RAW Papers Cypher: Like (of Pac Div), Sir Michael Rocks, Mod Sun, and Dizzy Wright

raw papers cypher

 

Who knew RAW Papers kept their ears to the Underground Hip-Hop scene? It’s fitting, since the majority of Hip-Hop artists are avid reefer supporters (plenty are also avid cigarette smokers).

It’s also fitting that these artists all have ties to the West Coast at the current moment.  California is (arguably) the state with the most advocates for the green medicine, and the highest amount of budding talent in the Hip-Hop game.

Four of Ronzo’s Word’s favorite MC’s came along for the promotional cypher, in order: Like, Sir Michael Rocks, Mod Sun, and Dizzy Wright.  Enjoy.

P.S. RAW, you should do more of these. Absolutely.

 

-Ronzo

Vic Spencer – Profound ft. Tree

Vic Spencer

 

Chicago native Vic Spencer drops some entertaining visuals for his song, “Profound ft. Tree”.  If the styling of Tyler the Creator, Hopsin, Earl Sweatshirt, etc.. then this is right up your alley.  He most resembles Earl, based on my first listen to him, with the slow flow and nonchalant delivery.

This “Profound” track is grime at its finest, especially with hard hitting lyrics that may or may not offend you.  If you like it, be sure to download his latest project, The Rapping Bastard, which is available at his Bandcamp for a price that you may name!

 

It’s dope to see all of these Chicago natives really coming together and forming a thorough music scene.  The violence there lately is terrible, and its nice to see all of these different artists with outlets such as music.

-Ronzo

Talent Attracts Talent: A Look at Talib Kweli Collaborations

Talib-Kweli

One of the greatest parts of Hip-Hop is the emphasis on collaborating and putting multiple artists on a single track.  There are plenty of classic jams throughout Hip-Hop history built on this idea, and one thing’s for sure: Talib Kweli is really good at being involved with them.  Either being recruited, or starting them himself.

Lyricists appreciate other good lyricists, usually out of plain love for the music.  Studying the game and recognizing other good musicians is just as important as making the music yourself.  Being surrounded by talent makes Talib easy to recognize, as he’s frequent collaborators with Mos Def, The Roots, Lauryn Hill, and Common, to name a few.  The collaborative album Black Star with Mos Def is an album that has been specially preserved in the gallery of Hip-Hop history. Their names were arguably the biggest on Rawkus Records in the late 90s.  Impressive legacy, to say the least.

Today, I’m going to look at three especially impressive tracks, including one recent track that might be the best Talib collaboration yet.

Talib Kweli – Guerilla Monsoon Rap ft. Black Thought, Kanye West, and Pharoahe Monch

“Get By” is what really propelled Quality into classic record territory, but it would be foolish to pass up on this posse cut gem in the middle of the album.  The most underrated MC of all time (Black Thought), the syllable king (Pharoahe Monch), the creatively mad genius (Kanye West), and Talib all on one track? Quite an impressive feature list for the first solo album of your career.

To be completely fair, Kanye doesn’t have a verse, but he does provide the beat and the hook.  All these guys go in, as per usual.

Reflection Eternal (Talib Kweli & DJ Hi-Tek) – Just Begun ft. Jay Electronica, Mos Def, and J. Cole

The coolest part about this collaboration is the snapshot of where both Jay Electronica and J. Cole were in their respective careers.  Jay Electronica had his infamous signing to Roc-A-Fella Records that very same year, and the Hip-Hop community was swept up in his mystique.  With no legit album (and a constant promise of an approaching project), people wanted to hear more and more.  A lot of fans were dying to hear more and more music.

J. Cole’s position was quite different at this time.  During his Friday Night Lights era, he was definitely not getting the same respect he gets nowadays, post-Sideline Story.  One thing I’ve always respected majorly about Cole is his ability to write poetically.  The guy’s been doing it his whole career, and the verse on this is no exception.

You can tell on this track that all of these artists knew what was at stake.  A Jay Electronica appearance was a huge boost to the importance of the track, raising the bar for what needed to be written among all four rappers.

