Monday, October 30, 2006

Review: Shock G - Fear of a Mixed Planet

Artist: Shock G
Album: Fear of a Mixed Planet
Year: 2004
Label: 33rd Street Records

Digital Underground are legends in their own right and the groups forefront MC, Shock G and his famed alter-ego Humpty Hump are icons of the industry. Hailing from Oakland, a mecca of gangsta rap, Digital Underground's music has always looked on the lighter side of life and the group that unleashed 2Pac onto the world are well known for not taking things too seriously. With numerous releases under his belt already, Shock G dropped his solo album 'Fear Of A Mixed Planet' on 33rd Street Records in 2004.

The tone of the album is set from the get-go with 'Keep It Beautiful' which showcases Shock G rapping over a laid back and calming beat. In this track Shock G urges listeners to keep it beautiful and improve the world with compassion, a standout line from this track is on the topic of 2Pac; "His special special gift was his love side, so many wanna be Pac but only cop the thug side". 'Cherry Flava'd Email' featuring 5th Element, Ant Dog, Clev MC and Delina Dream maintains the album's laid back pace before the harder hitting beat of 'Weesom Hustlas' greets the listeners ears. Shock is joined on this track by Digital Underground and Raw Fusion rapper Money B and Shock himself also raps using his Humpty Hump persona. The fourth track on the album, 'Cinnamon Waves', brings the tempo right back down and features Q Bert on the turntables and Ray Luv of Young Black Brotha Records fame dropping some rhymes.

The feel of the album changes quite a bit with the following tracks, the first of which is titled 'Holmedown Up' and features Yukmouth (Luniz/Regime) along with Java, Clev MC and 5th Element. The bouncy 'Lets Go' follows on with the upbeat feel of the album and then listeners are greeted with the short but impressive 'My Opinion' featuring Knumskull of The Luniz. Knumskull drops various lines about what's on his mind that could easily offend people before the voice of reason Shock G comes into the track with his reply. Shock then raps about racism on 'Who's Clean' where he successfully manages to show listeners how stupid racism is by using various examples, a few lines in this track are pretty left of field. The pace of the album then goes down a notch with the laid back title track which doesn't actually have any rapping.

'Gotchoo' again features Shock rapping about racism, which is not real surprising considering the title of the album. Next up comes the strange 'Rime in the Mochanut' where the last word of every line leads into the next line, it kind of reminds me of something out of the Austin Powers movies. 'Perfect Life' features the talented group Element and also appears on the Element's album ''. Both Element and Shock G do their part in making this track one of the best on the album, I was fortunate enough to see Element and Digital Underground together live in Adelaide and there is no doubt that the groups compliment each other well. 'We're All Killaz' plays host to some more off the wall Shock G lyrics, for example: "People into Jesus wear crosses around they neck, people into Pac floss tech's, I'm into my man from the Green Mile I declare, so around my neck I wear an electric chair".

Coming to the end of the album and the slower 'Baby You Okay?' is followed by the much more energetic 'Sunshine Rime' featuring Mo on the mic and Delina Dream on the hook. Clev MC who appeared as a kid on the 'Sons of the P' album then gets a 1 minute and 33 second self titled solo track before the final track on the album 'Your Sun Iz A Pimp'. This track is fairly tranquil and features Q Bert on turntables and also has K-Lien rapping alongside Shock G and his famous character Humpty Hump also drops by.

All in all this is a great funky album to chuck on when you feel you need to relax, for me this is a personal favourite when ever I need focus on something but need music in the background. The album isn't Shock's or Digital Underground's finest release however I still think it is a must have for anyone who has ever taken an interest into their music. Unfortunately for the music industry, Gregory E. Jacobs, better known as Shock G, announced his retirement from the hip hop game in mid 2005 stating various reasons for his decision. I'm not sure what his current situation is, all I know is that he is a legend of the hip hop community and a breath of fresh air in a business where everything is taken so seriously.

