille embarked on a production career that would lead to credits on albums by Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent and Kendrick Lamar. I use this introduction not simply because the debut of U-God's son iNTeLL goes by the same title, but specifically because iNTeLL himself isn't in Frost's position, who was one of L.A.'s earliest MC's and by the turn of the millennium could look back on 15 years of professional rapping. Instead iNTeLL applies the phrase to his personal situation, reflecting on a time when he was emotionally down in the dumps. The revelation comes at the very beginning of his 2017 full-length, in a moving acapella segment. There's a disarming quality to the Staten Island rapper's honest and elementary approach as he details his ups and downs, breakups, layoffs, arrests and everything. Making sure he's understood (no mumble rap here), he uses basic musical and lyrical patterns, which have a tendency to come across plain especially within musically more conventional segments like the track in question, "A Brighter Day." Produced by D.O.S., "A Brighter Day" tests the same elemental rap-meets-pop constellation as last year's "All-Amerikkkan Bada$$." More readily than Joey Bada$$ on his application for greater exposure, iNTeLL slides back into the familiar hip-hop neighborhood. "Stay Stanky" by Turkish producer Baykan Barlas is a solid interpretation of classic backpack hip-hop with considerable horsepower under the hood. Astro 'Jiggy' Jones samples "Superfly" for the later-'90s club track throwback "The Blackout," and Effdope's "Hunger Pains" sounds like something Brooklyn's AZ would rock over. iNTeLL also makes an effort to pick conceptual beats. Scopic submits a menacing Strange Music scenery for "Wear a Mask," Dom Staxx paints "Super Saiyan" in gothic hues and DJ Science makes up for the clunky rhythm section on "King Arthur" with depictive horns and Inspectah Deck and Killah Priest samples."
Video: Nick Cannon on Recent Collaborations with Mitchy Slick
C.M.: Mitchy Slick launched his newest album: PTSD - Post Traumatic Stress Diego on CONUREMusic. This 619 grown project drops knowledge to his fans with singles like: 'Stressed OUT', an ode to street soldiers and war veterans and the upcoming mega release with Mr. Ncredible, Nick Cannon entitled: 'Brain Food'. PTSD features cameos from King Trub, Eddie Mack, Adonis, Nick Cannon, King Triv, Don Elway and others.