Dec 31, 2012

Video: Uptown XO - "Rugged"


Uptown XO of famed DC crew and Mello Music crew Diamond District, keeps dropping gems from his latest mixtape "Grey". Check out the visuals above and DL the mixtape to get a good sense of the chill soundtrack and true school dedication of some of DC's own.

Dec 30, 2012

Throwback: Mass Influence - "This Is The Way"

Mass Influence recently re-emerged from a long hiatus to a vastly different ATL and music scene all together. I was always fond of their album "The Underground Science" from 1999 and the track "This is the way" still finds it's way into my ipod playlists weekly. There are many hidden gems on the album and shows the True School vibe they were on in the midst of the No Limit/Cash Money takeover of the South at the time. Though the MASSINFLU crew probably missed the boat on the fame they deserve, they still put out quality projects to this day so check out the Bandcamp and support authentic hip hop music. If only the underground vibe could regain popularity like the heyday of Rawkus, maybe folks could realize that not everybody in the south or ATL is a Trap Star.

Dec 29, 2012

Listen: Claudwell - "Dream Circus"


Brooklyn native Claudwell just dropped an album entitled "Dream Circus". Though there is not much background info on the project, the vibe of the music and taste in beats is pretty consistent throughout featuring production from: Chuk, Tall Black Guy, Chanes, Yazu, DropxLife, Pig Pen, Freeverse, and Kev-K.

Check out the tunes on Bandcamp help support the super slept-on talents of the world.

Dec 28, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Jacob Sutton


Somehow I thought I had posted the work of Jacob Sutton earlier this year when I cam across it during the summer, but I spent so much time emailing links of his work to friends of mine that I never actually wrote about it here on The Double Truth. I didn't then, but I will now and as you can see, it is atmospheric and painterly and words can't describe the detail captured in these underwater images, so check it out yourself. Check out his website here and realize the potential for art is always growing.


Dec 27, 2012

Listen: Cookin Soul X Biggie - "Ready for Xmas"


Though it is a few days past, everyone who desires a twist of gangsta with their holiday season should check out Cookin Soul's latest mixtape, free download, of some of Biggie's rap classics mixed with a Xmas vibe. Mining some of his lesser known verses and some of his most popular ones, Cookin soul breathes some new life into Biggie's thugged out but humorous approach to life and makes it something you can play to offend your parents with at any age.

PS - You have to endure Whookid's goofy chanting at times, but its free. Enjoy!

Dec 26, 2012

Throwback: Pete Rock - "Soul Survivor" Album



Listen to a classic album from Pete Rock as you stuff your faces with holiday treats and try on aunt Clara's pink bunny suit. Thanks to GangsterFreudy, who posted the entire album as one video post on Youtube. There are toom nay MC's to name who PR caught at the top of their game on this album, so check it out if you don't know, revisit it if you do and listen to a master at work.

Dec 24, 2012

Video: RUN DMC - "Christmas in Hollis"



RUN DMC X Holidays = Best Holiday Video and Song Ever!!!

I didn't grow up in NYC, but me and my brother rocked this track from "A Very Special Christmas" on cassette full blast every December 25. I miss those days!

Dec 23, 2012

Video: Big K.R.I.T. - "Rich Dad, Poor Dad"



Props to @BigKrit for the good words, good video, good music on the "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" track. I don't feature too many major label artists on TDT but whenever someone came make an honest "think back" track, I try to shine a light on it. Great concept and glad to see major artists being honest and real about their background, the hardships of growing up in small town America and fighting for your dreams. Check out his "Live From The Underground" album for more.

Video: Da Ricanstrukta - "Hip Hop 101"



Da Ricanstrukta and LuvJonez Music collaborated for a featured track on my upcoming Tastee Treats EP of guest vocal tracks over LuvJonez instrumentals. Dana Coppafeel, of King Hell Bastard and Break Bread, shot the video for the mixtape track with a beat-switch in the middle. Bilingual hip hop shows the power and reach of all hip hop culture, so support it's continued growth around the globe! If you aren't up on the group Break Bread, check out the Bandcamp page here for some quality Midwest hip hop.

DOWNLOAD the track here: Da Ricanstrukta - "Hip Hop 101" (Produced by LuvJonez)

Dec 22, 2012

Video: Roc Marciano - "76"

Roc Marciano teams up with famed video director Jason Goldwatch for his latest feature from the Reloaded album entitled "76". Shot in the grainy, hazy style of a VHS tape of "Wild Style" era NY, Roc Marcy is always consistent with the grmiey, street sttyle and doesn't dissapoint. Check out the video and the newest album from one of hip hop's Golden Era torch bearer's.

Dec 21, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Drive By Press

At first glance, Drive By Press may seem like any custom graphic T-shirt shop, but if you research the story of the DBP crew, you will see that they are a mobile, creative and educational juggernaut (despite being only 2 guys) that keep costs low for customers by cutting the middle man out of the design process and keeping it DIY. All designs are custom made by the staff artists and cut out of a woodblock, inked up in person and pressed while you wait (only 30 seconds torun through the press).  I work with these guys from time to time and they never dissappoint with quality. Check them out for custom merch or to get some new clothes for your squad. Click the link below and get your learn on!
http://www.drivebypress.com/

Dec 20, 2012

Listen: Apollo Brown X Guilty Simpson - "Parkour"

Mello Music just dropped a free download bonus track from one of the dopest albums of the year, "Dice Game". Get it while you can and turn it all the way up for your last day on earth!

DL it here: http://mellomusicgroup.bandcamp.com/track/parkour-bonus-track

Dec 19, 2012

Listen: Clew Rock - "Wind Chillz"


Chi-town emcee Clew Rock, just dropped a soundtrack for the cold season entitled "Wind Chillz" and produced by RoKnew. I first caught wind (no pun intended) of Clew Rock when I lived in the midwest and collected most every release my Chicago's underground legends The Molemen. He was featured on a compilation of other Chi rappers back then but appears to have grown into his own vibe and the type of True School MC that I always check for. Follow him and his crew on Twitter (links embedded) and get a taste of rap from Chicago of the thankfully NON-Chief Keef variety.

Check out his Soundcloud to DL the latest track and look out for more in the future.

