Ahoy! Knowledge The pirate returns to fire off his head-nodding lead single, “First Among Equals.” The new single, prod. By E.L.E.M.N.T, is off of the Pirate’s third solo album, Hidden Treasure, dropping May 17th.
Hidden Treasure dropping exclusively on The Pirate’s website here:
Toronto, Canada and Rochester, N.Y. are two notable areas generating ill Hip Hop music. Their borders have no stronghold on what they magnificently create when the cities unite. Toronto Emcee, Asun Eastwood (TOMA/Gold Era), Toronto Producer, Sibbs Roc (Gold Era) and Rochester, N.Y. Emcee, M.A.V. aka Maverick Montana (Da Cloth) are distant in miles, yet close in the collective musical taste on their new album 98 Miles. Although members of Rochester’s Da Cloth and their T-Dot border family have worked together in the past, this trio has their hands fresh in a newly formed brotherhood for an entire project.
Asun’s catalogue continues to increase and impress listeners from his solo albums Nimbus, Hollywood Briggs to his collaborations with Toronto cohorts, Futurewave and Daniel Son on Physics of Filth and Bite The Bullet. Then on to 2020 with Sewer Science (Produced by Vago), Let Me Talk My Shit (Produced by Wizdome Bunitall) and 2021’s Prophecy Is My Present with Philly’s The Twinning (Reker aka DJ R3K3R and Padae). M.A.V. brings Rochester’s reality to the world by way of 2018’s ABRACADABRA (Produced by FINN (Gold Era), Dust 2 Dust (Produced by Cotola), Hoodlum (Produced by Giallo Point) and the three part Angelz and Demonz series with Hobgoblin spanning from 2019 to 2021. Sibbs Roc of Gold Era has been a mainstay in the Ontario music scene, letting loose on his 2019 Master The Craft instrumental album, and his previous album Stand Firm, which also showcases his lyrical abilities. Fans heard more from Sibbs Roc’s production arsenal as he continued with Family Gang Black’s Ventilation album. 98 Miles is further proof of those harnessed skills.
“Flu Season” puts us in the driver’s seat to start off the journey with a rolling piano loop and an Alfred Hitchcock feel, courtesy of Sibbs Roc. M.A.V. and Asun deliver audio sickness an infirmary couldn’t contain. The Toronto/Rochester tandem express wisdom through life’s positive and negative alongside East Baltimore’s Jay Royale on “Tug of War”. Shifting gears, fellow Toronto comrade Daniel Son drops by on “Table Talk” while “50_50” brings Saipher Soze and Corden Barrett (Saxophone) in on the road trip, kicking their verbal assault.
“Don’t need a cut or a barber to fadeaway that’s why I smile when Nick post my song, his playlist play…” states Asun Eastwood with his appreciation to the stalwart Hiphop superfan on “What’s Rap, What’s Real.” M.A.V. is making it known that this is not a game, telling ya’ll: “…don’t let an Instagram post be your last day.”
Sibbs Roc came to show off his production talents in flipping a Sauvage Planet aka Fantastic Planet sample unlike any other on “Simple Diligence” as M.A.V. and Eastwood express the importance of their families.
When M.A.V. says: “…bring the water to a boil we ain’t letting up 300 miles one way cause we ain’t get enough…set it off in D.C. with three Vivica’s.” M.A.V. let’s you know the final track “”L’s & W’s” is just as ill as when 98 Miles first put the pedal to the metal. Sibbs Roc let his thumping cinematic sound go full throttle here. Asun talks his shit on the hook and second/final verse, “It’s no time for your race, can erase or pace us, every angle got covered ain’t no space to face us, my ace hands heavy we remake and shaved us, Macy Gray space fiends you relate don’t say much…”
The three combine their street knowledge, life experience, production and lyrical talents on 98 Miles with an unconditional bond that not many artists can achieve outside of the music with the same collaborators. This like-minded connection is the unity we hear throughout the album. Like true brothers far away from each other, small talk narrows the gap when being in person is not advisable. Wisdom doesn’t come on a silver platter. Not only are Asun and M.A.V. providing jewels in terms of seeing the light in the dark, but they also tell us to choose the direction in your life wisely. Only true men can be honest with one another initiating the respect. 98 Miles is just numbers and traveling. The three reppin’ Toronto, Scarborough and Rochester prove that music and brotherhood are the defining connected foundation. Pack your gear for the ten track excursion.