Shock G ft. Element - Perfect Life
Shock G ft. Knumskull - My Opinion
Rating:3 and a half Daytons out of 5

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Days Of Way Back

Rodney O & Joe Cooley along with their old silent member, General Jeff are no secret to any old west coast hip hop fan. Rodney O dropped his first record in 1986 when he paired up with Joe Cooley for the first time and was produced by the legendary Egyptian Lover. Their styles fit together perfectly and kept working together. In 1988 Rodney O & Joe Cooley went to the East where Joe Cooley entered the New Music Seminar, The final ended up being between Joe Cooley and Philly's Cash Money, apparently Cooley killed Money and lost by a single point, the crowd booed the fuck out of the judges but Joe didn't leave with the prize.
Rodney O, Joe Cooley and General Jeff returned to the west to release their debut album, 'Me & Joe' on Egyptian Empire Records', the album was a hit and the next year released 'Three The Hard Way' on Atlantic followed by 'Get Ready To Roll' on Nastymix, Jeff left just after this album which left the duo by themselves to release their first '92 album 'Fuck New York' a title aimed at dissing New York for not playing hot west coast records and also for the 'Fuck Compton' diss by Tim Dog. No doubt Joe was also still pissed about losing that battle with Cash Money in '88. Their second album of '92 saw Rodney O & Joe replace the General with Pookie Duke for their new record under their new name 'Tha Hitmen' called 'Here Come Tha Hitmen'. Rodney O released a solo in '97 called 'What You Gotta Say' thats not too bad but they came back in '98 together with 'The Final Chapter' but unfortunately this wasn't quite on the same level as their last albums and their 2000 album 'Veterenz Day' was worse still. They recently dropped a 'Presents' album called 'Summer Heat' that has a crazy Rodney O & Joe Cooley track on it featuring Young Maylay (of GTA San Andreas fame) called 'Ride, Swerve, Slide' that is back to their best, I'd love to hear another album come out with that early 90's gangsta funk style too, an Insane Poetry feature would also be good.

Somewhere along there they released the rarely mentioned E.P. titled 'Days Of Way Back', unfortunately the cover, like most of their albums doesn't have year printed on it but I'm pretty confident it came out in '93. This has 6 of their early tracks including the 1986 'Your Chance To Rock' debut track on it. We never post up full albums on this blog although this once I'm puting the whole thing up for the simple fact that it's all been mixed and scratched into each other by Joe Cooley and the Egyptian Lover and a couple of tracks would be too much of a tease to any Rodney O & Joe Cooley fan that may not have heard this.

..::Rodney O & Joe Cooley::..
...:::The Days Of Way Back:::...

Everlasting Bass
DJ's And MC's
Your Chance To Rock
This Is For The Homies
Super Cuts
Give Me The Mic
Mixed By Joe Cooley & The Egyptian Lover

Monday, October 23, 2006

Battle On Wax - Random Disses 5

Kokane Ft Cold187um - Don't Bite The Phunk (Dr Dre Diss)

On a beat hunt around town on the weekend Emvee found a copy of Kokane's 'Funk Upon A Rhyme' for $7 at a Cash Converters store, This prompted another 'Battle On Wax' post so I could chuck up my favourite track from this gem, 'Dont Bite The Phunk'. For those not familiar with this track it's another classic Ruthless Dre diss track. As a follow on from Eazy's 'Its On' E.P. This drills Dre pretty hard but gives props to Snoop, which is the only down fall to this mad track. In Kokane's eyes Dre bit his 'Phunk' from their days at Ruthless and considering that Dre is known for getting ghost writers like Jay Z, this would not surprise me one bit.

Luke ft J.T. Money - Cowards In Compton (Dr Dre Diss)
While we're dissing Dre, I've chucked on 'Cowards In Compton' that I ripped from my 12. The track is by Luke, that although he is a southern hip hop legend and I have nothing but respect for can't rap for shit, which is why he put his artist J.T. Money from Poison Clan to put the skills down on the diss. Dr Dre got a gapped teeth look-a-like to mimic Luke and Eazy in his 'Dre Day' video which is why Luke got pissed. I have heard rumors that after Dre's 'Dre Day' video Dre got run out of Atlanta by Luke and his boys while on the 'Chronic' tour. Although what the rumors are and what actually happened may be to completely different things. Any Tweedy Bird Loc fans that were wondering why he disses Luke in 'Fuck Miami', this is why.

