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I’ve had a tumultuous relationship with Talib Kweli.

It all began when I heard his contributions to the first 2 parts of Rawkus’ Soundbombing series (Chaos, 2000 Seasons, etc.)  Wow.   A content-heavy, cause-driven lyricist who picked soulful beats and spoke of injustice and equality while still managing some  ‘Wack Emcee’ slags in the process?  Beauty.

**sidenote, I was 5 during the Chuck D’s, X-Clan’s and NWA’s so don’t look at me like that.  I’ve diligently done my history since.**

So I followed him to Black Star.

Now, to go along with his classic songs, a classic album.  K.O.S. (Determination) and Thieves in the Night were my motivational, ‘Real Hip-Hop’ songs of ’98 and should probably be exposed to all teenagers trying to find themselves.  I bled those songs.  Every last syllable.

After a year or so of absorption, I find out him and Mos were going solo.  Worried, I still copped the solo joint on release –  Reflection Eternal: Train of Thought changed my life (Actually…all of the year 2000 did, but that’s another post). One of the most complete and holistic expressions of art to come out in the past 20 years.  Not to mention, classic appearances from Mos, De La, Kool G Rap and Hi-Tek absolutely molesting a Nina Simone sample at the end…it’s just so nutty.

Anyway…longer story less long,  next came, Quality which was dope, but not life changing (although Get By and Won’t You Stay will always and forever be classic songs).  And then we got Beautiful Struggle, which was like Quality but with cheaper production and less poignant writing and that Sucka Free Mixtape, which was worth all of 3 songs.  At that point, I was off Kweli.

In ’07 he came back with Eardrum.  And although resistant, die hard fans were telling me he was BACK!  So after a few months of holding off, I gave in.  It’s decent.  Sure the album’s about 10 songs too long, but the other 10 are Dope.  And that along with guesting on tracks with Hi-Tek, Sa-Ra, Dilla, UGK and others, it seemed like Kwe was workin on a return to his old form.

The point I’m tryin to make is this, if you were like me, and haven’t listened to any Kweli lately, check it out…you might be surprised.

Here’s some new new.

For the backpacks – Reflection Eternal feat. Bootsy Collins – Internet Connection

For the clubsIdle Warship (Talib Kweli, Res & Graph Nobel) – Girls on the Dance Floor (Remix)

Have a dope weekend folks.

Triple.

As album sales increasingly decline, it seems that official CD releases are following the trend as the next few weeks look barren at best.  All the while, online mixtape downloads seem to be doubling and tripling.  So, as not to combat the grain of the market, I give you a bunch of new DL’s for your listening pleasure.

First up, Jim Jones.

The Dipset Capo definitely knows how to market himself.  Every time he drops a ‘Ballin‘ or a ‘Pop Champagne’, he has the good sense to jump on a Ghostface or Kid Cudi joint and actually hold his own (yes…I said it).  And well, I still can’t tell you why I like him, or why anyone does….perhaps it’s one of those ‘Je ne sais quoi’s (or what Jim lovingly refers to as his[the most overused word in the world right now] swagger) or maybe it’s just time for Pigpen to succeed.  Anyways…here he is once more, this time with Hip-Hop’s Zach Morris, Asher Roth doing a remix of ‘I Love College’.

Asher Roth ft. Jim Jones – I Love College (Harlem Mix)

…Taipei’s Newest Imports

Haha…I still have NO idea how or why DJ Paul and Juicy J were in Taipei on NYE, but I heard they scared the bejeezus out of the crowd and rocked them pretty senseless.  So, hopefully that means more Three6Mafia in the clubs and less Flo Rida. YAAAAY!!!!

Here’re are a couple new tunes from the brains behind Crunk Music….

Three 6 Mafia – DAMN Feat. Project Pat
Three 6 Mafia – They Don’t Like That (Club)

New mixtape ish from Blacksmith Music.

This time Blacksmith CEO, Talib Kweli, long time collaborator, Res, and Toronto indie darling, Graph Nobel have combined to create Idle Worship. No word as to whether there will be an album or if this is just for fun, but here they are debuting over Busta’s ‘How we do it over here’ beat by Dr. Dre.

Idle Worship – Try It On (howwedoitoverhere)

Finally, if you’re like me, you were bombarded by Loud.com on your myspace and facebook a few months back talking about a competition to be the next Loud signee.

Well, aside from my general reservations of online contests, I also figured there’d be no way I could be among the finalists strictly based on my lack of gangsterific content.  Well, I was wrong….they picked dope lyricists….only problem is that you had to be a semi-celebrity FIRST, to even be considered a finalist (or so it would seem).

Loud has released their contest mixtape featuring the likes of:

  • Jake One : Underground uber producer.  Has worked with everyone from Posdnuous to 50 Cent and had one of the best hip-hop albums of ’08.
  • Brother Ali : Atmosphere labelmate and underground champion
  • Eyedea : Another underground darling, although I think his DJ, DJ Abilities, outshines him like a sun to a candle.
  • Royce Da 5’9″:  You already know about him.

So yeah….check it out…it’s still a good collection of artists, just lacking in the contest department.

KNONAM:  The Loud.com EP

That’s it from me.

The crew will be centralized back in Taipei very soon, so expect more posts from the fellas in the next few weeks.

Triple.

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