The poignant track fittingly gets a visual treatment as Rav goes back to his youth on this joint. The video directed by Alex Cherney, captures Rav pouring out his memories in the comfort of his living room, lamenting the loss of his brother but also reminiscing on the good times he shared as a kid with his brother.
Check the video here:
Too close to the TV comes off of Passprot Rav’s latest, Travel Ban, available on Apple Music here:
The legendary Cypress Hill producer continues his series of collaborative albums, pairing himself alongside the top independent and underground talents. With Death & The Magician, Muggs aims his spotlight on one of the most gifted and prolific spitters currently in the game, Brooklyn’s Rome Streetz. A personal favorite and often featured at DRHH, Rome is known for his sharp lyrics, honed ear and a truly gritty New York attitude.
Peep the video for “Stone Cold Soul”:
This offering provides plenty of the haunting samples and droning melodies that Muggs has been laying down over the last three decades. Rome fits right in line, following the likes of Roc Marci, Eto, GZA, Planet Asia and the other ultra-talented emcees that have previously crafted projects solely with Muggs. Highlights include “Ace of Swords,” “Zig Zag Zig feat Knowledge The Pirate,” “Stone Cold Soul,” and “The Devil’s Chord.”
Brooklyn spitter O Dawg drops the latest visuals for “Facing Factzz.” The video, beautifully shot and directed by revenxnt shows O around the way, posted at various spots in and around Brooklyn with his associates. The single sports banging drums and angelic vocal loops courtesy of producer Grimm Doza. This is the first video and single off the upcoming collab tape, Student of the Game, between the BK emcee and the Jersey producer. Check the video here:
Massachusetts rapper/producer Flip Jackson releases his debut album Follow The Leader. The 10-track project features MC Uncle Sam, JD Cuellar & Cilo BGR. Flip handles the production on most of the album but recruits Vinyl Villain & DK Media to contribute a beat each as well. Highlights include “Make it Flip” feat. JD Cuellar, “Ride Out,” and the Vinyl Villain-laced “God’s Grace.”
While Flip has been known for mainly making beats the past 8 years, the current pandemic pushed him to get back in the booth, ultimately leading to create this project.
Flip Jackson: “I began this project at the beginning of Covid-19, back in March & had no idea I would end up using this project as a form of processing what was happening in the world.”
Flip brings a street attitude and his production delivers a heavy club banger sound. Follow The Leader, courtesy of DGS Records & Gotham City Music Group is Available on Bandcamp here:
Norm Regular: “I really wanted to try my best to make an actual album.”
Baltimore emcee Norm Regular delivers a healthy dose of nostalgia on his debut LP, Describe Infinity to fully announce his arrival in the game. The quiet, ever-youthful Norm uncovers an even younger self while instilling his acquired wisdom across 11 tracks of head-nodding beats, all showing another facet or layer of Regular. He calls on a handful of underground producers to establish the sonic palette for Norm to craft his debut LP. With Norm, it’s easy to hear the nostalgia in his throwback flow, echoes of the second golden era evident in his voice. What seemingly comes off as a monotone flow at first, Norm has harnessed that same vocal tone to his advantage, sounding reminiscent of that second golden era sound.
On Describe Infinity, Norm Regular raps over a range of beats, from the tension of weaving through traffic of “Broken Mirrors” to the wafting “Enchacement Smoker” prod by Sean Keaton. Norm seems to shine on beats like that as well as the floating “Blue Light Special” prod by Really Hiiim. Norm keeps the mic to himself for the majority the album, with underground heavies Lord Juco and B.A. Badd adding some talent and experience as guest features. Norm Regular speaks on his brother’s influence as he skates on the funky bass groove and starry jazz hints of “Bones” prod by Aasir.
The title, cover art, and audio clips all pay homage and respect to Norm’s full immersion into hip hop in the 90’s with his brother’s rap crew Infinite Description.