Dec 18, 2012

Video: Muneshine - "My City"


Muneshine links up with DJ Spinna for the track "My City" (and Relic for the remix) as a preview for the album 'There Is Only Today'. It has a nice Dilla-esque swing to it and the beat switch keeps the vibe chill throughout.

Album available now: http://muneshine.bandcamp.com/album/there-is-only-today

Dec 17, 2012

Video: Gabriel Teodros - "Mind Power"


Nice little mellow heat rock from Gabriel Teodros for a Monday morning. The track and video for "Mind Power" from the Colored People's Time Machine album available on itunes here.

Dec 16, 2012

Throwback: Showbiz and AG - "Next Level"



Forever immortalized in Eminem's movie 8 Mile as the instrumental that some of the infamous battle scenes were shot with, Showbiz and AG's track from 1995 "Next Level" remains a classic from the hey day of the DITC crew. I miss the lyrical skill and production of those days, but thankful that Youtube still has gems like this floating around.

Dec 15, 2012

Video: Rapper Big Pooh - Friends"



Check out some new dopeness from Little Brother alum Rapper Big Pooh! Dropping a video for the track "Friends" from the recent Fat Boy Fresh Vol.2 project, Pooh and producer Astronote hook up to make an ode to crooked friends and lovers. More please!

Dec 13, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Dave Kinsey


Every time I forget about how much I like his work, I see that Dave Kinsey has a new series about to be on exhibit. As of December 13, Joshua Liner Gallery is hosting Kiney's latest body of work entitled "Everything at Once". I am always impressed with the amount of motion, movement and color that Kinsey brings to his work.
He somehow walks the line between cartoons and detailed figurative work and it always seems to "pop" from the background even when abstracted. His work always seems to play with the idea of urban and natural worlds colliding illustrated with trees, animals and humans in layered images, chaotic yet recognizable portraits of objects and ideas clashing with each other. Wishing I could see it in person! Check it out if you are in LA, or browse the Joshua Liner link above for a preview of some of the work! A few more sampels below.



Dec 12, 2012

Listen: Jean P - "Just Because" Album





Though his voice sounds remarkably like Asheru, a quality reference if anything, and his moniker sounds too similar to Sean P(rice), after checking the vibe of Jean P's project "Just Because", I am liking the direction of his work and hoping he can make some more noise in the future. Lots of soulful vibes and an ill flip of Bob James's "Nautilus" on the opening track exhibit a good taste is music and a consistent vibe across the entire album. Check it out and here's hoping for more in the future. DOWNLOAD LINK HERE: http://jeanpthemc.bandcamp.com/album/just-because

Video: Supastition X Marco Polo - "Yada Yada"



Supastition AKA Kam Moye seems to be conflicted about his rap moniker at times, but his taste in beats is always on points and he links with Marco Polo to make a banger called "Yada Yada". If this is a preview of more to come, then I'm excited to see Supa get some more shine with one of the premier underground beatsmiths. More please!

Dec 11, 2012

Video: Roc Marciano - "Deeper"



Roc Marciano drops another slow burner from his recent Reloaded project. Much like Sean Price, at least to me, these guys always bring a grimy vibe and bravado on tracks that never seems to get old.I am glad to see him staying focused on what works for him, in terms of beats and style, and more folks should learn from the vets like him when trying to strike out on their own.

Dec 10, 2012

Throwback: Median - "How Big Is Your World"



There was a point when I copped everything 9th Wonder touched but that has changed in recent years. In the throws of my last CD (digital or vinyl since) purchase circa 2008, I picked up Median's album "Medians Relief" and found this gem titled "How Big Is Your World" buried inside. There are many great lines in this track and makes me think of conversations with every person I knew who struggled at some point in their life to find meaning in the grind. I find myself coming back to it over and over again. Maybe you will too. I haven't followed everything Median has done since, but this was brain food when I needed it.

Dec 8, 2012

Listen: Ruby Ibarra - "You Tell Me"



Ruby Ibarra is on the eve of releasing her mixtape titled "Lost In Translation" and I was able to provide 2 tracks on the the project. I put together these promotional videos for both tracks, as they are not official videos, but preview the diversity and subject matter that Ruby can flex on any track. Check them out and support her mixtape, hosted by DJ Kay Slay due out next week.

Dec 7, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Colin Chillag




Colin Chillag makes work that seems unfinished but seems dedicated to taking the mystery of the process out of the task of painting. He leaves sketched lines, paint globs, color patterns and other steps of the rendering process embedded in the work to help comunicate some of the "behind the scenes" elements of art. Personally, I like that you can see the start to finish bits and pieces and how it feels like you interrupted the work somehow and can imagine it still being worked on. Maybe it is just me, but check it out and see how to make the "making of" as much of the art as the art itself.

Dec 6, 2012

Video: ILLmaculate - "Walk on Water (Fear of God)"

Rising from the MC battle circuit, Illmaculate drops some rhymes to show he can write clever songs as well, a rarity among battle rappers. In preparation for his upcoming album "CHRON: Legacy", ILL links with Portland beatsmith Lawz Spoken to create the single "Walk on water (Fear of God)" with 80's sci-fi synths and battle rap bravado. Check for the free download album on December 17th for more gritty vibes from the Oregon crew.

Dec 5, 2012

Video: Neek The Exotic - "Real Deal Hip Hop" ft. DJ JS-1

Neek the Exotic, a frequent Large Professor collaborator since the Main Source days, just released a video and single for his track "Real Deal Hip Hop" from the upcoming album Comin' In Piles. Produced by The Audible Doctor and featuring cuts by DJ JS-1, Neek reminiscnes on the "back i nthe day" grind that he faced as an MC and the current struggle to maintain that vibe today. It is a nice little chunk of hip hop appreciation in the midst of techno/house/dance tunes polluting airwaves these days. Enjoy and check for the new project on ILL Adrenaline Records.

Dec 4, 2012

History of the Hype Man




Shout out to Bryan at The Bee Shine (thebeeshine.com) for the collaborative write-up on the history and evolution of the hype man in hip hop. From plain clothes security guards to CEO's and mogul's, many of your favorite rappers from the past grinded their way up the ladder to success to get where they are today, for better and for worse. Check it out here and get your learn on!

