don’t play with me i’ll get you popped on your hoverboard

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N.O.R.E.’s Drunk Uncle tape was going to be a confirmed must-listen wild ride just off the strength of the Uncle Buck-referencing cover and the fact that there’s a skit of N.O.R.E. taking a piss that’s somehow “produced by Charlamagne the God”????? Like, does that mean Charlamagne was recording the sound of N.O.R.E. peeing? Or is that actually Charlamagne peeing and they just pretended it was N.O.R.E.? I dunno, but it’s a totally pleasant surprise that there are actually a few jams on this thing, basically whenever N.O.R.E. just gets to go crazy with beats that sound like late 90s Neptunes beats. “Want Me Dead” = good; “Want Me Dead” + what might be a years-old hyperactive T-Pain hook = even better. N.O.R.E. on “Giving It Up” = good, especially when he raps “This is that music you shouldn’t listen to!”; all the other dudes on “Giving It Up” = wait, why didn’t he and Vince Staples do a reggaeton song for this? And then it’s hard to fuck up N.O.R.E., Nature, Royal Flush, and Kool G. Rap on “Queens.”

But probably my favorite track on the tape is “Get Money,” which is produced by Swizzy and finds N.O.R.E. threatening to shoot someone off their hoverboard (see the title of this post). While that line will age about as well as an open bottle of Boone’s Farm, it is funny as fuck right now.

michael jackson with the work cuz i make the j’s start dancin

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Last night Lina, Nora Ephron, and I finished the OJ Simpson FX show. I really liked it, except for whenever the show tried to be meta (i.e., the Kardashian kids chanting their last name while watching TV, that guy yelling the phrase “PLOT TWIST” after that one plot twist involving the judge’s wife, etc.), but that’s just my personal preference.

The casting was amazing when it was spot-on, and even better when it wasn’t. Which is to say, literally what the fuck was going on with John Travolta the entire season were the makeup people just caking his face in silly putty before he went on set why didn’t his eyebrows move the scene where he listened to muzak in his car the Hawaiian shirt the Hawaiian shirt THE HAWAIIAN SHIRTTTTTT.

Travolta aside, I very heavily fucked with how the show managed to argue—and this is perhaps just how I read it—that OJ more than probably did it, or at least had something to do with it, yet the only logical course of action was to declare him not guilty. The final speeches by Chris Darden and Johnny Cochran really lay this out fairly plainly. As Darden points out, there really was a shit-ton of evidence linking OJ to the murder of his ex-wife and her lover, just straight-the-fuck-up, hammering the point home by cutting to the look of horror on the face of David Schwinner’s Robert Kardashian, who now fully understands he’s been aiding and abetting a murderer. But beneath the if-it-doesn’t-fit-you-must-acquits and loquacious razzle-dazzle of Johnnie Cochran lies a damn good argument that because of the institutional racism of the L.A.P.D., as well as the virulently racist attitudes of Mark Fuhrman who found key evidence in the case, there was reasonable doubt that the L.A.P.D. might have decided to skip a few steps and pin it on OJ because of his race.

To celebrate OJ getting off (AGAIN!), I spent this morning listening to a shit-ton of OJ da Juiceman, because he’s the fucking shit and the past few weeks of watching the OJ show reminded me he probably didn’t just take his name because he really likes Tropicana. History has certainly absolved Texaco Shawty in a way it didn’t the actual Juice—one went down in history as murderer and a sideshow, while the other is the pioneer of a the trap-Animaniac rap style that’s become a template for many an Atlanta rapper and ATL rap imitators the world over.

I wouldn’t begin to pretend to be some sort of great OJ scholar, but I can definitely say that his track “I Got Work,” off Alaska in Atlanta 2, is an incredibly fun rap song. OJ’s always plentiful energy seems boundless here, and the Metro Boomin’-produced beat is one of the better flips on Bangladesh’s “A Milli” template.

