Buddy – Guillotine

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Image courtesy the artist

Compton-based rapper Buddy is back with some beats and rhymes on the 5-track EP entitled Ocean & Montana, a collaboration with Canadian producer Kaytranada.

Buddy originally signed to Pharrell Williams’ I Am Other label where he released the Idle Time album in 2014 along with his single ‘Awesome Awesome.’ But the label relationship fizzled out.

The partnership with Kaytranada is a better fit nonetheless. ‘Guillotine’ pairs Buddy’s smooth flow over some funky West Coast electronic vibes. This is certainly no come-back record; rather, Buddy is just getting started. And Kaytranada’s beats continue to get more interesting.

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Hector Plimmer – Let’s Stay

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Image courtesy the artist

Hector Plimmer is an electronic producer from South London. His latest record, Sunshine, is an exploration of trippy synths and jazz drums. “It represents (in no particular order) my musical journey over the past 4 or so years, some of which may never have seen the light of day,” says the musician.

The opening track ‘Let’s Stay’ is a sublime mix of dreamy keys laced to a head-nodding drum kicks. It’s no surprise his influences range from Flying Lotus, Portishead, to Theo Parrish.

Download the album on Amazon

Oddisee – NNGE (feat. Toine)

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Image courtesy the artist

Beats, rhymes, and pieces. That’s what you’ll hear from prolific musician Oddisee, a native of the Diamond District. He’s back again with his third release in a dozen months with The Iceberg, an album that sees him grapple with the issues related to culture, race, and politics. The White House barred him from performing at Obama’s Farewell for his “controversial” lyrics on the track ‘Lifting Shadows.’

If the tune ‘NNGE’ is any indication, Oddisee is prepared to sharpen his words to meet these darker times.

“I grew up witnessing many protests come to Washington DC. This song continues that tradition by using words of encouragement over production inspired by the native sounds of DC music.” — Oddisee

Witch Project – Pearly Gates

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Witch Prophet AKA Ayo Leiliani

Witch Prophet is the Canadian-based hip-hop MC and artist Ayo Leiliani. She’s also the co-founder of the arts collective 88 Days of Fortune and part of experimental rap group Above Top Secret.

On her latest solo project, a 4-track EP entitled H.P.B., she rhymes soulfully over Mobb Deep’s 2006 release ‘Pearly Gates.’ Her version is superior.

“Do we keep moving forward?/ And backward?/ And forward?”

Although music and life vacillate, let’s hope Witch Prophet keeps pushing things forward.

Mz Boom Bap – Heard Em Say (ft. Curtis Roach)

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Image via Bandcamp

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.”

Download the The Rawness EP

Solange – Cranes in the Sky (Kaytranada Edit)

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In the footsteps of Dilla… (image via FB)

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 – Really Doe ft. Kendrick Lamar, Ab-Soul, Earl Sweatshirt

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 – Peace: Diva

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Image via SoundCloud

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 album is 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.

Favorite tracks:  Peace: Aisha, Diva, War: Hypeeee, War: Bonus edit, Bonus: Eternity

Download on Bandcamp and nod ya head.

PS. For similar tunes, check out Paul White and Illum Sphere.


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LIKE – Mission Road ft. Anderson .Paak

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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.’

Snag your copy of Songs Made While High