Dec 3, 2012

Interview: Just Blaze - Crate Diggers Unite!

Just Blaze sat down with Fuse TV as part of the Crate Diggers series to discuss the mysterious science of collecting records, unused samples, and some of back story to some of his most acclaimed tracks. Check it out and get your learn on!

Dec 2, 2012

Video: Substantial - "See Hear"



Substantial drops his newest effort "See Hear" as a follow up single to his album "Home Is Where The Art Is". Produced by Algorythm, much of the song laments about how the DMV (DC, Maryland, Virginia) area has changed over the years and the turbulent evolution of DC itself. Mello Music Group keeps dropping consistent efforts that stay true to the foundation of hip hop culture and "realness". It's out here if you look for it! Check out more videos and songs from Substantial and support quality music.

Dec 1, 2012

Throwback: Juice - "Gone But Not Forgotten"



Juice AKA MC Juice, has been rocking the underworld of Chicago for decades and is known worldwide as one of the elite battle MC's of all time. Coming up in the midwest, he was always buzzing with a new project and features on various albums out of Chicago and worked with the Molemen early on who I compared with DJ Premier as the local version of his production. Among my favorite albums by Juice at this point in his career was Tip of the Iceburg and the dedication to recently lost MC's at the time (Big Pun, Big L, and Tupac). Check it out here and see the early stages of a hip hop legend in the making. I just got into a conversation with Dharmic X and Infinite about this track yesterday so I wanted to share it while it was fresh on my mind.

Nov 30, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Smithe




Mexico City-based Smithe mixes vintage illustration style and detailed, heavily layered, grotesque and absurd that make for a unique combination. He has designed music posters and graphic illustrations that generate lots of attention. Check out the examples here and on his site.



Nov 29, 2012

Video: Saigon - "Game Changer" ft. Marsha Ambosius

Saigon always seem to battle with the need to educate the world about the dangers and regrets of thug life and though he can be inconsistent at times, it seems that having some kids made him approach his career as a more positive influence. His newest video from the album THE GREATEST STORY NEVER TOLD CHAPTER 2: BREAD AND CIRCUSES has him and Marsha Ambrosius (of Floetry fame) taking turns lamenting about the state of hip hop and features Saigon trying to weave his own history into the track. Glad to see him grinding again.

Nov 28, 2012

Video: Ruby Ibarra - "Beyoutiful"


Ruby Ibarra is no stranger to posts on The Double Truth, as she is also a frequent collaborator with me and my own music. I was moved by Ruby's powerful voice (and small size) the first time I heard her and amazed at her ability to build so much emotion and cultural content into her spoken word and her rap verses. This video is an illustration of one of her spoken word pieces that speaks to generations of women fighting societal pressures to be the stereotype of every cover girl. Check her upcoming mixtape Lost in Translation when it drops later this year and watch her in action on her Youtube channel here. Support quality hip hop and one of the few female MC's not selling her soul to be a neon wig wearing caricature of a real MC.

Nov 27, 2012

J Dilla - Donuts 45 Box Set (Wish List)

I remember being geeked about ordering the Donuts album on vinyl with a bonus 7" before it dropped only to be bummed that by the time it showed up Dilla had passed away due to health problems. I was excited to see him go solo with the beats as an official album and I remember thinking how on point his sample selection was for that time in his life. I studied the album closely, listening to him stretch his ideas with hiccups and imperfections, almost feeling rushed to get his concept down before moving on to the next one. This album was a turning point for me as a listener and a fan, as it made me realize (as did Dj Shadow's Endtroducing) that an interest in hip hop instrumentals was an art in itself.

Nov 26, 2012

Listen: Jazz Jousters - "Off Paradise" album

FREE DOWNLOAD
http://millenniumjazz.bandcamp.com/album/off-paradise

The Jazz Jousters, a collaborative beat project dedicated to strictly Jazz samples, has dropped consistent, chilled out, and experimental projects over the last few years and just added another to the catalog with Off Paradise (dedicated to Charlie Parker samples). I'm glad to see dedicated hip-hop cats still digging in the jazz crates and flipping both obscure and recognizable samples for a new generation to enjoy.  Most of the projects are free compilations, but given the excellent presentation, it wouldn't hurt to support these cats and their continued growth by spreading the word. Good music to chill with on a Monday morning! Enjoy!

Nov 25, 2012

Throwback: Outkast - Elevators (Me and You)



ATLiens will always hold up as one of the best albums of all time (start to finish) as some of the songs still resonate today almost 15 years later. This video and some of 3000's outfits started getting increasingly bizarre, but Outkast always brought talent and creativity to their music, so I could look past all of that and zone out to the music and message. This more chill time in hip hop is long gone on a main stream level, but many torch bearers still make thinking man's hip hop and follow the long road that Outkast helped pave in the midst of the Bling Bling era.

Nov 24, 2012

Listen: Dotmatic - "Lullabies for Fall"


Dotmatic just dropped a super chilled out series of instrumentals that make for a nice relaxing backdrop during the madness fo the holiday season. It may cost you some change, but it is worth it for some of the laid back soundscapes that Dotmatic provides on his "seasons" series. Much like Dot himself, I prefer this Fall release to this previous efforts, but the overall vibe of his work always has me checking back for more.

Listen: Elementality - "The Right Direction"


Kind of a throwback here, but in the midst of Rawkus Records last breath, they went on a Rawkus 50 campaign and signed up to release records by many super underground groups at the time (Cy Young, Roddy Rod, Silent Knight, etc.) and some of these albums still got super slept on from the overall fumble of Rawkus marketing. This brings us to the recent re-release on Bandcamp of the Elementality album "The Right Direction".

This was one of the more consistent albums released in that R50 group but hopefully it can get some more shine in 2012 and get the credit that they deserve. Entirely produced by Analogic (of Talib Kweli, Phonte, Masta Ace, Skyzoo fame), it is a decent portrait of a thriving underground in the early 2000's and shows that not everyone is on the techno/house/autotune vibe of most modern radio rap.

