There's been plenty written about how great Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar's album, good kid, m.A.A.d. city is. So much that I'm left with feeling like I have little of value to add to any conversation about it. But the video for "Bitch Don't Kill My Vibe," came out today and it inspired in me a thought(!) First of all, it's really good. Watch it. Secondly, jumping back and forth in tone as it does, it makes a nice point about how complex everything is—death, religion, fashion, mourning, partying, solitude, unity, nature, all this stuff. All sorts of paradox. Which starts to come as close to truth, I think, [...]
I have long been a proponent of the idea that the Notorious B.I.G. is the best rapper of all-time. (This after having long been a proponent of the idea that Rakim was the best rapper of all-time. I have been proponentizing for a long time. I am very, very old.) But I am starting to consider a different idea. Is Andre 3000 the best rapper of all-time? I think he might be! The body of work he amassed with his partner Big Boi across the six OutKast albums that came out between 1994 and 2006 already made for a strong case—Andre expanded the breadth of rap-lyric subject matter with [...]
At this point, it's hard to imagine what's making Kanye West sound so cranky. The fact that his mink coat is dragging on the floor, I guess? Or that a beautiful woman he summoned to his hotel room arrived wearing underpants? Maybe it's just that he has a head cold. You're all stuffed up, sore throat, sinus pressure. That'll put anybody in a rotten mood. Whatever it is, for the music's sake, here's hoping he doesn't cheer up. 'Cause this song, which debuted on Funkmaster Flex's show on Hot97 just last night, sounds great.
In town to perform on "Saturday Night Live" this weekend (where he hopes to be written into a comedy sketch), Los Angeles rapper Kendrick Lamar visited Funkmaster Flex's Hot 97 show yesterday. Watch how he twitches his right hand when he raps. It seems like a device he's developed to help him remember his lyrics. Like some kind of muscle memory thing or something. It's cool. And he's really, really, really good.
Wow! Excellent! So Kendrick Lamar, a young rapper from Compton who Dr. Dre signed to Aftermath/Interscope Records last year, recently released an album called good kid, m.A.A.d. city that has had much of the hip-hop community arguing about whether it is the best rap album of the year or the best rap album of all-time. I mean, it is really good. I've been listening to it a lot and it puts me in the mind of A Tribe Called Quest's first album and OutKast's second album. But apparently it could have been even better. Kendrick was reported to have recorded music with Lady Gaga earlier this year, but [...]
I bring you this new A$AP Rocky video sadly. Not because it's not good. I really like it, actually. It's just that, well, it features guest performances from three of the hottest stars in rap music—Atlanta's 2 Chainz, L.A.'s Kendrick Lamar and Toronto's Drake—and Drake's is, okay, hands-down the best part of the song. Check out the 24-second, 95-word riff he spins off the phrase "I know you love it when this beat is on" that starts at the 1:40 mark. Written in tight iambic pentameter, it's clever and well-thought-out and infectious and just… God damn it! I hate Drake. He is about the least attractive personality to [...]
E-40 continues to astound. At age 44, with his 23-year-old son following in his footsteps (that's him, Droop-E, on the second verse) the Vallejo rapper is making some of the very best music of his entire, 22-year career. This is from the The Block Brochure: Welcome to the Soil 3 album. The beat was made by Droop, seemingly by banging on an empty garbage dumpster.