While I am happy to see so many hip-hop acts in Austin receive props in the press nowadays, it is frustrating to see one or two specific styles dominate the scene. As someone whose age runs essentially directly parallel with hip-hop, I have held on to my so-called ‘backpack’ ways for decades now, and while I have learned to adjust to a mind-state where I can be more open-minded and accepting in regards to new sounds and styles, I can’t allow my love for boom-bap hip-hop to fade. Maybe that’s why I’ve been super hype for AUX CUTTER, the debut self-titled album from the trio of Ben Buck, Nate thee Great and producer Shadowboxin. AUX CUTTER is clearly not hear to play games… the album hits hard and is relentless from front to back, with the lyrical energy easily matching the pounding and intense production. Come year’s end, don’t be surprised if you see this near the top of many lists. Do yourself a favor and get hip early, and if you’re feeling it in any capacity, tell your people to follow suit.
It’s hard to be a fan of Austin hip-hop over the past 5 years or so and not be familiar with Ben Buck, and after a strong last couple of years with his hands in several different ventures, it appears that he is ready to make a sizeable impact on the scene via Aux Cutter, a collective featuring himself, the equally talented Nate Thee Great and hard-hitting Austin-based mainstay Shadowboxin on production. On Blast, their debut single, hits the ground running as the lyrical duo trades brief sets of bars over the driving, momentum-filled beat, and thanks to the highly artistic eye of Jonathan K. Horstmann, the debut video not only looks great, but does a great job of catching the visual version of the energy that infuses the single. Definitely check this one out, leave a like and a comment, and share it around for everyone to get hip to.
For the unfamiliar or uninitiated, Whataburger is a Texas institution. Most anybody from Texas will give you a detailed account of their love for the fast food chain, if given the chance, so it makes complete sense that the homie Ben Buck would dedicate a bit of his beatsmith prowess to WHATABANGER, an unofficial sonic ode to the fast food giant. The production more than lives up to the banger expectation set in the title, and for good measure, Ben Buck throws in every burger-related vocal sample that you could imagine. If you’re looking for some good beats to keep your head nodding, then look no further than this collection… cop it if you’ve got a few bucks to spare, and share it with all of the other Whataburger lovers you know so that we can all celebrate together!
Austin hip-hop mainstay Ben Buck is a beast with the pen, the production and the beatboxing, and his latest release Speaker Bump Deluxe continues the verification of those facts. Buck would’ve fit right in during hip-hop’s true school era, as his brand of boom-bap and lyrical artillery is reminiscent of the early 1990s, when diversity and uniqueness ruled hip-hop. A handful of these songs would fit in perfect on a skate video or an opening DJ set to a classic-style hip-hop show. Catch Speaker Bump Deluxe wherever you purchase or stream your music, and always support your local creatives.
Another week brings us another episode of DOOMpeerREVIEW, the Chief and TheDoomsdayDevice-hosted video show that recently premiered on the DOOMtubeATX YouTube channel. Episode 003 features videos from …&More…, ChiClopz, Kenny Casanova, Chucky Blk, Alligator Food (Sixo & Heir Max), Ben Buck, Upper Reality, Crew54, Notes Floats with Suzanna Choffel and Butcher Bear featuring Chief and TheDoomsdayDevice and BoomBaptist. Check it out, leave a like and a comment if you dig it, and share it around for others to enjoy. Don’t forget to subscribe to DOOMtubeATX for more content in the near future!
Two Austin icons teaming up for some real talk about the current (and seemingly never-ending) hard times that minorities are facing? You don’t have to tell me twice… and that’s exactly what we’re getting here. Kydd Jones has dropped a number of socially-aware tracks over the past month, and the streak continues with Rubber Bullets, a collaboration with Ben Buck and producer Wiardon. What really hits me about this song are the two parallel perspectives, which are different yet like-minded : Kydd talks about achieving dreams while hoping your light isn’t snuffed out early, while Ben Buck speaks a bit on privilege, being a proper ally to the cause, and the clear-cut difference in approach that Police bring to the table, depending on whom they are dealing with. This track is another notch in the belt of positivity for Austin hip-hop, so don’t sleep on it.
‘Ben Buck came to the KOOP Radio studios on February 9, 2020 to talk to Miss Manners about his new album, Kilroy. Hear from Ben about why he named his album Kilroy and what the iconic WWII American graffiti means to him, as well as why he likes discordant noise, and his feelings on respecting his predecessors in hip-hop. Ben also beatboxes live on the air.’
Be sure to tune in to Hip Hop Hooray every Sunday afternoon from 2:00 – 3:30 PM (CST) on 91.7 KOOP Radio.
One of the blessings of having been on the Austin hip-hop scene for so many years has been watching new artists pop up generation after generation and hold down the city. Over the past few years, one of the artists that has been impossible to ignore is the homie Ben Buck, a young, hungry MC with a penchant for intricate and elaborate beatboxing. After a flurry of singles over the past 6 months or so, Buck closed out 2019 with the release of KILROY, a proper collection of work that represents Buck‘s skill level and vision. The project is a collection of singles, live band demos, and even a live show snippet, with a vast collection of collaborators. On the production side, Ruler Why, Flobama, Wiardon, UGGO, Jarv, BRKCHK and even Ben Buck himself drop beats, and on the lyrical side, prolific MCs like Myka 9, AFRO, Jamar Equality, Chi Clopz, Flobama and Jarv all drop high quality guest bars. Don’t front on a legend in the making… check out the project on your favorite streaming service or storefront, and support your local creatives!
The Dang Ol’ tour that Ben Buck, Cold Sweat, Jantzonia and Manny Phesto took part in recently looks like it was a blast, based solely on the feedback from the crew, and the subsequent EP release that followed. It looks like their downtime, however, was not wasted, as Ben Buck has proven with the release of the video for his Spirits single. The track, produced by Flobama of Hermit Kingdom, hearkens back to the early/mid-1990s hip-hop energy that many of my peers know and love so well, so it’s only fitting that Ben Buck would employ Diggy and Wyatt El to make a video parallel energy infused with new school editing touches. Plain and simple, this video looked like it was a blast to make, and it only strengthens the message of the track by matching the energy and spirit (no pun intended) that already existed. Definitely dope, so check it out, leave a like and a comment, and share it around for others to enjoy!
Hip-hop is currently in a phase where the generational divide is greater than it ever has been, meaning vital elements of a once rich and thriving culture have been pushed aside in the name of innovation and redefinition. There were times, however, that hip-hop managed to broaden it’s scope while simultaneously enriching the culture and bringing in new skills to the existing elements, and this growth was mainly due to the way that new acts and participants embraced and pushed these elements forward. Thankfully, this aspect of hip-hop is not completely extinct, as Ben Buck demonstrates on a daily basis. His latest single, Checkmate, echoes back to a time in the early 1990s where hip-hop reached a true mainstream and underground harmonic tipping point : raw rap over high level production (shout out to UGGO for the monster beat), overlooked elements of the culture showcased (Ben Buck‘s prolific beatbox skills), braggadocios and self-validating lyrics, and most important of all, raw energy focused squarely at the listeners’ hearts and minds. These single releases by Ben Buck have me hype about what the upcoming full length holds in store, so I’ll definitely keep all of you in the loop once it hits. In the meantime, check out Checkmate on your favorite streaming service, and always support your local creatives!