Monday, February 28, 2005

Since I'm bored and don't have much else to talk about, and since people already know how good his new album is, I'm gonna talk about the first album I heard by Trick Daddy, his 3rd album Book of Thugs: Chapter AK, Verse 47. Back in 2000 my brother was working at a record store and came across a promo copy and gave it to me because he knew how much I loved "Shut Up". If you look on the left side of the cover, running vertically from down to up it says "Thug", but he never did use that title. A couple years ago I reccomended this album to Ethan, I think a while later he got it and said it wasn't as good as Thug Holiday, but I still haven't heard that one.

Intro (Marvin Dixon)
{little boy singing the chorus from Nann Nigga}
"oh hold up oh hold up, what's all that noise you in here makin' 'n' stuff, boy, tearin' up my house and everything, you need to do your schoolwork, boy, what you wanna be when you grow up anyway?"
"a thug!"
"you wanna be a thug? boy lookee here, thug boy lookee here, boy, last thug I knew of was in back in the days of nineteen ninety-nine, a boy named Trick Daddy, boy, that was a thug, ya hear me? cause I seen that boy snatch a pocket book, run down the street, get hit by a bus, hit by a car, skinned his leg up, hit two buildings, goin' bom bom, I couldn't say nothin but boy, go on wit yo bad boy just sit down cause yo uncle Marvin gon' tell you bout how a thug's supposed to be, now listen here boy"

"Boy" f/ The Lost Tribe and JV
The outro chorus you only hear at the very end as it's fading out ("don't fuck around and let 'em getcha boy, cause if you do I'm goin' all out witcha boy") is better than the actual chorus.

"Sittin' On D's" f/ Izm
One of my favorite spoken intros of any song ever, said by Izm: "understand this, it's twelve months in the year, six months to mind ya bidness, six months to stay the fuck outta mines, and hopefully it's a leap year, so you can take that one extra day, and think about all the dickhead shit that you did this year"

"America" f/ Society
The first of what would be many T double D children singing tracks, with that video with all the kids in front of the American flag. This song was on Thugs'R'Us too, except it was spelled "Amerika", I can't remember which album they made the video for. Trick does this amazing thing in the first verse where he stretches out the word "stubborn" until it rhymes with "the other hand".

"Shut Up" f/ Trina, Co and Deuce Poppito
"We gon' let the band deal with this", monster jam, my 20th favorite single of the past 5 years, best farting synth brass riff ever. I think at that point I had heard "Nann Nigga" but I didn't know who it was by or what it was called until like a year ago, so this was effectively my introduction to Trick and I think Trina too (or wait, was "Baddest Chick" before or after this?). Chorus that got referenced by Bleek on "Is that your chick?" and about 800 other songs in '00.

Hoe Skit
Dialing, ringing, then the outgoing message on Trick's answering machine, and Trina leaving the message: "Trick, you fuckin' up with a bitch like me, nigga what you think, you just gonna keep fuckin' for free, you gonna have to find you some more pussy for that bullshit, nigga you need to get on your motherfuckin' job" and then a song about hoes.

"Tryin' To Stop Smokin'" f/ Mystikal
"This time I had to get PHYSICAL!/so I went and got that nigga MYSTIKAL!", flipping "Going Back To Cali" for the chorus "tryin' to stop smokin', smokin', smokin', tryin' to stop smokin', naw, I don't think so"

"Could It Be" f/ Twista
It seems like Twista doesn't get as much respect from heads since he went platinum on a bunch of smooth R&B hits, but that really shouldn't be because it's not like he switched his style up, he pretty clearly has always loved spitting over smooth R&B beats and he sounds great on them. Sad pretty melody with both of them singing softly on the hook, Trick: "could it be that I'm lost, gettin' soft or just fallin in love?", Twista: "am I fallin' in love, oh no"

"Thug Life Again" f/ Money Mark of Tre+6
Best beat on the album, but the whole album's full of great beats, not simple generic bounce or bass, but busy and intricate and fullof pinging keyboards, all by people who I don't know if they've done anything else besides other Slip N Side albums, this one by Darren "DJ Spin" Rudnick and some of the other ones are: Righteous Funk Boogie, The Committee, Black Mob Group.

