music


Time to introduce you folks to a highly recommendable producer from my neck of the woods: Basel, Switzerland.

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SimonAyEm is part of the five-headed producer crew Prismatic Beats as well as the hip-hop collective TripleNine, a hold-all for producers, DJs, MCs and graff artists. TripleNine have become one of the more notable hip-hop hotbeds in the local and national scenes and have definitely shaped the arts in the last 14-or-so years, giving their output a recognizeable “Basel” branding. If I was to characterize what makes Basel, I’d say a bit rough and occasionally rude around the edges with tongue firmly placed in cheek–and a lot of heart for the art.

This year, SimonAyEm’s decided to do a bit of showing off, going through his immense back catalog of beats, to tie us beat heads a neat package of 13 dope instrumentals each week. All year round. For free! (Gasp!) Some have been used on published tracks, others haven’t. He’s currently at installment number 21, and there’s more than that where it came from.
So I strongly suggest you head on over to his blog to fill your boots and ears, and read up on the dude who should really get a lot more attention beyond our area.

The Greatest Gift by SimonAyEm

Peace,
9@home

Easily in my top 10 all-time favourite MCs, Brother Ali dropped a free EP earlier this year. Just for the love. And it is about love. Beats are by Jake One and Ant, nuff said.

Click for download

Brother Ali – The Bite Marked Heart (2012)

Brother Ali Website

 

Re-post, you know why. Keith Elam is no more. Probably the one death in hip-hop that shocked me the most. I didn’t give two shits about Tupac, and Biggie had it coming, too. Then again the murder of Jam Master Jay was a real tragedy, without a doubt. Now the Guru was supposed to grow old and grey, wasn’t he? Rest in peace.

Keith Elam and Christopher Martin are among the rare cats that have had a career in hip-hop that spans more than 20 years. Most people fall off at some point, but these keep going. From the beginnings when they were the flagship for jazz-rap to the dirty, choppy, “classic” New York sound of the Nineties and Noughties that has been coined in great part by Premier himself, it’s pretty safe to say that this duo has left its mark on hip-hop music. DJ Premier’s magic beat formula has helped countless MCs to have their instant classic singles while Guru has guest-starred on tracks and connected with people around the whole world. Guru and Premier are the embodiment of NY City hip-hop, even though neither of them was born there, Primo being from Houston and Guru from Boston. Together, they’ve brought the Big Apple sound and style to every head on the globe.

This is a compilation (a bootleg, I guess) of the tracks they’ve done outside their Gangstarr releases, i.e. either Premier production/remixes or Guru guest spots as either an MC or a producer himself.

All in all, there are no less than 476 tracks, or 2.5 GBs that come in servings of about album-size, lettered from A to Z. The tracks themselves are in no particular order, but if you want to know what’s there to have, peep the tracklist here.

Peace,

9@home

P.S.:

*pro·lif·ic (pr-lfk)

adj.

1. Producing offspring or fruit in great abundance; fertile.
2. Producing abundant works or results: a prolific artist. See Synonyms at fertile.

[French prolifique, from Medieval Latin prlificus : Latin prls, prl-, offspring; see al-2 in Indo-European roots + Latin -ficus, -fic.]

pro·lifi·ca·cy (--k-s), pro·lific·ness (-k-ns) n.
pro·lifi·cal·ly adv.

Released for Valentine’s Day 2008, this is a quick EP from my favourite peoples, the kids over at QN5. As usual, they manage to serve up a conventional theme like Valentine’s Day with a twist for your laughing muscles.

1. PackFM – “Plucking Daisies” [Prod by Deacon The Villain]
2. Session – “The Letter” [Prod By Tonedeff]
3. Cashmere The Pro – “Know I Do (RMX)” [Prod By Kno]
4. Substantial – “R Love Songs Gay?” [Prod By Tonedeff]
5. Mr. SOS – “Digital Video (f/ CunninLynguists & SunnyStylez)” – [Prod By Deacon The Villain]
6. Tonedeff – “Close” [Prod By Domingo]

QN5 Music – Baby Blue For Pink [EP]

John Smith, mcenroe and Yy, all from the beautiful provice of Manitoba, Canada. While being independently active within the Peanuts & Corn collective, they’ve also put out two albums as Park-Like Setting. Do not be fooled by whatever you think you know or don’t know about Manitoba, this album is a great listen. Some nice relaxed tongue in cheek lyrics and fresh production by the work-animal mcenroe who produces for damn nearly everyone on his label, besides rapping, artwork and whatnot.

