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Showing posts from November, 2013

Justin Timberlake, J. Cole, A$AP Rocky & Pusha T - "TKO" (Black Friday Remix)

Mr. Sexyback himself, Justin Timberlake, unleashed a surprisingly Boom-Bap-ified remix to his latest 20/20 Experience 2 single, "TKO" late Black Friday evening, which is slowly becoming a FREE music-giving holiday. Timberlake somehow managed to recruit J. Cole, A$AP Rocky, and his former "Like I Love You" collaborator, Pusha T (Clipse). While it might kinda seem like part of a larger label-contrived chart-topping master-palm, Justin Timberlake is actually an avid late 1980-90's Hip-Hop aficionado; case in point, The History of Rap (Parts 1-4) with Late Nite host-buddy Jimmy Fallon. Roots band leader/drummer Questlove [Jenkins] simply Tweeted, "#TKOremix so official! @JTimberlake, @PUSHA_T, @ASAPRockyTRILL & @JColeNC (w/ that post-"Control" flow) = COTDAMNY," which almost instantly piqued my interests enough to go check it out!


It's very well-produced, which is rare for an after-the-fact remix of this caliber, but "TKO" (Rem…

Ma Dukes & Akomplice Present: Joey Bada$$ & J Dilla - "Two Lips" (unreleased beat)

18-year-old 90's Hip-Hop revivalist and head PRO ERA wordsmith Joey Bada$$ recently described his still brief discography in 140 characters or less, "1999 was the debut. Summer Knights [EP] was the "holdmedown" people. But B4.DA.$$ [full-length] will be the break-through!!!!!" While Bada$$ previously laced up a few Dilla beats on 1999, "Two Lips" marks his first Yancey family-approved, non-Pirate Bay'd instrumentals, which he promises is only the first of his upcoming posthumous J Dilla "collaborations." The fruits of their labors, "Two Lips" 7-inch (with optional Dilla-themed T-shirts or sweatshirt) will become widely available through Akomplice, Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey's newly-formed record label/streetwear company, at 12 noon on November 29th. It's pretty amazing that even though "Two Lips" was essentially harvested from a vault-full of unused beat CD-R's, it still sounds like it was hand-c…

Bound 2 Falling In Love: James Franco & Seth Rogen - "Bound 3" (Kanye & Kim Parody)

Hyper-productive actor/director and sometimes writer/artist James Franco recently teamed back up with his This Is The End/Pineapple Express co-star and long-time buddy Seth Rogen to film a shot-for-shot re-creation of Kanye & Kim's grandiose "Bound 2" video, which debuted online just last Tuesday. From what I understand, Franco & Rogen are currently on-set filming The Interview (out Oct. 2014), supposedly centered around "an attractive talk show host and his producer [who] unwittingly get caught up in an international assassination plot" ... and this is what they've been doing in-between takes! "Bound 3" really doesn't do anything at all to help put to rest James Franco's oft-questioned [homo]sexuality, including but not limited to passionate lip-locking, romantic middle American landscapes, endearing bro-hugs, and a few vaguely insinuated dirty scenes. Lest we forget, this isn't exactly the first time Franco's had to chan…

We Are from LA Presents: Pharrell & Friends - "24-Hour Happy" (Despicable Me 2)

Pharrell has long surpassed anyone's expectations who previously pigeon-holed him as a Snoop Dogg & Jay-Z-affiliated Neptunes producer, on-and-off Funk-RockN*E*R*D frontman, or mere smooth-voiced hookman; he single-handedly co-fronted 2 of the summer's biggest mega-hits, "Get Lucky" and "Blurred Lines" (but you already know that much). Pharrell has recently started flexing his original soundtrack/composer chops as well, working on the original Despicable Me, it's sequel Despicable Me 2, and a rumored Amazing Spider-Man 2 super-score with composer Hans Zimmer, Mike Einzinger (Incubus), former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, and Dave Stewart (Eurythmics). Fresh on the heels of Bob Dylan's inter-active "Like a Rolling Stone" video, Pharrell and directing team We Are from LA unleashed the world's very first 24-hour music video for Despicable Me 2 single, "Happy" online Thursday-Friday. It reportedly features quick-strike appear…

Nick Catchdubs Presents: Danny Brown & Sleigh Bells - "Brown Bells EP" (Terminal 5 x 2)