New Gettie - Click Click (Cash Money Records Diss)
This next track is by the New York outfit 'New Gettie', who appeared on 'Da Wild Boyz - Time For Da Real' compilation that came out in 2000. The track is called 'Click Click' and is aimed straight at Juvenile, Lil' Wayne and B.G. as well as also giving a bit of a diss to the whole 'Cash Money Records' roster. Other than whats said in the track I have no idea what started the beef but is pretty clear that the Cash Money boys dissed New York at some stage. Like I said I know fuck all about this so I'll have to leave it here, but it is a straight diss with no hiding behind hints and metaphors.

Fat Joe - Fuck 50 (50 Cent Diss)
First up, I can't fuckin stand 50 Cent, that said I hate all these fake fuckin diss tracks that are made to make some extra dollars. On DJ Blacks 'Fuck 50' compilation there are 19 tracks all directed to 50, half of them probably don't even have a problem with him. Track 5 is Tupac featuring on a Black Child track dissing 50. I may not be the smartest guy in the world but I'm pretty sure Tupac never had anything to do with 50 Cent. Anyway I put Fat Joe's 'Fuck 50' on there because it's a pretty def track. Not that I have been a Fat Joe fan for the past 10 years or so since his quest for Top 40 fame.

The Relativez Ft Nuttz - This Is The Thanks You Get (Assorted disses)
This track is by west coast group 'The Relativez' who used to go under the name 'Young Soldiers' who appeared on the 'Murder Was The Case' soundtrack. They were originally an extention of Tweedy Bird Loc's 'Bloods & Crips'. The track is pretty much a Dre diss with the hook an answer to Dre "I started this gangsta shit, and this is the thanks I get" although they also diss Mack 10, Xzibit and a slight line to a few others. The track itself is pretty sick but as a diss track could have been more focused on their targets. 3 out of 5 of these tracks dissed Dre and I could easily find another 8 or 9, I guess cross dressing fake gangstas are easy targets?

Kokane Ft Cold 187um - Don't Bite The Phunk (Dr Dre Diss)
Luke ft J.T. Money - Cowards In Compton (Dr Dre Dss)
New Gettie - Click Click (Cash Money Records Diss)
Fat Joe - Fuck 50 (50 Cent Diss)
The Relativez Ft. Nuttz - This Is The Thanks You Get (Assorted disses)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Bitches That Don't Suck

First up, if you got offended by the title you must be a bitch and this post wasn't designed to diss female emcees in any way, infact I have got nothing but respect for any female emcee, breaker, DJ or writer who burn in a male dominated culture. I'm going to be honest though, I'm not really into that many female artists, but there are some that are dope on the mic such as The Conscious Daughters from Paris' 'Scarface'/Guerilla Funk' labels. I can't try and write this acting like I know all about the origins of the first female emcee because I know fuck all about that shit although I'm pretty sure that Sha-Rock from Funky Four + 1 More was dropping rhymes in the late 70's and obviously even before that I'm sure there would have been plenty of females on the mic at block parties etc.

As fake as the Sugar Hill Gang were nobody can deny their importance in hip hop and if it wasn't for New Jersy's Sylvia Robinson, Grandmaster Caz's rhymes may never have been heard by millions of people around the world. It wasn't until 1985 when U.T.F.O. released 'Roxanne, Roxanne'. Marley Marl came up with the idea of getting a local female artist to record a anwer record to it, this was the birth of Roxanne Shante. After that U.T.F.O. found their own female emcee named The Real Roxanne who dropped a track and after that a bunch of so called 'Roxannes' came out of the wood work to get a bit of fame. Roxanne Shante was the only one who was taken seriously in the long run.

In the late 80's the female trio 'Salt N Pepa' who's claim to fame was a thesis on rap music where they did a Slick Rick, Doug E Fresh answer record to their 'The Show' titled 'The Show Stoppers'. They made it pretty fuckin' big after that with a few singles hitting the charts. Other artists to come out around this time were the Ruthless Records duo JJ Fad who have a crazy track dissing pretty much every other female in the game at the time, Michel'le was also signed to Ruthless although she wasn't really a rapper. Queen Latifah was pretty much the front woman to the hip hop mainstream but was burnt by so many of her peers. Oaklands Oaktown 357 had a couple of albums out but probably got most of their fame from the 'Were all From The Same Gang' track. Monie Love was one female that definately doesn't fit the title of the post.

