Clams Casino-Bookfiend ft. DOOM

mf doom
Admittedly, I’ve never really got into MF Doom’s works. That’s not down to a dislike for him, but purely because he’s got so much work in his catalogue, and the small bits I do own are certainly impressive.

It’s fair to say my fandom of Clams is much more pronounced-I’ve repeatedly named him as one of the better producers in today’s scene, and here he laces Doom with a tricky yet typically-deep production that requires some flexible work on the mic. The multi-layered production offers a vast range of sounds to clasp on to, whether that’s the offbeat melodies sitting on top or the background metronomy that the percussion provides, and whilst it won’t appeal to the casual listener, those with a penchant for complex, technically-tight work will enjoy this. With a slight upbeat quality in particular segments and darker, more atmospheric sections elsewhere, both benefit from a stream of consciousness rapping style from Doom, who moves between introspective thoughts, social commentaries and more in a slow delivery that pinpoints production highs to tame the rather wild beat. Once again, this won’t be for your everyday listener, but for those who want to appreciate a unique, technical piece of hip-hop, you can’t go wrong.

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Calez-Too Broke (Mixtape)

calez
It’s been almost a year since we heard from Calez (unless I’ve somehow missed something), but he’s back with 14 brand new tracks that should make for a good barometer of how far he’s evolved in that time away.

From catching a listen of one or two of the tracks previously, his progression is absolutely evident, with heightened levels of intensity and vigour clear in his delivery, whilst the productions seem strong, bass-heavy offerings. The features are minimal, with a little help from his 2008ighties compatriots Julian Malone and UG (no Fonz-E Mak though, sadly), whilst the standout production credits come from Clams Casino and Calez adding a self-helmed effort onto here. Lots to look forward to, and you can download the project for free below.

Calez-Too Broke

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Clams Casino-Instrumental Mixtape 2


It’s been a little while since we’ve heard from the very talented Clams Casino, and he returns to our playlists with a compilation of some of his most recent and popular productions. There’s no doubt that he’s been one of the truly in-form producers of the last 6-8 months, and this collection is a good chance to discover and rediscover some of his work over that timeframe.

Fans of A$AP Rocky’s LiveLoveA$AP will both recognise and enjoy a decent chunk of this tape, whilst beats for Lil B, Mac Miller, The Weeknd and more also make appearances on this 14-track mixtape. The tracklist is a fairly diverse one and should show off the extensive range behind the boards that Clams possesses, and I’m definitely looking forward to this one. Free grab below.

Clams Casino-Instrumental Mixtape 2

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Clams Casino-Swervin' Remix Instrumental


Undoubtedly, Clams is one of the better producers in the hip-hop game right now, and it’s this remix of an XV track that brought him to the attention of many a few months back. Such was the remix’s popularity that Clams has responded to fan demand by letting loose of the instrumental, and it’s one that transcends its association with the original track.

Full of that atmospheric Clams Casino charm, there’s a sombre, almost melancholy vibe about the instrumental that results in a reflective effect on the listener, conjuring up a soundscape perfect for some introspection. The percussion is often muted to allow the drifty synths do their work, and its return is always to good effect as it snaps the track from a trippy, dreamy section into one with more drive and positivity, and that just one facet of another wonderfully detailed production from Clams. A great listen.

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OTU Presents: The Winter EP Vol. 2


Grab your scarf and gloves, stick on a pair of headphones and warm up with the second volume of our Winter EP. There’s been a rather large gap between this edition and the first instalment, but it’s arrived eventually and couldn’t be better timed with the weather getting much colder recently.

Once again, our resident designer (Indi) has lovingly put together a crispy new artwork, which adds a nice touch of visuals to accompany the listening pleasure of the 5 tracks included below. As per the previous edition, there’s no restriction on genre, artist or anything else: if it feels wintery, it’s got a chance of making the cut!

Click here for volume 1, and head below for volume 2.

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A$AP Rocky-Pretty Flacko


Still riding the considerable wave of support for his very likeable LiveLoveA$AP mixtape, Rocky comes through with his first (official) track since the release of the aforementioned mixtape.

In truth, it’s not up to the standards of the better tracks on the mixtape, but I expect Rocky’s fans to find it worth a couple of plays. The production isn’t as entrancing as the Clams Casino instrumentals he previously frequented, but has a more thumping, classically hip-hop vibe about it that will rattle a few speakers for sure, whilst the raps aren’t as firmly grounded in the Southern-style flow, as Rocky instead shows a little more of his native NY style in a few short bursts. Decent enough effort, and it may be a grower.

A$AP Rocky-Pretty Flacko

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OTU Presents: The Winter EP: Volume 1


My love of ‘winter music’ has been far from secret here on OTU, and several discussions with music fans of various tastes have led me to believe many OTU readers share that appreciation.

We’re all about satisfying the fans, so welcome to our new 5-part feature. Each edition features a selection of tracks that are taior made for the dark winter period, and in keeping with OTU’s diversity code, expect some old tracks, some modern tracks, with a vast range of genres represented (in no particular order either; for example, Vol. 1 doesn’t necessarily have all of the best tracks!)

Just to really drive those frosty vibes home, we’ll even provide you with fresh, original artwork for each ‘EP’ for you to download at your pleasure and finish off those playlists. Kind aren’t we? Without further ado, click below for 5 tracks to get your winter started.
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A$AP Rocky-Demons Video

One of my favourite tracks from the likeable LiveLoveA$AP mixtape, not least because it samples the excellent Clams Casino’s Numb instrumental.

Whilst I mostly agree with the notion that Rocky is more ‘style than substance’, there’s not too much wrong with that in truth, and his style makes for very easy, enjoyable listening. This track is demonstration of that, as he mostly delivers ‘stoner raps’ that aren’t anything particularly new, but when combined with his laidback flow and impeccable beat selection it creates an accessible all-round package that will continue to find fans. The video is fairly simple, having a generally hazy and misty effect, with the footage comprised of live shows, Rocky’s neighboorhood and various shots of the A$AP crew generally hanging out. Nothing particularly complex, and it works well enough with the audio.

EDIT: As I’m writing this, I’m advised this video wasn’t an ‘approved release’ and an official video for Wassup is on the way. Whilst not approved for release or finished, it’s clearly an official video in some capacity, and you can grab the audio on the LiveLoveA$AP mixtape here.

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