Cage - I Never Knew You
Cage doesn’t have too many tracks that I would consider ridiculously amazing, but this is one of them. When I first discovered this song all I could do was play it in my dorm with the volume cranked way up and the bass set to max. You definitely need to be in the right type mood to fully enjoy this song. It’s that special kind of music that can envelop you within its essence, and you forget what you’re doing as your brain is drowned in sadistic lyrics and grungy guitar. Nothing really like it. Obviously not everyone enjoys Cage’s darker music, but if you do, you definitely have an appreciation for this song and what it artistically accomplishes within the underground realm of dark grungy hip-hop.
“You’re always dying inside that much closer to home. On a crowded street corner surrounded by people all alone.”
My Song Rating: 9.6 out of 10
Necro - Underground (Instrumental)
This is my all time favorite instrumental to freestyle to. If you’ve never heard of Necro before, all you need to know is he’s the filthiest and most violent hip-hop artist I know of, at least for how famous he is for it. He’s also made beats for everyone from Wu-Tang to Cage. One of my other favorite Necro instrumentals to freestyle too is Agent Orange by Cage. Essentially what I’m saying is he’s probably my favorite producer to freestyle too. It has that raw repetition at just the right speed.Played 371 times.
Fat Trel – Freak A Melody (ft. Wale)
Fat Trel hails from Washington D.C. along with his feature and friend Wale, who signed Trel in 2010 at the time of this mixtape. The sample is my favorite part of this song because it exemplifies of the polarity of a hood rapper with an uncommon indie sample, which is from Hannah by Freelance Whales. The trap/hood rap scene is one of the most grossly overpopulated and watered down music scenes in existence. Fat Trel is no savior, but he keeps his head far above this general cesspool of shit. This is my second favorite song off of Fat Trel’s 2010 mixtape No Secrets. My favorite song, which I already reviewed, is Deep Thought.
My Song Rating: 8.9 out of 10Played 363 times.
Tupac - Thugz Mansion
This song is a classic of classics. Tupac represented more than just hip-hop…he was a goddamn one man movement. This is in my top 3 favorite songs by Tupac, and is one of the reasons Tupac is OBVIOUSLY better than Biggie. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a “big” fan, but he just doesn’t stack up lyrically, or on really any other aspect accept for that Biggie had a more powerful flow. I believe he actually possessed the most hard hitting flow ever.
“A place to spend my quiet nights, time to unwind. So much pressure in this life of mine, I cry at times.”
My Song Rating: 10 out of 10Played 429 times.
Obie Trice - Don’t Come Down
Respect to all the struggling mothers out there doing the best they can. This one of my favorite songs off of Obie Trice’s excellent 2003 debut album Cheers. I’ve been meaning to post more Obie Trice, so look for that in the future. Also you should check out the music video if you’re curious.
“It was just me and you, in the house, with that mouse and them traps and that gat. Waiting on the day for you to pull the trigger back.”
My Song Rating: 9.4 out of 10Played 222 times.
Hodgy Beats & Domo Genesis - MellowHigh (prod. by Mac Miller)
Slowly but surly Hodgy and Domo continue to progress their musical endeavors forward in a positive direction. I’ve always been a fan of them ever since I heard their first mixtapes. Much of this had as to do with the fact I knew they were going to improve over the years. I’m not saying they sucked originally, but they were only slightly above average.Tyler, Earl, Frank, and now Hodgy and Domo have all shown that their later releases are their best works, and they only intend on sharpening their art even further.
My Song Rating: 9.1 out of 10Played 1089 times.
Quasimoto - Planned Attack
Madlib is the king of abstract hip-hop instrumentals and flow. The music he makes with his alter ego Quasimoto is so unique in the hip-hop world that his songs like Am I Confused are in a genre of their own. This is my favorite song off of Madlib’s new album Yessir Whatever, which is set to be released June 18th.
“I’ll hit you with a slower fast pace. I’m a perceptional mode, new breed to wreck the whole space.”
My Song Rating: 9.5 out of 10Played 1383 times.
Quasimoto - Am I Confused
This is one of my favorite songs off of Madlib’s new album Yessir Whatever, which is set to be released June 18th. Yessir Whatever is a collection of 12 tracks made by Madlib and his alter ego Quasimoto over a roughly 12 year period. It’s about to be a collectors item, just you watch. Am I Confused and all of the other odd songs on the album represent completely unique abstract hip-hop, which only a yellow brick slinging womanizer could create. Quasimoto’s music is in a genre of its own.
My Song Rating: 8.7 out of 10Played 914 times.
Marco Polo - G.U.R.U. (ft. Talib Kweli & DJ Premier)
Without exaggeration, this is my favorite eulogy hip-hop song ever. The production is phenomenal, as I would expect from Marco Polo, my favorite Canadian producer. Everyone on this track obviously went all out. Cost isn’t a factor when you’re making the song for your fans just as much as you’re making it for own piece of mind and your lost friend. I didn’t realize Talib Kweli and Guru had such a history, and Talib’s potent story telling delivers on all fronts. Guru died on this day (April 19) exactly 3 years ago at the age of 48 from Cancer. He was a king of the golden era, and consistently delivered sharp and well thought out lyrics over DJ Premier’s classic beats while they were Gang Starr. My you forever rhyme in pace and rest in beats.
