Saturday, February 27, 2010

Guante & Big Cats!: "Red States" (Music Video)

Here is the DIY music video for "Red States," off of Guante & Big Cats!'s fantastic concept album An Welcome Guest. This was directed by local write and filmmaker Justin Schell (of 612 to 651, among other things).

Kanser: MPLS.TV's 'City Of Music' Feature (VIdeo)

MPLS.TV caught a practice session for local hip-hop stalwarts Kanser. Their album (or double EP) release party was last night at the Triple Rock and according to Big Zach, it seemed to go well. Congratulations to them for yet another successful project.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Freez: "The Ritual"+ Franz Diego: "Breakup (Remix)"

Two of the members of Illuminous 3 just sent these new tracks through, so I'm consolidating them into one post. First up is Freez, whose track "The Ritual" was produced by Greg Grease of Usual Suspects.

Freez: "The Ritual" (Prod. Greg Grease)

Franz, meanwhile, took a different approach and rapped over the instrumental to Mario and Gucci Mane's song "Break Up." I have never heard the original, and quite honestly, am not terribly interested in listening to it anytime soon. Franz's version should suffice.

Soulcrate Music: "Let It Shine" (Video)

"Let It Shine" is a song off Soulcrate Music's upcoming album The Heartland Panic, which will be available on March 9. It can also be preordered right now at the Lethalville store. And remember to catch the group on their current Blood In The Heartland tour.

Mac Lethal's Springfield, MO Story (Video)

Mac is telling stories about cities he's performing in for his current tour. I may continue to post these videos. I also may not.

Brother Ali to Headline 'Breaking Dawn' Tour

For the Fresh Air Tour, Ali did about 50 shows in 60 nights. Why stop there? This time around, Ali's hitting the road to make it to all those cities that he missed last time. Joining him will be none other than Cali emcee Fashawn, whose debut Boy Meets World was one of 2009's best albums. Dates are as follows:
March 29th - The Aquarium - Fargo, ND
March 31st - Zebra Cocktail Lounge - Bozeman, MT
April 1st - Republik - Calgary, AB
April 2nd - The Starlite Room - Edmonton, AB
April 3rd - Louis' Pub - Saskatoon, SK
April 5th - Pyramid Cabaret - Winnipeg, MB
April 8th - The Shelter - Detroit, MI
April 9th - The Mod Club - Toronto, ON
April 10th - Ritual Nightclub - Ottawa, ON
April 11th - Foufoune Electriques - Montreal, QC
April 13th - Jerky's Live Music Hall - Providence, RI
April 14th - Toad's Place - New Haven, CT
April 15th - Knitting Factory - Brooklyn, NY
April 16th - Diesel - Pittsburgh, PA
April 17th - Horn Gallery - Gambler, OH
April 20th - Soapbox Laundrolounge - Wilmington, NC
April 21ist - The Orange Peel - Asheville, NC
April 22nd - The Music Farm - Charleston, SC
April 23rd - Drunken Unicorn - Atlanta, GA
April 24th - BottleTree - Birmingham, AL
April 26th - Spanish Moon - Baton Rouge, LA
April 28th - Exit/In - Nashville, TN
April 29th - Mojo's - Columbia, MO
April 30th - Otto's Nightclub - DeKalb, IL
May 1st - Turner Hall Ballroom - Milwaukee, WI
May 2nd - Vaudeville Mews - Des Moines, IA

Donwill: Interview (Video)

Tanya Morgan member Donwill sat down for an interview with to promote his upcoming album, Don Cusack in High Fidelity, out March 23. Thanks to Audible Treats.

Rhymefest & Skyzoo: "Crack The Code" (Prod. K Salaam & Beatnik)

This came out a few days ago, and I'm late on it. I've been busy. So sue me.

Produced by NYC via MPLS transplants K-Salaam & Beatnik.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Paper Tiger: "New Jack Swing" 20 Minute Mix

Doomtree stays winning today on Midwest Broadcast. This time, Paper Tiger dropped off a 20 minute mix paying homage (or reviving?) new jack swing. Now you have a use for that orange jumpsuit buried deep within the recesses of your closet. Party on.

Paper Tiger: "New Jack Swing" 20 Minute Mix (Right click + Save as to download)

Dessa: "Behind The Smile, Pt. 1" (Video)


P.O.S.: "Stand Up" (Video)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Toki Wright: BlackMale EP

Toki Wright's new BlackMale EP is upon us. I'll leave you with Toki's words. And remember that if you'd like to donate money to Haiti relief efforts, that can be done at Rhymesayers' website.
Friends and Family,

First off thank you for your continued support. Since the release of my debut full length album “A Different Mirror” in June I’ve been continuing to work hard to bring you more. In the last six months I’ve traveled tour the country, released new videos, and been working daily to provide you with more original work.

