"I doubt I'm the only person who feels like this project was announced just last week (last September, in reality), nor the only one who's surprised the album is even coming out. Raekwon's "Only Built 4 Cuban Linx" took roughly five years and forty-two fake track lists to finally hit shelves last year, and the Clan have never been prolific with their crew releases (six years in between "Iron Flag" and "8 Diagrams"). So when songs started to leak and ridiculously dope artwork was revealed, it seemed almost too good to be true. And unfortunately the haste to produce and release the album shows when listening; the thing is clearly rushed and even feels a tad opportunistic after the surprise critical resurgence of the Wu after the Raekwon-directed "Only Built 4 Cuban Linx II." "New Wu," the trio's sole collaboration on that record, has more vigor than anything on "Wu-Massacre." "
Blood Type :: MIAliens :: Blood Type Music
as reviewed by Emanuel Wallace
"Back in the summer of 1996, Atlanta's SouthernPlayaistic duo released their second album, "ATLiens." It was powered by the lead single, "Elevators (Me and You)" and scored a relatively large hit for Andre (sans the 3000 at the time) and Big Boi. Fast forward to the year 2009 and another southern duo, Chief and Stepson, collectively known as Blood Type are here to represent for the city of Miami with their debut mixtape titled "MIAliens". As one might expect, Blood Type trade rhymes over some memorable tracks from Outkast albums, including the aforementioned "ATLiens" and "Aquemini". Less expected but greatly appreciated is the inclusion of familiar beats from the likes of Dr. Dre, Eminem, A Tribe Called Quest and The RZA. There's also a healthy amount of original beats on the mixtape as well, handled mostly by group member, Stepson. "
Brotha Lynch Hung :: Dinner and a Movie :: Strange Music
as reviewed by Pedro 'DJ Complejo' Hernandez
"Much can be said about Brotha Lynch Hung's latest album. Despite the fact Strange Music is technically an independent record label, "Dinner and a Movie" is easily Hung's highest profile album since his album debut "Season of da Siccness" over fifteen years ago. It is impressive BLH is still rapping, even more impressive he's releasing one of the most anticipated albums so far this year. That said, BLH's longevity isn't the most important element of his latest album or his career. Instead, BLH serves as an example of both the fickleness and loyalty of rap fans. That contrast is captured best by the industry mirrored in his latest album. "Dinner and a Movie" is presented as an audio movie. It is a collection of songs and skits put together to tell a story. It is meant to entertain and deliver a message at the same time. The problem is that it's a horror movie, and therefore despite all its successes, it will be judged first by its label, and then by its content. Movie fans in general tend to be fickle like that. Some might even call it snobbish, after all a good movie should be entertaining regardless of the content."
C Kane :: Farewell to the Flesh :: Long Range Distribution
as reviewed by Susan 'susiQ' Kim
"Long Range Distribution has been known for their horrorcore artists who turn rap music into shocking imagery with their main focus on horror-influenced motifs such as murder and death. Detroit rapper C Kane continued this trend of violent lyricism and style with his fellow members of the group 2 Sins up until his death. In a posthumous effort, C Kane's horrorcore antics are remembered in "Farewell to the Flesh." Horrorcore is a small sub-genre of hip hop that has a small, but loyal following and has even reached the more mainstream with Geto Boys and Gravediggaz which has only popularized the music even further. Recently, the sub-genre has even made the news because of a California horrorcore artist that in fact committed murders with possible influence from his music. With this in mind, for many, it's difficult to take in the descriptive, grotesque nature of some of the lyrics and at times many are left in awe. C Kane's lyrics are no different. "http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_farewelltoflesh.htmlDirt Nasty :: The White Album :: Dirt Nasty Music/Shoot to Kill Music
as reviewed by Matt Jost
"What's funnier, someone known to play vaguely funny roles in vaguely funny TV shows and movies doing 're-interpretations of some of your favorite white-rappers biggest hits,' or Joaquin Phoenix announcing to give up acting for rapping and some people actually believing him? The free mixtape "The White Album" will tell. Dirt Nasty released a self-titled digital album in '07, and while he hasn't exactly taken the music world by storm, Simon Rex, the man behind Dirt Nasty, is enough part of the in-crowd for the character to appear on 'Paris Hilton's My New BFF,' where he acted as a decoy to see how far the candidates would go to please their idol. Rap, white and funny somehow seem to go together. Mel Brooks figured it out first in the early '80s with "It's Good to Be the King" and "To Be or Not to Be (The Hitler Rap)," which spoofed Louis XVI and Adolf Hitler, respectively. Tom Green could serve as an example of a rap contemporary who tried his hands at both hip-hop and comedy."http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_dirtwhitealbum.htmlG-Side :: Starshipz & Rocketz :: Slow Motion Sounds
