Friday Rap-Up: Infinite Mindz, Jermaine Dupri, Daz, Kanye West, the Game, Bow Wow

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For the last year and a half, Infinite Mindz has been on a tear locally. Since the release of its debut album, Monkey Rebellion Musik, last year, the group has been in demand for shows, as well as being nominated in the Best Hip-Hop Group category at this year’s Westword Music Showcase. The act, comprised of high school classmates Mizzy Leo, Frankie Figgz and D.Z.R., sort of came together in 1999. After a few roster changes in the last few months, including the departure of founding member Figgz, the group now consists of D-kno!, Spoke-In-Wordz, O.N.E., Acezi and DJ Chonz. With the exception of D-Kno!, who joined the crew in 2005, the rest of the group members joined within the last year. Now they’re busy doing shows and working on new projects.

“We are currently working on the Infinite Mindz mixtape, Almost Famous Music,” says D-Kno! “We’re also working on our second album, The Dead End Kidz, with production from Gyp da Hip, Noel Zacanella, Mic Coates & Mass Prod., Inkline and Coagulated Recycles, along with some crazy features on it too.”

The group is intent on bringing recognition to the local hip-hop scene, even if the scene here is a bit segmented.

“I think the local scene has obviously taken leaps and bounds over the last three years in presenting all around quality music,” D-Kno! enthuses. “Whether gangster rap or underground hip-hop, it's to the point of where almost everything I hear has at least one great element to their material, and that's to say the least. I feel if there was more unity and support from each other, people from outside the state would be forced to pay attention here. We’re just excited to be a part of this whole movement because we're all just scratching the surface of what’s to come.”

While you’re waiting for the new mixtape and album to drop, you can check out Infinite Mindz on September 19 at the Marquis Theatre, opening for People Under the Stairs, and then on September 29 at B-Side Lounge in Boulder, at the Murs album release party. Check out the new single below, “We Live It,” from the Monkey Rebellion Musik album:

Jermaine Dupri, Daz facing $250K lawsuit

Lauded hip-hop and R&B producer and So So Def Records head Jermaine Dupri and rapper Daz are facing a $250,000 lawsuit for defamation because of a recorded phone call that was featured on Daz’s 2006 album, So So Gangsta. The suit was filed by Aika Kendrick who alleges that Daz and Dupri recorded a personal phone conversation and then used it as the backdrop for the song, “The One.” In the phone call, Daz goes off on Kendrick with a slew of insults and obscenities. Kendrick’s attorney issued a cease and desist order to prevent the phone call from being used, but she said it was ignored. According to Kendrick, the phone call made her the subject of embarrassment, humiliation and degradation. She is seeking $250,000 for negligence, copyright infringement, defamation, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Kanye West arrested in Los Angeles

On Thursday, Kanye West and his manager were arrested at LAX for felony vandalism. While at the airport, a paparazzi photographer was following West and taking pictures. West approached him and, with the help of his manager, grabbed the camera and struggled to take it away. The rapper threw the flash to the ground, and his manager had the camera and smashed on the ground as well. In the meantime, a videographer for TMZ.com filmed the entire altercation, at which point, West’s manager noticed him and took the video camera and smashed it as well. The two then tried to go through security and board their flight when LAPD arrested them. They were released a few hours later on a $20,000 bond. See the video here

The Game crushes Bow Wow in $100K Madden Challenge

For weeks, the Game and Bow Wow had been going back and forth in YouTube videos talking trash about who is better on Madden ‘09. Well, the matchup finally went down this weekend, and it was no contest. The Game played as the New England Patriots and Bow Wow as the Cincinnati Bengals. After the first quarter, the Game was up 21-0. Bow Wow claimed that Game knew of a glitch that makes opponents fumble, which he used to cause eight fumbles in the matchup. The Game ended up winning 55-23 and then went on to challenge the Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade to a match. The $100,000 prize will go to a charity of Game’s choice. Check out highlights of the matchup here (LINK: http://www.examiner.com/x-578-Video-Game-Examiner~y2008m9d6-The-Game-Slaughters-Bow-Wow-in-the-100K-Madden-Challenge)


LL Cool J Exit 13 Def Jam

Say what you want about LL Cool J as an artist in 2008, but you can’t help but give him props and respect for being the rapper with most longevity. That said, the new album, his thirteenth, finds LL attempting to hop on the latest hip-hop trends and fads instead of just being himself. Although there are a few standout tracks, for most part Exit 13 is a little too sugary.

Kardinal Offishall Not 4 Sale Geffen

Canadian MC Kardinal Offishall has been an underground juggernaut for the better part of a decade, but never really broke through to major success in the United States. But now courtesy of his deal with Akon’s Konlive Records imprint through Geffen Records, his first single, “Dangerous,” which features Akon on the hook, is getting major play in the States. His Caribbean style flow is fully intact, especially on tracks like “Burnt,” “Ill Eagle Alien” and “Nina,” which add a welcomed variety to the album. His style and flow are comparable to Ludacris, so expect to see Kardinal rise up quickly in the hip-hop ranks.

Common Market Tobacco Road Hyena

Seattle hip-hop group Common Market stepped onto the scene a couple of years ago with a solid self-titled debut. Great production, great rhymes, the disc was good all around. This time around, is doesn’t seem like the crew has upped the ante at all. For all we know, these songs, particularly songs like “Slow Cure,” and “Back Home,” could have been on the first album. All in all, though, it’s a decent album, even if nothing really sticks out.

-- Quibian Salazar-Moreno

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