"Kill Your Ass"
No wait, this is the best beat on the album. Holy shit, I can't even describe how good the beats on this album are. Slip'n'Slide must have the best anonymous clockpunchers of any label ever.

"Gotta Let You Have It" f/ Buddy Roe
Buddy Roe's verse on this is like, he's not even biting Pac, it sounds like he's just doing a straight out Pac impression.

"Hoe But Can't Help It" f/ Buddy Roe
It's like a meditation on self-determination. Does she mean to be a hoe, or is it just in her blood, something she can't help? Buddy's verse is disrespectful of hoes, but Trick comes off a little more sympathetic to the plight of the hoe. This sounds like such a hit song, if you could get away with saying "hoe" on the radio it probably would've been. This song was on Trick's first album Based On A True Story too, so maybe it was an underground hit so they re-recorded it, I dunno.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Memphis Bleek - "Like Dat" / Young Gunz - "Set It Off"
With Kanye and Blaze off building their own houses at Sony and Atlantic while the Roc restructures or gets absorbed into Def Jam or whatever, Jay is farming out what's left of the Roc roster's singles jobs to Swizzy as repayment for keeping his voice on the radio post-retirement with those T.I. and Cassidy samples. "Like Dat" has another horn riff and "Bring Em Out" type beat, but the shit that makes it good is that wobbly guitar sample underneath everything, and the way the beat shifts into halftime "Swizz slow down the beat, it's all love, slow motion for me like it's screwed up, make it move like the Matrix dude was duckin' slugs, Bleek the black sheep mami now kick it up" / "Set It Off" meanwhile not really having any of those redeeming qualities, just sounding like a sluggish version of the "I'm A Hustler" drums with Swizz rewriting the "Get It On The Floor" hook, but Neef as usual upstages Chris with a fly little flow on the 3rd verse.

J-Kwon f/ Petey Pablo - "Get X'd"
Trackboyz still the secret hottest producers in the game, picking up spare parts of everyone else's sound and squeezing something fresh out of it. Since the Neptunes took back the "Tipsy" stomp for that horrible song on the Gwen Stefani record, they're back to stealing that Timbo circa '99 warped unsteady synth tone (think "Snoopy Track"(!) or that Game song) that they already put to such amazing use on the Ali/St. Lunatics soundtrack jam "Breathe In, Breathe Out" that got buried and slept on thanks to coming out at the same time as "Hot In Herre". With two of my favorite voices that don't belong to favorite rappers smeared all over it.

Tango Redd f/ David Banner and Bone Crusher - "Wobble and Shake It"
Since I only seem to be capable of talking about what the producers doing if I haven't heard the song enough times for any of the verses to sink in: Banner with the tinny "Like A Pimp" woodblocks and another tinny organ line that's a little better than his last few tinny organ lines for some kid with dyed blond dreadlocks that I've never heard of, kinda-biting 504 Boyz for the hook. I can't remember the last time someone put Bone Crusher on a song and had him do a verse instead of the hook, it's kind of refreshing, he sounds kinda different from usual too.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Strength In Numbers 3
this Friday, Feb 25th
@ the Thunder Dome

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Monday, February 21, 2005

50 Cent - "A Baltimore Love Thing"
Okay, obviously I was interested in this based on the title before hearing it, and 50 repeatedly saying it's his favorite song on the album and describing it, like:

Well, A Baltimore Love Thing is, it's titled that because in Baltimore the heroin addiction rate is really high. So the song is about the relationship between an addict and the drug. I give this drug emotion, feelings and at some point in the song, the drug actually becomes mad at the addict for trying to leave. It's like a real vivid description of what it would be like if it was human.