But hey—enough of my yakkin’. Listen to some freakin rap music.

i keep a chip in my phone

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The first famous, like actually famous, person I ever interviewed was David Banner. He’d been one of my favorite rappers all throughout college, and I was so nervous to talk to him that I actually smoked a cigarette while I was on the phone with him to keep myself from freaking out. He was great—notably, he told me that he and T.I. recorded “Rubber Band Man” in the back of a barber shop—and was generally super gracious despite my fanning out all over the place.

What’s interesting about Banner is that a few years back, he developed this insane guilt complex about having made songs like “Play,” which while extremely catchy is pretty brutally misogynistic. In 2010 he released an album called Death of a Pop Star with 9th Wonder, which unlike everything he’d done for the past decade didn’t have anything remotely resembling a hit single on it, but was actually pretty interesting if you gave it a chance. He just put out a new mixtape, titled Before the Box, and it’s really good. It definitely rides the same woke-ass wave as B.o.B.’s new music (which I am pretty sure I am the only person who enjoys), in that it definitely comes off like Banner’s been reading some InfoWars and is pretty sure there’s a secret world government and shit like that.

Anyhoo, these are the things I think about David Banner, and now that you’ve read this far you should listen to “Get Crunk,” which is from Banner’s Crooked Lettaz days and features Pimp C and is like the best song ever.

six hundred sixty six miles per hour

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I don’t know what’s gotten into me man, but lately I can’t stop listening to Kyuss’s Welcome to Sky Valley. I was walking my dog earlier tonight and started skanking like Axl Rose askin’ for some reggae down an abandoned Melrose as me and Nora Ephron (pictured above) were bumping “100 Degrees.” But there’s something about “Gardenia,” maybe the way it just sort of chugs along or the fact that it sort of seems like the lyrics are about having sex with a truck that really does it for me. Anyways, this is a slapper.

I feel like someone could sample and/or rap over a loop from the middle part of this. Or maybe that’s a terrible idea, I don’t know. Either way I’m out, peace bro.

them haters all on the internet bloggin, talkin bout a whole buncha motherfuckin nonsense

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The remix of the Lil Kim/Charlie Wilson/T-Pain masterpiece “Download” is, well, a lot. Featuring The-Dream and Official First Web Native Rap Star Soulja Boy, the track doubles, triples, quadruples down on the conceit of the original, which flips Zapp’s “Computer Love” for the social networking era. The-Dream tenderly shooby-doo-wops and then shit-talks bloggers (always a great tactic), and Soulja Boy talks about iChat, Twitter, and the nonexistent SpellFinder. Extremely chill, but not as chill as T-Pain referring to his boner as a “hard drive.” And even though Zapp’s version isn’t an explicit rewrite of Kraftwerk’s “Computer Love,” it’s pretty inarguable that the former wouldn’t exist without the latter. Which is to say, I would like to formally add this song to the list of reasons why Soulja Boy came up out the water just as important as Kraftwerk.

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juiced just like jamba

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OK first of all, I can’t even begin to talk about how incredible an album title Thizziana Stoned and the Temple of Shrooms is. We cannot continue this extremely short blog post without establishing this vital fact. Second of all, we must acknowledge the excellence of Droop-E’s beat, which I’d need an entire 33 1/3 book to discuss. Third of all (this is not a thing), “Slobba” is an extremely good song about blowjobs.

made a lotta albums, did a lotta shows

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Man I just got back from a festival in the Dominican Republic and it was like the coolest shit ever. Me and my mans Holy Mountain spent like 15 hours next to a lighthouse on Santo Domingo’s malecon eating burgers and catching vibes from a bunch of bands while waves crashed around us, and I cannot explain the degree to which I only want to listen to chill ass music ever again. Speaking of chill ass music, Kokane and Too $hort’s “Luvin a Pimp” is a chill ass song, it feels like it was invented for smoking weed on a beach while wearing an overly large hat to keep the sun out your face. Kokane’s verse is kind of “I’m an old man who doesn’t understand political correctness,” but hey what the fuck are you gonna do, Kokane’s an old man who doesn’t understand political correctness. I guess what I’m trying to say is Kokane’s fellow Pomona resident and Chief Pimp of All Hip-Hop Suga Free could have rapped his part and I wouldn’t have batted an eye.