pls-craftsmen.jpg

1 Wax On, Wax Off
2 Cut Once ft. Pip Skid
3 Craftsmen
4 DFA
5 Short Pants Long Sleeves
6 Overrated
7 Eight Bars Each ft. Birdapres, Cadence Weapon, Evil, Gruf, Pip Skid, Satchill Paige
8 By My Lonesome
9 Bush League Psych-outs
10 Barbie Doll Eyes
11 The Five Year Plan
12 Church Of The Poisoned Mind
13 The Boss Of Me
14 Our Turn (Scratches by Hunnicutt)
15 Small Market Team

Park-Like Setting – Craftsmen (2005)

Park-Like Setting label site

Peace, 9@home

You know your name’s become a staple of every household when you keep being referenced in rap songs of people who probably don’t even watch the news all that much, or who could barely walk when he was still on the telly.

cronkitevietnam

Walter Cronkite reporting from Vietnam in 1968

So while I have little to say about the man himself that hasn’t been said by people who actually knew about him, and to turn this back into a hip-hop post, these are some of the joints I found in my collection where he gets a mention, good or bad.

The Creators ft. Phil da Agony – Kronkite

Keep the game tight, Walter Cronkite,
whatever we write we recite,
the key to the light, is simply keeping the game tight
every days and every night, the darker the light
remarkable mics, three strikes… [what?!]

 

Das EFX – Jussumen

So cool out, Purno, I burn you no jive
I wickity wax that scalp just like Alberto V.O. Five
Diggity damn right half pint, i taste great like Bud Lite
I’m well known like Spike or Walter Kronkite
Cause we’re.. jussumen…

 

Cru – Lisa Lipps

It’s the Mighty Ha, I’m a street Bronx, I
Deliver the real like Walter Chronkite
God I’m a destiny, black man
Devil’s in the rain receive the backhand

 

Lord Finesse ft. OC & KRS-One  – Brainstorm

Originally, it’s the same the vet
I’m on that get rich list, but they didn’t call my name yet
I make it special like a prom night I bomb mics
while other brothers are old news like Walter Kronkite

Re-posted. Originally from 06.

Despite my starting out with Son Of Noise, this crew here was actually the first I’d heard of. Gunshot put out their first 12″ in 1990 called “Battle Creek Brawl”. Its incredibly rough sound by DJ White Child Rix and the fiery delivery by Alkaline, Mercury and Q-Roc was like nothing I’d heard before. I’ve read that it was their music, together with Hijack’s, that coined the idea and sound of “Britcore”. They certainly did for me. At the time I didn’t even know where and how to get hold of the singles that they were releasing, so I was stuck with a few hissy radio recordings (and the good thing was: with the crackling and the distortion they sounded even better!) A few years later, while Vinyl Solution was still their home label, French label Independance issued the group’s first singles as one Compilation. Instead of the cover for the compilation which I haven’t found, here are covers of the three 12″es included.

Battle Creek Brawl (1990)

Clear From Present Danger / Interception Squad (1991)

Crime Story / No Sell Out (1991)

Compilation Tracklist:

01 Clear From Present Danger (4:47)
02 Interception Squad (4:04)
03 No Sell Out (5:18)
04 Crime Story (4:49)
05 Battle Creek Brawl (4 Minute Warning) (4:42)
06 Battle Creek Brawl (Apocalypse Bass) (4:37)
07 Clear From Present Danger (Instrumental) (4:46)
08 Interception Squad (Instrumental) (4:03)
09 Battle Creek Brawl (Instrumental) (4:42)
10 No Sell Out (Instrumental) (5:18)
11 Crime Strory (Instrumental) (4:49)
12 Battle Creek Brawl (Apocapella) (3:21)

Gunshot – Compilation (1994)

And, from the same year, here’s another collection of singles, aptly titled The Singles. Some of the tracks are the same, but others are not. (Thanks, Wasteland Drifter.)

