Apr 30, 2018
"Tried to be a citizen...they wouldn't let her."
I had a trip to Italy this month, and when I was in Pisa an album cover popped into my head! With this month being the eighth anniversary (already?) of the passing of Guru, I was glad to be able to get my own version done in time for this episode's cover art. Thanks to Lisa for the original photo (yes, I really was in front of the tower for this shot), Damian for font advice and Sabrina for the translation!
This month, the show of course includes something from Guru, as well as selections influenced by the disgusting treatment of the Windrush generation (help however you can), some new releases and a few old gems, as always.
The Mouse Outfit are playing in Manchester on May 18th - tickets here!
Twitter : @airadam13
Ruthless Rap Assassins : And It Wasn't A Dream
With everything that's been in the news over the last month - but which has been going on for a very long time - this is a perfect record to pull out of the archives. Manchester's Ruthless Rap Assassins emerged from the pioneering Broken Glass crew, and released their debut LP "The Killer Album" is 1990. This track was a single from that album, and sounds very much of its era - but even twenty-eight years down the line, the subject matter cuts just as sharply.
Ludwig Göransson : Killmonger
Easily my favourite track from the "Black Panther" score, which starts off gently and then builds along the way until it bangs out into full trap mode, reflecting the violence of the character. Great work from Göransson and the African musicians he worked with on this.
Ocean Wisdom ft. Method Man : Ting Dun
I didn't know about Camden's Ocean Wisdom until my man Didjit told me to check him out, so I went to have a listen to the "Wizville" album. This track stood out as an immediate favourite, and to my mind Ocean absolutely dominates the track, despite the presence of a legendary MC who has known to slay guest appearances in his time. Meth does do a nice turn in tilting his vocal style towards Ocean's, and together they put in a great vocal performance over the Basquiat beat.
Prhyme : Streets At Night
As I said last month, "Prhyme 2" is definitely an album to pick up, and this is one of the best tracks on it. May not be the obvious Premo style, but he delivers 21st century boom-bap off the back of an Antman Wonder sample (don't worry, it's all cleared!)
Termanology ft. Lil Fame and Ea$y Money : Welcome To The Machine (Remix)
Dug this one from out of the corners of my hard drive, and was surprised I hadn't played it yet. I got this one from the old Spine Magazine site (RIP), but you may be able to find it if you have a hunt around. Artisin is the producer, and the Pink Floyd sample he uses starts in the intro but then winds its way into the main part of the track. Lyrically, Termanology's verse is kind of like his own version of GZA's "Labels", though the audible highlighting of the names of each one was a little heavy-handed. Lil Fame of MOP contributes a solid verse as well, and the third verse is really the only let-down.
Blak Twang : Fearless (Original & 19 Long Time version)
It made sense to share both versions here, with the original coming from the originally unreleased "Dettwork SouthEast" and the refresh being part of the brilliant "19 Long Time" LP, with V-Essence on the hook. A perfect song to play this month, with Tony Rotton addressing the far right, the murder of Stephen Lawrence, and the horror of the Black Holocaust.
[Supreme] Sunz Of Man : No Love Without Hate (Instrumental)
A great example of the work of the man responsible for Sunz Of Man's early production, with some straight boom-bap around a classic soul sample. I've got two copies of the 12", but I'll leave the rest out there for you :)
The Mouse Outfit ft. IAMDDB and KinKai : Feeling High
May 4th will see the release of The Mouse Outfit's third studio LP, "Jagged Tooth Crook", and they were kind enough to send through a preview copy so you could hear a track a little early :) The vocals come courtesy of two standouts from the new generation of Manchester artists, IAMDDB and KinKai, both of whom are getting respect from those in the know, perfectly complementing the vibe of the beat. Production is by Chini and Defty, founder members of the crew, along with Metrodome - a longtime Manchester artist despite his young age. Chilled, polished, quality. Get that album!
Meyhem Lauren ft. Conway the Machine : Venetian Loafers
That new age vintage New York street talk from Laurenovich! This is Queens flavour from his new "Glass" EP, solely produced by Harry Fraud - definitely one to check out, and one I think we'll be returning to for a future episode. Right here, Meyhem and Conway from up in Buffalo, NY give you uncompromising, unapologetic rawness.
Sean Price & Illa Ghee : Metal Detectors
The title track from the newly-released EP from the late Sean P and Illa Ghee from the Mobb Deep family, and it's a killer. The opening verse is definitely one of Illa's best, in my opinion, and it's always great to hear Sean's voice. I've not been able to find out who produced it yet (damn digital releases), but it's darkly beautiful.
Jay-Z : People Talkin'
One that might have passed you by, after it was apparently dropped from the "Blueprint" album. Jay claimed this Ski Beatz track which was originally for someone else, and the finished product finally got a release on the "MTV Unplugged" album as a bonus track - although I'm playing it here from a white label. Always liked this one, right down to the annoyed mumble near the end about Jay never having to sell another record in his life!
T_One : Lot Of Cats Hate My Guts
From the Beatfonics Crew's "Beatxploitation" tape, T_One throws all kinds of samples into the stew for this one!
Geechi Suede : Limozini
This one cried out for a little light juggling before letting it run - not least since it's only a short track anyway. Produced by Nytelife (and taken from the "0.9 Nytelife FM" album), the track is based around a fairly modern sample from one of the greats and provides a bouncy background for Geechi to get busy on.
Black Milk : Could It Be
The new album FEVER is somehow Black Milk's sixth, and he continues to deliver his own interpretations of styles from Detroit and beyond. On this track he brings in a guitarist, bassist, and keyboardist, then plays producer in the traditional sense, guiding them into a cohesive unit playing an irresistible groove.
Gang Starr : Much Too Much (Mack A Mil)
Always one of my favourites from the must-own "Daily Operation" album - the third in Gang Starr's faultless run. Listening to this reminds me how much we miss Guru.
Rottin Razkals : Oh Yeah
Rottin Razkals came up under the wing of Naughty By Nature, with one of the MCs (Diesel) actually being Treach's younger brother. They only released one album, 1995's "Rottin Ta Da Core", from which we have this big single. NBN wrote and produced it, but you can't take away from the energy of the performance by the group themselves!
[DJ Spinna] Jigmastas : Too Ill (Instrumental)
I was definitely a fan of the fact that the "Resurgence" album came with the instrumentals included - it allows me to share gems like this :)
Zion I ft. Pep Love : Warriors' Dance
The "Deep Water Slang v2.0" album may not be one that everyone knows, but it really is quality all around and is well worth seeking out. This track, featuring Pep Love of Hieroglyphics, is somehow both bouncy and a revolutionary anthem. Zion and Pep are a great combination, and Amp Live's production is always inventive and well-done.
Please remember to support the artists you like! The purpose of putting the podcast out and providing the full tracklist is to try and give some light, so do use the songs on each episode as a starting point to search out more material. If you have Spotify in your country it's a great way to explore, but otherwise there's always Youtube and the like. Seeing your favourite artists live is the best way to put money in their pockets, and buy the vinyl/CDs/downloads of the stuff you like the most!