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


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.