Hip Hop October Selection
Here are a few short reviews selected for you specially by Throw Up Magazine’s editorial staff. These will guide you through this months’ hottest Hip-Hop releases. Tune in to our Spotify playlists and… Enjoy!
21 years after The Realness, Cormega‘s debut album, which has become a classic and precious diamond of the purest street lyricism, the rapper from Queensbridge (New York) decides to return to the scene, a few years after his last work, with the sequel to the masterpiece that launched his career. The Realness II begins with an indisputable sentence that best sums up the story of Cormega and what its rhymes represent: “A street legend that raps elite level / Either way you can’t see MEGA / Reversed is A-GEM / sustained pressure to shine brighter than rhyme writers“. Time passes, but Mega remains a master in the art of crystallizing reality and the essential truths of life in verses to be delivered to posterity and to the listeners ready to receive them. Street poet and philosopher Cormega, today, compared to 20 years ago, can boast of having transformed his street knowledge into wisdom and, as he himself says in his rhymes, there is a substantial difference between the two concepts. This will be just one of the many “pearls” that you will find set in the new Cormega album, embellished by the collaboration of other great masters of rhymes such as Nas, Lloyd Banks and Havoc.
Probably with “10” ends one of the most epic sagas in the history of music (we are convinced of it) and Hip-Hop culture. 10 years ago, the mind of Westside Gunn gave birth to the first chapter of Hitler Wears Hermes, between an Atlanta basement and the streets of Buffalo, where the rapper and CEO of Griselda Records has his roots, starting a path that would revolutionize the recent history of this culture and the rap music industry. A.A. Rashid, philosopher and teacher with a past in the street and in prison, whose voice we have already known about along the steps of this journey, once again, into the tape’s intro track, illustrates very well what this Westside Gunn’s path has represented and continues to represent. for Culture. WSG, with his genius ability to think outside the box, surprises his listeners every time. In fact, taking care of the artistic direction of 10, the rapper from Buffalo manages to make Doe Boy’s “trap” raps on the 808s arranged by his son coexist with the conscious rhymes of Mos Def & Talib Kweli, the “science lessons” by Busta, Ghost & Rae and the coke rap of his sharpshooters, Stove God and Rome Streetz, with A$AP Rocky and Run The Jewels flows, the screams of DJ Drama with the poems of Keisha Plum, everything cut with the amazing samples played by the outstanding producers and blended with the iconic “boo-boo-booms” and a real crackhead freestyle. As Westside Gunn himself would say: “there is one and only Fly God” and we adore his cult.
A few months ago we had the honor of interviewing the Boston producer with Italian origins Michaelangelo, who told us about the great quality of the local underground movement, one of the most active scenes at the moment, of which he is also one of the greatest contributors, thanks to his great beats. How can we blame him !? Proof of what he said is the new project by BoriRock, Boston MC with Puerto Rican origins, which Michaelangelo fully produced, entitled On Dogz. Write down on your block notes the name of this Boricua rapper, because, at least in our opinion, he could be the revelation for this 2022: BoriRock, in fact, brings bars, street attitude, style and charisma in profusion. On Dogz confirms not only the health of the Boston underground scene, but how its cohesion is elevating the whole movement. Take for example the recurring presence of other dope spitters from the local Hip-Hop scene such as Primo Profit, Rlx and Shaykh Hanif. This last month we had this album on repeat and, if you haven’t already done so, we advise you to go and revisit the entire BoriRock discography!
