The Healing Power of Music

Top o’ the morning, tunegrapers!  And yes, I am aware that it is 3 o’clock in the afternoon.  I hope you all aren’t feeling the effects of whatever you did last night, ‘cause I know I am.  Days like this call for some Advil, plenty of liquids and Atmosphere’s track “Sunshine”.  It’s my go-to jam for the not-so-nice morning after.  I’ll admit that the song’s imagery doesn’t quite fit this frigid winter day in Boston, but it’ll be sure to warm every crevice of your soul.  So here’s to thoughts of sunshine and a speedy recovery.  Enjoy.

By Courtney Flynn

A Rain Delay

Back to Curren$y, this mixtape is insane. I've been back and forth on the song Rain Delay, it's strange and unique and fascinates me every time I listen. I officially decided this morning to except the shrill sounds and other weird things that permeate the beat and accept the song for what it is. What is this song? An example of genius. There is so much potential in a new wave of rappers who I can only hope are about to take over the mainstream and Curren$y is one of the leaders in that group of rappers. Check out Rain Delay, hear for yourself.

While you're at it check this banger out...


Friday Night Right

It's Friday, I'm finally done with the work week and ready for the weekend. Moon and Stars (Remix) by Big K.R.I.T. ft. Curren$y and Killa Kyleon will definitely be on at wherever I'm going tonight, I'll make sure of it. Return to the Winners Circle is Curren$y's insane new mixtape (which includes Moon and Stars) that's necessary for purchase. So let it make its way into your party playlist this weekend and everyone will dig it.

Moon and Stars (Remix)

and another dirty Curren$y tune,

Listen for the Wiz Khalifa reference. 


Jay Electronica at Night

I know, I've posted about Jay Electronica before, but I really think if he can step back up a bit better then Shiny Suit Theory back to like, Million in the Morning or The Pledge (Eternal Sunshine) status, he can be huge, and an actually legitimate mainstream talent with the help of Jay-Z. After enjoying the subhuman antics of the Jersey Shore earlier, I definitely needed a little something to bring me down to earth. I rode my longboard home and on the way listened to The PLedge (Eternal Sunshine). The song fit the ride perfectly, it was really relaxed and just worked with the cold January night in Boston. Try it out sometime.

The Pledge (Eternal Sunshine) - Jay Electronica

Too much rage?

As a society, we tend to let artists get away with more than most people because their art is worth whatever hell they raised in the process.  We’ve seen this in the past, specifically with drug use, with artists such as Jimi Hendrix, The Doors and Janis Joplin, whose music was heavily influenced by whatever they were sippin’, smokin’ or droppin’.  It’s certainly no new phenomena, and it’s something that occurs today throughout all music genres (except maybe Gospel).  I myself don’t mind if an artist needs a little extra something-something to get the creative juices flowing, just as long as the final product is quality.  But what happens if an artist’s drug use lowers the quality of their music?  Do we still turn a blind eye and wait for an upturn?
This leads me to the most disappointing album of 2010: Kid Cudi - Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager.  Now, I happen to love Kid Cudi’s first album Man on the Moon: The End of Day, which is chalk-full of weed and ‘shroom references, but it seems that Cudi has gotten heavier into drugs these days.  He is the self proclaimed “Mr. Rager” after all.  And let’s not forget about his liquid cocaine bust or this shining moment:

Mama Cudi would be proud.

All jokes aside, Cudi’s drug use has seemed to hamper his performance on Man on the Moon II.  Too much off-key singing, not enough rapping – lyrically, it falls flat and is clearly uninspired.  I also noticed that I don’t sympathize with Cudi as much as I did on his first album.  Man on the Moon II is definitely darker and more cohesive than Man on the Moon I, but it also feels a bit contrived.  Don’t get me wrong, I love me some depressed Cudi, but how he talks about his own tortured soul with such, dare I say, pride?  It just throws it off for me.  Maybe I set my hopes too high for this album.  Maybe Cudi is due, like many other artists, his own sophomore slump.
As much as Man on the Moon II fell short of my expectations, I have to give credit when it’s due.  The production quality is sound.  I wouldn’t expect anything less, as it came in part from Kanye West’s GOOD music label.  Also, I’m really digging the hip-hop/alt. rock sound Cudi is growing into (listen to “REVOFEV”).  I think he’s onto something there.  He just needs to perfect it.  And maybe rage a little less.

By Courtney Flynn

Sex Pistols Reunion?

