Nottz-Turn It Up ft. Pete Rock (Video)

So, if you’re going to put two fantastic producers like this together, you’re pretty much going to get a monopoly on my attention. Both are revered for their beat work, but the two come together here in a performance capacity, lacing verses on a classic-style production that will certainly win the hip-hop heads over.

It’s a beat that’s wonderfully simple, combining a strong midtempo percussion with an unashamedly repeated melody on top, giving the production a structure and consistency that allows the MCs to exhibit some flexibility in their raps, whilst also allowing room for a couple of rogue samples and scratches to be sporadically thrown in on top. Rock opens with a laidback contribution, including a nice nod to his timeless T.R.O.Y. production, before Nottz arrives with a little more intensity in his verse, making for a good blend of styles between the two.

The clip’s shot with a distorted, scrapbook-style effect that adds a throwback quality and sense of reflectiveness, whilst also being unfussy enough to give it a ‘no-nonsense’ vintage hip-hop vibe. Only a short one, but very likeable and you’ll find it on Nottz’s In My Mind EP.

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Pac Div-Gimme What You Got

It’s difficult to not be a Pac Div fan, given that their music never ceases to be a combination of diverse and incredibly consistent, and grabbing new material from them is always appreciated.

This is an upbeat, positive jam with a summery production that has a lively bounce, courtesy of soft melodies, drifty vocal samples and a percussion that just rolls cooly along throughout the track. For those of you of a classic disposition, this actually samples Pete Rock and CL Smooth’s Take You There, explaining the beat’s deliciously retro vibe. The Div’s raps are good throughout, bouncing along with the melody nicely courtesy of fairly slick flows from each member, whilst keeping things fairly light lyrically to prevent smothering the production. A very good listen, and let’s hope more is coming soon.

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Pete Rock and Smif-N-Wessun Speak On Dr. Dre Vs DJ Premier

In support of their latest drop Monumental (cop here) Pete Rock and Cocoa Brovaz drop by with Vlad TV for a quick interview.

Here we have the threesome discussing the somewhat problematic question (in some people’s eyes; not mine I hasten to add) of who is a better producer: Dr. Dre or DJ Premier.

I think Rock covers it perfectly by stating how it’s difficult to compare the different New York gritty yet funky samples of Premo versus Dre’s famous laid back G-Funk.

Good stuff.

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Pete Rock & Smif-N-Wessun ft. Styles P & Sean Price-That’s Hard

A lot of people have been sleeping on this imminent project and I have no idea why. I mean, it’s Pete Rock AND Smif-N-Wessun (Wait. Didn’t they have to change their name due to the guns manufacturer?) Regardless, here they hook up with a double dosage of SP (Love what they did with the cover) for this heavy violin effort with equally mean lyricism and textbook scratches from Rock himself. Monumental drops June 28th.

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Jeru The Damaja Prepares Upcoming Album

The elusive Jeru The Damaja has confirmed in a recent interview that he has a new album coming with production from Large Professor, JuJu from the Beatnuts, Pete Rock and hopefully DJ Premier!

Jeru also speaks some wisdom as always on the current state of hip-hop and on receiving a shout-out from Gucci Mane. Jeru recently visited Toronto for a Guru tribute show with Canibus and R.A. The Rugged Man. Damn. Hip-hop lives. Watch the full video here.

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Reks-Rhythmatic Eternal King Supreme [Album Review]

“Reks’ third offering in the shape of Rhythmatic Eternal King Supreme delivers to the underground fan with a range of subject matter, on-point rhymes, lyrical dexterity and Reks’ best selection of beats to date.”

The artist:

Born Corey Isaiah Christie in Lawrence, Massachusetts, Reks dropped out of college to pursue his dream in hip-hop. After taking the Boston underground scene by storm, Reks landed a deal with Landspeed Records who delivered his now decade-old debut Along Came The Chosen in 2001. The success which followed gave touring opportunities alongside respected emcees including Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Redman, De La Soul and his idol KRS-One. Reks’ second effort Grey Hairs (2008) is frequently cited as a classic amongst underground heads spearheaded by the impeccable Say Goodnight with legendary producer DJ Premier.