“BlackMale” is an 8 song digital EP of all brand new music. Seeing that it is Black History month it seemed like a fitting to release this interpretation of African-American manhood. I worked closely with Benzilla, Reggie Reg, Greg Greaze, PC, and Mike Swoop to craft this project. This project was also made possible by the Minnesota State Arts Board’s Cultural Community Partnership Grant. I set the foundation for this project with an organization called CRUNC (Community Roots Under New Construction).

“BlackMale” is available for free download, or as a “choose your own amount” donation. You can give whatever amount you see fit. My friend Jeanine Estime will be returning to her homeland of Haiti to hand out basic needs items (soap, toothpaste, asprin, etc) to people in her old neighborhood that were effected by the earthquake. All donations from the digital downloads will go directly to her via me.

I’m also proud to announce I will headlining my first tour titled the “Black Belt Tour” with Haziq Ali (Organized Rhyme/Atlanta), and Omaur Bliss. Stop by one of the tour dates below to hear new music from the EP and “A Different Mirror.”
DOWNLOAD - Toki Wright: BlackMale EP

M.anifest: "Free.99"

After listening to the opening track for Freeway & Jake One's The Stimulus Package, M.anifest was so inspired by Jake's soulful production that he jumped in the booth and let loose a few bars.

M.anifest: "Free.99"

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Brother Ali: "Bad Mufucker, Pt. II" (Video)

At the Freeway & Jake One album release party. Props to Vibe.

Jimmy2Times: Mothership Connection (Dre Day 2010 Mixtape)

All my Twin Cities people: I hope you realize Dre Day is tonight at the Triple Rock. In anticipation of what's sure to be a tremendous night, Jimmy2Times put together a Dr. Dre mix to get your head nodding. So, whether you're going to attend Dre Day or not, put your Dickies on, grab your favorite drink (a 40 or some gin and juice, preferably), a celebrate the Doctor's incredible musical legacy.

Krukid: "It's Cold" + Snow Angel EP

Krukid, one-third of indie supergroup A.R.M., recently sent this new music my way to share with you. This particular track, produced by Minneapolis wunderkind G Mo, is part of Krukid's 7-song Snow Angel EP, which can be downloaded at his Bandcamp site.

Doomtree Like to Jump Rope (Video)

HUGE news from the Doomtree camp. Especially if you're interested in how they keep busy while on the Every Never Is Now Tour.

The Cool Kids In The Studio For Blakroc 2 (Video)

Andrew at Fake Shore Drive recently stepped in the studio with The Cool Kids to discuss what's new with the group. To recap, I'll borrow a few of his words below:

Last year, I did a full preview of When Fish Ride Bicycles, most of which ended up becoming Gone Fishing. Chuck and Mikey decided to redo the project and go a different direction, and from what I heard on Monday, that was a pretty accurate statement. This new project is going to totally mess your head up. I'm willing to give you the FSD guarantee on that. It's not what you're expecting, and Chuck has taken his production to the next level - not to mention Mikey is snappin' like crazy.
I wasn't able to film any of the new When Fish Ride Bicycles tracks, but I was able to get some footage of The Kids recording a track from the upcoming BlackRoc project, with The Black Keys. Chuck Inglish produced the track while out in NYC, during a hilarious studio session that featured Dame Dash, Sean Price (P!), Thirstin Howl III and the Black Keys. I'm not sure when the new BlackRoc project is dropping, but this is sure to be a heater.

Lipset: "About The Day" (Video)

Kanser recently held a show at The Nomad and graciously let Saint Paul emcee Lipset share the stage with them to perform a song off his recent mixtape In From The Cold, which I posted last week. This track is titled "About The Day."

Freeway & Jake One: 'The Stimulus Package' Release Party (Video)

Freeway & Jake One held a release party in NYC for their anti-Rhymesayers Rhymesayers album The Stimulus Package. Here's some footage from the night, which includes a snippet of Freezer and special guest Brother Ali performing "The Truth," off of Jake One's White Van Music.

Orikal Uno & Ganzobean: "Always"

Twin Cities artists Orikal Uno and Ganzobean just released a track from their upcoming project, titled Hate/Hate Relationship, which will be out in July 2010.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Icemantis: "Infirmary ft. Dudu Stinks" (Video)

Several members of Madison's finest Dumate collective got together recently to perform this Icemantis track at the Alchemy Cafe.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Graham O'Brien: "RecycleMaker ft. Kristoff Krane"

Local percussionist Graham O'Brien, also the drummer for No Bird Sing, will be releasing a solo album in March titled Live Drums. The album is designed to explore the sonic possibilities that can created by layering samples over O'Brien's drum work and other live instrumentation. O'Brien called in some favors by recruiting many of his favorite local emcees to record with him for the project. "RecycleMaker" boasts a guest spot from Kristoff Krane and is the first single from the album.

