Saturday, June 29, 2013

Gregory Pepper & Madadam "Big Huge Truck"

Expanding the Backpack, 6/29/13

New free EP from weirdo indie-pop hopper Greg Pepper and Canadian producer Madadam, offered up courtesy of Fake Four Inc.  This follows in the steps of Gregory Pepper's excellent "Escape From Cystal Skull Mountain" album that dropped last year, and has been billed as more of a hip hop style side project that him and Madadam closely worked on together for a while.  Even if Gregory Pepper's moronic singing and humorous lyricism aren't your cup of tea, this free project is still worth checking out for the collaborations that him and Madadam have roped in from their Fake Four fam.  Featured over the course of the album are verses from Ceschi, Noah23, Awol One, Open Mike Eagle and Kirby Dominant to name.  Stand-out songs include "House on Wheels" and "Let's Be Friends," though the album's crowning achievement may be "Walrus for Mayor," which finds Awol One and Gregory Pepper waxing poetic over a very warm and optimistic Madadam beat.  My only gripe with this project is that the sound is mixed very low, which means you really gotta crank up the volume if you want to hear it clearly next to other recordings.  Still definitely worth a free download over on the Fake Four Inc Bandcamp Page, or a stream under the tracklisting below: 

1. Sisypheon Rock (Gregory Pepper Mix) 
2. Mechanical Head (feat. Blue Blue Heron) 
3. House on Wheels (feat. Noah23) 
4. Cautionary Tales (feat. Ceschi) 
5. Pinch the Hooch, Double Helix, Jizz Cracker 
6. Walrus for Mayor (feat. Awol One) 
7. Stone Airplane 
8. Madadam Interlude
9. Stirring Dead Leaves (feat. Open Mike Eagle) 
10. Let's Be Homies (feat. Kirby Dominant) 
11. Fronting In Your Heartbone (feat. Livestock) 
12. Sisypheon Rock (Madadam Remix) 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Destro Destructo "Day of the Dead"

Expanding the Backpack, 6/17/13

New album from Destro Destructo of Oldominion/Boom Bap Project, "Day of the Dead," available on a donation basis (or as a free download) via Destro's Bandcamp Page.  This album is entirely produced by a producer from Zaragoza, Spain by the name of Cash Flow, who tragically passed away in 2011 over a battle with leukemia.  Destro decided to complete the project and offer it up to the masses in Cash Flow's honor, and the album is an achievement with plenty of stand-out boom bap hip hop jams to nod your head to.  Cash Flow's simple loop-based production is a great compliment to Destro's steady voice and style, and the plethora of guest spots from the always excellent Oldominion crew further boost the quality of the product.  Early favorites to me are the title track and "Along for the Ride," though the whole thing is pretty solid and well worth a listen.  You can download the album for free over on Destro's Bandcamp, but if you choose to donate something for it 65% of the proceeds will be donated to cancer research/care in Cash Flow's name.  

1. Dream Big 
2. Along for the Ride 
3. Undertow 2.0 (feat. Snafu & NyQwil) 
4. Sweat Equity 
5. Day of the Dead (feat. Goldini Bagwell & Pablo) 
6. Filthy (feat. JFK) 
7. Fever (feat. L Pro) 
8. Grizzly 
9. Heaven & Hell (feat. Bishop I) 
10. Black Cobra (feat. Onry Ozzborn, Iame & Laura Ivancie) 
11. Served Cold (feat. Luck One) 
12. Occupational Hazard 
13. Electrico (feat. Oldominion) 
14. Champion Sound (feat. L Pro) 
15. Eyes Wide (feat. Josh Malm aka Redwood Son) 
16. Fade Away 
17. Code of Conduct (feat. Silas Blak & Serge Severe)

Friday, June 7, 2013

Literate Accomplishment

The Latest Greatest, 6/7/13

New album from Literati, entitled "Fait Accompli," dropping on Ecid's Fill in the Breaks imprint on June 25th.  I'd heard of this group in passing through Ecid's promotional pushes, but was first introduced to their music at a pretty shitty show in San Francisco at a bar called the Showdown, where they only managed to play two and a half songs before a gang of rowdy reggae DJs cut them off mid-set to spin records.  Still, even with such a short span of time to show and prove, it was clear to me that these two fellas knew what they were doing and how to do it well.  The group's two members, Mercies May and Chris Caesar, have been involved with a lot of under-the-radar projects over the years, with a wide range of collabs that have even included Little Dragon (yes, the current popular Little Dragon).  Their material as a duo seems to be destined to get progressively better, and leave it to Fill in the Breaks to highlight that progression with this new full length of theirs.  Looking forward to hearing it, check out the video for the single below:

1. Modern Life
2. Echo & Narcissus
3. No Money
4. Bad Karma
5. My Own Worst Enemy
6. Cupid
7. Tear Gas
8. Swoon
9. Parade
10. Way Out
11. The Future
12. Shade And Shadow

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

nosunnofood "nosunnofood"