My Song Rating: 9.8 out of 10Played 580 times.
Das Racist - Sit Down, Man (ft. EL-P)
Even though Das Racist wasn’t around that long before they broke up in 2012, they created some incredibly unique and goofy songs. I was really disappointed when they broke up, mostly because they were noticeably getting better as time went on, and they never fully achieved the level of music I knew they were capable of. In my opinion, this song represents the epitome of their works. As expected, EL-P’s viciously hard verse is so lyrically potent, you need read along with the lyrics to even start to appreciate the complexity of his writing. Choosing him as the feature for such an intense beat was a very smart decision. Sit Down, Man is off their mixtape also called Sit Down, Man.
My Song Rating: 9.6 out of 10Played 754 times.
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - Can’t Hold Us (ft. Ray Dalton)
This music video was posted only 5 hours ago and already has over 30,000 likes. As I already stated, The Heist is the best hip-hop album to come out in 2012, for many reasons. This song being one of them. Macklemore can change his flow to any emotion he wants to portray quite proficiently. He goes from the soft somber tones of Same Love, to the hipster cherished Thrift Shop, to his depressing stories of internal struggle in Fallin and Otherside, to Can’t Hold Us, which is that “lets get hyped to some good lyrics” type of shit. He’s beautifully mastered his craft over the many years he’s been in the game.
“I grew up, really wanted gold fronts, but that’s what you get when Wu-Tang raised you. Y’all can’t stop me. Go hard like I got an 808 in my heart beat, and I’m eating at the beat like you gave a little speed to a great white shark on shark week.”
Once again, Macklemore boasts one of the most colorful hip-hop music videos I’ve ever seen. His video for Wings is even better though. It’s still my favorite music video to this day. The video makes the deepness of his message dig only that much deeper into your brain.
My Song Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Nitty Scott MC - Bullshit Rap
There are numerous dope female hip-hop artists on the rise that definitely boast a lot of talent. Don’t sleep on them. Women in hip-hop who aren’t spitting bullshit need more support than ever now, so turn off that damn Nicki Minaj and listen to some real music.
“We represent for hip-hop, and not for rap ya’ll.”
My Song Rating: 9.1 out of 10
Brother Ali - Work Everyday
This is my favorite song off of Brother Ali’s latest album Mourning In America And Dreaming In Color. As always, Brother Ali’s lyrics and delivery act as the driving force behind his work. He is the definition of “real hip-hop”, as in that he’s NEVER made one song that goes against his beliefs. I didn’t like the exceptionally brief chorus at first, but the more I listened to Work Everyday, the more I began to understand the song. I realized the short potent cries of having to “work everyday” are extremely appropriate for the average American’s whimper of desperation for their hopeless/endless life of labor…only more musical though. Not to mention Brother Ali low-key adds his 2 cents in each chorus. It took me a couple listens to realize this. If you like Work Everyday, some of my other favorite songs by Brother Ali include Forest Whitaker, Good Lord, and Lookin’ At Me Sideways. Here are the LYRICS to Work Everyday, which I recommend you read while you listen to this song.
Also take note that when Brother Ali gets locked up it’s for a good purpose…not because he’s a cocky dumbass like so many rappers out there.
My Song Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Aesop Rock - Cycles To Gehenna (Zavala Remix)
Cycles To Ghenna is one of my favorite songs off of Aesop Rock’s album Skelethon, which is definitely not his best album, but it was still one of the better hip-hop albums of 2012. This remix takes the song to a different level though. Like all of his music, this album takes quite a few listens before you fully appreciate its complete spectrum of emotions and metaphor laced story telling. Similarly, you cannot read a very deep and complex poem and immediately comprehend its profound beauty 100%. The magic behind Aesop Rock’s music is you can listen to it on repeat for hours (as I have), and still constantly have those moments of “Oh shit, I get that verse now…fucking sick”. This album is no different. Aesop Rock is hands down the best hip-hop lyricist of all time.
“Here is how a great escape goes when you can’t take your dead friends names out your phone.”
My Song Rating: 9.0 out of 10
Busta Rhymes - Where’s My Money
Grand Theft Auto IV was a legendary game for multiple reasons…one of them being its sound track. I bought the deluxe collectors edition with my brother, and it included an OST album simply called The Music of Grand Theft Auto IV. I remember on the way home putting it in my car and playing Where’s My Money for the first time with the bass and volume cranked up. My brother and I couldn’t get enough of it. We’re both big Busta Rhymes fans, even though he’s been a lazy fuck in terms of his more recent musical efforts. This song is one of my favorites by him, and to this day stands as one of his rawest and most hard hitting works ever. Very few artists could kill such a grimy and unorthodox beat the way he managed to do this.
“Critical, it’s pitiful, I’m cynical how I deliver lyricals and take these other niggas paper! Topsy-tervy, controversy, I’m so thirsty, got no mercy. For some of these bitches I collect my money now and later!”
My Song Rating: 9.6 out of 10Played 573 times.