St. Paul Slim: "More Fire For Haiti ft. Unicus"

Saint Paul slim remixed the beat to Ludacris' "Last Of A Dying Breed" to cook up some "More Fire For Haiti." Unicus of Kanser also jumps on the track.

Eyedea & Abilities: "Spin Cycle" (Live in San Francisco)

Eyedea and Abilities played at Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco recently and Always Hustle was able to capture some footage. Unfortunately, there were some serious microphone issues, which made it more difficult to catch all of Eyedea's lyrics. I'm still excited to see the duo when they come through Madison next weekend. Also, more videos ("Glass," "Paradise," "This Story") can be seen at the Always Hustle blog

Friday, February 12, 2010

Heiruspecs College Scholarship Fund Concert: 2/25/10 at Central High School

I mentioned this show in a previous post featuring live audio from a Heiruspecs show, but was holding off on the official concert announcement until I had a digital flyer to display. Lo and behold, Saint Paul's finest just made the announcement official on their website. Now it's time for me to follow suit.

Please go to this event. Not only will it be an evening of amazing music, but proceeds go towards one of the best causes imaginable.

Lupe Fiasco: AllHipHop Interview

Brother Ali at Rhymesayers Haiti Benefit Concert (Video)

Brother Ali himself also dug up this footage from his set at the Haiti benefit show. In front of a packed house at First Ave, Ali rocked out to such cuts as "The Preacher," "Fresh Air," "Truth Is," "Uncle Sam Goddamn," and "Bad Mufucka, Pt. 2."

I Self Devine at Rhymesayers Haiti Benefit Concert (Video)

Here is some footage of one of the midwest's most under appreciated lyricists at Rhymesayers' recent Haiti benefit concert. First he raps over "Exhibit C," followed by "Officer Down."

Every Never Is Now Tour: The First Communique (Video)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rhymesayers Hatit Benefit at First Ave (Video)

I don't know who Mr. 83 is, but he was able to capture some assorted moments from the Rhymesayers-presented Haiti fundraiser concert the other night. Looks like it was an absolutely tremendous event. A couple cool moments: 1) St. Paul Slim and Toki Wright remixing "The Freshest Kids." That song came on my iPod the other day, and I was hoping it wouldn't just up and die now that Ali's tour is over. 2) I Self Devine performing. I've been waiting for a new I Self album for some time now.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Toki Wright: "Out Of Nothing" + 'BlackMale EP' Announcement

On Tuesday, February 16, Rhymesayers/Soultools emcee Toki Wright will be releasing a digital EP, titled BlackMale. "Out Of Nothing," which was produced by Reggie Reg, is available for streaming/download at the bottom of the post and is the lead single from that project.

The BlackMale EP will feature production from Benzilla, Reggie Reg, Mike Swoop, and others. While the 8-song EP will be available for free download, Toki is also providing an option to donate any amount of money that will go directly towards relief efforts in Haiti. Lastly, keep in mind that Toki will be embarking throughout the Midwest on the Black Belt Tour starting next week. So if he stops in your town, do your part and support.

Lupe Fiasco: "What U Want"

Another track that Lupe himself confirmed will be on his upcoming album, Lasers, just came through the pipeline. Quite a different feel than "I'm Beaming," but I like it almost as much. Gracias, Nah Right.

Kidz In The Hall: "Jukebox" (Music Video)

Land of Make Believe will be released on March 9.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Big Quarters Announce New Album "Party Like A Young Commie" (Video)

Our favorite sibling hip-hop duo will also be playing a show at the University of Minnesota's Whole Music Club on Friday, Feb. 12.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Twin Town Titans: 2007 J Dilla Tribute (Video)

