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Trae Tha Truth at MLK Day & Houston 4 Haiti

From Nancy B:

Houston, TX - Prior to kicking off his multi-city promo tour today, behind upcoming album, Tha Truth, Houston rapper Trae Tha Truth had to put it on for his own city and community.

Monday morning found Trae being featured in Houston's MLK Day Grande Parade again this year as well as being honored as a past Co-Grand Marshal for that organization's MLK Day Youth Parade.

A favorite in Houston's City Hall circles, Trae is pictured here along with District F Council Member Al Hoang and Brigadier General (Ret), Remo Butler.

Monday night found Trae alongside Texas rap legend and former labelmate at Rap-A-Lot, Bun B, who, along with RAL's International Red, organized a Houston 4 Haiti show at local venue, Warehouse Live. 100% percent of the evening's proceeds were donated towards Haiti's relief efforts and Houston made a good showing both attendance and performance-wise.

According to the Houston Press - - the amount raised for Haiti was in the region of $10,000.

Trae's recent trip to NYC was also a huge success and netted this terrific video interview with the web staff at XXL (thanks to Travis, Anslem and Jesse for that) - .

Trae can be found in the following cities for the next week or so with more promo dates being added daily. Stay tuned.


January 19th & 20th- Dallas
January 21st- Shreveport
January 22nd- Jackson, MS
January 23rd & 24th- Memphis, TN
January 25th- Little Rock, AR

Zion I Hit the Road With Reggae Rock Band Rebelution

From Ballin' PR:

Bay Area Hip-Hop Legends Zion-I Hit the Road with Reggae Rock Favorites Rebelution on U.S. Tour!

"Zion-I has earned a reputation for having a dynamic live act as well as for putting out high-quality albums for the better part of a decade" –Erik Arnold, SF Weekly

January 14, 2010 OAKLAND, CA —Oakland hip-hop duo Zion-I start 2010 off by hitting the road on a three month U.S. tour with Reggae sensations Rebelution and Soja. The twenty city tour will start in Anaheim at House of Blues on January 13 and end up at the House of Blues in West Hollywood on March 6, 2010

"We're excited to go out on the road with these cats," explains Zumbi, emcee of Zion I, "And vibe off an entirely different crowd and audience."

Ten years after the release of their debut single,  Zion I released their 6th album, The Takeover, this past year. A filler-free new mix of jabs, roundhouses and uppercuts that continue their streak as one of hip-hop’s most diverse groups in hip-hop. The Takeover, which features guest spots by Houston legend Devin the Dude, UK emcee Ty and Rhymesayers’ Brother Ali, producer AmpLive and emcee Zumbi incorporate the best parts of their live show—perfected through nonstop touring—and bring that vibe to the studio.

Over the course of five LPs and numerous EPs and mixtapes, the group has proven to be a welcome enigma in hip-hop. Lyrically, Zumbi runs the gamut on a range of issues both serious and frivolous, discussing problems and pleasures both spiritual and worldly. Throughout, his fanbase keeps coming back for his smooth delivery and ability to raise issues without sounding didactic. Musically, Amp draws from both the usual (funk, soul) and esoteric (house, drum n bass) to create soundscapes that work as well on an electronic music mixtape as it does hip-hop. An accomplished remixer as well, Amp has remixed everyone from Linkin Park to MGMT, and most recently released Rainydayz Remixes based on Radiohead’s In Rainbows. Every production and remix, though, always brings it back to his main job in Zion I. “I started using way more effects on this album,” says Amp. “So I was able to bring in more elements that I’ve been using for some of the dance and indie rock stuff.”

From the electro-rap homage “DJ DJ” to the spacey futuristic synths of “Antenna,” The Takeover encapsulates the diversity and versatility that have made Zion I Bay Area stalwarts for over a decade. As with any Zion I album, there’ll never be any compromise away from deep thought, but as anyone who’s seen the pair live knows, that means nothing if the crowd ain’t entertained.
One listen to the album, and you’ll know The Takeover may be the most appropriate title of the year.

Headlining the entire tour will be reggae rock favorites, Rebelution.  Hailing from Santa Barbara, California, Rebelution has developed into the front runner for grassroots, independent and touring driven music groups representing the Cali-Reggae scene. Originally formed in 2004, members Eric Rachmany (vocals / guitar,) Rory Carey (keyboards,) Wesley Finley (drums,) and Marley D. Williams (bass) met in college, while residing in Isla Vista, a popular beachside community in Santa Barbara. It was there that the seeds to Rebelution’s future would be planted-- and would instill their kick back, “worry free” vibes, catchy refrain, and optimistic, inspiring, and engaging music that would leave their listeners with the sense that they have the power to make this world a better place.