01 – Clear From Present Danger
02 – Children Of A Dying Breed
03 – No Sell Out
04 – Killing Season
05 – Social Psychotics
06 – Nobody Move
07 – Crime Story
08 – Interception Squad
09 – Mind Of A Razor (Remix)
10 – Battle Creek Brawl
11 – Children Of A Dying Breed (Burial Mix)
12 – Killing Season (Murder Kiss Remix)
13 – Colour Code
14 – Gunshots History (The 94 Lick)

Gunshot – The Singles (1994)

In 1993, Q-Roc had left the crew by then, they released their first album called Patriot Games. White Child Rix’ production had become more sophisticated with more multi-layered tracks and a very effective use of vocal samples to add some catchiness. The flows had slowed down a tad bit so they could actually perform their tracks live on stage and the whole thing made for an amazing album full of bangers.
[anecdote] I remember one time in school camp, when I was in charge of preparing breakfast and waking up the other kids… I laid the tables and then popped in 25 Gun Salute turned on full blast in a tiny chalet up in the mountains… Talking about an early start… When you hear it, you’ll know how much they hated my guts for the rest of that day. Well worth it, though. [/anecdote]

1 Manhunt (1:29)
2 25 Gun Salute (3:01)
3 Gunshot History (3:49)
4 Reign Of Terror (2:58)
5 World War 3 (4:19)
6 Radio ? (2:10)
7 Day Of The Jackals (3:42)
8 Underworld Crime Soldiers (0:59)
9 Bombing In Five Minutes (3:08)
10 Patriot Games (4:25)
11 Mind Of A Razor (4:02)
12 The Cholo (0:25)
13 Year 2000 (4:38)
14 Bullets Entering Chest (5:10)

Gunshot – Patriot Games (1994)

By 1997, they had finally put together another album called Twilight’s Last Gleaming. So the murky theme was continued. Content-wise, they’d relaxed a bit with their guns, battle, soldiers and blood theme and turned a bit more introspective. I seem to remember that the album was received with a somewhat lukewarm applause. And that may well have marked the moment where Gunshot was beyond their peak for their audience. I’d still contend that the album is slept-on and that it’s actually very solid and listenable. On this one, Barry Blue made a guest appearance before he’d join the group as a steady member on the next album.

01 Twilight
02 Maths And Stats
03 Millenium
04 Mask Of Phantasm
05 G. S. Vibe
06 Ghetto Heartbeat
07 Roots And Reality
08 Die Hard
09 True Fist
10 Gunshot Forever
11 The Silkmaker
12 Return Of The Gunshot
13 Kingpin
14 Untouchable ft. Barry Blue
15 Inner Space
16 Postcards From The Edge

Gunshot – Twilight’s Last Gleaming (1997)

In the year 2000, the crew dropped their latest and last album so far with International Rescue. Personally, I was a bit disappointed by it. While the production was solid and sometimes quite good, the MCs were lacking some of the drive and dopeness they displayed on Patriot Games. Some of the verses grate on my nerves, others I find just a bit forgettable, but that’s probably just me. Yet I’m afraid the only reason why this album didn’t disappear completely off the radar was the English Patient posse track with illustrous guests such as Blade, Task Force, Huntkillbury Finn, Icepick and MC Mello.

1. The Saga Continues… (Intro) (1:00)
2. International Rescue (3:54)
3. Shanghai Badbwoy (5:26)
4. Rinse Out (3:55)
5. Construct Destruct – Demo ’91 (Skit) (0:38)
6. Pain (5:22)
7. Scream 3 (5:03)
8. Hail Mary (4:45)
9. Minus 10 ft. Huntkillbury Finn (4:11)
10. Bo Bo Bo! – Demo ’90 (Skit) (0:36)
11. Everyday (3:35)
12. Pressure (5:19)
13. The Long Goodbye (4:11)
14. Badman Walkin’ (4:50)
15. The English Patient ft. Blade, Task Force, Lord Barry Blue,
Huntkillbury Finn, Icepick & MC Mello (5:02)
16. Whilst My Guitar Weeps (Outro) (0:35)
17. Shanghai Badbwoy (Remix) (4:40)
18. Weep Again (Encore) (1:16)

Gunshot – International Rescue (2000)

It’s quite safe to say that Gunshot will not release another album under that same name. (Is it?) Even their website gunshotuk.com was taken down.

To get back to the English Patient track with its analogy playing on UK Hip-Hop as the sick patient that needs treatment, it’s rather ironic that Gunshot as one of the pioneer crews that lament the state of UK rap didn’t quite survive into the 21st century while there’s now a host of MCs and DJs out there on the islands that seem to be doing increasingly better. Gunshot certainly broke down a few doors, but it was the generation following them that got a foot in. Well, except for old farts like Rodney P or Blade, perhaps…

MC Mercury’s Space
DJ White Child Rix’ Space
Barry Blue’s Space
Gunshot Discog
Gunshot on Wikipedia

Next up: Hijack

Peace, 9@home

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