I have always loved the Sex Pistols. They are one of my favorite bands and a default when I'm in the mood for that kind of music. I agree with the SLC Punk line delivered by Steve-O (not of Jackass and WIld Boyz) that their message was not for people in the U.S. but for people in the U.K., but in the end, they did have a universal touch to them, as well as a distinctly catchy yet thrashed up and hard sound to them. Something unique, totally English yet totally punk. Recently Johnny Rottern has considered a Sex Pistols reunion. I consider him kind of a a sell out and product of the capitalist he once rebelled against these days but hey, who from my generation (who is a punk rock fan) wouldn't want the chance to see them live?

Pretty Vacant Promo Vid for the single.

Akron, Ohio

How could you deny the powerful and driving rhythm section of the Black Keys. Could you deny that Brothers was the best album of 2010? Well you could argue that it wasn't...but I'd surely argue against you. Either way the Black Keys are one of the most refreshing and revitalizing groups in the musical spectrum. I've seen them get compared to the White Stripes alot, and yeah, okay, I understand where those people are coming from but there is one huge difference. The Black Keys, despite the name and number-of-members similarities, take what the White Stripes do, and make it more raw, more to the point. They water down all the extras the White Stripes throw on and you get a pure bluesy rock sound, infused with soul and some funk, but pure nonetheless. When any song from the Black Keys comes on, there's really just two words that come to my head, "oh, fuck." Speechless and lost and in the drowning distortion and blues tinged riffs of their heavy rock and velvety soul.

Never Give You Up - Black Keys
                                             A powerful example of their softer music. I've always thought the heavily distorted guitar riffs which pop up occasionally throughout the song were the bands attempt at horns. One of my favorite Black Keys songs by far though.

The Black Key's latest single, Ohio

Psychotic Girl - Black Keys
Just one more, another favorite of mine. Wow, I just don't know how anyone could resist this song, well any of their songs for that matter. 


Digital Millenium Copyright Act

A post of mine has officially been demoted from post, to draft, so that it will not appear on the internet. I received the email at work today, and figured the best thing to do is post the email on the internet, why not?

Blogger has been notified, according to the terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), that certain content in your blog is alleged to infringe upon the copyrights of others. As a result, we have reset the post(s) to "draft" status. (If we did not do so, we would be subject to a claim of copyright infringement, regardless of its merits. The URL(s) of the allegedly infringing post(s) may be found at the end of this message.) This means your post - and any images, links or other content - is not gone. You may edit the post to remove the offending content and republish, at which point the post in question will be visible to your readers again.

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This blog isn't stopping anytime soon


Drake's Blunder

Say what you will about Drake as a rapper, but damn it, the boy can sing a mean love song.  I don’t know if he gets it from his acting experience, but his voice just seems to emote so effortlessly on every slow jam he releases.  I actually prefer his breakout mixtape “So Far Gone,” which is mostly R&B songs set to a heartbeat-beat, over his latest commercial album “Thank Me Later” for just that reason.  Let’s face it rap fans – the slow love song is Drake’s forte.  So of course, when I heard a leaked version of the song “Fall For Your Type” [prod. by 40], I instantly fell in love with the familiar beat and Drake’s crooning.  “Fall For Your Type” is a song that young people can relate to because we’ve all had at least some experience with relationships, yet we’re still stubborn (or stupid) enough to make the same mistakes.  Talking to myself but I never listen/’cause man it’s been a while, and I swear that this one’s different.   It’s about knowing who is bad for you, but at the same time falling powerless under their spell.  I couldn’t wait until the full track was released, but then THIS happened and I let out a prolonged “Nooo!”

                                                       Fall For Your Type ft. Drake - Jamie Foxx

DRAKE GAVE THE SONG AWAY!  TO JAMIE FOXX!  I mean, I don’t understand why Drake would give the song to anyone anyways, but to Jamie Foxx?  The dude is 43, or something.  I feel politically incorrect even referring to him as a “dude.”  He’s just too old for the song to sound believable.  Remember when I said “Fall For Your Type” is a song young people can relate to?  Well, it’s just not believable that a man in his 40s is struggling with relationship issues that are obviously way below his maturity level (on second thought…).  The song is just more age appropriate for Drake, and not to hate on Foxx, but Drake sounds better on the song, too.  So tell me what you think.  Who did it best? 