And that's basically what it is. Mostly describing the addict as a female with him as the heroin being a man, dick-as-syringe, "push me inside you", I guess even for an abstract conceptual track he can't let it seem gay or anything. Starts with a big dramatic timpani roll like it's going into some big dramatic NYC banger but instead settles into a soft ooh-ing rim tap beat. First verse starts of gentle and flirty and then suddenly turns hostile and angry right after the word "relapse":

girl I'm missin' you, come and see me soon
tie your arm up, put that lighter under that spoon
now put that needle to your arm, princess, stick it in
relapse, you back, bitch, don't ever try that again
all the shit I did for you, I made you feel good
we have a love thing, you treatin' this like it's just a fling
what we have is more sacred than a vow or a ring
you broke my heart
you dirty bitch, I won't forget what you did
if you give birth, I'll already be in love with your kids

and then, later:

I hung out with Marvin when he wrote Sexual Healing
Kurt Cobain, we were good friends, Ozzy Osbourne too
I be with rock stars, see you lucky I'm fuckin' with you
I chill with Frankie Lymon and Jimi Hendrix crew
see this is new to you, but to me this ain't new
I live the lavish life, listen if the mood is right
me you and your sister can do the do tonight
I never steered you wrong, you hyper I make you calm
I'll be your acceptable reason for you to move on
let's make a date, promise me you'll come to see me
even if it means you'll have to sell your mama's TV
I love, you love me back, noone said lovin' me'd be easy

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

R&B roundup

John Legend f/ Kanye West - "Do What I Gotta Do"
I heard this on a mixtape like a year ago, and didn't think about it for a while until I realized that for some reason it isn't on Get Lifted, which is surprising because it's really good. Maybe they couldn't get the Biggie and/or Aretha samples cleared.

Faith Evans - "Again"
Check for that 2nd verse that starts with "in ATL I caught a case". OK, by the end of the verse she gets into some shrill Britney anti-media shit, but still that's some real talk, especially considering that post-Mary J "autobiographical" R&B is usually so vague and anonymous when it gets down to dirty details and naming names (Usher more than anyone benefitted from this and the premise that if you've been through a public breakup/rehab/whatever, any song you release that obliquely hints at it will be interpreted as "opening up"). But Faith really takes it there, it's just too bad the song itself comes up short. Like, literally, it's too short, and just as it's fading out you're ready for the big emotional bridge that breaks it all down and makes you feel it. OK, maybe there's some things Faith can learn from Mary.

Mario - "How Could You"
Baltimore's baby boy fresh off a huge across the board #1 hit, ready to follow it up with the ballad and really become the super Mario brother of this R&B shit. But it's sub-Omarion at best, when he needs to be staying ahead of the pack here. He hits some of those velvety high notes, but I dunno if it'll take him past the 106 & Park countdown again.

Ashanti f/ Cam'ron, Juelz Santana, Ja Rule and Black Child - "Only You" remix
Dipset and the Inc., two dynasties in corporate crisis (one without a label and the other with the label heads getting picked up by the FBI) teaming up on a beat that was too hard to just be singing on anyway. Cam and Juelz up first trading back and forth a few bars at a time, not embarrassing themselves to much (unless you count "eyes look like iPod"), but the Ja/Black Child verse is tight just for the way they chop in words from Shanti's verses on the original ("crazy", "bout the" etc) and rhyme with them.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

For the Bizarre fan(s) over at Gel & Weave: "Holla Atcha" f/ Erick Sermon from the solo album Hanni Cap Circus, out in May.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Norm Skola - "Nobody Move"
The next song that's going to rule Baltimore and jumpstart a career like "Oh" and "this Is My Hood" before it. Skola's been kicking around the city for years, had an EP out back in 2000, some other singles and press clippings, but nothing like this. "Nobody move, nobody get hurt/somebody move, somebody get merked/this is how it sound when I put in work/and this is how it sound when you put in the earth", sounding kind of like a cross between Cassidy and Jada, but a young Jada, back in like 98 before his voice got really guttural, over a blazing Jay Funk beat full of rickety snares and horn blasts.

