Category Archives: Underground Me Now

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Domestic Terror :: BLXPLTN’s New ‘NO ENGLISH’ Video

BLXPLTN has never been afraid to be as poignant as they are confrontational with their observations on the truth and he state of the nation.  NO ENGLISH, their latest video and the first single off their upcoming sophomore release Children of the Foreign, is a bold statement on how the so called ‘tired and huddled masses’ that America claimed they wanted are now literal fodder at the hands of our political machine.  A system of rule that was set up to protect Americans of all colors and creeds is doing all that it can to keep us at odds with one another as it tears us apart us a nation.  BLXPLTN displays their feelings on the matter via a video dominated by two parallel states : a rousing and emotional performance versus ICE agents chasing members of the band through the woods.  If this is a taste of what’s to come with Children of the Foreign, I’m ready for a major dose of their reality.

-chief

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Taking Initiative :: Bjorn Vader Is The Change He Wants To See

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It’s funny how you can know somebody, and yet there will still be room for pleasant and perspective shifting discovery.  Take my longtime friend Bjorn Vader.  I’ve always known he has a deep appreciation for music, along with impeccable taste and an ear for discovery.  I’ve even heard him, at times, mention chops that would make good samples.  What I didn’t know, however, was how much work he was putting in on the production side to not let these ideas go to waste.  Unlike so many who wish they could produce, Bjorn taught himself the tricks of the trade, and has the catalog of production to show it.  Take a dive into his soulful Bandcamp page, tell a friend to do the same, and if you feel inspired to do so, follow in his steps and make some beautiful music of your own.

-chief

Blind Faith :: Marrshun Examines ‘Prayer Hands’

While discussing local creatives, Nick Hanover of the OVRLD blog decided to do me a solid and hip me to some unique hip hop in the form of Houston-born, New York-based MC and performance artist Marrshun.  The video Hanover shared with me, Prayer Hands, is a meditation on how traditions in the black community that originated from abuse during times of limited human rights have evolved into a form of passivity that puts faith in an interesting juxtaposition of being valid and an empty gesture.  The whole idea is visually sold in the form of an interpretation of the iconic opening to the Brady Bunch sitcom, with an interesting family portrayed solely by Marsshun.  Based on the merit of this work in a vacuum, I am definitely interested in hearing more songs, seeing more videos, and perhaps checking out a live show one day.  Definitely check it out yourself, as this is the kind of art bound to open up lines of dialogue and deep thought.

-chief

Innocence Lost :: Click-Clack Reemerges With ‘Blue Eyed Black Boy’

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Click-Clack, as anyone who follows this blog knows, is an artist that I respect on both a creative and a personal level.  His drive and skill level are inspirational, and his natural talent and charisma are undeniable.  Like all artists (myself included), however, we deal with the soul-crushing valleys just as wholeheartedly as we do with the soul-lifting peaks that come with being an artist.  For a while, it seemed like Click-Clack was considering a hiatus, if not a full retirement, from the creative side of things, with the occasional single drop or livestream snippet of work serving as both a bittersweet teaser and a signal for hope of new material to come.  Most of us in the peer group knew he was working on new music, and whatever it was would more than likely be dope, but honestly, I was not prepared for the jump in skill level that is Blue Eyed Black Boy.  Produced almost entirely by Ballteam, with a beat by Drae Da Skimask being the outlier, the project serves as the perfect canvas for Click-Clack to not only go off on a plethora of styles, but get extremely personal and reflective with the bars as well.  Add in to the mixture a pitch-perfect cover illustration, in terms of tone, by @ultrashook, and we’ve got a strong contender for an Album of the Year situation here.  Songs like LyorTalmboutPush To Start and Wager are certified bangers, but there really isn’t a dull or slow moment on this album in all honesty.  Usually, I give a suggestion to support, but in this case, I’d say you’d be dumb not to support work of this quality and caliber, so get on it!

-chief

Party Lines :: Dem Beach Boys Strike Again With ‘Down With GOP’

It’s been about a year since Dem Beach Boys, the self proclaimed ‘only conservative hip-hop group in America‘, dropped GOP Ain’t Nuthing to F’ With.  In that time, they’ve been working hard on their debut mixtape, Dem Pet Sounds, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t ready to strike when the time is appropriate.  As Early Voting came to a close, the crew dropped another banger in the form of Down With GOP, an incredibly smart and well-crafted satiric look at polarizing thought that tends to separate us rather than unite us as citizens in the America experiment.  The crew use both style and interpolation-esque references to several classic hip-hop songs, and they even manage to stick a skit in the middle that is (sadly) a bit too relevant in terms of its truth.  There’s nothing to be sad about, though, as this track (and video) not only make you laugh, but think as well.  Go vote, give this video a like and a comment, and share it around so that everyone on your timeline can get all worked up and offended, because that’s the way of things today.

-chief

Political Discourse :: Moodie Black And Ceschi Connect For ‘Ye Death’

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Moodie Black, a standout group from the Fake Four roster full of massive talent, has always been observant of what other boundary-pushing artists are doing, especially polarizing artists like Kanye West.  has always envisioned her band being as relevant as Ye, while offering a balancing set of opinions, ambitions and skill sets to offset that of the Chicago-based ‘mad genius’.  You can imagine, then, that Ye‘s embracing of MAGADonald Trump and the Right in general has been fuel for the Moodie Black creative fire.  Add to the fact that Fake Four label head (and incredible artist in his own right) Ceschi stopped by the studio to commit a hook to the inspiration, and the result is Ye Death, an observation on living in the madness we do now and feeling like a kite off the string, which is probably very much how Ye feels now (in light of recent reports that he feels ‘used’ by the same political machine he wholeheartedly embraced, and all within the span of about 2 months).  and company always have something deeply introspective and relevant to say about what’s rocking the societal boat, and this is just another notch in the belt.  Definitely check it out.

-chief

Halloween Havoc :: Bitforce And Joshua Lopez Combine Forces For ‘Descendants Of Belmont’

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With the expansive nature of video games, taken in part with the insane skill level of Bitforce, you can pretty much guarantee that these guys have a song that can cover most any holiday or occasion.  For Halloween, the guys went the extra mile by teaming up with guest guitarist Joshua Lopez of Sonic Boom for Descendants of Belmont, a medley of songs from the canon of Castlevania games.  In fact, the guys took that extra mile and went an additional extra mile on top of that by dropping a music video, just in time for all you spooky boys and girls to enjoy during the fright night!

Getting a double-down like this is like finding that house that gives out full size candy bars, or finding a group of unsuspecting kids to shoot roman candles at without fear of getting caught… it’s like the best of both worlds.  Grab the track if you can, and definitely like, comment on and share the video, and most importantly, be safe out there this Halloween night!

-chief