A cornucopia of delicious auditory candy for every hip-hop taste bud.
Lyriciss – The Balance EP
God-given flow meets hardbody beats. Listen close and you’ll hear the hunger: it’s in the moments between couplets juuuuust before the beat hits on the dusty title track. And there are Ray J jokes on “Stop Scheming” – further testament that everything is automatically enhanced with Ray J jokes. It’s the new horse! Clever enough for headphones, thick enough for trunks. [Download The Balance EP]
Soulbrotha – “Way of Love”
SB dares us to see what it means when hip-hop delves in a different music territory. “Way of Love” opens the challenge with an urgent indie-meets-rap fusion. Beat winks at XX. Flow nods to early Cool J. A structurally radical volley from SB’s long overdue Southpaw EP, out November 25.
David Banner Feat. Don Trip – “Do Work”
It never really occurred to me before but David Banner and Don Trip really sound alike. I’m strictly talking voice here. Banner obviously enunciates with more vigor, as if he’s rapping and shitting at the same time. Ugh, gross.
Omen Feat. J. Cole – “Mama Told Me”
In which Omen tries on a suit tailor-made for J. Cole. Sports more revelatory rhymes from Jermaine: “I used to be embarrassed getting picked up in that Honda/Thought my niggas might not play me if they found out my mama was a white lady.” Beat sounds like a color-blind 4 year-old pressing random keys on a Casio keyboard.
Hodgy Beats (Feat. Left Brain) – “Crap”
These two have always meshed well. But “Crap” does more than reaffirm Mellowhype’s chemistry; it’s also evidence that Hodgy has gotten better at rapping. Left Brain’s boardsmanship is still as stellar as it ever was. He even turns in a rare cameo on the mic. Awesome.
Slim the Mobster Feat. Dr. Dre – “Back Against the Wall”
Dre’s doing throwaway mixtape joints for shits and giggles now? This one finds him getting busy over T.I.’s “Salute” beat. Available on Slim’s War Music.