DL it here: http://elementality.bandcamp.com/album/the-right-direction

Nov 23, 2012

Video: 9th Wonder X Buckshot - "Crazy"



Buckshot and 9th Wonder drop another video for the recent album 'The Solution' (Jamla/Duck Down Music), which reminds me of the Alanis Morissette "Ironic" video from the 90's. Always glad to see Buckshot making music and showing that he can still have fun with it. Check out the new album on Itunes and follow everyone on twitter @9thWonderMusic @Buckshot @DuckDownMusic @JamlaRecords ----Directed by Calvan Fowler of Daydream Filmworks @CalvanDaydreams

Humor: Pizzo, San Quinn, Silkk & Master P - "High Fo Xmas"



Since today is the first official day of the X-mas season, I wanted to share this humorous (because of how laughably lame this concept was) song with the world. In 1994, the year of many hip hop classic albums, Master P was just starting his No Limit empire and thought it would be cool to have a gangsta rap x-mas album starring the little known No Limit roster and west coast mainstays like San Quinn. Everyone around me was buying up every No Limit release like crazy, this one too, but I just was not feeling his movement then (or now). I can look back at the cheesy, thug stereotypes that P sold to the masses at that time and laugh, but this album seemed to be the first of many gimmicks that worked in his favor in the mid-90's. Cash Money soon began to ape his grind and we see where that got us.

Nov 22, 2012

Listen: Rapper Big Pooh - Fat Boy Fresh Vol.2



As a follow up to Big Pooh's Fat Boy Fresh Vol. 1, former Little Brother MC Rapper Big Pooh recently dropped Fat Boy Fresh, Vol. Two: Est. 1980. Featuring guest spots from Fashawn, Joe Scudda, King Mez, and Thurz (among others) with production entirely from Astronote ("Cognac," produced by Focus). It is floating around the web as a digital-only release on Bandcamp or itunes but will hopefully see a physical release on Pooh's Members Only label sometime soon. Sample it on itunes and help support a fan favorite from one of the last (now defunct) official hip hop groups of our time.

Nov 21, 2012

Listen: Dana Coppafeel X Speakeasy ft. Proph - "One of These Kids"




I am proud to present some recent work by some Midwest homies that always bring a fresh and fun vibe to the underground arena. UniFi Records out of Milwaukee put together Dana Coppafeel, Proph, and Speakeasy for a track called "One of These Kids" over Wisconsin beat battle champion Da Ricanstrukta's instrumental. Playing off the typical braggadocio of MC's, the new single showcases some of the many talented artists on UniFi, so check out there website and roster to get a peek at what some non-thugged out rap from the middle sounds like.

Nov 20, 2012

Listen: Quartermaine - Quarter Life Crisis



Quartermaine, half of the super slept on DC-area crew called Critically Acclaimed, recently dropped a solo album called Quarter Life Crisis on ReDef Records. I was a big fan of most of the Low Budget Crew (Cy Young, Kev Brown, CA, etc.) in the early and mid-2000's, so I am glad to see Qaurtermaine being productive on the boards and in the booth. The album features production from Quartermaine himself, plus Kev Brown, Ken Wood, and Joc Max and lyrics strictly from Q himself. Peter Rosenberg reps hard for these guys, so that should tell you the quality of music, even if it flies under the radar. Check it out on itunes and support quality music!

Nov 19, 2012

Listen: Murs X 9th Wonder - The Final Adventure


The final installment of the Murs and 9th Wonder collaboration (4 deep) is a refreshing mix of grown man themes and humrous, hip hop tales. Murs hold down the entire album, but leaves room for only one feature, 9th Wonder's and Jamla's female star Rapsody. If you liked any of the previous efforts, this final go-round of the "Cali-lina" sound keeps the spirit alive for future MC's/groups to carry the torch for the underground artists who can work strong separately and as a team. Check out a sample below and grab the album on itunes.

Nov 17, 2012

Video: Hezekiah X Thomas Clay - "Poppin' Fly"



Produced by JR and PH7, and featured on their newest album The Good Life, "Poppin Fly" is a feel good joint for the end of Summer and is a nice soulful introduction to the laid back concept behind the entire album. Jr and PH& are a production duo via Germany that have been putting out consistent records with underground giants like Little Brother, Sean Price, Skyzoo, Strange Fruit Project and many others over the last few years, and this album continues that trend with features and guest spots from fellow Soulspazm Records artists and other underground stand-outs.

Grab it on 2LP/CD or on itunes here: http://bit.ly/JRandPH7GoodLife‬ Support quality music!

Nov 16, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Hugo Gellert


I had a chance to see a retrospective of Hugo Gellert at the Mary Ryan Gallery in New York a few weeks ago and though I had never seen his work before, I was impressed at how colorful and oddly relevant the subject matter was despite being done in the 40's, 50's and 60's.

Nov 15, 2012

Video: J. Bizness - "Giraffes" ft. The Black Opera



Since dropping his instrumental album Flight Plan back in August, J. Bizness has built a buzz around his spacey, mellow tracks and inspired label mates The Black Opera to write some rhymes over one of his beats. The results of that collaboration was the video and song called "Giraffes," a dark dedication to life with addiction. Check it out here and see if you know anyone in your life with the same issues...I know I do.

Nov 14, 2012

Video: Sabzi - "Phở Life"



Sabzi, of Blue Scholars fame, introduces a fun Phở anthem on behalf of the many good Phở spots in the Northwest (Seattle). For those who don;t know, Phở is a famed Vietnamese beef broth dish with noodles and meat and other Southeast Asian spices, veggies and flavors. The bulk of the Phở I have had has been in Laos, but most of the spots in the U.S. are Vietnamese. Grab a bowl or try a Bahn Mi sandwich and try some cultural food for once in your life!

This is more of a fun-loving ode to good food, but not the auto-tune thugs or techno rap poison on the radio and I'm always glad to see someone being honest in their music.

You can contribute to the cause of a well meaning MC (mostly producer) from the Northwest.