Norm: “probably wouldn’t be rhyming if not for them.”
Norm: “Putting this one together, Shit definitely came from a different place.”
It’s clear that Norm was able to pinpoint that inspiration and channel his own talents into a cohesive project. Describe Infinity is available here:
Mondo Slade delivers the latest video off his brand new project, Revenge Of The Slade, out today, 12/24. The video, directed by Louis Kole shows a masked Mondo posted up, criminal activity evident throughout the visuals. Mondo spits casual but focused over a swirling orchestral arrangement courtesy of Hooks Arthur. The strings provide the perfect tension for this crime caper as Mondo details the various ways he moves in the streets.
Revenge of the Slade is out now on streaming platforms. Check it out here on Apple:
Continuing on his prolific run, Toronto’s Lord Juco comes through for another sharp project. With the third installment, (the previous two both dropping on Christmas day the past 2 years) producer Bohemia Lynch and emcee Lord Juco connect again for Shadows 3. Juco calls on fellow underground stalwarts Flashius Clayton and Skunkz over the cascading piano notes of “Staff Picks.” On the airy “Stelvio,” Juco lays an inspired versewhile Starker unloads a clip of his highly syllabic flow over stirring strings. Juco closes it with the split beats of “Scene Selection,” where Bohemia Lynch loops plinking piano keys and sliding glissandos sounding like a New Year’s Eve ballad. The second half switches to a soulful and funky vocal loop, with Juco strutting off into the sunset.
Lord Juco speaks on the concepts of the Shadows projects: “Shadows was visually based on ‘Isaw the devil‘ but sonically all three have their own movies they reference.. Shadows 1 – The Shining; 2 – House of 1000 corpses; Shadows 3 – Bay of Blood.”
Lord Juco has stayed consistent in the game for several years now with his intelligent and clever rhymes, his ear for production and his stellar work ethic. He stays grounded and continues to work with talented artists regardless of status. Bohemia Lynch has proven to provide the perfect canvas for Lord Juco yet again, with unique samples and dynamic loops.
Check out Shadows 3 live on Christmas, 12/25/2020 at 12AM here:
Lenox Hughes: “This tape is definitely motivation to get a bag. I want everyone to be successful in life; wether you you selling your own clothes, hustling or getting up for a 9-5 everyday.”
Creating vibes of lavish lifestyles, Harlem’s Lenox Hughes spits over fly production from Michigan producer AP. Lenox brings his street demeanor, mixing his taste for the finer things to complement the smooth arrangements courtesy of AP.
AP on the project coming together:
“I think it was from one of the first batch of beats I sent to Bub (Rock) in 2018. Bub and Lenox knew each other and I guess he let Lenox hear some of the tracks. Lenox ended up recording to one of em and made “go get it” that was on his last project, Finding The Balance. After that we talked about doing a some more work or a project, but we didn’t start really working on it until earlier this year.”
Joints like “Legendary” is a funky fly groove, perfect for night time cruises. “Million Dollar Dream” exudes a similar vibe and smooth feel. On “Fritz and Frank” Lenox provides the street tales, while joints like “Paid in Full” is more of a journey. With compressed drums and a rumbling low end, Lenox spits venom here speaking into existence with his need to be “Paid in Full like Rakim.”
“Intricate Threads” is head nodding piano-driven beat where Lenox spits double time.A highlight off Opulent Habits, “The Hype,” features Brooklyn’s Eddie Kaine over a gorgeous loop that seems to never end until AP layers another on it, elevating it.
AP on the concept/theme: “I asked Lenox to give me a theme or title for the album and he came up with Opulent Habits. Just so happened I was in a good place creatively at the time and zoned out and made most the tracks over 3 day period and the rest came a couple weeks later.”
Lenox maintains the balance between the elegant concepts and the street raps, evoking images of regal materials and luxurious accommodations. AP comes through on the production end as well. It’s the techniques and overall vibes that AP lays down which separates him from other beat makers and producers as an underrated producer in the game. Opulent Habits serves as a solid project connecting 2 emerging talents.