Fool's Gold Records co-founder and sometimes club-ready DJ Nick Catchdubs recently took it upon himself to conjure up a Danny Brown/Sleigh Bells mash-up couplet, dubbed Brown Bells. It's in honor of the slightly odd pairing's 2 upcoming gigs at Terminal 5 (New York), November 22-23rd. While I'm not really the biggest mash-up champion, unless it's either Girl Talk of Danger Mouse, Catchdubs did it right; releasing a 2-track EP complete with cleverly-titled "Diggin' Demons" & "Grown Up Rivals," which sound more like a tried-and-true in-studio collaboration! Nick Catchdubs of course left in plenty of recognizable fragments from "Dip/Demons" (Diplo Remix) and "Grown Up/Bitter Rivals." When you consider Danny Brown's guest-list of fairly unexpected collaborations on his recently-released OLD album (ie: Purity Ring, Charli XCX, BADBADNOTGOOD, etc.), an anthemic full-fledged Sleigh Bells team-up doesn't seem all that…

Give Me One Reason: Action Bronson & Party Supplies - "Amadu Diablo" (Unplugged)

While it kinda looks like it could've been made fro about $20-30, Action Bronson & Party Supplies' new VHS-indebted "Amadu Diablo" video is really nothing more than an endearing (albeit weed-fueled) tribute to the long-forgotten glory days of MTV; Rik Cordero self-desribed it as "found footage from the 90's now playing @ComplexMag" aka Blue Chips 2 Unplugged aka MTV Unplugged. "Amadu Diablo" starts off with producer Party Supplies (Justin Nealis) wielding an acoustic guitar seated across from Bronson himself, long skinny joint in hand. Action Bronson 1/2 sings 1/2 raps "Amadu Diablo" while Nealis haphazardly strums along: "Every day I'm walking with my head up / Don't let up cause it's a set-up / Like Albanian marriage, from Haiti to Paris / The bath was 90 degrees / Tapping Heinies with ease (shit!)" The track slowly morphs into "Give Me One Reason," the 1990's era Tracy Chapman hit which it …

The Ellen Show Presents: Kanye & Kim Kardashian - "Bound 2" (Charlie Wilson)

The lone Soul-based track on Kanye's recent Death Grips-inspired Aggro-Hip-Hop album Yeezus, "Bound 2" essentially made me commit record-diggin' treason and buy a bootleg LP on South Street against my better judgement, which ended up being f*#king scratched mid-way through the coveted track! After performing it on a number of late night variety shows, Kanye finally debuted the official Nick Knight-directed "Bound 2" music video on Ellen Tuesday morning. It's a semi-strange trip across America's lush countryside, with new-found fiance Kim Kardashian awkwardly seated backwards on the front of Kanye's BITCHIN' motorcycle; Ellen kinda forgot to Tweet-ion [mention] that Kim's essentially topless and somehow, sans nipples, too. Knight manages to artfully inter-splice in images of wild horses, a Bald Eagle, Kanye in double flannel, and a bunch of all-American imagery that counter-echoes Kanye's Wes Lang-designedConfederate-leaning Yeezus T…

Oh My Lorde: Scott Bradlee, Postmodern Jukebox & Puddles The Clown - "Royals"

for their latest video-remix treatment, Scott Bradlee & Postmodern Jukebox recruited Puddles The Clown (aka Big Mike Geier), a 7-foot-tall sad clown and Atlanta-based performance artist with a voice not unlike Tom Jones; together, they recorded a sprawling "throwback"-style cover of Lorde's recent mega-hit, "Royals" in Bradlee's living room. It's a pretty amazing track, nonetheless, which wouldn't have been entirely possible without Robyn Adele Anderson, Cristina Gatti, Adam Kubota, Allan Mednard, and of course, Puddles' gold-plated vocal chords. "Royals" is far from Postmodern Jukebox's first go-round; in fact, they've recorded genre-shifting covers of everyone from Robin Thicke to Katy Perry and even laid down an entire Nickelback album, A Motown Tribute to Nickelback! Bandleader-pianist Scott Bradlee has composed a staggering mix of re-arrangements, including all sorts of broad-spanning styles: Doo-Wop, "Grandpa St…

Jimmy Page Presents: The Notorious B.I.G. - "Hypnotize" vs. "Ramble On" (Ramblize Remix)

Former Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page Tweeted "on this day, Biggie Smalls" along with a web-link Friday morning; He's pieced together what kinda sounds like a semi-unfinished mash-up between "Hypnotize" and "Ramble On" that's been dubbed "Ramblize." 90's Hip-Hop heads might recall that this isn't exactly Page's first forre into Hip-Hop, as he previously re-recorded parts of "Kashmir" for Godzilla break-out hit, "Come with Me" with none other than Puff Daddy [included below]. "Ramblize" somehow teeters that fine line, where if it sucked (which it doesn't), it'd still be pretty cool simply because of the sheer fact that Jimmy Page remixed a Biggie track! From what I understand, Page recently uploaded a similar Snoop Dogg/Led Zeppelin mash-up of "Drop It Like It's Hot" (credited to Led Dogg). Lest we forget, Led Zepplin's now-deceased mondo-drummer John Bonham has been …