By Courtney Flynn

Datpiff.com and Young Roc

The free mixtape site DatPiff.com is a Wikipedia of sorts.  It’s constantly being edited by its own users, who are zealots for quality hip-hop.  If a mixtape is trash, they’ll be sure to voice their opinion.  That’s why I can always trust DatPiff to put me on to the best new stuff, and 11:11 (Playerway & Gold) by Young Roc is no exception.  I’ll admit I had my doubts when I first saw the mixtape’s 30 tracks, because let’s be honest, there aren’t many rappers who can carry an album of that length.  However, I was pleasantly surprised by the musical ear-gasm 11:11 brings.  The crisp beats and sample selections are just a couple indicators of the tape’s masterful production, the majority of which was done by Young Roc himself.  As far as lyrical content goes, there’s nothing new to see here, just the money, hoes and clothes.  On the other hand, no one can deny the honest, raw style that Young Roc brings to each track, or his relaxed flow, which is similar to Wiz Khalifa’s (listen to “The Feeling”).   Overall, 11:11 (Playerway & Gold) is a solid, lighthearted mixtape that will keep me going through the winter.  I just wish they had shortened it to only the best songs.  Notable tracks are “Make A Wish,” “Rambunctious,” “Reptilian Resistance,” and “You Are Not Alone” [prod. by Sango].

Make a Wish - Young Roc

By Courtney Flynn

Roth Doesn't Party, He Trips

Asher Roth has gone totally psychedelic and a lot more intelligent and its pretty cool. He is not the party boy he once was, I think partly due to his recent association with Lupe Fiasco. Whatever it is, his lyricism has made a come back with a focus on intelligence and a bit of introspection and psychedelic imagery. It's pretty great and I'm pretty sure there is a real, noticeable change it the lyrics he rights, and its not just me.

Lupe's rap supergroup, All City Chess Club. (Asher Roth, B.o.B., The Cool Kids, Charles Hamilton, Blu, Diggy SImmons, Wale, J. Cole, Dosage.) 


Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings Beast Buy Theater

I've been mentioning Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings a lot lately, because I saw them on Thursday, December 30th. It was wild, a whole new experience for me, and almost as much as or more of people a party then any rap, punk, rock, whatever show festival I've ever been to. The atmosphere was wild and energetic and a bit alcohol induced. There was a lot of overly drunk middle aged shuffle and stumble dancing. A couple older women drunkenly screaming cigarette laden cheers as well. The band though, was amazing. After an entertaining warm up by the Dap Kings Sharon Jones came out and immediately busted out some high energy, raspy, time machine funk and soul. I didn't grow up in an time when the music Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings creates was really at it's prime, but I definitely feel like this show touched at least a little upon the atmosphere those past shows created. At one point Jones went through a lesson of a series of dances popular in the late 60's along with a driving powerful train like rhythm and horns section powering her through it.  As well later in the show she had each member of the Dap Kings play a solo on their individual instrument, making for an amazing display of their idiosyncratic talent, a shocking display of musical knowledge, and abilities from baritone sax, to congos and bongos, to guitar and piano and more. Basically wow, an all out party, comparable to one of my favorite party atmospheres,a Badfish shows, but with a different kind of flavor that makes it without a doubt a rare experience in today's music scene.
Are You Gonna Give it Back - Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings

I don't know if I should be ashamed about having Chris Brown on my iTunes.

(Top) Swizz Beats, Chris Brown, lil' Wayne. (Bottom) Old School Busta

Heard this song the night after New Years, at a party the night before I left for Boston. I remember thinking wow this is great, but not really taking it in. I totally forgot about the song after that night, but heard it again recently. I have to admit, I am a fan of, I am a fan of G Shit ft. Chris Brown by Tyga, mostly because of the chilled beat, and even more so I'm a fan of Holla at Me ft. Tyga by Chris Brown. This song is the song Chris Brown rang in the New Year with, Look at Me Now ft. Busta Rhymes and Lil' Wayne . The song, announced on his Twitter, is another Chris Brown track thats actually bearable, something I never imagined myself saying before 2010, and now in the begining of 2011, I'm saying it again. Either fast forward through, or block out Chris Browns half-rap half-sing attempt for the first 51 seconds and chill on the cool and unusual beat. After 51 seconds Chris Brown comes with his best attempt at a high speed rap for a some bars, then says "i'm done" and Busta Rhymes comes on. Thats when the song takes a turn and goes from chill to straight dirty. Busta releases a high speed barely understandable, yet stunningly good, storm of wordplay worth listening to. After that Lil' Wayne comes in with one of his better quality verses, a bit better then typical lil' Wayne. Lyrically nothing unique, but flow wise I can appreciate it.
I'm becoming more addicted the more I work on this post actually...

Look at Me Now - Chris Brown ft. Busta Rhymes & lil' Wayne