Other late 80's early 90's rappers were Eazy E cashed in when he created H.W.A. (Hoes With Attitude) Tairrie B who had material produced by Schoolly and thrashed by Eazy, Nikki D and B.D.P.'s Miss Melody, B.W.P., Sista Souljah, Ice Cube's prodeje Yo-Yo, Brooklyn's MC Lyte, Nefertiti, Sweet Tee, MC Peaches, Cl'che, as I already mentioned the Conscious Daughters, Rhyme Syndicate's Funky Gripsta who appeared on Ice's Home Invasion album at the age of 13 and then knocked the 'Funky' from her name. Some female emcees like Queen Latifah are likely to cut your dick off if you refer to her as a 'hoe' while others use the word on every other line, Boss is definately the latter, and shes got skills to back up her attitude. The track 'Mai Sista Izza A Bitch' with AMG is a classic male/female combo track.

Over the past decade or so most posse's from around the U.S. had their token female emcee, Rap-A-Lot had Choice (briefly) and later the Ghetto Twiinz. In-A-Minute had Sonya C who dropped 'Married To The Game', Master P's No Limit had a few including Mercedes, Mia X and of course Death Row had the dope Lady Of Rage. Sick-Wid-It who are pretty much all related one way or another had Suga T dropping rhymes, SPM's Dope House Records have Powda (formally from Salty Water), Pimpstress and even Carolyn who does R&B hooks even dropped a rhyme on SPM's latest album. Gangsta Boo is 3-6 Mafia's pick, Thirstin Howl's Lo-Lifes have the incredibly annoying Unique London throughout their work, Tweedy Bird Loc's U.W.C. had Nini-X ripping verses on some tracks, The South Park Coalition have had a few females features over their work over the time including Aggravated Phat Kat and Dope E's partner, Solar E impressing on the mic. Lately there have been rappers like Dramma Queen, the locked up Lil' Kim and the awful Hot Hoes On Top keeping female hip hop alive and well.

I have got to give props to all females dropping rhymes like the ones I have mentioned and all the ones you're saying 'I cant believe he didn't mention her', all the B Girls spinning on backs like Asia, spraying walls or like Spinderella, DJ Princess Cut and the Coup's Pam the Funkstress, spinning wax. Sorry to all those I forgot but I'm not acting like a expert, if I forgot 'em, leave a comment and let me know.
I will be honest though, there are not too many female rappers I could honetly say I would buy their record and play it out from start to finish. I'm more into a featured verse on a posse track.

Boss ft AMG - Mai Sista Izza Bitch
Gangsta Boo ft Prophet Posse - Fuck You
Pimpstress - Meet Your Fate
Conscious Daughters - Shitty Situation
Ghetto Twiinz Ft G-Slimm - Let's Get This Shit Str8

Monday, October 09, 2006

Remix Vinyl Rips Pt 2

A couple of months ago I put up a few remixes of some tracks that are ripped from twelves, and now I've got another three for ya. The first is from CPO, MC Ren and DJ Train's (R.I.P.) old group from about '90. It's got the usual stuff you find on most twelves but with a crazy remix version of 'Ballad Of A Menace' (Homicidal Theme Remix) which even the album version from 'To Hell And Black' is my favourite track along with 'Homicide'. This remix is psycho with the album version being 4 mins 33 secs, this goes for 6 mins 57 secs and with a whole extra verse. The whole track from start to finish is nuts. If you've got the album version and you download this let me know what you think.

Next is from Detroit's Awesome Dre & The Hardcore Committee. Their first album, 'You Cant Hold Me Back' came out in 1989 on Bentley Records and distributed by Priority. A twelve was also released with a 'Frankly Speaking' remix on one side and an 'Executioner Style' remix on the other . Both are quality remixes. I've put the 'Executioner Style' one on this time but will definately be putting the other on soon. I also have a unreleased album track from their second album, 'A.D.'s Revenge' that hopefully I can get Afects to rip for me sometime.

The last one for now is 'Life Of A Gangbanger' by a group called White Knight. I got no idea where these guys are from or anything about them. I was bored at a secondhand record store that had no hip hop about six years ago and stumbled across this record, chucked it on the decks and bought it within seconds. Thats what I love about hunting for wax in those shitty stinkwhole record stores. Some of you may have downloaded it from us a couple of months back when I put it up by accident instead of a Tweedy Bird Loc track for a couple of days.

