Autumn in the City
A 70 degree fall night at LA's Detour Festival in downtown
Now that summer's over, with the night creeping in ever sooner and the days mellowing out, I find myself listening to different music than what I've had in my rotation the past few months. I don't know why, but my mood has always been influenced by the weather, and of course, my mood affects what I listen to. While this summer it was all about upbeat bangers like Black Milk's "Sound the Alarm", UGK's "International Player's Anthem" (that Willie Hutch sample is the truth!), and Nas' "Holy Ghosts" these days I've been listening to more R&B, jazz, and rock. My hip hop listening habits have changed too - it's less about the slick production than it is raw beats and more laid back flows (see Shallah below). So I guess this is my opening-of-the-fall season post - new joints for the new season.
[MP3] Raekwon :: Cocaine World
Off Rae's Vatican Mixtape Vol. 3, this cut features the Chef with a slightly more restrained, but still dark flow over a simple loop. Fans of Shallah have got to check this out, if for no other reason than for Rae's (in typical Wu fashion) rant that comes in at 2:14 - "you can meet me in Africa...I just bought a crib out there, ya heard? Nice little hut, luxury hut n*$#@, muthaf*&%^$ing bed made out of hay, n*$#@....tied up with gold yarn....y'all n*$#@s is soft man, for real."
[MP3] J-Dilla :: Mash's Revenge (feat. MF Doom & Guilty Simpson)
On first listen, this track may sound like crazy bangup mess with halting flows, but after a few listens you'll hear the genius in the organized confusion that you often find in Doom's tracks. If you liked Madvillain, this one's like a dilla-fied take on those chaotic beats.
[MP3] Jay Electronica :: The Pledge
Ok, so this one clocks in at 15:39 and there's a long intro by Just Blaze and Erykah Badu, but it's worth it. First off, sampling Jon Brion's title track from the original soundtrack to Eternal Sunshine would have had me hooked right there, but once you get to Jay flowing over Brion's loop, you'll be feeling it. This is not your typical hip hop beat - like Jay says, "no hooks, no drums, just looped it" - it's deceptively simple, yet dope as hell.
[MP3] Lupe Fiasco :: Can You Let Me Know (feat. Verbal of M-Flo and Sarah Green)
Alright, so the beats on this one are pretty slick, but I can't get this joint out of my head. The production, particularly the pianos, sounds like something by Taku of M-Flo, but I'm not sure who's on the boards with this one. In any case, Lupe and Verbal come correct with nice flows over a fresh beat. Me likey.