Continuing in the realm of 2017 beat tapes comes Austin producer Botany AKA Spencer Stephenson with his album Raw Light II.
The drum looper ‘Wednesday Night October 28 2015’ is one of the standout tracks, sampling together a frosty choir before spinning off until into cinematic vibrations powered by a flute. The Madlib and Four Tet influence is evident.
Portuguese beat maker Mz Boom Bap links up with 17-year-old rapper Curtis Roach to produce an early 90s retro hip-hop track entitled ‘Heard Em Say.’ Anything that sounds remotely like Pete Rock, DJ Premier, or Illmatic in general, is music to my ears.
“everything from the drum programming to the sample selection to the subtle ringing distortion of the Akai s950 delivers a seldom seen old-school authenticity.”
Canadian artist Kaytranada has been making beats since he was 15 years old, so dedicated to the craft he made a new chop every day for three years thereafter. Just scroll through his SoundCloud page — there are mixtapes, a series of his own dope productions, and remixes of the Fugees, Jill Scott, and Danny Brown. But the remix he dropped today of Solange’s ‘Cranes in the Sky’ is exceptional.
“I couldn’t help it and i can’t deny how good it sounds. this is just an edit to play on my dj sets, and i played it once and everybody wanted it right away. Honestly i was gonna wait to see if Solange or her team or whoever works for her wouldve ask me to do an offical remix so if they still want to, i could make it sound better than that version but ohhhhh, what the hell….anyways i highly recommend you that new Solange album “A Seat At The Table”.”
From hip-hop to RnB, electronica, and funk, Kaytranada does it all, so eclectic he even leaves the genre blank with ‘?????’ on his Facebook page.
Danny Brown, the so-called hip-hop’s ‘dark knight,’ is not one to follow trends. MTV even called him “one of rap’s unique figures in recent memory.”
On his newest album Autricity Exhibition, named after a Joy Division song, he lets go of all the anxiety and demons that haunted his 2014 depression. He also wanted more respect from his rap peers who seemed to outcast him for his weirdness. Nas was happy to tell him otherwise, and to stop complaining and get to work.
“Stop thinking about everything else and go with the actual thing that got you here. Sit there and fucking do the work. Put the beat on and let the fucking shit happen. Something is going to happen.”
And it did. What results is even darker, twisted rap, which remains true to his unique persona. “Really Doe” is one of those standout tracks, in which Brown raps “Show me somethin’ I ain’t seen before.” Peep it below, and download the album if you want to warp into a different dimension. 👊
Big Peace, also known as Big War, is a producer and a co-founder of the multidisciplinary Generic Greeting Collective in Manchester, UK.
According to the Bandcamp page, the Peace/War albumis a collection of hip-hop beats made from 2010 – 2016 that incorporate elements of Balearic dance music, dub, and grime. The vibe is next-level, to say the least, as is the artwork.
Like is part of hip-hop trio Pac Div but is also a solo producer and rapper. Songs Made While High is his first album, continuing his exploration of beats from his instrumental EP Emeralds. He explains his creative process for the album on his Bandcamp page:
“…The reason I titled this album ‘Songs Made While High’ wasn’t because I’m a pseudo-druggy (I only smoke weed and occasionally take shrooms). As cliche as it may sound, music gets me high. I’m addicted to sounds and melodies, Chords and samples- colors and soundscapes my brother and I heard growing up in church…”
His collaboration with fellow LA-native Anderson. Paak (stream above) is one of the stellar tracks on the album. ‘Lamped’ is a dope chop too; peep it after the jump. He also premiered a music video for the album’s final track ‘Miss Me With That.’
Kirk Knight is a 19-year-old Brooklyn producer and rapper from the hip-hop collective Pro Era, spearheaded by frontman Joey Bada$$.
‘Young Ones’ is the first single from his mixtape Black Noise coming out soon. He dropped his debut solo album Late Night Specialto much acclaim last year. Don’t sleep on the track ‘Brokeland,’ which reminds me of another New York based hip-hop crew.
Check out his site for upcoming tour dates and more info.