as reviewed by Guido Stern"Like Paper Route Gangstaz, G-Side work extensively with super producers Block Beataz (the dudes behind Jackie Chain's "Rollin'"), and are effectively rapping in service of their huge, lysergic beats. ST and Clova are working entirely within the conventions of grass root Alabama and Georgia hip hop, putting together rhymes about being on the grind and the usual fascination with expensive cars. Clova delivers his verses from his viscera, eschewing semantic elegance but conveying a tangible sincerity. ST is the wordsmith of the twosome, particularly in his ability to switch flows and take some of the listener's attention away from the surround sound production. On "We Own Da Building," he raps, "And they say there's no honor amongst thieves // but honesty has never been a problem amongst G's // I follow the five P's: proper preparation prevents poor performance, and avoid informants." The volatility of his flow is enough to complement the track's runaway keyboard without trying to contend with it. "http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_starshipzand.htmlInspectah Deck :: Manifesto :: Traffic Entertainment
as reviewed by Pedro 'DJ Complejo' Hernandez "If any member of the Wu-Tang Clan can be considered "underrated," it would Inspectah Deck. Though the man has a history of stealing the show on Wu-Tang albums, his solo career has never reached the heights of other Wu members. Part of the problem came from the fact Inspectah Deck's first solo album came after the first series of critically acclaimed Wu-solos. While "Uncontrollable Substance" was a dope solo album, it came at a time when the Wu's popularity was declining somewhat and failed to reach the legendary status of albums like "Tical," "Only Built 4 Cuban Linx," "Liquid Swords," and "Ironman." The album sold gold, but that has been the height of Inspectah Deck's career as a soloist. Thankfully, the lack of commercial success has not affected Inspectah Deck's solo career or quality of music. "Manifesto" is Deck's fourth solo album and finds him as sharp as he's ever been. "http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_deckmanifesto.html
Kaigen21Meiso :: Root Is the New Leaf :: Takaba Records
as reviewed by Patrick Taylor
"Kaigen21Meiso is a collaboration between Tokyo rapper Kaigen and Honolulu-based rapper Meiso. Both MCs have been active in the experimental hip hop scene, and "Root Is the New Leaf" is twelve tracks of glitchy, boundary-pushing hip hop in the vein of anticon. Former anticon affiliate Sole contributes production, as does K-The-!???, Omid, Curse Ov Dialect, Michita, and Kaigen. Before you glance at the score, see a "5" and decide that this record isn't worth your time, let me explain something: they rap in Japanese, so I can't understand a word they're saying. It's totally possible that Kaigen and Meiso are dropping some serious knowledge, and I'm just too ignorant to understand. I'm all for hip hop in a foreign language I do understand, but with an art form that depends so much on the use of words, understanding the language is a prerequisite for enjoying the music."http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_rootisthenewleaf.htmlMadlib :: Madlib's Medicine Show #3: Beat Konducta in Africa :: Stones Throw Records
as reviewed by Patrick Taylor"If you don't know who Madlib is, here's a brief bio: born Otis Jackson, Jr., his dad is a musician and his brother is producer/rapper Oh No. He first made his name as part of the Lootpack crew in the early 90s before going solo later that decade. He's collaborated with J Dilla (2003's Jaylib album), MF DOOM (2004's Madvillain album), and produced tracks for Percy P, Guilty Simpson, Erykah Badu, and Talib Kweli. He has more aliases than a gun runner, rapping as Quasimoto, doing jazz as Yesterday's New Quintet, and doing collaborations with Brazilian artist Ivan Conti as Jackson Conti. He puts out several albums a year, and in 2010 is putting out one a month as part of his "Medicine Show" series. March's entry is his fourth Beat Konducta collection, comprised of beats made from African music. "http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_madlibshow3.htmlSkandal & Beat Butcha :: A Quick Snack EP :: 7Thirty Entertainment
as reviewed by Steve 'Flash' Juon"Skandal's bio contains the usual amount of hyperbole for a new artist, including time-worn phrases like "top 5 artists to watch for in (insert year here)." Two things distinguish Skandal from falling into SOSS (Same Old Shit Syndrome) though - he's got Beat Butcha on the boards (one of Canibus' favorite producers) and he hails from the United Kingdom. He's made a little bit of a name already on the hip-hop scene with his underground banger "Kill 'Em Wit the Flow". The new digital-only "A Quick Snack EP" includes both the original and a remix with fellow scene veterans Klashnekoff and P Money. I appreciate the new spitters on the beat but the song that really wins me over on this short release is the bass-heavy "Home Economics""http://www.rapreviews.com/archive/2010_03_aquicksnack.html
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