SUPPORT THE KICKSTARTER HERE
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/townfolk/pho-life‬

Nov 13, 2012

Listen: Mr. Dibbs - "Deadworld Reborn"


Help Mr. Dibbs help his friend's family and pay tribute to all good friends everywhere by supporting his newest project (click this link) Deadworld Reborn. If you are not familiar with Dibbs, he is the hardcore turntablist extraordinaire for the Rhymesayers crew and a big supporter of midwest, homegrown hip hop. He suffered some health scares in recent years but even in the face of that agony, he still found inspiration from the folks around him to press on. Help him give his friend a proper send off and do the right thing. To quote the man himself, check the supporting text below:

"Holed up in the hospital for a few weeks, I was an inadvertent resident of an impromptu hip hop retirement home. Battling leukemia on the floor above me was my longtime friend Marcus “Skandal da Ruckus Man” Mitchell. An epic MC and producer, of equally epic bodily proportions, Skandal’s heart was big, but his production skills and lyrical largesse were even bigger. I dragged my sometimes half-incoherent ass, IV and all, down the hallways and into the elevator to visit my homie. The nurses always thought I was lost. Fuck that. 

I was FOUND…in the strong lifeline we’ve all come to know and love as Skandal. He was my pusher man…keep on pushin’, Dibbs, until you get to the other side of you. 

Skandal lost his life in October this year. I have memories for days of him, but there will be no more new ones. I don’t get to have that again. I don’t get to have those phone conversations with him or watch stupid-ass movies or videos on YouTube and laugh about it. You don’t miss that shit, until that shit’s not there. I got lucky. I would trade my life for his any day. I wish I could be like that dude. He made me feel important enough for me to be reborn. I am doing it. I am doing it now. 

And so I’m giving you Deadworld Reborn…because this man gave me back my fucking life. 

And with that, I want to give his family back their lives…and a return to normalcy. All proceeds from this album are going directly to Skandal’s family and young daughter Chloe. Pay what you can…Skandal sure did." 

Nov 12, 2012

Listen: Karriem Riggins - "Alone Together"

Karriem Riggins, the secret drumming ingredient behind many of the late J. Dilla's beat projects, has emerged from the shadows of the music industry to introduce his music to the masses. Riggins has been a background player (drums and drum programming) on many of the the Neo-soul artists staple albums from the late 90's and some varied projects in the 2000's like features with Madlib, Erykah Badu, Common, and Slum Village (among others) that involved some of the more creative and experimental hip hop of the decade with his drum programming and involvement.

His debut official album is called "Alone Together" and is being released by underground powerhouse Stones Throw. It features 34 tracks of Riggins mixing his influences and paying tribute to the artists that supported him all these years. Sampel the tracks on the ST website and learn what one of the unspoken heroes of the ast decade of hip hop has been up to.







Nov 9, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Dan Webb


Dan Webb is a wood-working sculpture artist whose work uses a mixture of every objects (pillow, sheets, shoes, etc.) and the surreal (bones emerging from a slab of wood). He somehow manages to pull life like effects from the wood with incredible detail that pushes the boundaries of traditional wood work. Check out the pics above and his site for more info.

Nov 8, 2012

Listen: Apollo Brown X Guilty Simpson - "Dice Game" Album



If you don't know about the raw talent that both Apollo Brown and Guilty Simpson bring to the table, then the Dice Game album is all the evidence you need.

Nov 7, 2012

4 More Years: Congrats Obama Team!



I try not to mix too much politics on the sight, as it can be pretty divisive, but I am glad that people got out to vote in America and decided to trust Obama with the task at hand. I was raised in a red state and will never agree with the mind set of the right, but I respect their ability to vote for who they think is right (despite being hella wrong in this case). I am sure they are all doing the Footloose warehouse frustration dance right now (posted below via FotC) but giving up on the POTUS after 4 years, from letting Bush run wild for 8 years, seemed pretty anti-progress. Regardless of the future outcomes, I am glad to say I am standing on the side of history with all my fellow brown peoples (and everyone else).

Nov 6, 2012

Video: Rapsody - "The Drums" ft. Heather Victoria, The Soul Council



Rapsody is back with another gem (the track "The Drums") from her album The Idea of Beautiful. Good video for good music! Check it out above and look for more work from Rapsody, Heather Victoria and The Soul Council!

Nov 5, 2012

Video: Sean Price - "The Genesis of Omega"



From what I understand, this video was created by the Dallas Penn crew and dedicated as an unofficial music video for Sean Price's "The Genesis of Omega" track from the Mic Tyson album. It is a humorous approach to a short track that illustrates some of P's punchlines with quick glances of the GI Joe-ish figure in the video. Good for a laugh, but seriously support Sean Price and the DuckDown Records family.

Nov 4, 2012

Throwback: Biggie - "Sky's the Limit"



"...Keep on Pressin On"

After a week of stress and hurricane madness in NYC, which will last for a while, some of the lyrics from this song, and just watching the video in general, help the mind relax and think about better days ahead. 

Nov 3, 2012

The Joy of Painting with Sean Price



Sean Price // Sean Ross // Bob Price // Sean Mandela takes a humorous approach to painting in his "hood", while paying tribute to afro'd out cool daddy painter Bob Ross. Have some fun in a post-apocalyptic version of America lead by Sean P.

Nov 2, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Ronald Wimberly


I had a chance to meet with Ronald Wimberly at an off the wall film shoot, but I was looking at some of his work on his phone and saw an URB magazine cover with Jay-Z on it that I remembered and realized the breadth of his work. He combines Roy Lichtenstein-ish printer dots (comic book style) with Japanese style animation and Hip Hop sensibilities to make dynamic and visually interesting work.

Nov 1, 2012

Listen: Journalist 103 - "United We Stand"


Just in time for the election season, Journalist 103 of the underground crew THE LEFT, drops a solo album with bangers galore about politics and a world gone wrong. The album "Reporting Live" dropped on Oct. 30th and the track above is the second single, produced by Monkadelic, and you can preview and download it here: http://coadgame.com/journalist-103-of-left-united-stand/

Oct 31, 2012

Listen: Guilty Simpson X Apollo Brown - "Truth Be Told"



Apollo Brown has been steadily linking up with underground greats to build his recent discography and the results are always dope! Apollo has now linked with fellow Detroit giant Guilty Simpson for a collaborative album and just dropped the "Truth Be Told" single above via Mello Music Group. Looking forward to more from this combo! With Guilty's gritty rhymes and Apollo's soulful soundtrack, this album looks like a gem in the making. Look for it November 13th, 2012!