Zion-I are currently supporting their new album, The Takeover, which is available now and also offering 5 free downloads on their site: .

ZION I Tour w/ Rebelution and Soja

January 14, 2010 Thursday Anaheim CA House of Blues
January 15, 2010 Friday Ventura CA Ventura Theater
January 16, 2010 Saturday Ventura CA Ventura Theater
January 20, 2010 Wednesday San Francisco CA The Fillmore
January 21, 2010 Thursday San Francisco CA The Fillmore
January 22, 2010 Friday Portland OR Roseland Theatre
January 23, 2010 Saturday Seattle WA Showbox at the Market
January 24, 2010 Sunday Eugene OR W.O.W. Hall
January 26, 2010 Tuesday Bellingham WA Wild Buffalo
January 27, 2010 Wednesday Boise ID Knitting Factory
January 28, 2010 Thursday Salt Lake City UT The Depot
January 29, 2010 Friday Denver CO Gothic Theater
January 30, 2010 Saturday Boulder CO Boulder Theater
January 31, 2010 Sunday Omaha NE Slowdown
February 02, 2010 Tuesday Madison, WI Majestic Theater
February 03, 2010 Wednesday Minneapolis MN Fine Line Music Café
February 04, 2010 Thursday Chicago IL House of Blues
February 05, 2010 Friday Grand Rapids MI The Intersection
February 06, 2010 Saturday Columbus OH Newport Music Hall
February 07, 2010 Sunday Toledo, OH Frankie’s
February 10, 2010 Wednesday Boston MA House of Blues
February 11, 2010 Thursday New York NY Fillmore @ Irving Plaza
February 12, 2010 Friday Washington DC 9:30 Club
February 13, 2010 Saturday Philadelphia PA Fillmore @ Theatre of The Living Arts
February 14, 2010 Sunday Norfolk VA The NorVa *NO SOJA
February 17, 2010 Wednesday Atlanta GA The Masquerade
February 18, 2010 Thursday Ybor City FL The Ritz
February 19, 2010 Friday Orlando FL House of Blues
February 20, 2010 Saturday Jacksonville Beach FL Freebird Live
February 21, 2010 Sunday Jacksonville Beach FL Freebird Live
February 24, 2010 Wednesday New Orleans LA House of Blues
February 25, 2010 Thursday Houston TX House of Blues
February 26, 2010 Friday Austin TX Stubb’s
February 27, 2010 Saturday Dallas TX House of Blues
February 28, 2010 Sunday San Antonio, TX Scout Bar
March 02, 2010 Tuesday Tucson AZ Rialto Theatre
March 03, 2010 Wednesday Tempe AZ Marquee Theatre
March 04, 2010 Thursday San Diego CA House of Blues
March 05, 2010 Friday San Diego CA House of Blues
March 06, 2010 Saturday W. Hollywood CA House of Blues
March 07, 2010 Sunday W. Hollywood CA House of Blues

Donwill of Tanya Morgan to Release Solo Debut Album

From Audible Treats:

Donwill of Tanya Morgan To Release Debut Solo Album Don Cusack In High Fidelity on March 23rd      01.19.2010

Assuming Character of John Cusack from Cult Classic Film High Fidelity, Donwill Explores Life And Love Through Rap

(January 19, 2010 - Brooklyn, NY) Donwill, one third of acclaimed hip-hop trio Tanya Morgan, is proud to announce the release of his debut solo album, Don Cusack in High Fidelity. The album, ingeniously inspired by the plot of the celluloid classic High Fidelity, will be released on March 23rd, 2010 via Interdependent Media.

Don Cusack In High Fidelity is Donwill’s musical representation of the movie from which it took its name. Not only is High Fidelity Donwill’s personal favorite film, but he identified with John Cusack’s character, Rob Gordon, so much that he created an entire album inspired by the movie. Donwill incorporated personal stories of falling in love, fearing commitment, hating his job, and learning life lessons, to create a clever and deeply personal musical interpretation of the film. Skillfully and artfully crafted using direct subject matter and quotes from the cult classic, the 16-track personal odyssey will resonate not only with fans of the original movie but also with anyone who has spent time trying to figure out the opposite sex. "The album is based on being in a state of perpetual pre-mid-life crisis," says Donwill. "Nothing in life will give you all the answers, but this album will help people find some of the answers they might be looking for."