Tyree - "Shake It Fast, Take It Slow"
"Rod Lee hit Tyree with a banger, now every rapper in the city in danger", Rod creeping up on a new style, a little less minimalist than usual, with a big thick synth line coming down the end of every few bars. And that amazing part where everything but that ticking hi-hat stops and Rod grabs the mic with that voice that's rocked a million club jams: "hold up ladies, make your way to the dance floor, my man Tyree wantin’ to see you take it to the floor and shake it fast and then take it slow", and then the beat switches up for a verse in that subtle way that Three 6 does a lot, with pummeling kick drums and a low low bassline that stays for the last chorus.

Hazmatt and Erica Kane - "Wait A Minute"
Two of 92Q's on-air staff on one track, so you know they’re gonna spin it, but it's actually kinda hot. Big gated 80's snare drums that I'm pretty sure are from a Phil Collins record but I'm not sure which, with thin crisp Crime Mob-sounding drum machine beat over it. Hazmatt raps on the air all the time, I wrote about one of his songs once, he's alright, but the shocker is Erica, who apparently not even a lot of the 92Q people even knew she could rap, and she totally shows him up, ok flow but big charisma and these amazing parts where she breaks into a fast singing part and changes up her voice. I don't know if that's her real name or she got it from the Aaliyah song but she uses that as her intro music all the time, the one time I saw her in person she was fine as hell. She's also got a track where she raps over that new Amerie song.

Also, if you missed the link in the comments of a previous post, Weapon Shaped has a post about B Rich with a mp3.

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Like I said, probably the first rap album I ever heard (if not then probably the Beastie Boys; I prefer to think it was this). I didn't see any of the Elm Street movies until years later but I loved "Nightmare On My Street", which I found both funny and genuinely scary (c'mon, I was like 6 or 7). Like that part at the end where Will frantically calls Jeff and tells him not to fall asleep, and then Jeff dozes off and suddenly it's Freddy Kruger (as played by their human beatbox Ready Rock C) on the other end of the phone, screaming "I'M YOUR DJ NOW, PRINCIE!" Last weekend I was at a party and my friend Chris put on Ready To Die, which was kind of funny because I had just listened to it earlier that day for the first time in like months, and I was telling him about how "Suicidal Thoughts" always reminded me of the end of "Nightmare On My Street". I didn't hear this album for years until a few months ago. My band that just broke up rents a practice space in south Baltimore that's owned by these old prog rock guys, and the room we play in has these cassette racks all over the walls with like hundreds of cassettes, all from 1990 or earlier. So for a while I would just grab any tape that caught my eye, usually something classic rock, to listen to in the car, and then put it back at the next practice. This one I'm probably just gonna keep, though. I don't think anyone will notice. 92Q always plays "Brand New Funk" on their old school mix at noon, and that kinda put me in the mood to hear it again. There's so many great songs I forgot about. Like "Charlie Mack (1st Out The Limo)", which is a boast about how tough their bodyguard is, and has maybe the first recorded mention of a "hip hop cop". And some really weird dated moments, like on "Live At Union Square (November 1986)" when Will does some questionable variations on the "ugly people be quiet" routine, such as "all the homeboys that got AIDS be quiet". If this album had the theme song from the TV show on it it'd be perfect.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

no seriously new Will Smith album guys seriously: Lost & Found, out in April. Maybe it's just because I've been listening to He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper a lot lately (I'm pretty sure it was the first rap album I ever heard, too, my cousin Mark had it), but I'm kind of interested in this (although that's a misnomer because the Will Smith records don't resemble any Fresh Prince records besides sometimes "Summertime"). Reasons to care: first single/video "Switch" is produced by Kwame, who's the greatest producer in the world right now based on the 2 records he did last year. It's ok, I guess it's going for a dancehall thing (Elephant Man rmx coming) but the tempo and the claps remind me of B Rich "Whoa Now". People are gonna hate it. But there's also multiple Jazzy Jeff productions on the album, and Will's been doing a bunch of tracks with Petey Pablo. Plus Kanye and Snoop and Luda and so on. Some quotes from Will from a Philly radio interview:

