Tuesday, January 31, 2012

MaLLy: "Future's Classic ft. Tigre"

Prefix just premiered a new song by MaLLy featuring Tigre of 925ve. The track was produced by Rem', who MaLLy's been working with since his projects like The Passion. By now we should all know what to expect from a new MaLLy track: hard-hitting verses and a supremely confident delivery. "Future's Classic" has got that in spades. Stream/download it below.

MaLLy: "Future's Classic ft. Tigre"

M.anifest: "Makaa Maka" (Music Video)

Excellent new music video from M.anifest. "Makaa Maka" was produced by Kwabena Jones and the video was directed by Isaac Offei Awuah. "Makaa Maka" translates from Twi as "If I said it I said it" or "I say it without apology."

Mike the Martyr: Lake Street Bar, Pt. 2 (EP)

Mike the Martyr had a busy year in 2011, producing for the likes of Slug, A.G., Termanology, and more. With the new year upon us, he's showing now signs of slowing down. Lake Street Bar, Pt. 2 is the follow up to last year's instrumental EP. Hit the jump to download the project.

Trama: "One Day At A Time" (Music Video)

This song will be on Trama's TramDilla mixtape, due on March 1. Stream and download the song below.

Trama: "One Day At A Time"

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Villa Rosa: "Chico ft. I Self Devine" (Music Video)

New visuals from Villa Rosa, "Chico" features a guest spot from I Self Devine. The video was directed by Greg Grease. Blue Diamond Island is available now.

Metasota: H​.​I​.​P. (Happy I'm Present: 2 Week Theory)

Metasota is currently prepping his upcoming album, There's Something About Larry. In the meantime, check out the 9-track project H​.​I​.​P. (Happy I'm Present: 2 Week Theory). Most songs were mixed by Mod Sun, while Cory Grindberg and Mike Frey, among others, get production credits. Stream it after the jump.

Metasota: H​.​I​.​P. (Happy I'm Present: 2 Week Theory)

F. Stokes: "My Simple" (Music Video)

F. Stokes is releasing a new EP titled Love, Always on March 6. Above is the music video for "My Simple", the lead single off the EP, which you can download fro iTunes below. Also, F. Stokes will be performing at the FineLine in downtown Minneapolis on February 1.

F. Stokes: "My Simple"

I Self Devine Announces the Culture Series Part II: The Upliftment Struggle

I wasn't able to attend I Self Devine's recent concert at the 7th St Entry for his first Culture Series release of LA State of Mind. Thankfully, these shows are a monthly occasion. The second installment of the series was recently announced. On the first Thursday of next month, he'll release The Upliftment Struggle. Then, on February 19, he'll perform the mixtape at the Entry with special guests I.B.E., Ill Chemistry (Desdamona and Carnage), and Maria Isa.

Dre Day 2012 Announced

Last year's Dre Day with Heiruspecs headlining was a party for the ages. This one should be just as good. Some of the Get Cryphy crew will be spinning to start things off. Felix of Heiruspecs is hosting the event, and this year's headliner is The LBC Drama Club (featuring members of Heiruspecs). Not sure what that means, but it sounds like fun.

Buy tickets to Dre Day 2012 here.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Doomtree: "Bangarang" (Music Video)

Har Mar Superstar gets the lead role in the new Doomtree video, and shirtlessness ensues. No Kings is in stores right now. Bangarang.

Chantz Erolin & Alan De Leon Taverna: "January 9th Freestyle" (Prod. Julian Fairbanks)

Chantz Erolin (of Art School Girls) and Alan De Leon Taverna recorded some genuine freestyles while home from college during their winter break. The beat is from Julian Fairbanks of Audio Perm.

Chantz Erolin & Alan De Leon Taverna: "January 9th Freestyle" (Prod. Julian Fairbanks)

Anchormen: "The Essence ft. Big Zach" (Music Video)

The Anchormen, composed of Big Wiz, Aquafresh & T La Shawn, released a song with Big Zach of Kanser/More Than Lights. Mike the Martyr handled production on this joint.

Longshot: "Real Thing ft. Psalm One" (Prod. Jake One)

If you remember 2-3 years back when Jake One's White Van Music was coming out on Rhymesayers, the label held a contest where rappers submitted songs on the WVM instrumentals with the winner being awarded a original beat from Jake One. Longshot of Chicago (now a Minneapolis resident) won the contest, and finally one of the songs he made with Jake got a release. Props to Be Scene Mpls.


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Atmosphere: "Became" (Music Video Trailer)

Atmosphere and Rhymesayers will be releasing the music video for "Became," from their 2011 album The Family Sign, in collaboration with the Minnesota School and Business and the Minnesota Transitions High School’s Digital Media Academy. In an effort to support creative arts and local education, Rhymesayers reached out to the two schools and gave them the opportunity to produce this music video. The video above is a trailer for the music video's official release. The full music video for "Became" and a documentary about the creative process will screen at Fifth Element on January 19.