Now, if Apollo can link with Rakim to put out a full length, he will have come full circle. Fingers crossed!

Oct 29, 2012

Video: Dag Savage - "Cali' Dreamin'" ft. Fashawn, Co$$, Tiombe Lockhart



New music from Dag Savage, a collaborative project from Johaz and Exile, and given that they keep good company with Fashawn, Co$$ and Tiombe Lockhart, it seems worthy of checking out more from. Though Johaz sounds remarkably like fellow left coaster Planet Asia (voice wise), he keeps the lyrics cohesive with the vibe of the song and his guests. Here's hoping for more from Dag and the Dirty Science crew.

Grab the single via iTunes & get your limited editions 7″ at shopdirtyscience.com

Throwback Video: Black Star - "Respiration"



Maybe it's the Fall weather (chilly hurricane weather) in NY right now, but this time of year and living in Brooklyn always makes me think of this song and video. Verses still true to this day. I miss...

Oct 28, 2012

Video: Originoo Gunn Clappaz - "Hurricane Starang"



In times of chaos and great storms like Hurricane Sandy, which is supposed to eat NYC, Duck Down's OGC says it best...

Oct 27, 2012

1982 (Termanology X Statik Selektah) - "Still Waiting"



Termanology and Statik Selektah teamed up as "1982", a mini-super group of underground hip hop champs, and have been putting out consistent tracks about their life and times. "Still Waiting" speaks many truths about the rap industry and being a fan in general of music that seems to be ignored in the face of techno/house/party rap these days. Check it out above and get more info about the video, album and contact info after the jump:

Oct 26, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Jenny Saville

The image above was the first Jenny Saville painting I ever saw and it changed how I viewed painting and even worked on my own projects from that point. Her work is giant, often 10 feet tall, and the textures and layers of paint are so thick it feels like ripped flesh, often mimicking the subject matter. These first few paintings are of post plastic surgery women and their attempts to mangle their bodies to make themselves beautiful. Though it is less "horror" themed then most of the work this past month, her images shock most people but I find myself re-inspired every time I see them.


More info and images after the jump:

Oct 25, 2012

Listen: Dibia$e - "LLAMAVILLE"


Dibia$e just dropped another batch of off-kilter goodness for your listening pleasure. For fans of Dilla, Flying Lotus, El-P, Madlib, and other more experimental Hip Hop production. Dibia$e always brings a nice crunchy, lo-fi, grimey soundtrack and Llamaville fits the mold well. Maybe not everyone's cup of tea, but if you like it then support the quality musicians like him!

A quote about Llamaville from the man himself:

This is the instrumental version of the album "llamaville" threw some surprises in there too. and don't even complain about the sound quality it say tape deck music in the description. LLAMA !!!

Oct 24, 2012

Video: Beat Junkies 20 Year Anniversary (Better Footage)




Out of excitement to share the music, I posted my first batch of videos on Monday that were filmed with my cell phone (low quality), but I also went through other footage I filmed with a real camera and found some much better footage of each of the Beat Junkies doing a solo routine to start the show. They are all posted above and not in any order, but these should be easier to watch and appreciate.

Oct 23, 2012

Video: RZA X Black Keys - "The Baddest Man Alive"

RZA finally dropped the soundtrack for his debut feature film "The Man With The Iron Fists" and among the crazy 58 track OST, he brought some new collaborations with the Wu family and some new, old-sounding collaborations with the Black Keys. The Key have a way of making all new material with enough filters and lo-fi arrangements that it sounds like a lost soundtrack anyway, so the match up makes good sample-fodder for RZA and his style. Check out the movie when it hits your town and try to digest the full soundtrack and its many forms to fulyl wrap your head around the project.

More info after the jump:

Oct 22, 2012

Video: Beat Junkies 20th Anniversary


Despite the bad sound quality of the following videos, I got the chance to see the Beat Junkies 20th Anniversary show live and in the front row this past Sunday in Brooklyn. With special appearances by Marley Marl, Da Beatminerz, X-Ecutioners, Craig G, Rolli Rho, Breakbeat Lou and in house visitors like Talib Kweli, Ali Shaheed Muhammed, Marco Polo, Lord Finesse and others, it was a fun night to see many of my favorite artists and people rock together in one place, for the first time in 20 years. I got a chance to see Shortkut, Rob Swift, Melo-D, Babu, Rhettmatic and D-Styles do solo sets and team sets and reminded me why I love DJing and scratching so much. Please excuse the crappy sound of my camera and try to enjoy a rare treat of the world famous Beat Junkies ripping shit up for a new generation live on stage.

Check for solo performances by each artist and more videos later today.

Shortkut (Beat Junkies) - warm-up routine

 

Final Jam Session with Beat Junkies and Guests

D-Styles and Melo-D routine

Oct 20, 2012

Video: Sean Price - STFU PT. 2

Sean Price recently dropped another promotional video for his upcoming Mic Tyson album on Duck Down Records. There are not many rappers who I want to hear tough talk from these days, but Sean Price always brings a slightly more lyrical, sometimes humorous, but often intimidating presence to the mic and this video is a great illustration of him causing havoc in outer space and jungles and I find it easy to digest.

Directed by The Chain Gang, the video has a series of random sequences of Sean P drinking milk, crashing a spaceship and fighting with apes. The track is produced by fellow underground legend The Alchemist and seems much in the same lane as his recent production for the Gang Green squad (odd and Wu-Tang ish).

More info after the jump:

Oct 19, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Tony Moore


Tony Moore may only be a name you recognize from the credits of the hit show "The Walking Dead", of which he is a co-creator and the original illustrator of the comics. If you are familiar with his work, it inspired the show but also comes from a long list of other great projects he has been a part of for many years. Known for his work on Battle Pope, Masters of the Universe, Brit, the Eisner Award-nominated series The Walking Dead, and his creator-owned books Fear Agent and The Exterminators, Moore is a fan favorite and always has new projects on the horizon.

On a personal level, I have known Tony since college and I am proud and excited that he was able to see these subjects and his drawing talents through to a successful career. He has many great projects in the works but check out his most recent work with Marvel comics and admire the detailing and humor buried in much of his work.

