Tag Archives: hip hop

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

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Chosen Ones :: Apek Bends Minds With ‘The Village’

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My man APEK recently hit me up with a track he collaborated on with producer Ruler Why that he thought I might feel.  Hitting play on The Village and the subsequent listen definitely had an impact on me… APEK hits the nail on the head about more than a few aspects of commitment to the hip-hop culture on a creator level that I directly relate to.  The way that it immediately puts you in outcast status in both musical and everyday social circles… the therapeutic aspect to writing that most do not see when they pass of your work as simply ‘a song’… the personal drive that keeps you pushing your own limits and boundaries, even when success has been achieved… the absurd, but very real, desire for tangible objects to validate your hard work, such as chains and clothes… the way that some people are just waiting for a chance to crucify you and make you irrelevant.  APEK has always been an MC that puts deep thought into his output, and The Village not only continues that trend, but shows positive growth in terms of writing songs that can be felt on a deeper level.  I anticipate this one (hopefully) getting some 2018 props when people start mentioning highlights of the year.

-chief

Fallen Stars :: Rest In Peace To Austin Legend MC Overlord

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Last night, my timeline was filled with sad news.  Dominican JaySmackola and Tee Double all posted right around the same time about the passing of MC Overlord, who’d been in and out of the hospital for the better part of 2018.  In this loss, Austin is losing a legend, a diplomat and a true enthusiast for its hip-hop scene.  As a member of .::liquidstereoproject in the early 2000’s, Overlord was one of the acts that embraced us and gave us opportunities to open for his projects, which certainly helped us build a crowd.  His impact and influence are unmatched in this town.  In memory of this influence and his kind spirit, I’m sharing two videos courtesy of the Austin History Center to give you an idea of what MC Overlord was all about when he was at a creative and career peak.  He will be remembered and honored for years to come, I am sure.

-chief

Brutal Honesty :: JSoulja Stops By Lit Up AV For ‘Talk About It’

Lit Up AV recently welcomed Austin MC and move-maker JSoulja to their studio for a live impromptu performance of his latest single, Talk About It.  The clip is short but powerful, as JSoulja raps and sings about the hurdles one most overcome when hyperfocused on being real with yourself and dedicate to your rise.  His confidence beams through his calm and calculated performance, and his words have impact, as evidenced by the head nods in the adjacent room that are caught on camera.  I’ve heard the name JSoulja on the scene recently, and this little snippet of the talent definitely has me interested in digging deeper… perhaps you should do the same.  Don’t forget to drop a like and a comment on the video, share it if you know others who might dig it too, and always support your local creatives.

-chief

Street Wise :: T$O, Eric Dingus And Grind Life Films Connect For ‘Nevermind’

The Austin hip-hop scene, since day one, has been a diverse one.  For every backpack lyricists or abstract thinker’s rapper, you’ll find a street-wise, school of hard knocks rapper counterpart.  Recently, the homie Dominican Jay posted a video for Nevermind from Austin-based T$0, and it definitely caught my attention in terms of that street vibe.  The prolific Eric Dingus provides the production assist for the onslaught of bars, and the always on point team at Grind Life Films dropped a heavy dose of dope aesthetic touches on straightforward performance and candid footage.  There’s no need for extra flare or thrills on this one… this is hard hitting product for heads that can deal with the real.  You know the drill… likes, comments, shares and support are always welcome to our local creatives.

-chief

Award Tour :: Austin Hip Hop Awards Cyphers 2018

The Austin Hip Hop Awards 2018 took place recently, and with that comes the traditional set of cypher videos.  Each video is meant to highlight notables from the awards while giving these artists a chance to showcase their talents and introduce new viewers to what they’re all about.  The 2018 editions, curated by Austin mainstay George VonDoom, definitely stand up to the test when it comes to giving a solid cross section of Austin talent.  There are definitely artists I personally would have loved to see involved, but I give much props and respect to all of those involved, as these cyphers proved that these spots were earned.

Part one took place at the Metropolitan apartment complex, home to many hip-hop shows and events over the years.  This cypher took on a more hardcore edge, featuring Tone BriganteSpefyLoose Cannon, and strong closeout verses from Geezy Goin Ham and 245 Nixout.

Part two was the more ominous, 1990’s-esque aesthetic edition.  Raps in the kitchen, no frills, just straight talk and straight lyrical prowess.  Mista D and George VonDoom set things off proper, with Foolish Karlito closing things out in immaculate style.

Part three, set in front of an impressive mural, was more straight talk from a diverse group of MCs.  Sixxx kicked the door down, Kannkasso and D.R.O.I.D. lit things up with wordplay and high energy flows, and GA Daniel cleaned up with a heartfelt flow.

Here’s to those showcased in the Austin Hip Hop Awards 2018 cyphers, and props to the Austin Hip Hop Awards for taking the time each year to put this level of recognition together.  Not everyone makes music for validation on this level, but you can best believe that receiving this kind of validation encourages artists to keep moving forward and to better themselves.

-chief

Diversified Elements :: Clemits Drops ‘A Cult Classic’, Continues To Grow Creatively

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Clemits is setting himself up to reap the rewards from loads of hard work he’s been putting in the last few years.  His latest project, the hypnotic beat tape A Cult Classic, not only entertains, but has been rolled out by the likes of Hip Hop DX, among other tastemaker blogs currently helping to define the hip-hop culture.  The tape covers a variety of feelings and moods within a tight 14 tracks, with clear influences to jazz, film scores and even hints of electronic music all emerging from the boom bap foundation Clemits provides.

On top of what will surely be a successful album release, Clemits is also nearly a full season deep into The Clemits Show, a podcast designed to showcase fellow creatives, discuss creative methods and inspiration, and hopefully help those looking for creative motivation to move forward with their ideas.  Click the pic below for access to the podcast via Apple :

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Hopefully, Clemits continues his current trajectory, as he seems to be headed for good things in the near future.  Make sure to support him and other local creatives, simply because it’s the right thing to do.

-chief