Talib Kweli, Elzhi, and Phonte – No Competition (prod. by Khrysis)

“No Competition” is a gift to Hip-Hop heads across the world.  All three of these rappers have been praised individually for their lyrical prowess and songwriting in general.  It’s impressive that all of them are still doing it as well as always to this day.  It all comes together over nice production by a rising star in the Hip-Hop game, Khrysis.

This cut is on the album Jamla Is The Squad, which just released on January 28th.  Be sure to check it out.

-Ronzo

Big Sean – 1st Quarter Freestyle

Big Sean

 

After not hearing new material from Big Sean for awhile, it’s nice to see him making an enjoyable freebie track.

One of Sean’s top assets is his ability to string together nonsense in a really entertaining way.  This lyrical method isn’t exactly new to Hip-Hop, but Big Sean is, and always has been, one of the frontrunners of the style these days.  It’s what made him attractive to Kanye.  Even with the heavy pop presence and success Big Sean has had in the modern day industry, he’s stuck true to what made him famous in the first place: the feeling that he could just keep going, and going, and going…etc.  He may not be the most sound lyricist, and he also might not be among the deepest of song writers.  But he sure knows how to entertain; and that’s definitely respectable.

In his newest release of 2014, Big Sean goes for 5 minutes over production by Key Wayne and Travis $cott.  Serving as his introduction to 2014 (or in other words, his 1st quarter), it’s quite nice.  Check out the Mike Carson-directed visuals down below, and if you like it, go download it here on Soundcloud.

-Ronzo

Audio Push – Turn Down (Video)

audio push

One of my favorite artists on the rise in 2013 just made visuals for one of my favorite tracks off their mixtape, Come as You Are.

“Turn Down” is a song that represents everything chill.  As they say, it’s the perfect music for Monday-Friday.  Through a clever flip of the popular phrase “Turn up”, Audio Push explains the daily mindset of the average working citizen.

Turn down for what? Turn down cause you tired.

I’m really digging this group, as I said in my previous article about them, and I’m hoping to see a vibrant 2014.  Debut album, anyone?

-Ronzo

Dopamine Knights Update 1/31/2014

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Hey there everyone, I’m slightly behind on posting the Dopamine Knights’ Sunday Meds 2 releases, so here’s a post to catch all of you fans up.

The past two weeks have provided some pretty dope releases, setting up the grand stage for the final 3 tracks of the project.  First up, Ace and I go back and forth with sixteens, playing with words and giving insight into our daily lives on the track, “Check the Resume”.  It’s got some bounce to it, so prepare for the head-nodding that’s bound to happen.

For the latest release, we get a little bit goofy.  I’m sure all of you stoners can relate to our newest track, going by the name of “Munchie Run”.  It’s a song that perfectly encapsulates the feeling of imminent “smash attack” on the way to a convenience store during a hazy night chiefing with the homies.  We had a lot of fun with it, so we hope you will too.

That’s all for right now.  Like I said before, though, be on the lookout for the next 3 weeks.  Sunday Meds 2 will be coming to a close as we move on to the next pojects.  Stay dope, ladies and gentlemen.

-Ronzo

Mobb Deep – Taking You Off Here

mobb deep taking you off here

New Mobb Deep album? What, what, WHAT?

Coming this April, The Infamous Mobb Deep will be a new album full of scrapped tracks, with previously unreleased verses from Nas, Ghostface Killah, and Raekwon.  These 10 extra tracks were recorded during The Infamous sessions, and were not chosen to make the final cut for one of their most famous (and one of my favorite) albums.

This is all part of a 20th anniversary celebration of the original release, an extremely special treat for Mobb Deep fans everywhere.  Here’s one of the cuts from the April release, called “Taking You Off Here”.

In addition to this awesome project, Prodigy and Havoc are already on a tour that began in January.  The Infamous Mobb Deep Tour will be continuing all the way until May, so be sure to check the dates and order tickets ASAP.

mobb-deep-tour-dates-Ronzo