When the legendary Cypress Hill producer DJ Muggs and Colombian-born New Jersey rapper CRIMEAPPLE meet, we already know something extraordinary will come out of it. This time, however, they wanted to surprise everyone with a project rhymed entirely in Spanish. In previous projects, in fact, CRIMEAPPLE had already accustomed us to mixing some sentences in Spanish with his English, but he had never gone beyond a few verses or songs. On the other hand, however, the Los Angeles producer, Muggs, who thanks to his long experience in Cypress Hill, the firsts to spread “Spanglish” rap in the world, and being in some way linked to the huge L.A. mexican Hip-Hop community (see Psycho Realm posse), he knows the subject perfectly. Therefore, the idea of experimenting and showing off the phonetic skills of the Colombian-born rapper on an entire record could not have come more organically than this. In a few years, Crimeapple, starting from the New Jersey underground scene, has built a solid fan base all over the world, especially in Latin America and Colombia. Here, in fact, the rapper had already planted the seeds and consolidated his Latin American audience, thanks to the previous collaborative albums with Muggs recorded in Medellin and Cartagena. Sin Cortar (“without cut”) confirms the incredible artistic alchemy between CRIMEAPPLE and DJ Muggs, beyond the language used and opens up new unlimited scenarios for the Colombian-American rapper from Hackensack (NJ).
Under the surface there is an army of MCs who have been striving for years, knife between their teeth and sharp rhymes, in the “underworld” of this Rap scene, motivated by their love for Hip-Hop culture and a firm conviction that their art deserves the respect due, beyond to the recognition obtained. Among the ranks of this army are veterans who, thanks to their contribution and resilience, would certainly deserve medals and flowers for their contribution to the construction/maintenance of the foundations of culture, despite their names not being mentioned in the media headlines. Among these, the Virginia MC Bless Picasso certainly deserves a place of honor and he has now released a new album, entitled “Hell Or High Water”: his project is not only excellently rhymed, but also extremely well curated. Certainly one of the best releases of the month.
A native of Villiers-Le-Bel, a municipality in the 95th arrondissement north of Paris, 404Billy takes us to the concrete blocks of the French streets with a new project, where he decides to showcase the versatility of his repertoire and the ability to spit punchline on raw beats that best describe the surrounding reality. In truth, the Parisian rapper already has a solid background as a lyricist, having already “cut his teeth” during a few freestyle battles in the past and having shown his skills more than once in his other projects. In this new EP, entitled BLKKKK VAN GOGH, however, he seems to have found in the hardcore and raw aesthetics of the “Griselda” or Benjamin Epps style a dimension congenial to his style.
What is happening overseas on a musical level, from the incredible albums created by the eternal DJ Muggs to, the now known to all, climb of Griselda Records and the seething US underground, is also influencing the Italian market, of course, with all the difficulties of penetrating a local Rap industry, in general, culturally unprepared and focused on an audience of teenagers or a little more. One of the names that has always had the credentials to become carrier and ambassador of this “renaissance”, even in our country, and has the possibility of reaching a fairly extensive fan base is, without doubt, Nex Cassel. The Venetian rapper has, in fact, been recognized for years as one of the best MC’s on the Italian scene, but his skills as a producer, however, were still unknown to most. In fact, with the Mercato Nero (Black Market) LP, Nex using his beatmaker tools, transports the influences and aesthetics of the underground sounds to his music, organizing a product, not only obviously equipped with his sharp bars, but bringing with him some of the best rhymers of the peninsula from Noyz Narcos to Danno, passing through the MRGA team, Gianni Bismark, Il Turco (GDB) and Egreen.
We liked the latest project by the Brixton (London) rapper, TMO Trips, entitled “Most Official Stamp” so much that we wanted to contact him for an interview.Yes, because Most Official Stamp, in our opinion, evokes those vibes and that energy that the London Rap, in our opinion, offered fifteen years ago, when the hype and the commercial success that the genre has then experienced skyrocketing in recent years, driven by the explosion of the UK drill, it was still in an embryonic and more spontaneous stage. We touched it at the time, living in those neighborhoods for a few years: the boys of the council houses in Brixton as well as in Hackney and in the other popular hoods, the so-called youth gangs, were spitting bars about their reality, looking at overseas idols like 50 Cent, the Dipset or the Coke Boys of French Montana. TMO Trips is part of that generation and its first mixtapes and videos date back to that era. Today this London rapper has remained faithful to that mentality, whereby bars count even more than the hype and the so-called “clout chasing” of this time, inspired by the aesthetics coming from the overseas underground, where lyrical skills are accompanied by samples and a 360 ° artistic care of the product.