Donwill faced unique challenges in creating his first solo record. Similarly to how lead character Rob Gordon managed the behavior of his record store employees, Donwill assumed the responsibilities of an orchestra conductor, guiding his featured guests to embody a key character from the film. Opio from Souls of Mischief assumes the role of Ian, Rob’s ex-girlfriend’s new lover while Che Grand assumes the character of one of Rob’s unruly record store employees, Barry, who was portrayed by Jack Black in the film.

Further exhibiting a new chapter in his career, Don Cusack also marks the first time Donwill displays his productions skills. In addition to enlisting Tanya Morgan producers Von Pea and Brick Beats, as well as A-Plus and Keelay & Zaire, Donwill also produced one of the album's 16 tracks, for the song "December 27th." "Originally, I was going to use the concept for a short EP and had made all of the beats myself," says Donwill. "One of those beats was a clear standout, so when I decided to expand the project into a full-length, and really give the album its proper due, I brought in other producers and used their beats along with mine. It really was just figuring what beats fit together best to create a common thread for the album's narrative."

For Donwill, one third of Tanya Morgan, a critically acclaimed group well known for their creatively themed releases, undertaking the challenge of creating an album based on a film is a natural progression. Other group members Von Pea and Ilyas will also release thematic solo albums this year; Pea’s Got to Have It in the summer and Hello, Hell in the fall, respectively. Tanya Morgan collectively views this string of solo releases as a trilogy of albums, each adding a key piece to the Tanya Morgan foundation.

Check out the unmastered version of "I See You." Featuring Ragen Fykes, the song will be the official first single: .

"Laura's Song" Max-single buy link: .

The Background:

Donwill is one-third of hip-hop group Tanya Morgan, formed in 2003, who recently released their third full-length album Brooklynati in 2009. With the high praise from Rolling Stone and Time Out New York that Brooklynati garnered,Donwill is now ready to release his own album, Don Cusack in High Fidelity on March 23rd, 2010. The maxi-single of "Laura's Song," complete with the album version, radio edit, instrumental and a couple of remixes is now available for purchase on iTunes. The album will be released by Bay Area label Interdependent Media.

About Interdependent Media:

Founded in 2006 in the Bay Area by Evan Phillips, Interdependent Media has built unique strengths in the development, production, and marketing of recorded music via new methods of marketing and promotion. Armed with a comprehensive understanding of both traditional and emerging methods of marketing, iM has successfully created multi-faceted methods of raising awareness and interest in their projects. Industry veterans Ian "ID" Davis and Dominic Del Bene head operations at iM and are credited with discovering and/or developing artists such as 9th Wonder, Little Brother, Tanya Morgan, Blackalicious, Del the Funky Homosapien, the Hieroglyphics and more. In 2009, iM will be releasing multi-media projects from artists Finale, Canibus, K'naan, Truthlive, and Tanya Morgan. For more information, please visit .


"i See You" (Unmastered version) .

"Laura's Song" .

Bio, pictures, and streams available here: .

Facebook: .

Twitter: .

Cypress Hill Now at Priority

Hip-Hop legends Cypress Hill have become Snoop Dogg's first signing as Creative Chairman of Priority Records. The group have signed an exclusive worldwide deal with the label and are gearing up for the 6 April release of new album 'Rise Up'.

"My role as Creative Chairman of Priority Records has put me in the driver's seat to help revive the most important west coast hip hop label," said Snoop. "As such, I'm excited to announce my first signing as Cypress Hill. Cypress Hill is undeniably one of the most important hip hop groups in music history, not only are they incredibly talented and the first Latino hip hop group to go platinum, they are also from the west coast—so this signing is the perfect marriage."

"We're very excited to be part of the Priority Records family," says Cypress's B-Real. "It's a label with a rich history, and together with Snoop we're going to add to its legacy."

Speaking about the release of 'Rise Up', CH's first record since '04's 'Till Death Do Us Part', B- Real said, "We took a little break after the last record to work on individual projects," adds B-Real. "Both Sen Dog and I wanted to put out our own solo records, which we had been working on for some time. And though we were doing other things, we each kept ideas in mind for Cypress Hill and would go into the studio periodically to record. It was great to work at our own pace and without a deadline hanging over us. We'd get together at my studio and record whenever we felt that burst of creativity. It was an amazing way to work and resulted in what I think is our best record yet."