Expanding the Backpack, 6/5/13

New self-released project from Edison, under the moniker of nosunnofood, available now on a name-your-own-price basis.  This new album is an accoustic driven project that was apparently recorded over the course of four years and underwent various moves and metamorphoses in the process.  Edison is one of the Bay Area's finest producers, and this collection of songs offers up a quieter and more meditative approach to his beats while maintaining his trademark excellence.  The folky guitar elements of the production here remind me a bit of the awesome instrumental hip hop album that 2econd Class Citizen released last year "The Small Minority," though nosunnofood definitely stands out on its own and delivers a very strong emotional palette of sounds.  Some great music to write or make art to, but also an album that you can really pay attention to in your headphones.  You can download the album for whatever price desire (including Free Fifty Free) via Edison's Bandcamp Page or you can stream it in full below:

1. the sighs
2. slow climb to the common corners
3. there is no war in love and hate
4. astringent
5. the repeating fades grayer everytime
6. until the day your keys own you
7. my modesty, your venn diagram
8. where she walks, i will walk too
9. that dream of falling face first
10. breaking through to find more to go through
11. last time, that stuff you said was wrong

The Offspring Runneth Over

The Latest Greatest, 6/5/13

New album from Gajah & Mute Speaker, "On & Offspring," out as of a few days ago via Acid Lab Records.  Gajah is one of the many skilled MCs out of LA who never seems to get the right amount of props for his projects, with a grip of quality albums both as a solo artist and as one half of Project Blowed's Acid Reign crew.  I like Gajah's music in general, but this new collaboration with Brighton-based producer Mute Speaker sounds like one of his most solid projects to date.  The album boasts some very strange and edgy electronic production, plenty of tightly written verses and flows, and some ill guest spots from Open Mike Eagle, Ceschi, Tommy V, and more.  The always awesome cover artwork from Albane doesn't hurt matters any either.  Feel free to stream the project below, and make sure you score a copy for yourself if you're feeling it. 

1. On
2. Enough is Enough
3. The Great Indoors
4. In Between Time (feat. Open Mike Eagle)
5. No Mercy On These Parts
6. Lawd Have Mercy Lude
7. Peace of My Mind (feat. Shuanise)
8. Beast in Man's Clothing (feat. Sojourn, Shames Worthy & Zane One)
9. Game Runner
10. Party Animals
11. Stability (feat. BeOND & Lyricon)
12. See No Hear No
13. Kids These Days (feat. Ceschi & Tommy V.)
14. Offspring

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thr33 X Dope

The Latest Greatest, 5/23/13

Psyched to see that the Th3rdz debut album "This That & Th3rdz" finally has a solid street date attached to it, and will be dropping June 18th via Camobear Records.  Seattle's Oldominion collective has got its fair share of criminally slept on rappers, and when I heard that JFK, Candidt and Xperience were working on a project together, I immediately started keeping a careful ear to their bandcamp page in order to download whatever tracks I could get my greedy hands on.  These three are some very skilled rappers, both on stage and in the studio, so as expected the leaks from this project (which date as far back as 2011) have been damn great.  What I wasn't expecting was how many of those leaks wouldn't make the final cut, which I'm assuming is a good thing since this beast is 19 tracks long and probably loaded with A-sides.  JFK, Candidt and XP all have excellent solo projects under their belts, and they compliment one another nicely on guest spots and at shows.  This debut of theirs also boasts production from Vitamin D, Smoke, and Kuddie Fresh amongst others, along with guest features from Nacho Picasso, Geologic of Blue Scholars, and Sleep of Oldominion.  Bangalangin'.  Peep a couple of videos from the album under the tracklisting below:

1. Intro
2. Big Chain (feat. Cadence)
3. Rap Rap (feat. Piece)
4. Hustle Harder (feat. Geologic of Blue Scholars)
5. Fixed & Addicted
6. Settle Down
7. Boobiewho (feat. Sonny Bonoho)
8. Work
9. All Do It
10. Be Yourself
11. Playas Only (feat. Brotha Brown)
12. Go For Broke
13. GNikes (feat. Fatal Lucciano)
14. Pushin' (feat. Nacho Picasso)
15. What You Waiting For
16. Favorite Song
17. Go Off (feat. Sleep of Oldominion)
18. Awaken Your Dreams
19. Goodies

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Dillon & H20 "The New Blues Brothers EP"

Expanding the Backpack, 5/22/13

New free EP from Dillon and H20 of Mass Influence, who are touting themselves as "The New Blues Brothers" and who got the funky chops to prove it.  Dillon is a rapper who I wasn't immediately sold on when I heard his earlier work, but who's gotten progressively better with each release to the point where he's kinda killin' it on this new EP.  Mass Influence also released a hell of a comeback song "Morning Breath Chasers" last year, and it's great to hear some new rawness from H20 on here.  The Blues Brothers concept is fun and ties the project together nicely, and the whole thing has the enormous benefit of being produced by one of funkiest hip hop producers on the map, Batsauce.  Good stuff, you can download "The New Blues Brothers" for free (or whatever you wanna donate) on Dillon's Bandcamp Page or stream the EP below:

1. 106 Miles to Chicago (Intro)
2. The New Blues Brothers
3. Outlaws
4. Something in the Wind
5. Waddap Y'All (feat. Chop)
6. Get Your Mackin' On