More art and info after the jump:

Oct 18, 2012

Free Download: DJ DJAZ - 2000 Til' Infinity mixtape


Remember the days when you could get a DJ mix without gunshots over every track, screaming over every track, explosions and other annoying sound effects and shout outs? Apparently, so does DJ Djaz and he builds a super underground mix of non-clubby hip hop for the latter half of 2012 with some gems from then and now. 

DJaz brings a nice mix of tracks from some underground standouts and many unknowns but it is all a good balance of MC's and groups from the past and present that you may have never heard about otherwise (Dark Skinned Assassin , 90 Proof , Finsta Bundy, Ruthless Bastards, La The Darkman, Ak Skills, Natural Elements, Jakki Da Mota Mouth, Copywrite, etc.) so check it out and do your eardrums a favor. Digest some original underground flavor and check out some artists that deserve some more attention. 

FREE DOWNLOAD link : tiny.cc/p1eamw


Oct 17, 2012

Listen: Dr. Oop X Budamunk - "Black Love Oriented"

If there was ever a request for a defining example of "Grown Man Hip Hop", then Dr. Oop and Budamunk found the recipe. I have been a fan of Dr. Oop and his many incarnations since first hearing him on KanKick's first album back in 1999/2000 on a track called "The Finer Things"(which he revisits in a reggae style on this album). Dr. Oop is like a deeper thinking version of Devin The Dude, in that he talks often of getting high and his many life adventures that have resulted. He also balances that with heavy concern about healthy lifestyle, global politics and being honest with ones self, among other topics in his music.

Always laid back and sounding fresh over a jazzy soundtrack, provided here by Budamunk, they both serve up a chilled out, collaborative album for Japanese label JazzySport. It may not be for everyone, but this album is a perfect soundtrack to relax and zone out to, for me, and hopefully you too. Check out the sampler below and support quality music!

Oct 16, 2012

Free Download: Jasiri X ft. Invincible + Rhymefest - "Candidates For Sale"



In a current election year that is buzzing with talk of corruption, excessive spending, and false information, a good friend of The Double Truth, Da Ricanstrukta, produced a track for Jasiri X, Invincible, and Rhymefest that speak to these topics.


"Candidates For Sale" was inspired by growing corporate influence over politics, and the ridiculous amounts of money now needed to win public office. It is the first single off my new mixtape "Rappers On X" available for free download on 10/22/2012.

"Rappers On X" will feature Planet Asia, Brother J of X-Clan, Hasan Salaam, Mac Miller, Wise Intelligent, Sadat X, B. Dolan, Toki Wright, Invincible, Rass Kass, Torae and Rhymefest.

Oct 15, 2012

Video: Kooley High - "David Thompson"



Kooley High returns with a mellow gem of a cut dedicated to the NC State great star of old, David Thompson. Continuing with their sport themes (and the somehow recent trend of naming songs after celebrities) Kooley High bring some laid back flow and self reflection lyrics over the DJ Prince beat in anticipation of their upcoming album. Check it out and pick up the single on iTunes here or on the KH website here. More info after the jump:

Oct 14, 2012

Video: John Robinson X Kyo Itachi - "Masterful" ft. Dj Djaz



John Robinson and Kyo Itachi team up for the track "Masterful" ft. DJ Djaz and blessed the track with a nice little video. John Robinson is an underground icon and keeper of the mellow rap funk, kinda like a slept on Nas without the major label drama or distractions and always delivers some gems. They are working on an upcoming album called "The Path of Mastery"and this track is a promotional cut from what is to come from the crew. Check out more links to the music and other projects after the jump:

Oct 13, 2012

Fine Art Friday: Dario Puggioni


Berlin based painter Dario Puggioni's paintings are masterfully rendered figures mixed with horror movie aesthetics that illustrate emotional hardships and uncomfortable compositions that fits perfectly with this months Halloween-ish artists. Check out more of his work below and learn to appreciate the distortion of the human figure and sculptural quality of paint. #FineArtFridayOnSaturday (apologies for the late post)

Oct 11, 2012

Video: ILL Doctrine - "Why is Every Hip Hop Debate So Annoying?"



Jay Smooth of Ill Doctrine always has a funny and intellectual look at various topics in society and more so in the universe of hip hop culture. His latest humorous rant involves asking the question "Why are hip-hop debates so annoying"? Discussing the trend of media conversations and the stagnant topics and relevance of media's constant chatter about hip hop's place in the world. Check it out above and contribute your thoughts at Ill Doctrine's Youtube page and help enliven the conversation's we all have about the advancement of the culture.

Listen: Madlib - Medicine Radio Show Pt. 2




Beat fiends rejoice! As a prelude to the upcoming album from Yesterday's New Quintet, Madlib recently teamed up with Carhartt clothing for the Carhartt Work in Progress / Carhartt Radio release of Madlib's Medicine Show series. Sorting through his endless volumes of audio experiments, crate digging gems, psychedelic oddities and reals of unreleased beats, Madlib brings another mix of brain food for you to vibe with for 47 minutes. Check it out here and look for more surprises from him soon.

Oct 10, 2012

Video: 7even Thirty - "Get up"


I am not gonna act like I have been up on 7even Thirty all this time, but I tend to check up on anybody signed to Mello Music Group, as they have a good record of picking quality artists. 7even Thirty is definitely like an Andre 3000 of the underground and embraces the space cadet vibe, but he keeps a good mix of spacey beats, bouncy electro and experimental vibes that match his delivery well. Check out his album on Bandcamp and see if it fits your groove.

This video for "Get Up" is one of the tracks that stuck out to me from the Heaven's Computer album that he just dropped, so I'm glad to see some visuals for it. Glad to see Mello Music making noise with every new album!

Peep the Dilla verse/flow he borrows from "Raise it up", which the whole song kinda sounds like anyway. Paying tribute to the legends is always a win in my book.

Oct 9, 2012

Listen: Kankick - The Traditional Heritage




Though this album is not new, after talking with Dharmic X this past weekend about underground artists, I found myself listening to it while working on some late night projects and realized what a gem it was all over again. If you are a fan of Dilla's beat tapes, and early Madlib stuff, then Kankick will please your eardrums. He's just started loading his back catalog on Bandcamp, but everything he touches is ill and deserves more attention.