turned up way before the molly

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Rejoice, fellow Rich Kidz heads, for a new Rich Kidz tape has blessed the front page of your preferred mixtape download site. While on first blush it’s nowhere near as essential a listen as Everybody Eat Bread or A West Side Story—both of which are swag-rap classics that predicted way too much of the modern Atlanta sound to have been overlooked the way that they were—THERE IS A NEW RICH KIDZ MIXTAPE Y’ALL!!! Skooly is obviously great on his own, but I really feel like he needs somebody to bounce off of or almost serve as a counterbalance to his wild style. And who knows Skooly better than HunchoKae? Nobody, that’s who.

This tape has its fair share of great tracks—the six-song run from “FR FR” to “Can’t Trust ‘Em” is fantastic, and the title track is fun in one of those “the influential and underrated rap group making the case for their place in history” ways, but mainly I’m just excited about the fact that a new Rich Kidz tape exists, because now that they have new music out there there’s a chance that Rich Kidz might become as big in real life as they are in my brain. I posted “FR FR” below, because I like it and Will A Fool is an underrated producer. This is the end of this blog post.

disappearing ink, was written in hieroglyphics

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His perhaps deserved rep for weed and permanent vacation-oriented lyrical content aside, Curren$y is legit one of the best writers in all of rap—dude can cultivate a mood with the best of ’em. When he’s really got his motor running and he’s waxing laconically about pulling jobs, hitting dealerships, and partaking in all kinds of opulent elegance he really reminds me of, like, a character in a Raymond Chandler novel: hard-boiled, non-nonsensical, and preferably smoking on something. He’s also one of the few rappers dedicated to sonic cohesion—he’s done a fairly high number of single-producer projects, including the Pilot Talk albums with Ski Beatz; quick projects with Harry Fraud, Cool & Dre, and Chase N. Cashe (I’m not looking up dude to see if I spelled his name right cuz he subtweeted me one time YEAH I’M PETTY); #The1st28 EP where he and Styles P rapped and Mostabeatz produced; and the Alchemist collab tape Covert Coup, a high-water mark in both Curren$y and Al’s careers imo. (if you don’t believe me, listen to “BBS” and report back to me)

SEE WHAT I DID THERE I BROUGHT IT ALL TOGETHER SORT OF BY TALKING ABOUT CURREN$Y WORKING WITH STYLES P AND ALSO ALCHEMIST THEN EMBEDDED A SONG THEY ALL DID ON THE NEW CURREN$Y/ALCHEMIST THING

Anyhoo, probably my favorite Rap Thing out right now is Curren$y and Alchemist’s Carrollton Heist tape. I don’t know if you blog hogs have listened to it or not, but but if you haven’t, then listen to it. If you have, listen to it again, especially “Disappearing Ink,” which I have taken the liberty of embedding above.

Styles P is another one of rap’s great writers, one of those guys who really clearly puts a ton of thought into every line he writes and wants it to be as airtight as humanly possible. It’s a style that, while it might not offer the immediate dynamism of some young swaglord with beads in his hair who just buttchugged some mollywater going all Animaniacs over a beat, isn’t trying to mask a lack of substance with some off-the-wall bullshit. (Not that I’m saying that I don’t also enjoy said off-the-wall bullshit or that everyone who raps in a straightforward manner is automatically good, I’m just saying that it’s harder to hide the fact that you don’t have anything interesting to say if you’re rapping in a more conventional manner, which makes the fact that Styles P is always so compelling even more impressive to me. Anyways, I’m digging myself into a hole, I’ll stop.) He’s also got the best Twitter feed in all of hip-hop—funny when he wants to be, goofy when he wants to be that too, wise when he has to be, and offering you daily affirmations that you need to be drinking your juice.

Anyways I’m gonna go to bed now, goodnight y’all