Video - Oddz.N.Endz Present Evan Roberts: Golden

From Jessie Maguire:

With the release of Evan's "Outta Hear" EP on December 28th, 2009 comes his first video for his first official single, "Golden".

Artist: Evan Roberts
Title: "Golden" (Official HD Video)
Producer: StarKiller for Oddz.N.Endz Music
Album: Outta Hear EP
Director: Mike & Lora Cinema
Label: Anotha One Records

Evan Roberts - "Golden" (Official HD Video) from Anotha One Records on Vimeo.

Download "Outta Hear" EP: .
Freddy Madball Posts New Video for "Y Que"

From Warm Fuzzy PR:

Freddy Madball has posted official video for the song "Y Que" here: .

The song appears on his solo debut "Catholic Guilt" which is out now and features appearances from Vinnie Paz (Jedi Mind Tricks), Slaine (La Coka Nostra), Travis McCoy (Gym Class Heroes), Jaysaun (Special Teamz), Reef The Lost Cauze and Rancid.  More music and details at .

Amp Live Preps Solo Album & Remixes Why?

From Terrorbird Media:

Amp Live Preps Solo Album For Child's Play

Zion I producer and Radiohead Remixer enlists Mickey Facts, The Grouch, Myka Nyne and more; Remixes Why's 'Eskimo Snow'!!!

Child's Play Records is proud to present Amp Live 'Murder at the Discotech.'  The anitcipated electronic and hip hop fused record features guest vocals by Mickey Factz, Zumbi of Zion I, Grouch, Eligh, Trackademicks, Fashawn, Myka Nyne, Hot Tub, Yak Ballz, My First Earthquake, Golda Supa Nova, Bambu, Dude Royal and more.  Featuring the internet buzz hits 'Gary is a Robot' featuring Trackademicks (Fools Gold) & Mr. Micro and 'Turn it Up' featuring Mickey Factz (XXL hottest mcs to watch out for 2010), Murder at the Discotech is best defined as electro hop; melting dubstep, electro, hip hop and indy in to one pot.

Amp Live Remixes Why?'s 'Eskimo Snow'!!!

1. Why? - Bezerkley (Amp Live Remix)
2. Why? - Against You feat. Zumbi of Zion I (Amp Live Remix)
3. Why? - Black Purse (Amp Live Remix)
4. Why? - Good Woodz (Amp Live Remix)
5. Why? - Uno Roses (Amp Live Remix)


Amp Live is the latest up and coming beat maker hailing from California, one of hip hop's most thriving centers. Amp's building a rep as one of Cali's most talented and diverse producer/djs. After his dreamy soulful beats for Zion I, he has been able to produce for major and independent artist such as Akon (Warner), Flipsyde (Interscope Records), Nicole Schercenger of the Pussy Cat Dolls (Interscope), the album "Moneys My Motivation" for bay area hyphy artist Kafani(Koch), the remix for "Place for My Head" by Linkin Park on the platinum selling Reanimation Album, the soul smash single of 2003-2004 titled "Closer" by the r&b artist Goapele(Sony Records), and a gritty, rough track for LA phenomenon Mystic on the debut hit album Cuts for Luck Scars for Freedom (Goodvibe/Interscope) called "Girlfriend Sistagirl".

Most importantly Amp Live's most recent success has been his critically acclaimed "Rainydayz Remixes" album for the rock group Radiohead's In Rainbows LP. Always experimenting, Amplive has done breaks, house, 2 step, dance, electro, mashups, and drum 'n bass, including a remix for Philly MC Bahamadia on "Pep Talk", the hip hop group Zion I, a electro music LP Electrowonderland Vol 1(2006), and a new Electrowonderland Vol.2.

In the past years, Amp Live has been a part of the video game industry, having his production being one of the main features for the Sony Traxxpad and also a basketball player character in the NBA 2K6-2K7 video game. Finally, Amp's beats have been featured on a number of movies and tv shows, which include "So You Think You Can Dance", "Dirt" by Courtney Cox, "Friday Night Lights", "Honey", "Big Fat Liar","Leprechaun 4", "Americas Top Model" by Tyra Banks, ESPN Sports center, and the "Jamie Kennedy Show".