Kankick is a long time affiliate of the Lootpack and Madlib, so his vibe is grimey soul, samples galore, experimental jazz, and crispy drums and will keep you hypnotized for hours. He is fiercely independent and so much of his contact info is off the grid, but his Bandcamp page has most everything you need to absorb his sounds.

Support quality music and check for more from Kankick in the future.

Oct 8, 2012

Video: Brother Ali - "Only Life I Know"

Brother Ali continues to put out quality videos to fit his quality music and the clips for "Only Life I Know" help drive the point home about the hardships of American life and life in general.  Jake One handles the boards for the entire album and helps balance the sound with anthems and mellow, soulful beats that Ali can shine over with his heartfelt stories and personal lyrics.

Check out the whole album on itunes and support quality music from the Rhymesayers crew.

Learn more about the video below

Oct 7, 2012

Video: Killer Mike - "Reagan"

Killer Mike returns with a vengeance and an incredible animated video to illustrate his words for the track "Reagan" off his R.A.P. Music album. Listen to the words closely and study the illustrations for subtle and not so subtle clues to the motivation behind the track. I am glad to see Killer Mike get his due recognition and not being afraid to address politics on a larger scale in the vein of Public Enemy or Immortal Technique. Do your reality TV-induced mind a favor and digest this video and the words for a quick history lesson on the state of the world. (via Pitchfork Media)

Oct 6, 2012

Throwback Track: Citizen Kane - "Blackrain"



Citizen Kane is a super slept on group from Toronto, Canada that released their debut album Deliverance back in 1999. Though their album won acclaim in Canada and had some video time on Rap City in the 90's, it was the 1996 B-side to the Structure/Foundation single, called "Black Rain", that stuck out to me for all these years. The Bill Withers sample flip and lyrical skills that shine on the single made it almost hypnotic to me and I still rock it in my iPod daily during long train rides. I wish their was an official video for this track, but this post from Youtube of the 12" cover will suffice.

More classic Citizen Kane videos like "Soldier's Story"after the jump:

Oct 5, 2012

Fine Art Friday: John Casey

John Casey has been a favorite of mind since I found a book of his illustrations years ago. I respect pencil drawing from the craft point of view, but also Casey's ability to create macabre, humorous work that reminds me of Edward Gorey. Check more of his work on his site or his blog.

More images of his recent sculptural work and color illustrations after the jump.

Oct 4, 2012

Video: Zion I - "Human Being"

After years of grinding under the radar, Zion I might be able to finally crack the top 40 (fingers crossed) with the most recent single entitled "Human Being" from the Shadow Boxing album that just dropped. Continuing with their experimental music, mixing dubstep-ish effects and 808 drums, and positive (often political) lyrics, Zion I crafted a fun and clubby track as a proper exit to the Summer. Hopefully, they can get the notice they deserve with their latest offering and get universal attention from hip hoppers everywhere.

Oct 3, 2012

Listen: Phonetic One - "Clarity"


Phonetic One is no stranger to posts on The Double Truth, as I have worked with him in the past, and plan on releasing more stuff in the future. I just came across some new material he put out for a track called "Clarity" and it exhibits the clever style and intelligent rhymes he is known for. He is still in college, but working hard to break out in a larger role once his studies are complete. Check out "Clarity" above and stay tuned for more in the future.

Oct 2, 2012

Listen: DJ Shadow - Reconstructed



DJ Shadow has long been a favorite for me and with the recent re-release of many of his iconic works with the "Reconstructed" greatest hits box set, I am reminded of his vast catalog. Pieced together from Endtroducing and everything in between now and then, this box set includes remixes, edits and versions of Shadows work from all corners of his mind. His work with UNKLE, his solo work, his guest production and other items help build a great overview of his mix of chilled out, downtempo, trippy music to his breakbeat and experimental work with guest vocalists. If you never knew how to enter into his catalog, this a great place to start learning backwards to the cornerstone that was his debut album. Gems galore!

Get the super glossy, awesome sauce packaging and collectors edition too! News after the jump:

Oct 1, 2012

Thank You Everyone: 10,000+ Views And Counting...

Just notified that my blog hit 10,000 total visitors as of today! I appreciate all the readers and folks from around the globe that check in with The Double Truth daily. Here's to 10,000 more!

---LuvJonez

Video: Ruste Juxx X The Arcitype - "GGTC"

Ruste Juxx and The Arcitype are back with another video and single from the V.I.C. album that just dropped this past week. Do your self a favor and pick it up! This album has bangers galore and The Arcitype comes with solid production that supports Ruste Juxx's grimy flow wit ha mix of soulful chops and street rap anthems. Similar in quality (to me) of when Jake One and Freeway hooked up for a full-length album a few years back. The right beats can carry an MC far and this collaboration is further proof.

Pick up Ruste Juxx + The Arcitype's 15-track 'V.I.C' album out now on AR Classic Records/Duck Down Music Inc.

Fans can purchase the iTunes Deluxe Version here: http://bit.ly/PTCzTj

More info after the jump:

Sep 30, 2012

Stadium Status - Jay-Z is The King of Brooklyn




" I don't wear jerseys, I'm thirty plus..."
.....unless I own the team, then I will make an exception.


Certainly not startling news, but as the Barclays Center opened up for business this past Thursday, Jay-Z launched his first of 7 straight performances to a sold out crowd in front of his hometown Brooklyn crowd. He rocked a team hat and jersey for the crowd, despite his rap claim to never wear them, and has now christened the Kings County with their own awesome spectacle for concerts and events, mainly the Brooklyn Nets. Somehow, despite no games having been played yet, it already feels like the Nets will make noise with their squad and new arena to quickly outshine (and encourage hatred from) the NY Knicks. It's an exciting time to live in BKNY, until the rent goes up so high that it turns into Manhattan, Jr., but until then it is nice to see Brooklyn spread the love and acclaim that Biggie desired back in the day. Hate on Jigga for many things, but his grind from the projects of BK to the crown prince of BK didn't take very long and his "hard knocks MBA" has finally brought him the cornerstone of an empire. Stadium status indeed!

Read more about the show and opening events after the jump