Death Grips Channel Bob Dylan for "Government Plates!?" (Third Worlds, self-released)

Although it might seem like a pretty mis-matched pairing at first, Bob Dylan & Death Grips have more in common that you or they'd really like to admit. Dylan was the first Folkie to "go electric" and Death Grips have largely forged their own ground in their Proto-Rap sub-genre; Dylan never really adhered to generally-accepted social norms and the same could be said for deathgrips; Both artists make the kind of music that you either love or hate, there's no middle-of-the-road fans. Uploaded late Wednesday afternoon without any prior notice, Government Plates is Death Grips' fourth overall album (counting Ex-military) and the second self-released in such a guerrilla manner. Death Grips simultaneously uploaded 11 motion picture/music videos to YouTube, one for each album track, which may be part of drummer Zach Hill's long-rumored short film. "You might think he loves you for your money but I know what he really loves you for, it's your brand new l…

Privilege, Superiority, and Misconceptions: Lily Allen - "Hard Out Here" (Regal Recordings)

Even though she released a new John Lewis-backed Keane cover just the other day, British Indie-Pop star Lily Allen has finally returned with "Hard Out Here," which could be a sonic indicator of her forthcoming third studio album. It's titular refrain goes something like "Forget your balls, and grow a pair of tits / It's hard, it's hard, it's hard out here for a bitch" and Allen addresses jarring topics such as body image, media-propelled sexism, super-sexed up video vixens, non-equality, injustice, etc. "Hard Out Here"'s companion Christopher Sweeney-directed video essentially conveys everything that Lily Allen whole-heartedly despises about Hollywood/London elite: plastic surgery, TWERKIN', Robin Thicke, wasteful champagne-pouring, ridiculous weightless ideals, wildly expensive cars. It's done in a very tongue-in-cheek way though, whereas if you didn't know any better, you might think that Allen was a terribly misguided…

White Denim & The Bottom Dollar String Band - "Pretty Green Mash" (Downtown Records)

Purchased on a whim and the sheer strength of two Southern-fried rockin' Blues-Funk teaser singles, White Denim's recently released sixth album, Corsicana Lemonade is without a doubt one of this past year's late-blooming sleeper hits; While I've always seen White Denim's name strewn across various Indie Rock-leaning blogs (especially Gorilla vs. Bear), I'd never really given the Austin-based band a legitimate shot. It's just a solid, no frills 10-track Rock "N" Roll album that's equal parts Black Keys and Creedence (with some added Psych-Rock flavor). But in true Southern Rock fashion, White Denim recruited The Bottom Dollar String Band for "Pretty Green Mash," a reduced version of their lead Corsicana Lemonade single. From what I understand, the track's included on a "Pretty Green"online/tour-exclusive 10" EP, along with B-sides "Under mi Pretty Green" and rough album closer "[Looking for] a Place …

John Lewis Presents: Lily Allen - "Somewhere Only We Know" (The Bear & The Hare)

Quasi-retired British songstress and walking firecracker Lily Allen has finally made a triumphant return to music, in one of the least Punk Rock ways humanly possible; covering "Somewhere Only We Know"(Keane) for a super-early John Lewis Christmas web-ad. But somehow, it really works and Allen's airy vocals synch up well with the playful, old school-looking Bear & The Hare animation work. Since releasing her sophomore album, It's Not Me, It's You (2009), Lily Allen got herself a husband and 2 kids, stared acting a bit, launched a record label imprint, changed her name twice (Lily Rose Cooper), and recently appeared on Pink's latest single, "True Love.""Somewhere Only We Know" is a pretty drastic shift from Allen's former potty-mouthed brand of Reggae-infused Indie Pop, which could very well echo her forthcoming third album. According to NME, Lily Allen recently lamented that "it's not an earnest "I'm a mum" …

Ride The Lightning: Broken Bells - "Holding On for Life" (After The Disco, short film)