"Gary is a Robot" ft. Trackademics VIDEO!"
* *

Amp Live
'Murder at the Discotech'
OUT 3/16
(Child's Play)


1. Intro
2. Blast off
3. About to Blow  feat. K.Flay
4. Gary is a Robot feat Trackademicks and Mr. Micro
5. Chick Pop
6. Hot Right Now feat.  Dude Royal, The Grouch, Fashawn, Eligh, Bambu, Zumbi, and Chris Young
7. Turn It Up feat Mickey Factz
8.  Dropp feat. Hot Tub
9. Mad Man
10. Money Back Guaranteed feat. Rebecca from My First Earthquake
12. Get Served feat. Myka Nyne
13. Ugly feat. Yak Ballz
14. Bravest Heart feat. Golda Supa Nova

* *

Ty Fyffe Launches Online Competition

From Melanie Cornish:

Tuesday January 19th 2010


Queens based super-producer Ty Fyffe has developed his very own unique way of encouraging emerging artists to feature on his first of a kind project. TY FYFFE PRESENTS RAW N UNCUT gives aspiring and established acts the opportunity to face off creatively for a position on the Raw N Uncut compilation album, which will be hosted by DJ Kay Slay and  heavily marketed and promoted online and to radio.

Urging performers to take the initiative and use the platform he is providing, Ty Fyffe hopes that notoriety will follow for those who are selected to feature on the finished project. “The whole concept of this project was to give the true MCs out there a chance,” he explains. “It is not easy getting into this game now, so much politics involved but through Ty Fyffe Presents artists have the chance to get themselves out to a much larger audience, all the while rhyming & singing over production crafted by me.”

Working with a team of recognized professionals in radio, distribution and media. Ty Fyffe has secured the involvement of DJ Kay Slay who will be hosting the project and will premier the first single from the compilation on his Street Sweepers radio show. The album, upon completion, will be available for download on a variety of high profile sites and blogs with the first single being promoted digitally by coveted digital distribution powerhouse, Digiwaxx Media LLC. 'This is a chance of a life-time and I am not into co-signing just anything' – DJ Kay Slay.

Participating in TY FYFFE PRESENTS RAW N UNCUT will give artists opportunities which some work years to procure. Each entrant will be able to record over production from the man who has crafted soundscapes for a league of A List artists including 50 Cent, Drake, Busta Rhymes, Jay Z, Eric Sermon and many more. If selected by Ty Fyffe to appear on the album, those successful entrants will receive an exclusive track to use and submit for the final album.

The key selling points of this competition are not just the production or the publicity that artists will secure but also that it is available to artists globally. Acknowledging that both rappers and singers from the US have an abundance of things working in their favor, Ty is intent on giving artists from countries, that may not necessarily be as laden with opportunities, a chance with TY FYFFE PRESENTS RAW N UNCUT.

“This competition is open to folks from all over the world, not just the US and it would be great to see the project attract artists from other continents,” says Ty.
“But as we are aware, Hip-Hop’s inception may have been on the streets of NYC but today it has no boundaries and I hope artists overseas see how being involved in this competition can put them in front of a totally different audience,” he concludes.

To find out more about the competition please go to WWW.TYFYFFE.COM .

Bisco Smith "Vibrations" + Album Release

From Audible Treats:

Bisco Smith – "Vibrations" + Album Release      01.19.2010
Celebrating The Release Of His Fifth Project, Bisco Lets Loose New Single, Hosts Album Listening Party

The Song:

After whetting appetites in past months with a host of songs, videos, remixes, and more, The Broadcast has finally arrived and Bisco Smith is poised to have it arrive with a bang. The most visionary effort of Bisco's career to date, The Broadcast pushes boundaries of what hip-hop can be, incorporating dirty, often pounding elements of electronic and dubstep, along with Bisco's visual-as-always lyricism. Having worked with just one producer for this album for the first time in his career, The Broadcast is Bisco’s most focused effort to date. Producer J. Vegus and Bisco worked in harmony to accurately incorporate both artists’ visions, which gave the album a cohesive sound from beginning to end.

