La Coka Nostra Added To Rock The Bells Hip-hop Festival Alongside Nas, The Roots and Common; Group Re-caps Bring Tha NoizeTour ***
With anticipation at feverish levels for La Coka Nostra’s upcoming debut “A Brand You Can Trust”, the group has announced they will appear at this year’s Rock The Bells hip-hop festival performing alongside a reunited House of Pain. The tour is expected to hit 10 North American cities from June 27- Aug. 9 and will feature Nas, Damian Marley, the Roots, Big Boi and Common, among others.
The group recently completed their sold-out Bring Tha Noize Tour with Kottonmouth Kings and has offered the following tour recap:
“The Bring Tha Noize Tour was dope. Every night the venues were packed and the fans matched the energy that we brought to the stage. With La Coka Nostra and Kottonmouth Kings on the same bill, you had to know that it was going to be a wild party when you bought the ticket, and that's exactly what it was,” says La Coka Nostra’s Slaine. “Kids were moshing and going crazy in just about every city in the country. Now that the tour is over, I am short a few more brain cells, and I am looking forward to doing it all over again soon.”
La Coka Nostra’s “A Brand You Can Trust” will surface through Suburban Noize Records on July 14th, 2009. The group’s debut features an all-star roster of collaborations between La Coka Nostra and Snoop Dogg, Cypress Hill, Bun B, Psycho Realm, Q-Unique, Immortal Technique and the Alchemist. The group’s video for the track “I’m An American” can be viewed online at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3qU821mlqM .
“When we first started recording tracks for La Coka, we knocked a lot of joints out at once, and there was a lot of hype and buzz around the project and the group. We started leaking those tracks to feed the hunger that was out there, but in the meantime I think we raised the bar and created an expectation level within the group to really make a dope record,” says Slaine. “While we were on the Bring Tha Noize tour, I had the headphones on and listened to the final version of the album sequenced, mixed and mastered, and bugged out at how good it is. We set out to make a boom bap hip-hop record and we did that, but to stop there would be selling it short, because lyrically, musically, and sonically this album doesn't fit in a box. This summer the world will finally hear what the is really going on with La Coka Nostra.”
You should already know that The Mighty Underdogs are fresher than the average thanks to writer Matt Jost's review of "Droppin' Science Fiction," but now things get even fresher with a new video for the single "Science Fiction." Enjoy!
Our good friend K-Murdock from Panacea and Subsoniq has a remix submission in a John Legend contest that we think is pretty damn fresh. We'd like you to check out the "If You're Out There" remix HERE and if you're feelin' it like we're feelin' it then please cast a vote for K-Murdock's track. It won't take but a second of your time and we know he'd appreciate all the fans and supporters of RapReviews.com showin' a little love!
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Hip-Hop Shop is the precursor to K4D every week on Sunday night. Even though your host Flash has a cold, we get through regardless with great new music from Ali Vegas, Big Shot, Grynch f/ Illa J and more! The show is sponsored by thecancerandmrob.com and replays are available every week on RapReviews.com. The Hip-Hop Shop is 100% podsafe so distribute to your friends and tell them to visit RapReviews.com!
When you see a gorgeous Korean girl with fire red hair and eyebrows to match, it’s pretty hard not to take notice. Frankie Finch is well aware of that fact, it’s pretty much what she’s been going for, and it’s been working. Over the years Finch has been in the public eye in a number of ways as she’s hosted a variety of television shows and launched a fashion company, but now she’s ready to put her fiery personality front and center with her fiery hair and show her talent as a recording artist. The other day I bumped into the California resident while we were both in New York City and we talked about her love of individuality, the sound she hopes to create with her music, and the many places people may have already seen or heard her.
Pitbull was set adrift by the folding of his old label TVT, a popular hip-hop reggaeton artist without a place to call home. Fortunately the Cubano rapper straight from M.I.A.M.I. has landed at a subsidiary of RCA called Polo Grounds Music and is already making noise with his new single "Blanco." Paired with a punchy if somewhat stereotypical hip-hop dance beat which sounds INCREDIBLY similar to Justin Timberlake's "Like I Love You," this is nevertheless another Neptunes banger which is bound to get both airplay and carplay as people cruise down the streets bumping the beat. I'm not the most fluent Spanish speaker out there so when Pitbull jumps back and forth between tongues I get lost at times, but even a blanco gringo like me can appreciate his energetic and passionate reggaeton delivery. "Blanco" is a another surefire Pitbull hit.
