Posts Tagged ‘opinion’

No Marci Beaucoup (Roc Marciano)

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Roc-Marciano-Marci-Beaucoup-cover

​It’s no secret that I’m a huge Roc Marci fan. I hold that dude in high regard and he is responsible for me still giving a fuck about New York hip-hop these days. His first two albums are personal favorites of mine and I have no problem having that whole “modern classic” argument with anyone when it comes to Marcberg. I still haven’t taken Reloaded out of my car and its been over a year now. While most people are rocking Christmas tunes I’ll rock “We Ill,” “Death Parade” or “Deeper” as they are some marvelous winter anthems.

Last month, Roc blessed with the Pimpire Strikes Back mixtape just to get our feet wet for his 3rd official release. Some of it was met with mixed reviews as many of us weren’t used to Roc having this many co-pilots. After a few listens though, you could tell it was vintage Roc over melodic backdrops such as “”Sincerely Antique,” “Bruh Man,” “Sacrifice,”  or the Max B inspired “Ice Cream Man.” I loved the mixtape, as do most I believe. It was a little different than what we’ve come to expect but undeniably fresh.

Now that Marci Beaucoup has released I’ve given it my undivided attention and a handful of listens. Now, let me say off the bat it’s not nearly as disappointing as the title of this post. And by no means is it worthy of sleeping on, but I won’t front either, the shit ain’t what I expected nor what I would have wanted from Roc Marciano at this point. ​ My takeaway so far is this, yes if we’re ranking all of his releases and taking into account Pimpire, then this release right here is his Attack of the Clones. Last week Jay-Z ranked his albums and this album is definitely Roc’s Dynasty.

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Wu-Tang Forever?

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Who ever thought we’d see the day our beloved Wu Tang members would desperately cling for relevancy? There is no denying the Wu is one of the greatest, most influential and successful groups of all-time. Growing up there was point when every Wu release was met with tremendous excitement and copped with ease. Even the Wu affiliates were copped, every one from Shyheim to GP Wu to Killarmy all the way to Royal Fam.

They’ve been responsible for a plethora of classics, both solo and collective efforts. But if we’re all being honest here, we know the last release that was truly worthy of its praise was the ’09 Only Built 4 Cuban Linx Pt. II. Way before that and certainly well after, there hasn’t been much and when I say before that, I meant for a long period of time. Once the dust settled and the hype dissolved, we later realized albums such as 8 Diagrams or the 11 year old Iron Flag were simply not up to par. They were not how we wanted to remember the Wu. (more…)

Remember when Ras Kass used to be dope?

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Remember those days? If you’re like me you probably held Mr. Austin in very high regard. I bet you thought he could be a top 5 lyricist one day too. Well, this isn’t about playa hating. Not about hating on anyone trying to get money because I can assure you this ain’t going to do it. This is about how one of the most gifted lyricists of all-time completely pissed away his career with horrible career decisions. I won’t even touch on the life decisions because we all make mistakes, but since Pac died the Leftcoast hasn’t been right.

Ras Kass had the ability to be one of the greatest. He completely has stayed fucking up with dumb decisions like these. Go ahead, tell me I’m wrong after you listen to this bullshit. Victor Maitland stays laughin’ at this crap.

Blog Watch Edition 9: Odd Future, Again and Again

Monday, April 4th, 2011

Everyone’s talking about Odd Future but most online writers keep a cool distance between themselves and the collective’s actual musical content. Details after the jump. (more…)

Blog Watch Edition 8c: Critical Loop

Monday, March 28th, 2011

There’s a loopy set of assumptions circulating trough the bloggasfear as of late. Details after the jump. (more…)

Blog Watch Edition 8b: Gender and Sexuality

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

Politically correct epiphanies are not limited to SXSW attendees, it seems. Details after the jump. (more…)

Blog Watch Edition 8a: The Startling Epiphanies Of SXSW

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

Last week I had nothing to write about. There were many exceptionally good pieces that made their way through the bloggasfear this week, but many that inspired me to respond critically as well. So many, in fact, that I had to break this week’s edition into three parts. Part A deals with the epiphanic fallout of SXSW. (more…)

A Few Thoughts Regarding Big Pun

Friday, March 25th, 2011

The recent anniversary of Big Pun’s death had me thinking about a few things, but I was busy with some other pieces and only recently remembered to begin writing my thoughts down.

I think Big Pun was a very talented rapper. His debut album Capital Punishment still sounds good today; it is a frustrating reminder of a hardcore-bordering-on-commercial NYC sound that people either abandoned, forgot how to recreate, or simply cannot adapt to suit the sensibilities of today’s listeners. He had a knack for stringing together combinations of words that less skilled rappers could never make flow. He did a respectable job of emulating Kool G Rap’s style and adding his idiosyncrasies. That “dead in the middle of Little Italy…” stretch is clearly a great moment in multi-syllabic rhyming. He is the only Puerto Rican emcee who is regularly mentioned as being among the greatest of all time.

A few things trouble me about Big Pun’s critical reception and legacy, though.
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Pacewon and Contemporary Rap Consciousness

Friday, March 18th, 2011

Pacewon and Mr. Green “Can You Hear Me” (dedicated to the people of Tunisia)

The social and political consciousness that is evident in rap songs during the late ’80s and early ’90s is invoked by nostalgic admirers as a defining characteristic of rap’s earlier years. Its gradual decline in visibility and relative absence in popular contemporary rap is lamented and occasionally cited as a symptom of the genre’s degeneration, and spuriously linked to a related growth of apathy and ignorance among listeners. The “conscious rap” of the past is incorrectly assumed to be  a sub-genre that is diametrically opposed to the values and aesthetics of “gangsta” or “commercial rap;” the running story is that it faded from popularity because neither the music industry nor a critical mass of fans respected its cerebral content or capacity for exposing the truth.

This narrative is retold and embellished to justify the increasingly conservative tastes of a small but vocal minority of older hip hop fans who view politically and socially conscious lyrical content to be the exclusive domain of artists who match a narrow, increasingly outdated aesthetic. ((Including but not limited to: dreadlocks, twists, and other “natural hairstyles, loud “bohemian” clothing, production that samples heavily from bebop and fusion jazz, lyrics that proclaim a connection to the Black Power and Civil Rights movements and a kinship with imprisoned political activists, and publicly acknowledged dalliance in non-Christian faiths/belief systems/philosophies/dietary restrictions.)) Recent songs such as Pacewon and Mr. Green’s “Can You Hear Me” (see the video above), which do not resemble the militant songs of the past but are still politically themed,  are not widely praised for their content. (more…)

Blog Watch Edition 7 – Are You Serious?

Sunday, March 13th, 2011

This week the bloggasfear/internets produced some great articles on rap, just as many that were less than great, and a few that inspired me to respond. Details after the jump. (more…)