This is my 9th album and its like i feel im saying more things than i've ever said before... im saying stuff that i've kinda avoided sayin in the past... theres things about my divorce and things about what fame does ..i never say that stuff so i feel like its a real slice of me ..i have a friend she went holy roller so i have a record "miss holy roller" which talks about the dangers of that kind of aggressive religious fundamentalism yeah we got a couple of party records ive worked with petey...

people are gonna be very surprised i went some places i never gone with my music before ..theres a record you know eminem dissed me on his record people are used to me not respondin to that kind of thing its just a little somethin its not too much its a record called mr nice guy

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

"I'm A Biter" Jay-Z mix
It was really just a matter of time before someone put together something like this. I'm sure there's plenty more they missed. I'm not really mad at Jay for constantly flipping lines from classic Big/Snoop verses, though, it's not like he's trying to put anything over on anyone, if people don't recognize where the rhymes are from it's their fault. When it's multiple bar chunks from more obscure sources like the UGK bite on "99 Problems" it gets a little sketchier, though.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Where Do We Go From Here? by Nas as told to Dacre Bracey - Nothing really surprising in there, the usual gripes about hip hop today and, like, shoutouts to Beethoven. But I like when they just let the tape run and have someone talk instead of trying to cram it into Q&A form or something.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Bossman - Law & Order (Double Down Entertainment/1Up Productions)

Look at the cover, Jimmy H. standing in white shirt with "Charm City King" stenciled on it, for some reason looking way more lightskinned than he does in person or in other photos, superimposed over pictures of the Baltimore harbor, the projects, and the city courthouse across the street from where my girlfriend's mom works.

Openin' Arguments
"it's the Charm City's king...from the land of the know? got the highest murder rate...AIDS rate...the most underrated rappers...'cept for me, let's get into this shit, hey yo the Bossman's here, Neize's here, NEK, 1Up, this is our year, came from the rear, now I'm front tier, stick shift flow let's get this shit in gear". Neize from 1Up, who does most of Bossman's beats, gave me props for noting in my review of the last NEK mixtape how on "I Did It" he put a 6/8 sample over a 4/4 beat in a real creative way, and he does it again on this track, with "Here I Am" by The Three Degrees, the same sample used on Twista's "Get Me", but flipped in a completely different way and it still sounds cold as fuck. "this is Law & Order, this is for my daughter, for that dude who gave my pops a quarter, gave my mom a nickel, this for all I been through, this the appetizer, let's get into the menu"

"Law & Order" f/ DJ 5Star
Produced by Niige & Lansky for A.R.S. Productions, scratched hook of Lil Scrappy saying "nigga I been down by law" and Jay-Z saying "I'm a boss I said" from that part on "Big Chips" right before he crosses his legs and compares himself to old ladies in the park.

"Hey U" f/ Nicole Leach
Kind of a fake Timbaland beat with loping rhythm and needley guitar line, best verse is an awesome doubletime flow with rhymes recycled from the NEK track "95 South".

Weird storytelling track with Bossman getting grilled by the cops and him telling him this convoluted plot using all names of famous rappers, I think it might be some kind of nod to Usual Suspects with the guy using all fake names in the interrogation room, anyway it's a goofy "meta-rap" concept like people keep making a big deal about The Game album doing even though people have been doing songs like that forever.

"Off The Record"
I put up the lyrics and a yousendit link a while ago, but I got a request for another link after it expired so here that is.

"Oh" (B-More Anthem)
This is the only other blog that has ever talked about Bossman, and they put up an mp3 of "Oh" that you can still DL there. Dude describes it pretty well, and makes the same point I made when I first wrote about it about the slowed down "Think"/"It Takes Two" break.