CPO - Ballad Of A Menace (Remix)
Awesome Dre - Executioner Style (Remix)
White Knight - Life Of A Gang Banger (Remix)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

SPM - When Devils Strike

  1. At Shetoro's Crib (A Poem)
  2. The Day of Unity
  3. Garza West
  4. When Devils Strike
  5. Something About Mary
  6. SPM Diaries
  7. In My Hood
  8. Carolyns Hook
  9. Real Gangsta
  10. S.P. So Bastardly
  11. Blazin Janey
  12. If I Die
  13. Dope House Family
  14. Shout Outz
  15. Not So Freestyle
South Park Mexican's 'When Devils Strike' album has just hit the shelves after a long long wait. The name South Park Mexican can cause alot of controversy because of the bullshit charges pinned against him.Without getting into everything SPM was sentenced to 45 years in prison with no evidence for allegedly touching a 9 year old girl. Anyone who has followed the case would know that this was more about jealousy and greed on behalf of one of SPM's old partners who incidently just recently lost a civil case against him where she was trying to get money from him, anyway those who know, know. Just a day into this albums release and controversy has already arisen with an article posted in the Houston Chronicle trying to turn people off of buying the album. The funniest thing about this article are the comments made claiming that there is no way that any material on the album could of been recorded while SPM was locked up due to Texas laws, when anyone that hears any of this album can obviously tell otherwise. The article will no doubt serve as further promotion for Dope House Records.
Prison bars don't seem to stifle rapper's music
Coy's newest album is set for release today

Copyright 2006 Houston Chronicle

Houston-based Dope House Records today plans to release the latest album for Latin rapper Carlos Coy, also known as South Park Mexican, who is currently imprisoned for molesting a 9-year-old girl in 2001.

When Devils Strike is Coy's first album release since he was sentenced to 45 years in prison four years ago.

"If people want to buy the record, well that's just a sad commentary that people are interested in what a child molester has to say," said Assistant District Attorney Denise Oncken. "He was convicted of it. The jury found that he abused a 9-year-old little girl."

Andy Kahan, Mayor Bill White's crime victims advocate, questioned whether Coy is capitalizing on his crime to make money.

"Is he using the ill-gotten notoriety or the infamy from being a convicted child molester to sell his songs?" he said. "It's American free-enterprise capitalism at its best or worst."

At the time of his conviction, prosecutors and the jury said the victim's testimony was the strongest evidence against Coy. Several other girls also testified that they had sexual relations with Coy while they were minors.

Efforts to reach Coy's victim's family for comment were unsuccessful.

Oncken said there is no way to stop Coy's family-run record company from operating.

Coy's record label recently released a free promotional 30-minute "snippets" album that sampled the music on his new CD, along with taped telephone conversations between Coy, calling collect from Harris County jail, and Dope House Records discussing the new album.

Texas Department of Criminal Justice policy prohibits inmates from using recording devices, said TDCJ spokeswoman Michelle Lyons.

"I would be very surprised if the album includes any material that was not previously recorded," Lyons said. Inmates do not have access to the Internet, and their phone time is limited. Coy is limited to one five-minute call every 90 days, she said.

"We do have some recording artists serving time in TDCJ," Lyons said. "Are they writing songs? Very possibly, but they don't have the ability to record."

Coy and family members who work at Dope House Records declined several requests for interviews. Coy and his brother, Arthur Coy Jr., launched Dope House Records in 1995.

The snippets album begins with a faux newscast claiming his innocence. The album also plants the idea that When Devils Strike contains material written and inexplicably recorded during Coy's incarceration.

Anyone who is a hardcore SPM fan such as myself would of undoubtably bought countless CD's by various artists just because of an SPM feature on a track. I pretty much thought I had them all but the other day I received a myspace message from Protext who sent me the link to a SPM mix that he had put together of mostly feature tracks. All mixed together and sounding sick, this is where I realized that there are at least 4 or 5 tracks I still need. For anyone into SPM make sure you download this mix because it is worth the megabytes and you can tell when you hear it the hours of work behind this mix.