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Sit Down with DJ Premier and Pete Rock

Happy New Year Pilgrims!

I mark my return with an hour-long sit down with two of hip-hop’s greatest ever producers: DJ Premier and Pete Rock. Such an enthralling interview and it’s fantastic to see the chemistry between the two friends and competitors as they discuss the career-defining records for not only themselves, but the artists they crafted them for.

I’ve already watched this 4 times.


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Kanye West, Pete Rock, Kid Cudi, Jay-Z, Curtis Mayfield and Charlie Wilson-The Joy

The most eclectic line-up since the inception of G.O.O.D. Fridays? It has to be up there.

Pete Rock serves up a deep, booming and atmospheric production that will definitely satisfy the hip-hop heads: it’s all about thick bass, pounding percussion and soul samples. It has to be said that Jay seems to have really upped his game on these GOOD Friday tracks, and both him and Kanye do decent jobs on verse duty, whilst Charlie Wilson and Cudi only really provide background vocals.

From top to bottom this is unquestionably a hip-hop track, and not the usual genre crossover you tend to find with ‘Ye’s material. Very replayable.

Kanye West-The Joy ft. Pete Rock, Jay-Z, Charlie Wilson, Curtis Mayfield & Kid Cudi

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Red Cafe-Heart and Soul of NYC (prod. by Pete Rock)

I forgot that I actually really, really like this song.

It was released way back in July 09, and I was really disappointed on reflection to find that I never actually posted it. Genuinely sorry for holding out on you with this one. Production and sample on this are absolutely fantastic, and Red’s raps are nice too. The hip-hop heads will love this, and the production is so good that I’d imagine others would too.

The video is every bit as good. Really feel like you get to know the NYC we never see, and it’s a perfect fit for the sombre atmosphere of the track.

Audio should definitely be grabbed, and can be done so here.

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Quick Blast: Kanye West's New Album 'News'

A few news outlets are reporting that Kanye’s next album will feature production/assistance from RZA, Pete Rock and Q-Tip. There’s been a lot of talk that it’s going to be a ‘real rap’ album, and hopefully it’s true. The rumoured artists above add to that belief, and I’m looking forward to hearing some new stuff from it.

My prediction? Look for the first single/leak to drop by the summer.

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Throwback Thursdays Vol 17

This week’s TT is for Ajay as much as anyone as I know he is a big fan of Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth. They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y) was the lead single from Rock and Smooth’s debut Mecca and the Soul Brother (1992). A now classic, T.R.O.Y was inspired by the death of a close friend, “Trouble” T. Roy of Heavy D and the boys.

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Murray’s Best of ’09

So I think we are all in agreement: 2009 has been quite a year for hip-hop. It has seen the return of Em, Jay has completed his Blueprint trilogy and 50 has had so much beef you would think he will be full up for Xmas (*cringes*. Yeah that was bad).

Aside from the big names dropping their albums, we have also seen some highly anticipated underground acts dropping LP’s too. This is my Best Of ’09 list and contains some real gems so don’t let the year go past before getting your hands on these.


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September Summary

So, we all know September was a generally slow month for good new music (with a couple of notable exceptions). However, I’d planned on doing a month summary anyway so I’ll try and be as pragmatic as possible.

Click below to see my summary for the month, including my favourite albums and tracks from September.

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Pete Rock’s Contribution To NBA Live 10

Another very dope track from the NBA Live 10 soundtrack. This is an uptempo anthem which will appeal to fans of all genres.

The verses are nicely flowed, and the hook is good too. The production is the winner here though, and just like the track I posted yesterday, is another great upbeat jam. What a soundtrack this is shaping up to be!

See below for the download link, as well as another awesome track from the NBA Live 10 OST from the super-dope Murs, which features Kurupt and Jay Rock.

Pete Rock-When I Need It

Murs-We Ballin’ Ft. Jay Rock and Kurupt

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