"yeah, it's the Bossman here, chillin' with the homey Rod Lee, you know? bout to take y'all through a place, where we call home, Bmore, stand up, let's go, uh

hook: this is the land and the home of the OH!
this the city where they rock them OH's!
if you're reppin' your city scream eastside OH! westside OH!
this is the land and the home of the OH!
this the city where they rock them OH's!
if you're reppin' your city scream northside OH! southside OH!

welcome to Bmore, it's the home of the Wire
motherfuck the roof, bitches' pussies on fire
man the block's on fire
tinted Crown Vic's with the hundred spoke tires
woop woop! I hear the cops got him wired
I thought he was a thug, now he singin' like a choir
woop woop! now here come them riders
whose guns don't work 'cause they keep gettin' fired
always ya hustlers, ya pitchers, suppliers
keep a money grip like a fresh pair of pliers
think it's contagious the way they catch bodies
killers all ages, from OG's to shawties
stay with a razor, ain't safe at the party
saw Ray Lewis at the Super Bowl party
I don't mean to brag but them boys got body
the B-O-S-S and it ends wit what they call me


well we known as the town of no ill rap artists
R&B singers, club bangers and ballers
all that's gon' change since y'all heard of the Bossman
who flow change like dimes and quarters
when it come to lickin' shots we some fuckin' alcoholics
we'll lick a shot at ya sons and ya daughters
this not San Diego but everybody got charges
pits and rottweilers, the Bossman scorchin'
brawlin', hot with a flow boilin'
the city I was born in
known for raisin' they guns not they children
so many dead beat dads, we be runnin' out of coffins often
with moms and pops locked, nearly felt like an orphan
people killin' they kids, I ain't talkin' abortions
kidnappin', ransom, extortion
it costs to be the boss, y'all rappers can't afford it


what we did, bring shit like Carmelo and Dixon
Sisqo paved the way and got the game's attention
homey did his thing with that "hey now, woah now"
it's all good, Bossman in control now
rappers think they hot, and my flow finna hose down
number one murder rate, call us the ghost town
move that heavy weight like ? in the first round
we get that fast cash, we ain't tryin' to slow down
hustlers, strip clubs, get ripped, drink dubs
down with those spinners, can't get with them spinnin' hubs
y'all say "dog" and we say "dug"
but the truth of the matter we don't really give a fuck
in the land of the OH and the home of the Ravens
bodies in Dru Hill ain't got nothin' to do with sangin'
AIDS is gettin' dangerous
didn't think I would see the day when sex turn niggas angels
but still I'm claimin' Bmore


uh huh, shouts out, y'know what I'm sayin', Greenmount, old York, whole Northeast, take it all the way down to Biddle Street, you know the whole down the hill click, man, let's get it poppin', slide it all over west, Park Heights, Emerson Ave., y'know what I'm sayin', even y'all County can feel us, yo, y'know what I'm sayin', do it for the whole city, stand up, Bossman, baby"

"Give Em Sum"
"you want it with the Bossman? please don't say that/the boss don't play like a broken tape deck"

"I Did It"
I've already talked about this song a few times, but also: it always reminds me of "December 4th", in terms of the bright, nostalgic, sensitive, wintery vibe, plus because he talks about his parents and his birth date and says "more sicker".

"Dat Night"
Easily my favorite song on the album. I'm not even gonna talk about it much, I'll just give you an mp3. It's pretty much the only song where Bossman kinda-sings, but it's awesome how the hook changes every time as the story progresses.

"Crazy" f/ Tony Manson & Dollars
Another nervous violin beat courtesy of Spit 1, who also does beats for C. Miller and Comp, the token NEK posse cut but surprisingly it's all about how much each of them loves their kids and how fatherhood makes them crazy but turned their lives around.

"Pressure" f/ Dollars
Pretty much the only non-single on here that already appeared on a mixtape, it's ok, terse piano beat and Bossman sounding really intense and angry, "somebody need to fire me, label need to hire me", sounds better in the context of the album than on the mixtape for some reason, maybe because there were more tracks like this on the mixtape.

"Blam Blam" f/ Hots
Nice beat with a couple bars of hyper hi-hats alternating with a couple bars of minimal hi-hats, featuring Hots, Bmore MC who had a hit called "2 Step" maybe a year and a half ago, you can watch the video for it here, Neize said he's working with Hots and he apparently has some kind of deal with Interscope.