Visit the Rhymesayers website to learn more about the event.
RSVP to the screening at Fifth Element on Facebook.

Lazerbeak: "Smash Hit"

Here's another sample of what's to come from Lazerbeak's upcoming Lava Bangers instrumental album, which can be preordered right now. "Smash Hit" (premiered by Absolute Punk) is the second single from the album, after "Cement Blocks/Knife Fighter." Stream it below.

Brother Ali: "Sweet (Potato Pie)"

Brother Ali dropped some food raps over the "Sweet" instrumental this morning. As he says, "It's well known that I'm top 5 dead or alive in the kitchen. Squash the beef and get you a piece." Ali also took to Twitter this morning to discuss several relevant topics such as the Drake/Common feud and the concept of a "freestyle." It's all excellent insight. Download the song below, or hit the jump to stream it.

Brother Ali: "Sweet (Potato Pie)"

Prof: "Gampo" (Music Video)

Back in November Prof released the music video to "Need Your Love." It's a ridiculous piece of satire so bizarre it's brilliant. This morning he delivered yet another absurd and farcical music video for "Gampo," off his free album King Gampo. I'm having trouble finding ways to describe it in writing, so please just watch it yourself.

925ve: "One, Two, Three"

For those of you unfamiliar with 925ve, they are a 5-person group hailing from Minneapolis. Composed of Prizm, Iggz, Tigre Cole, & Brando, they keep their production in-house and all bring different elements to the table lyrically. "One, Two, Three" was produced by Tigre Cole, and features Tigre and Prizm trading aggressive bars over the straightforward boom bap. It will be on their upcoming full-length album.

925ve: "One, Two, Three"

Mike Dreams: "We The Ones" (Prod. Gmo)

Here is Mike Dreams' lead single to his third studio album. The album is called Millennial, and should be due in the springtime or early summer. Gmo produced this one, so you know it's a knocker.

Mike Dreams: "We The Ones" (Prod. Gmo)

Monday, January 9, 2012

I Self Devine: "Sweat Equity" (Music Video)

Here is the first music video from I Self Devine's excellent LA State of Mind mixtape. Continue reading the post after the jump and you'll find another video in his Culture Series in which I Self speaks about the mixtape and how growing up in Los Angeles influenced him.

Franz Diego: "Waggin On The Scene"

Franz Diego just released the music video for his new song "Waggin On The Scene," produced by J-Hard. I've got a feeling this is going to quickly become a Twin Cities house party anthem. The boisterous track will be featured on their Sense of Self album that will be available for free download on February 7 at the Illuminous 3 website. The song itself is available for download below, as is a DJ/Remix kit with a radio edit and acapella version for the producers out there.

Franz Diego: "Waggin On The Scene"
Franz Diego: "Waggin On The Scene" (DJ/Remix Kit)

Paper Tiger: 20 Minute Mix of Lazerbeak's Lava Bangers

Paper Tiger recently released another one of his consistently excellent 20 Minute Mixes. The theme for this one stays in the crew, as it's a continuous, career-spanning mix of fellow Doomtree producer Lazerbeak's patented Lava Bangers. Hit the link to stream the mix, or right click + 'Save As' to download it. And remember that you can preorder Lazerbeak's upcoming instrumental album right now at Doomtree's website.

Paper Tiger: 20 Minute Mix - Lazerbeak

I.B.E.: Watch This Too (Mixtape)

I.B.E.'s Watch This Too mixtape features him going in over several of the instrumentals from Watch the Throne. This tape serves as more of an anti-WTT, though. You won't catch I.B.E. name dropping Hublot, Rothko, Picasso, Warhol, etc. If you were fed up from Jay and Ye's references to being in the upper 1% of the 1%, then Watch this Too might be more up your alley. Continue reading after the page break to stream the project.

I.B.E.: Watch This Too (Mixtape)

The Tribe & Big Cats!: Daytrotter Session

Last year, the Tribe & Big Cats! stopped into the Daytrotter studio for a quick session and played some material from Make Good and Forward Thinkers, Movers, Shakers. Props to Egypto for putting me on to this. Hit the link below to check it out.

The Tribe & Big Cats!: Daytrotter Session

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I Self Devine: LA State of Mind (Mixtape)

As promised, today I Self Devine released the first mixtape in his Culture Series. I'm still on my first listen, but LA State of Mind sounds like what one would expect it to be: tales of oppressed and overlooked cultures, communities and individuals in urban America, mixed with personal stories and commentary from I Self Devine. Considering this is I Self's strong suit, and something he does better than most rappers, I have no complaints whatsoever. Stream or download the mixtape below.