Bisco is also excited to set loose the album's next single, "Vibrations," which will also be accompanied by a video in the coming weeks. Staying true to its title, "Vibrations" is chock full of heavy bass, sharp synthesizer lines, and pounding drums, courtesy of album producer J.Vegus. Lyrically, Bisco strays from his signature social observational style, which is found on other songs from The Broadcast; "Vibrations" serves as a getaway track for Bisco, just as he hopes it will for others looking to escape through his music. "This is escape music," says Bisco. "With this new single, hopefully we can help you forget the past and future for the time being and just exist in the moment."

Celebrating the long-awaited release, Bisco is excited to let fans hear The Broadcast in its entirety, and will be giving fans a chance to do so tomorrow, Wednesday, January 20th, where Bisco will host a listening party. Held at the No Malice Palace, located at 3rd Street and Avenue B in New York City, the event will kick off at 7:00pm for the after work crowd and will include a happy hour open bar from 8:00pm to 9:00pm. DJ Lokash and DJ Marcus will be DJing the event, and Bisco has a special treat for all in attendance – the world premiere of an exciting new video, directed by frequent collaborator Vidoli. Fans can also check out Bisco performing live Saturday, February 6th at Santos Party House for his official album release show. Kicking off at 11:00pm, the show will cost $10 at the door. Door tickets will also include a free copy of Bisco Smith's new album.

Bisco Smith's second full-length album The Broadcast is available now. Please post buy links: .

The Broadcast teaser: .

The Background:

Bisco Smith moved to NYC 10 plus years ago from Connecticut and quickly made a name for himself DJ'ing at clubs, distributing mixtapes, performing at open mics, and in graffiti circles. His debut release, The Basics EP (2006), gained the favorable attention of music critics and his subsequent release, The Stay Up Project mixtape (2007) was downloaded over 5,000 times. Bisco's penchant for capturing our chaotic reality with his narratives, images, and collaborations has earned him a reputation as one of the most honest and creative artists of today. Going beyond music, Bisco Smith is also an accomplished graphic artist. He's done cover art, designed promotional materials and spearheaded art direction for artists such as Aesop Rock, The Perceptionists, C-Rayz-Walz, Murs, El-P, and others. His art has been featured in several magazines and art house coffee table books and in galleries, such as Danny Simmon's Rush Arts Gallery. 2008 was a big year for Bisco. He released the critically acclaimed album When Electric Night Falls (Embedded Music), toured the US, and performed at CMJ, SXSW, Scribble Jam, and NXNE. Since the start of 2009, Bisco has already released a multimedia project entitled The Strange Love Project, and is now preparing for the release of The Broadcast. It is clear that he shows no sign of slowing down. He spends his time designing everything from record covers to websites, painting walls, participating in art gallery shows, and mentoring the city’s youth with art and music, all the while transmitting top quality music to the world. Prepare to tune into Bisco Smith's forthcoming LP, The Broadcast, available online now.

"Vibrations" .

"Broadcast Live" (Remix of TV On The Radio's "Wear You Out") .

"Railroads" Turnbull Green Remix .

The Broadcast teaser video .

"Railroads" Feat. Human?, Grimace & Esen .

The (W)rap Up - Week of January 12, 2010

Hurricane Chris :: Unleashed
J Records
Author: Steve 'Flash' Juon

"Hurricane Chris can lay claim to being one of the most successful digital artists of the 21st century, with his hit single "A Bay Bay" being downloaded over 3.5 million times as a song or ringtone. Commercial success not being equivalent to artistic merit, our writer Justin 'Tha Shiznute' Chandler found his debut album "51/50 Ratchet" to be more than a little bit underwhelming. That being said the amount of focus and determination Chris shows as a young artist in a crowded marketplace and his willingness to embrace new media distribution make him a hip-hop entrepreneur to watch, and Adam Bernard's interview shows we haven't stopped paying attention."

arious artists :: East Coast Block Starz :: Block Starz Music
as reviewed by Matt Jost

"From what I understand Block Starz Music offers various services to musicians along the lines of promotion and distribution, specifically tailored to the digital age. "East Coast Block Starz" is a compilation that isn't given away for free like so many mixtapes these days but instead promises to deliver your money's worth. Ten months ago RapReviews writer DJ Complejo was hoping for an East Coast edition while reviewing the "West Coast Block Starz," and here it is, 17 single tracks of contemporary East Coast rap."

various artists :: The Harder They Come Soundtrack :: Island Records
** RapReviews "Back to the Lab" series **
as reviewed by Patrick Taylor