Artist: Mims f/ LeToya Luckett Title: Love Rollercoaster Label: Capitol Records
As the second single off Mims new album "Guilt," none too coincidentally charting at the same time the album is hitting stores, Mims is definitely trying to win back the large mainstream audience he found with "This Is Why I'm Hot." It's a new kind of Mims though - less braggadocious, more laid back, and willing to share the spotlight with a R&B singer instead of keeping it all to himself. In fact the producers known as Da Internz may have made this track a little TOO smooth. Don't get me wrong - this one's going to be a hit on urban radio and whenever it's time to grind with a honey nice and slow on the dancefloor, but Mims fans who remember him for "Hot" may find this song a little too COOL by comparison. Personally I'm going to cut Mims a break on it because I like the snap beat, the slow bass, the layered strings and the laid back rap. Whenever a song is as enjoyable for the instrumental B-side as the hip-hop A-side, you know it's one that you need in your crates. "Love Rollercoaster" fits that criteria.
Recently I received an e-mail about album scores at RR. The author while appreciative of the work we do at RapReviews had some grave concerns that we are far too generous in our scoring of albums and as such our reviews aren't as helpful as they used to be. In effect to paraphrase what the author wrote: "Is everything a 7 or better?"
I must confess some weeks I've felt that way myself. I'm definitely guilty of contributing to the problem because I probably overrate some otherwise mediocre rappers who are making a sincere effort, just solely on the basis of being so much better than garbage rap albums like Soulja Boy. The problem for me is that even a talking toilet lid would be better, so that's just not a good standard. It's either that or I'm getting too nice in my "old age" at 34 and I just don't have the "AWW THAT'S GARBAGE, THAT'S WHACK, THAT'S FUCKING BULLSHIT" passion I did when I was 21 - that or it takes something the level of Soulja Boy to pull that passion out of me.
Either way I'm being too nice, and I suspect that if I'm anything of a leader for RapReviews.com everyone else may be following my example. I'm not saying that our writers should necessarily start handing out 1's and 2's left and right, that would just be going overboard in the other direction, but maybe a 7 should be a little harder to come by and maybe we've also diluted what a "coveted" 9 really is. I can honestly look at The Nines page on the website and think that anywhere from 10-33% are things I don't own or haven't listened to. So either my library of rap is not big enough (which if you saw the amount of records and compact discs overflowing my house you would never say in a million years) or we've gotten very lax about what it takes to be considered a classic the level of Illmatic and A Book of Human Language. I think we can all re-evaluate what the RR ratings mean.
For argument's sake let's consider this a new INFORMAL guideline.
0 - Incomprehensibly bad. Doesn't even deserve a score. EXTREMELY RARE. 1 - Horrid. Frightening in an unentertaining way. Someone might have been trying to make an artistic statement but they failed abyssmally. 2 - Worse than bad, and definitely no good. Might have one passable song out of 10-14. Probably someone who could try harder and might suck less, but they're still such untalented hacks they'd suck anyway. 3 - Almost bad. Now we're getting into Soulja Boy range of "talent." 4 - Just plain bad. Probably marginally redeeming on some level. A 4 for beats or rhymes or a 4 overall says "some radio station somewhere might play this and people might think it's good by sheer repetition." 5 - Mediocre. Rises above being bad but just really isn't all that good. 6 - Marginally good. Something you might actually bother to rip for the fact there were good beats and good rhymes, but that you wouldn't end up seeing at the top of your "most frequently played" on iTunes. 7 - Acceptable. This is one we're handing out way too much of. How many things rated 7 and up would you ever go out of your way to listen to again after you're done reviewing it? If you wouldn't, score lower. 8 - Good. Now we're up to the level of Jay-Z, Nas, OutKast, De La Soul. Something you'd definitely listen to again. Something you'd rip and add to your favorites. Possibly an album you'd play from start to finish. 9 - Great. There's a timeless quality to the album. Artistic inspiration palpable in every beat and rhyme. The album seeps into your brain like a coffee stain on tablecloth that never goes away. Something you LOVE. 10 - BRILLIANT. This should also be EXTREMELY RARE. Even if you love it enough to be a 9, consider whether or not the masses would feel the same. Does the album transcend? Does it have a timeless quality future rap generations will recognize, or would the luster fade over the years? Theoretically there shouldn't be a bad song on it.
Hopefully this is helpful as we all read RR in the future. I'm going to try to be more stringent in my ratings from now on too.