I Self Devine: LA State of Mind (Mixtape)

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

I Self Devine Announces 'The Sounds of Low Class America' and Mixtape Series

Rhymesayers is kicking off 2012 with their second big announcement in as many days. I Self Devine is preparing to release of his sophomore solo LP, The Sounds of Low Class America, on May 8. The album has been done for years now, but I Self has been focused on his other passion, being a community organizer in South Minneapolis. Nearly every dedicated rapper or fan I know in the Twin Cities credits I Self as one of their favorite artists. Both Self Destruction and The Anti Album (as Semi.Official) are notorious local favorites. It's sensational to see I Self returning to music with such a blazing focus in 2012.

To precede the album's release, however, is a four-part mixtape release, entitled The Culture Series. On the first Thursday of each month January through April, I Self will release a free, 10-song mixtape. He will also be performing each mixtape in its entirety at the 7th Street Entry with special guests from the local scene. The first mixtape, LA State of Mind, will be released tomorrow.

I.B.E.: "Oh Ma Da" (Music Video)

Minneapolis' own Intelligent Black Enterprise has been releasing videos for his "Pages from That Tape" series. "Oh Ma Da" is the second to last video in the collection, and is influenced on I.B.E's upbringing in a Nigerian household.

T.Q.D.: "Insomnia" + "Taketh Away"

T.Q.D. (The Quiet Dude) of Background Noise Crew is returning with his first full-length album since 2009. Taketh Away, the third album of his career, will be released on January 27. Check out the first two singles from the album below, and preorder it via his Bandcamp site.

The release party for this album will also be on January 27, at Hell's Kitchen in Minneapolis.

Cory Grindberg: CRACK (Free Instrumental Album)

CRACK is a free instrumental album produced by Cory Grindberg of Audio Perm. It's 28 tracks long, and surely addicting. Cory Grindberg and the rest of his Audio Perm crew are the dopeness. Speaking of which, check out their recent profile in the Twin Cities AV Club, a step-by-step guide to being dope, while you're listening to CRACK.

Cory Grindberg: CRACK

Brother Ali: "Writer's Block" (Prod. Jake One)

Several months ago I watched an interview with Brother Ali when he announced he and Jake One would be working on an album together. I saw him debut some of that material at Soundset 2011, and recite some new verses at the 7th Street entry last month. Now Ali and Rhymesayers have decided to start off 2012 by releasing something from their studio sessions. "Writer's Block" will not be on the upcoming Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color, but it is enough to get me supremely excited for the album (as I always am for new Ali releases).

The track is a take on the often attempted but seldom expertly executed rap song about the creative process. Ali uses the first verse to discuss the quality control in his music from artistic and financial perspectives, while the second verse tackles the anxiety induced when the words aren't coming. All of this comes with a refreshingly nonjudgmental tone; Ali isn't criticizing anyone, just describing his methods.

And as good as this song is, everything else I've heard from the album has been greater.

Brother Ali: "Writer's Block" (Prod. Jake One)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Lazerbeak: "Cement Blocks/Knight Fighter"

Lazerbeak had one hell of a year in 2010, producing the entirety of Sims' Bad Time Zoo (my favorite album of the year, local or national) and much of No Kings. Now, he's coming back with an instrumental collection of his patented Lava Bangers in an album aptly titled after his funked-out boom bap productions. Lava Bangers the album started as a collection of 150 different instrumentals, eventually whittled down to 20 tracks that were seamlessly mixed together by none other than Plain Ole Bill. It sounds like the resulting product will be equally ready for the headphones, the car, and the dance floor.

Stream/download "Cement Blocks" and "Knight Fighter" below to get a feel for what the album will be like. You can preorder Lava Bangers immediately. Also, for you emcees out there, get your bars up and enter the rap contest; you can find out more about this on today's Tuesdays with Lazerbeak post.

Lazerbeak: "Cement Blocks/Knight Fighter"

Guante & Big Cats!: "Winter is Coming"

"Winter is Coming" is the first new song released from Guante & Big Cats! in over a year. The freebie serves as the announcement for their new and fantastically titled album, You Better Weaponize, coming sometime during the third quester of 2012.

 Guante & Big Cats!: "Winter is Coming"

Sean Anonymous: "Fast Forward" (Music Video)

Sean Anonymous of Wide Eyes will soon be releasing Anonymo, an EP of new material. "Fast Forward," the lead single, was produced by DJ Corbett, while the video was directed by Dave Wilson.

Soulcrate Music: "Click, Click, Follow, Follow" (Music Video)

Soulcrate caught a case of future shock, releasing a song and video sardonically mocking those who allow social networking to consume their daily lives. Now go follow them on Twitter and 'like' their Facebook page!