"Just as marijuana is alleged to be a gateway drug to a more serious and expensive drug habit, "The Harder They Come" soundtrack might be a gateway to a serious and expensive addiction to reggae music. At the very least it was one of the principle albums that introduced reggae music to the Western mainstream, and along with the Wailer's 1973 album "Burnin'," cemented many people's love for the then-nascent genre. "

Bisco Smith :: The Broadcast :: Embedded Music/Audible Treats
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"Jesal 'Jay Soul' Padania first introduced the RR readership to Bisc1 a/k/a Bisco Smith in 2008. Although Padania was of the opinion Bisc wasn't his cup of tea he did describe the previous effort as a "tightly sequenced, short twelve-track offering that flows together well, punctuated only by the crispness of the drums." That alone was reason enough for RR to give his follow-up release "The Broadcast" a chance. Early listens convinced me that Smith had enough potential that I picked his "Railroads" song featuring Esen and Human Grimace for an episode of Hip-Hop Shop entitled Watch Dem in 2010. The musical backdrop sounded like a hip-hop take on Audioslave's "Show Me How to Live," while the rhymes dropped had the dark and gritty sound of late 1990's era Rawkus Records, particularly Company Flow. I could dig it."

Boss :: Born Gangstaz :: Def Jam West
** RapReviews "Back to the Lab" series **
as reviewed by Emanuel Wallace

"For the record...she doesn't give a fuck, not a single fuck, not a single solitary fuck. This is the mantra in play for the entirety of the 1993 debut release from Boss, "Born Gangstaz". For what it's worth, Boss was actually a duo consisting of Lichelle "Boss" Laws and her DJ partner Irene "Dee" Moore, but much like the currently re-emerging Sade, the group took the name of the premier artist. The story of Boss (the group) is filled with valleys and peaks, and are only slightly eclipsed by the story of Boss (the individual). As a group, trying to secure a deal took Lichelle and Dee from their native Detroit, to New York, back to the D and off to California. "

Dood Computer and Stir Crazy :: Penny Dreadfuls :: All In Merchandise
as reviewed by John-Michael Bond

"You can't knock the hustle of hungry dudes willing to put themselves out there to get their music heard but, like any reviewer will tell you, when it comes to self released, self promoted records the number of hungry cats without the talent to make it spamming your mail box is simply massive. Drive is great. There have been shit tons of fantastic artists who've never made it simply because they didn't have it. If you're one of the rare exceptions though you'll stick out like a diamond in the rough; glistening in the pile of "hey dude would you review my record?" submissions. My latest addition to the exceptions list is Dood Computer and Stir Crazy, and their simply ridiculous "Penny Dreadfuls" tape. "

Kosha Dillz :: Beverly Dillz :: Modular Moods/Shemspeed Records
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"As it turns out this isn't even the first time we've written about Dillz - Justin 'Tha Shiznute' Chandler covered his "Freestyle vs. Written" release with C-Rayz Walz back in aught-eight. Aight. I'm sold. Let's find out why Kosha Dillz has suddenly gone Beverly Hills and see if it's a change for the better or for the worse. "Beverly Dillz" opens with the stripped down "DooDoo," plucking one to two isolated notes over echoing drums.  "

Metermaids :: Smash Smash Bang EP :: 27 Sound Entertainment
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon

"Swell and Sentence, the duo behind the pseudonym Metermaids, list a diverse range of influences to their rap style - Otis Redding, Modest Mouse, Stevie Wonder and The Roots among others. Well then! From that list I'd expect the Metermaids to be soulful, alternative rock style live hip-hop musicians with poignant lyrics. Amazingly their previous release "Nightlife" seems to have struck most of those chords, being described by one of our own staffers as "cater(ing) so perfectly [to] the more open-minded kids that love rock AS MUCH as they love hip-hop. "


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Welcome to for Dec. 12th, 2017!! Please support us at our Patreon page and we can go 100% ad free when we hit the target goal. You can also shop Amazon through RapReviews and like us on Facebook. This week we have EIGHT new items for you: 21 Savage x Offset x Metro Boomin's "Without Warning," Apollo Brown & Planet Asia's "Anchovies" (our featured review), an editorial on Mega Man 11, MMA Mania interviews with Arlene Blencowe and Michael McDonald, the top 10 Rick Ross videos, Emanuel Wallace's The (W)rap Up for Dec. 5, 2017 and WSIB #17: "Get Up Offa That Thing" results!

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