Friday, April 24, 2009

What's New In Dart's iPod #75 AKA Where Amazing Happens

So far these NBA playoffs have been extremely exciting as the Bulls and 76'ers managed to come away with upsets. Several players had out of body experiences and a couple of 'em went Super Saiyan in front of a worldwide audience (Derrick Rose, Ben Gordon, LeBron James, Dywane Wade, Ray Allen, Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce, etc.). Amazing has happened so far but the real test lies in the future playoff rounds. The Bruins also swept the hated Montreal Canadiens 4-0 and the Red Sox start their first series vs. their mortal enemies the New York Yankees tonight. I also did a new collaborative blog with my boy Travis Glave @ Wake Your Daughter Up so be on the lookout for that one!

This week I'll be reviewing four new projects that recently hit the 'net/bloggerverse and/or will be landing on store shelves soon in the following order: Curren$y "This Ain't No Mixtape", The Grouch & Eligh "Say G&E", Men Without Pants "Naturally" and yU "Before Taxes". For those of you new to this blog, I don’t rate albums on a scale or assign them a numerical value out of 5 or 10, instead I merely answer the all important question of “Is it worth buying or not?”. Here's how my "Cop It Or Not" ratings system breaks down below:

Oh No! This CD is a drink coaster/table balancer/doorstop/gerbil/hamster room divider/frisbee/discus/makeshift shield/last ditch choice for a visor/alternate shuriken choice. Sell this shit to whoever is dumb enough to buy it from you.

Maeby (Maybe)! Depending on your own set of personal preferences you might like this joint. Give it a listen first to see if it's in your lane or not.

Mos Def! Cop the album when it drops...'Nuff said.

Only ask me questions about the guys that're playing! © Doc Rivers

Best Joints: The Briefing, Get It Ya Self, Blown Away, Scared Of Monstas, Elevator Musik, On My Plane, 16 Switches Spitter, The Jets Son, LOL, Sail On, Got It, Power Button, Up Here, Cook Up, Food For Thought, Galaxy, Look Up To The Jets, Something Like & Top Of The Money

Hot Garbage: N/A (About 5 or 6 of these tracks could've used different beats though)

Dart's Take: Curren$y Da Hot Spitta is yet another one of the young emcees that have become blog favorites through to his nonstop grinding, lyrical consistency and a gang of mixtapes he's put out. This is his official debut street album available from Boston based Hip Hop label Amalgam Digital. This album is pretty impressive in the sense that Curren$y varies up his flows and song topics while keeping his lyricism as the main focus. You can tell when he has outside production because the beats just stand out so much more. The underwhelming sonic aspect of this album prevented Spitta from earning a mos def. I give "This Ain't A Mixtape" a highly recommended maybe.

Best Joints: Intro, Say G&E!, Push On (Push Up), Old Souls, Boom, Denial, I Know You Wanna Feel, Teach Me The Way, All In, Do It Again, Rivers Run Dry, No Flowers, Comin' Up and Sign Of The Times

Hot Garbage: Worried About The World was just meh to me.

Dart's Take: I've been a fan of the Living Legends since the late 90's when the Backpack Era was at it's peak (1997-2002). I even have a super rare issue of Subculture Magazine with a detailed Living Legends interview in it featuring all of it's members. I was listening to old tapes from The Grouch back in 1997/8 so to review an album from Grouch & Eligh in 2009 is kinda surreal. The crazy thing is that these guys having lost anything in their lyricsm or flows after 12 years plus since I first heard them.

The Grouch has the same hunger on the mic that he had on "Nothing Changes", "Success Is Destiny" &"Fuck The Dumb", that alone is commendable. Eligh spits with the same command and intensity he had on "As They Pass", "A Story Of 2 Worlds", & "Sidewaydaze". When you take these two legendary West Coast rhyme veterans you can expect nothing less than great material. If you're not a Legendary head this might skew a bit boring to you (possibly) or you might love it. Either way I give "Say G&E!" a highly recommended maybe.

Best Joints: Superfine, My Balloon, Let's Meet In Real Life, If You're Thinkin' Of Me, I Do and Goodbye

Hot Garbage: And The Girls Go (Where's Mark Ronson when you really need him?), Double Life, Never Gonna Do That Again. Rock Show, Keep On Movin', All You Need Is Luck and The Beginning.

Dart's Take: One of my favorite all time producers is Dan "The Automator" Nakamura. He and Jon Spencer of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion collaborated to make an album I was very interested in hearing last summer when it was announced by their label that the project was coming soon. After 8 months of delays and a Japanese release but no American LP I ultimately stopped caring. The album has recently surfaced on the 'net so I decided to review it....Uhh, what the fuck is this supposed to be exactly?

Half of this album I was praying that the song hurried up and ended and the other half I hoped that they didn't fuck it up with the noise and annoying vocals. I couldn't get into this project at all. It was a disjointed clusterfuck of noise kinda reminiscent of that N.A.S.A. LP some people actually think is good. I could've gone without ever even hearing this collaborative album and I would've been just fine. "Naturally" has earned every bit of an oh no from me.

Best Joints: Before Taxes Intro, Beats & Rhymes from March25 (Kick Styles), Almost Time, Thought About It, BreakDown, Corners, The UP&UP, Close, Fine, Lunchin', Native, Memory, The Rock, In The Reign, MmHmm and Brainwash

Hot Garbage: N/A

Dart's Take: Last week we got beat in the head with DMV supergroup Diamond District's "In The Ruff" LP. This week 1/3rd of Diamond District decided to expand on his "Before Taxes EP" and make it an LP. You add yU's verses to production from The 1978ers (Slimkat78 & yU), Oddisee, Kev Brown & Bilal Salaam and guest appearances from the DMV crews Low Budget and The Remainz plus Grap Luva and Finale and the end result is another ridiculous free album.

I played this jawn to death this past week. I feel asleep playing it and woke up just to play it again from the beginning in the morning! I give "Before Taxes" a mos def. Good lookin' out to my boy Kenny Fresh @ Fresh Selects for putting us all on!

Late Passes (For Doz Dat Slept):

Projects I'm Looking Forward To Reviewing Once They Leak...I Mean Drop in 2009:

Rhymefest-El Che
Jay Electronica-Act II: Patents Of Nobility
Jay Electronica-Abracadabra: Let There Be Light
Royce Da 5'9"-Street Hop
Big Boi-Sir Luscious Leftfoot, Son Of Chico Dusty
Mos Def-The Ecstatic LP
Royce Da 5'9"-Street Hop
Magnif & J Dilla-Detroit Royalty
Blu-God Is Good
Sean Price, Guilty Simpson & Black Milk-Random Axe
Redman-Muddy Waters 2
B.O.B.-The Adventures Of B.O.B.
Billy Danze-Behind Gatez
AG & O.C.-Oasis: Together Brothers
Phat Kat and Elzhi are Cold Steel
The Beatnuts-The Planet Of The Crates
Skepta-Microphone Champion
Ski Beatz-Half Man, Half Amazing
Evidence-Cats & Dogs
Statik Selektah-The Hangover

The NBA...where amazing happens © NBA Entertainment



Travis said...

It's funny how I got into Grouch & Eligh. I've always avoided Living Legends for the most part, but I was hanging with some hippy kids in Golden, Colorado a few years ago at a BBQ. They were playing all this "hippy music", then they busted out Grouch & Eligh's "No Greener Grasses". I thought the shit was pretty good and have continued to check for them since then and go back to their older material

Justin Boland said... the dude on the cover of that Guru album even him? Has he been....Taken?

Or, does he have some sort of degenerative condition we don't know about?