After what even most die-hard Shins fans would consider a pretty lackluster album attempt, frontman James Mercer has reunited with producer-buddy Danger Mouse aka Brian Burton to write and record a new Broken Bells album, After The Disco. Broken Bells (1) was essentially Mercer's "solo" debut and once again, he's comfortably playing the Run-D.M.C. to Danger Mouse's Rick Rubin; who seems to play best with others, ie: Gnarls Barkley, Gorillaz, The Black Keys, Beck, Portugal. The Man, etc. Lead single "Holding On for Life," which was previously included within an album teaser, has been self-described by Burton as a mix between late 1980-90's Dr. Dre or Ice Cube and Bee Gees-style falsetto. After The Disco will become available this upcoming January 14th and will feature micro-appearances from Nate Walcott (Bright Eyes) on horns, Daniel Lupi-orchestrated string arrangements, man-made drum machine fills by Brian Burton himself, and "some back-up si…

DISTILLED & BOTTLED by BANG YA HEAD: MED, Blu & Mayer Hawthorne - "The Buzz" (Madlib Beat)

While chances are kinda slim that this was recorded all at once (but you never really know with Stones Throw), Rappcats gave cyber-birth to an amazing-sounding MED, Blu, Mayer Hawthorne & Madlib track, "The Buzz" around 12-1am Tuesday-Wednesday morning. Not unlike The Burgundy EP, MED & Blu share vocal duties, Madlib produced the beat, and Hawthorne's relegated to the buttery smooth hook; an unreleased Dâm-Funk track will also appear on flip Side B. The Buzz 12" EP will include two vocal tracks, bonus beat, instrumentals, and a cappella. It's currently available for pre-order today (November 5th) at either Stones Throw or Fat Beats. Let's talk about the sheer talent Stones Throw managed to wrangle yup for "The Buzz:" prolific underground king Madlib chopped up a beautiful Boom-Bap-infused Soul sample, the label's former Blue-Eyed Soul crooner Mayer Hawthorne on the hook, and MED & Blu, two of the most talented and criminally under-…

A Stable Sound Presents: Cut Chemist, Chali 2na & Hymnal - "Work My Mind" (Funk Off)

Brainfreeze 45 extraordinaire and Jurassic 5 DJ Cut Chemist was temporarily locked up for unspecified reasons in recent years, but now he's back with a long-awaited new [compilation] album, Funk Off; partially previewed during "an excellent mix for the Stones Throw Podcast called Cassette Culture using four cassette decks and tracks from a release he was working on called Funk Off," it's a quasi-collaboration with 1980's French New-Wave groups Vox Populi! & Pacific 231. Cut Chemist unleashed two non-album singles leading up to Funk Off's October 29th release, "Outro (Revisited)" and "Work My Mind." The latter is essentially a re-imagining/remix of [Vox Populi!] album track "Alternative Fresh," which features select verses by Jurassic 5 frontman Chali 2na and Hymnal. "Work My Mind" is more or less a self-described "future-primitive analogue thriller," complete with a music video directed by Delaney Bishop, …

An Early Review: Action Bronson & Party Supplies - "Blue Chips 2" (VICE Records)

"If you want to laugh, cry, jerk off, take a shit, this is the music you want to have playing," Action Bronson recently told Rolling Stone of the general aesthetic for his upcoming VICE Records (Warner Bros.) album. "This is for when you're comfortable with who you are - whether it's your dick size or your tit size," which is actually a pretty good assimilation of Bronson's overall musical feel. His rap schemes are more often that not littered with vague references to mid-90's sports, pro wrestling, gourmet food, exotic women, "wax" [weed], etc. Action Bronson has somehow managed to release 7-8 albums/mixtapes over the course of the past few years, and I think it's justifiable to ay that his just-released Blue Chips 2 (November 1st) just might be his magnum opus. Even though a handful of Blue Chips 2 tracks were pre-released as early as January 2012, Party Supplies' slightly left of center anti-Hip-Hop beats are pretty fucking im…

Tougher Than The Rest: Peanut Butter Lovesicle -"Jealous Minds" (Ice Box/Palace)

Ocean City, NJ's finest Brooklyn-transported Rock "N" Roll revivalist outfit, Peanut Butter Lovesicle (PBL) recently returned back home to record their latest single, "Jealous Minds." Drummer-frontman Timmy Miller and brothers Jake & Mike D'Arc laid down some righteous-sounding basic tracks at Ice Box/Ice Palace; "Jealous Minds" was produced by Andrew Wilson and PBL also included a special Soundcloud shout out to local record store, Grass Roots Music, for good measure. Sonically, I'd equate the band's new track to modern day Prog-Rock in the vein of Wolfmother or even along the lines of The Black Keys, but it's a pretty Aggro-Metal affair (post-spaced out intro ha). "Jealous Minds" was preceded by Dirty Pride EP roughly a year ago, from which one track in particular, "Black-Eyed Blues,"Peanut Butter Lovesicle and their all-star team somehow managed to land a featured spot on Gossip Girl. While there are seemingl…