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Erik L. (Detroit CYDI)
Reps: Stockholm/Soundvalley, Sweden
My first exposure to Erik L's beats were when his fellow producer in Detroit CYDI Doc Illingsworth sent me some links earlier on this year. From that point on, I was on the lookout, which led me to his 2008 "Loose Control EP". In addition to his stellar work with Detroit CYDI he's recently earned a placement on the prestigious "Beat Dimensions" Vol. 2 compilation (Rush Hour) with his selection "Soularp Suite Part 2" and dropped the slept on "Kitty Kat Kaboodle" EP with Cerebral Kortex & Kissey Asplund. Keep the name Erik L. in your memory banks because he's gonna be wrecking shit in the near future. You've all been warned. "Favorite Flava-Different Phase" is now available on iTunes!
Fabio Musta (Babygrande Records)
Reps: Rome, Italy
Fabio Musta's jazzy, soulful brand of Hip Hop production is well known throughout Europe and he's regarded as a young legend in his native Italy already. After a while his dream of invading the States where Hip Hop originated from materialized and he was signed to Babygrande so he could work with some of the best in Hip Hop. The end result was the slept on "Passport" album that dropped this past Spring. If you need heat, he's got it.
Cadik (Membran Music)
Reps: Budapest. Hungary
Hungrarian Hip Hop producer Cadik wasn't on too many people's radars Stateside before the LP "Basic" appeared either on the internet or in a select few music journalists & Hip Hop bloggers mailboxes midway through last year. I remember wondering how in the Hell this cat managed to evade the net I've since cast around the globe. If you hear Cadik's doing a show near you or you see a track of his around open your goddamn ears...you won't be disappointed.
Juuso (Burnt Berry Recordings/Jazzy Sport)
Reps: Helsinki, Finland
I'd been hearing music from this kid Juuso floating around for years on MySpace but when local cats Tableek of Maspyke and Blacastan sent me a track called "Black Vs. Bleek" that made me say "Dayum!". If you go find the Juuso & Tableek "Nothing Lesser EP" it's five tracks of heat that make you want to lock them all in a studio for months and make a full length project. Too bad I'm not an A&R...Don't sleep!
Annu (Chocolate Milk)
Reps: Richmond, VA
Let's assume that you've never heard of Annu before. Let's assume you haven't downloaded his "Dream Runner EP" already. Let's assume you haven't already heard his insanely ridiculous "Def Vibrations" project. Let's also assume that I didn't try to roundhouse kick a police horse in the head after hearing all this shit, too. Too bad I did. Don't worry, though...The police didn't catch me.
Next up: EQ, Devonwho, Michita, Benga & Teebs