We've got a fresh batch of hip-hop for ya, and it sounds goood! King FOE and Yonnas Abraham of BLKHRTS rap scary in "Goth Swag," Naeem Oba and brikAbrak open eyes with "La La La" from their upcoming EP Bread and Circuses, Myrical gets dirty with his new banger, "Ass Out," Myke Charles releases a hot new video for "100 Degrees," Pries's "Contact High" makes an appearance on Devin the Dude's new soundtrack for Highway and BURNTmd presents "Smooth Criminal Part II" from his new album Not So Black and White.
Halloween may be over, but its spirit will always be alive in our black, black hearts. Speaking of BLKHRTS, King FOE and Yonnas Abraham indulge their dark side here with "Goth Swag." FOE's scary fast verses against Yo's looming hooks form a dramatic ebb and flow that works well with the menacing piano that dominates Yo's production. That piano, by the way, is sampled from Bauhaus's "Who Killed Mr. Moonlight," the same group that Yo references in his opening lines.
The juxtaposition of deliberate, urgent verses with a pensive, expressive chorus in Naeem Oba and brikAbrak's "La La La" will open your third eye and brush the dust off your soul. Contexualized with political samples from Dead Prez and 2Pac raise the stakes of the song, while a brief, repeated shout, sampled from Mountain's "Long Red" (better known from Nas's "It Ain't Hard to Tell") infuses the track with extra soul and nostalgia. Though the song is political, it isn't partisan, and is more a broad call to action then an overt political statement.
Given this track title, "Ass Out," and its first line, "Now this come on and make the block quake," Myrical's track is instantly reminiscent of Big Sean's verse in Kanye West's "Mercy." With Serious Beats's flamboyant and energetic production and Myrical's gaudy braggadocio, there's something very Maybach-ish about the sound. This is kind of track you bang with your friends before you try to bring home some action for yourself.
Myke Charles first made waves delivering Eminem's lines from "Love The Way You Lie" as a part of a cappella vocal group Urban Method, one of the top three finalists on the last season of NBC's The Sing Off. Now Myke is back to writing his own lyrics espousing and exposing Denver with "100 Degrees." Myke's delivery is on point and varied, and he blends straight-ahead lyricism with the singing voice we always knew he had. Add Paul Junior's production, and the result is a joint primed for radio.
"I'm high as hell and I didn't even smoke anything," Pries says at the beginning of "Contact High." This is the feeling the rapper communicates with his chill flow, relaxed lyrics and nod-inducing hook along with producer Kountdown's ethereal sample of Telepopmusik's "Breathe." This song was first released at the beginning of the year, but it was recently included on the soundtrack for the upcoming stoner comedy, Highway, starring Devin the Dude. The soundtrack inclusion places him with the likes of 2 Chainz, UGK, Schoolboy Q and Asher Roth, among others.
Beginning with an fierce tirade from Robert De Niro from The Untouchables BURNTmd, "Smooth Criminal Part II" walks the thin line between aggressive and smooth. BURNTmd provides a vicious verse one and, for verse two, employs Craig G from the Juice Crew, who provided a verse for a Marley Marl track that this track samples. That's a smooth move if ever we've seen one. With cuts from DJ Grazzhoppa and production from Reef Ali, the track samples from a bevy of other sources, as well -- from Nas to Eazy-E to Big Daddy Kane -- this one goes way back.
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