"Last Dance Part II" f/ H. Gold, Dollars & Ameisha
Produced by Samir, who's been responsible for some of the illest Baltimore club tracks in recent years, but this disappointingly is just a generic goth piano hip hop beat that doesn't stand out at all in the context of the album.

"Closin' Arguments" f/ Cash
Another collabo with estranged NEK member Cash, cool song.

This is a hot album, probably one of the hottest to ever come out of Baltimore. Go to Bossman's official site to get more audio, watch a trailer for the album, order it, watch live footage, etc.

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cormega - 62 pick up -- my friend asks me if i've heard the new cormega. no. no, how new? really new. he plays it for me on his computer. and it's a real single, radio edit and everything, coming off an album shelved almost a decade ago, coming out at the end of february with no particular explanation, no changes made to it, no disclaimers, kinda perfect reactionary statement, backing up all the shit he talks about the glory days (i mean, that's not really his deal, i don't want to misrepresent him. i like that he doesn't talk reactionary like, say, saigon or whoever, he just does his thing and i'm not sure he realizes the ideological import or why i feel slightly embarrassed about writing about him even though he's one of the realest niggas rapping [i get confused because all his fans love canibus and ghostface-- and i really have no idea who marley marl is]), buying himself some more time before he can drop urban legend, jacking t.i.'s title and getting krs-one and messy marv on a track together. -- perfect, mixing gentle conceptual shit (he's rapping to a judge, see) and one of his sketches, laying down miniatures in about two minutes, full of all his careful details from fifteen years ago. full of acuras models they stopped producing five years ago, cars sold at police auction in upstate new york, sold by used car dealership in schenectady, or parted out and crushed into a slab. and robberies by men who are now climbing into their early 40s, carrying brown lunchbags to 9-5s. and chains that got melted down a long time ago, scattered between, dispersed between 6 rings and two watches. riding hill street blues theme like cam did on harlem streets, sounding like old cormega cause it is old cormega, sounding like he's reading it off crinkly yellow notebook paper in the booth, notebook full of these little stories written in tiny blue ink handwriting, sounding passionate and robotic.

further explanation:

cormega, nas - radio freestyle -- through radio static and shitty mp3 digital blips and cuts, nas doing a bit of the message (FAKE THUG NO LOVE YOU GET THE SLUG CB4 GUSTO), foxy mmmm! mmmm!ing in the background, and mega destroying it every time he gets the chance, MY JACUZZI FEELIN TIGHT WARM RELAXED IN THE STEAMIN LOUNGIN LIKE A FALCON ON A MOUNTAINTOP IN EGYPT SCROUNGIN CATS SCHEMIN WHEN THEY SEE MY ROCKS GLEAMIN MEGA SHINE FOREVER RHYME WICKED LIKE A DEMON WEAR MY CHARCOAL NEW BALANCE A LOT YO THE NARCOS KNOCKED MY MAN MARCO HIS MONEY WAS MARKED YO. you know?

cormega - fuck nas and nature -- "i don't even know why you wanna even try and come at me! yo, this is corfuckinmega! you know my status, you fucking faggot. that's why i fucked you up. that's why my man took your fuckin gold chain and be wearing your shit in the projects. you a fuckin BITCH. nas, ya needa get a fuckin fireproof fuckin van the next time you come through the projects, so they won't burn your shit down. talkin bout street dreams, rockin a pink-ass suit. what kinda dreams yall niggas workin with??? that last crack yall niggas sold was yall ASS." secret best diss track ever, opening with the ohhhhh not that nigga incredulous thing that nas stole for ether, explaining to him that he's a fucking fake instead of telling stories about production contracts and video shoot arguments and shit like all the nas tracks he made after, love in love out, slick response.

cormega - dead man walking -- mega gets hit the vest and grazed and jacked for a key, and it's revenge storytelling on the same beat as the first blueprint bonus track, talking detached and clinical, barely upset, while crossing names off a list with a mack 10, kidnapping underlings to lead them to the boss, catching him getting out the 7 and collapsing his lungs, "shit is real, i feel better / word on the street is that a four-four can't stop mega."