As many of you may know, J Dilla's was born on February 7, 1974, and tragically passed away on February 10, 2006. To celebrate his life, several rap blogs have been posting remix projects, favorite Dilla beats, and tribute videos to honor to legendary producer. Similarly, Tru Ruts just released a fascinating video featuring numerous Twin Cities artists, unofficially dubbed the "Twin Town Titans." The description of this event is a bit of a mouthful, so I will borrow the words of our friends at Tru Ruts:
In 2007, Tru Ruts brought together 9 of the top emcees in the Twin Cities, unofficially dubbed the 'Twin Town Titans', to pay tribute to the great J Dilla. This was the first time that this many of the Twin Cities best emcees had all shared the stage together, representing not only the foundation builders of Minnesota hip hop, but also some of its rising stars. Backed by the Leroy Smokes band, along with singers Anika and Pavielle, each of the emcess dropped a verse in honor of Dilla. The emcees included Slug (of Atmosphere/Rhymesayers), Truthmaze (Tru Ruts), Muja Messiah (Black Corners), Maria Isa (Sota Rico), OSP, Buss One (Leroy Smokes), Nena (of Heat), Mazta I and St. Paul Slim (of Guardian of Balance and Stophouse). The tribute was organized and produced by e.g. bailey (Tru Ruts). The filming as organized by Damian Kussian. The performance opened for the Slum Village concert at Trocaderos on July 11th, 2007.
Rest In Peace, J Dilla.

Mike Dreams: Dreamer's Poetry (Free Album)

Minneapolis' Mike Dreams just released Dreamer's Poetry, his album which has been in the works for quite some time, via 2DopeBoyz and I will say I enjoy that cover art quite a bit. The guy clearly put his heart into this project. Do him a favor and give it a listen. Tracklist and download link below.

Preview Freeway & Jake One's 'Stimulus Package' Vinyl (Video)

I want to personally give my thanks to Rhymesayers Entertainment for giving us a reason to buy the physical copies of albums these days. Last year, BK-One's and Ali's hard copies were super official. Could The Stimulus Package be the greatest album packaging ever? Quite possibly. Also, I don't believe I posted the video for the CD version, because I was on my temporary hiatus, but you can view the video here.

Jordan Looney: "Oceans"

Photography by Andrea Brubaker

New music from Saint Paul rapper Jordan Looney. He has recorded several songs from his upcoming mixtape, Nerd-Hop, Vol. 3, and they are currently in the process of being mixed down. I did have the opportunity to hear many of these tracks in their preliminary stages, though, and this collection of songs is without a doubt his best body of work yet. More fire sauce coming soon.

Sims, Toki Wright, & Danami: Feb. 13 Concert Announcement (Video)

A.R.M.: Two Africans and a Jew EP (Artwork)

M.anifest just posted the very fresh artwork for the upcoming A.R.M. (M.anifest, Krukid, & Budo) EP, Two Africans and a Jew. He says they have a tremendous collaboration with Slug on the project. Should be something to look forward to in the near future.

Lipset: In From The Cold (Mixtape)

New music from one of the up-and-coming rappers in the Minneapolis rap scene, Lipset.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Friday, February 5, 2010

Guante & Big Cats!: "The Damp Foggy Midnight" (Live on 89.3 The Current)

Guante & Big Cats! and their band dropped in on The Current's Local Show to perform one of the closing tracks off their collaborative release, An Unwelcome Guest, which is available now.

Trey Lane: "All Things Considered ft. Toki Wright" (Music Video)

Some visuals to the title track off Trey Lane's album, which is in stores now.

Greg Grease In The Lab + Last of the Record Buyers (Video)

Greg Grease will be hosting Last Of The Record Buyers on February 18 at Fifth Element.

One Be Lo & Red Pill on F.O.K.U.S. Radio (Video)

Peace to Teddy Ruck-Spin for sending this my way. One Be Lo and Red Pill freestyle over the ubiquitous "I Wanna Rock" instrumental. One Be Lo's B.A.B.Y. (Being A Black Youth) has a tentative release date in late April. Could be a preliminary album of the year contender if the One Man Army stays as consistent and sharp as he usually is.

Greenhouse: "Cold Out Here" (Music Video Trailer)

Off Greenhouse's fantastic Electric Purgatory, Pt. 1.

Mac Lethal Introduces New Black Clover Mech (Video)

In case you're interested in this kind of thing.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Prof & St. Paul Slim: "Horses In The Ghetto" (Music Video)

Off of Recession Music.

Illuminous 3: "High Water" (Prod. Gmo) + Interview

Illuminous 3 has a cool new Illuminous Free program:
In order to stay current and keep up with all the music being released these days, we figure that we'd join in and show you what we got to hold you over in between major releases.

"Illuminous Free" is a monthly program where we will release one song a month featuring a different producer. We have opened up submissions so that any producer can submit any amount of beats each month to be selected for the program. In exchange the producer will not only have a song out with Illuminous 3, but they will also have a mini-interview to showcase what other things they are working on and gain some further exposure. And to top it all off the fans get some free music so everyone wins!

This month's featured producer for January was G Mo, he is a young up and coming producer out of the Twin Cities and he is ridiculously talented, don't let his soft-spokeness fool you! Check out his interview!
Illuminous 3: "HIgh Water" (Prod G Mo)