for real, get that realness/true meaning special edition. play it in your car in the morning, start out while it's still dark, cruising choppily through morning rush hour traffic, touring the city as the sun comes up, listening to both cds end to end, rewinding back key lines to hear again, rewind it back again and say it along with him. he's got these heartbreaking songs about his guilt and fallen soldiers and beautiful songs about dope game heroes, kids making fifty thousand a week in the bronx selling heroin and buying james bond benzes with a hundred grand in extra features and louis vuitton upholstery and how he was feeding himself and his crew and buying gold chains and delta forces, and inspirational tracks about catching his 5-15 and getting himself an appeal and a college education and a record deal when he was basically left for dead and ready to just cycle through block->prison->block->cycle forever and ever, and poetry about moisture in the air when coke boiling. and it all sounds written down and serious, and disses to nas or just unnamed snitches that sound like he's rapping a eulogy, sound like he's rapping at your fuckin funeral. and the flow, sounding like he's reading it off yellow notebook paper. verses that sound written. you know? so tightly constructed and stripped of all excess. for real, get that testament when it drops at the end of february. the dude is independent now, defensively bragging in interviews about his daughter sleeping in a bed that cost five grand and his garage being full, an x5, an h2, a 64 impala, a monte carlo, a 69 ss camaro, acting like he invented balling without a major label.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

N.O.R.E. - "Trying To Hear Cuts From N.O.R.E."
Don't know if it's Swizz again, but yet another track with a sample from a Jay-Z verse for the hook, slowed down and almost not recognizable (from the Blueprint 2 filler "2 Many Hoes", right before the one good line, "and you keep talkin' over the beat like Clue"), with some other sampled shoutouts from Capone and Fat Joe shoehorned in there. Not that hot, though, dude can stick with the raggaeton for now.

R. Kelly - "Sex In The Kitchen"
In '03 on the promotional appearances and tours for Chocolate Factory and The R In R&B, Kells would sing an a cappella version of this, and it was this perfect miniature, less than a minute long, silly singsong melody, playful innuendo culminating in the punchline "we'll be making love like the restaurant was closed". He played a full band version on tour before Happy People/U Saved Me, but it didn't appear on either of those albums, for kind of obvious reasons. And for some reason just now the studio version has leaked, and it pretty much sounds like it was done back in '03, circa "Laundromat" and "Ignition", when he was using that bubble popping sound on everything, and the punchline doesn't hit as well when it's repeated over and over on the outro chorus.

Clinton Sparks ft P. Diddy and Miri Ben-Ari - "Run This City"/P. Diddy and Heavy D - "Big Booty Girls"
I originally wrote about "Run This City" a few months ago, back when Sparks had just started spinning it, but now it's the official first single from his Koch album "Get Familiar 1: Maybe You've Been Brainwashed, Too", which is being released in March, 6 months to the day after the New Radicals album of the same name, for some strange hilarious reason. The new version of the song is more or less the same as before, except with Miri adding some good foreboding violin parts on the the choruses and a nice sweep over the 2nd verse. Puff's performance is pretty great, screaming "y'all killed Big, y'all wanna see me cry? that ain't enough, wanna see me die!?" / Heavy D continuing his Kwame-esque resurrection via production (well, he did that Jay-Z song before "On Fire", so maybe technically Kwame is the one who's Heav-esque, but whatever), doing a hook with a "Without Me" jack (or was that "round the outside" bit ripped from somewhere else?), ok latin-ish beat that might make a good diddy bop jam when the summer comes.

Snoop Dogg - "Ups & Downs"
I kind of like the part where Snoop sings on "Let's Get Blown" and the part at the beginning of this where he's talking in that weird voice (what kind of accent is he trying to do?) just because it's fun to hear him do something different with his voice for once, after hardening it into the same register and doing nothing but the same flows about the same tired pimp shit for so long. And that Bee Gees sample is killer.

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