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Music

Shabazz Palaces Bring the Funk on "Bad Bitch Walking" (premiere)

A sultry, locomotive shuffle of hip-hop and hot blue funk, Shabazz Palaces' "Bad Bitch Walking" features Ishmael Butler as a susurrating lover whose languid gaze of a woman is slowly supplanted by the erotic ellipses of female motion.

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Music

​Nnamdï' Creates a Lively Home for Himself in His Mind on 'BRAT'

Nnamdï's BRAT is a labyrinth detailing the insular journey of a young, eclectic DIY artist who takes on the weighty responsibility of reaching a point where he can do what he loves for a living.

Music

Maestro Gamin and Aeks' Latest EP Delivers LA Hip-Hop Cool (premiere + interview)

MaestroAeks' Sapodigo is a collection of blunted hip-hop tunes, sometimes nudging a fulsome boom-bap and other times trading on laid-back, mellow grooves.

Music

Chewing the Fat: Rapper Fat Tony on His Latest Work From Hip-hop's Leftfield

Fat Tony proves a bright, young artist making waves amongst the new generation of hip-hop upstarts.

Music

100 gecs Remix Debut with Help From Fall Out Boy, Charli XCX and More

100 gecs' follow up their debut with a "remix album" stuffed with features, remixes, covers, and a couple of new recordings. But don't worry, it's just as blissfully difficult as their debut.

Music

Run the Jewels Return with 'RTJ4' When We Need Them Most

Run the Jewels have always had a taste for action-movie hyperbole, but as they've powered through their careers, the lines between slapstick and real have almost ceased to exist.

Music

Alt-R&B's RICEWINE Nails the Vibe on 'Lovesick'

RICEWINE's uneven yet generous third LP, Lovesick, perfects an infectious and consistent sound, allowing the groove to propel the album forward.

Music

The Best Hip-Hop Albums/Mixtapes of 2010

Epic, sleek, weed rap, emo, sociopolitical, gangsta, or house party? In which direction will hip-hop go? 2010 was a year for all of the above.

Music

Run the Jewels - "Ooh LA LA" (Singles Going Steady)

Run the Jewels' "Ooh LA LA" may hit with old-school hip-hop swagger, but it also frustratingly affirms misogynistic bro-culture.

Music

The Seshen Return Feeling Kind of 'Cyan'

San Francisco alt-R&B/electropop group, the Seshen tie musical and emotional threads together beautifully on Cyan.

Music

Marks X the Spot: Rapper Giovanni Marks Challenges the Hip-Hop Paradigm

Giovanni Marks, the William S. Burroughs of hip-hop, offers up his thoughts on the trials and tribulations of an indie hip-hop artist.

Music

Danny Brown's 'uknowhatimsayin¿' Is a Classic Hip-Hop Record Without the Experimental Edge

Detroit rapper Danny Brown's uknowhatimsayin¿ is a spare, principled record that's mostly about hard beats and harder bars.

Music

JPEGMAFIA's 'All My Heroes Are Cornballs' Humanizes His Visceral Online Image

On All My Heroes Are Cornballs, experimental rapper and producer JPEGMAFIA broadens his visceral online image and sounds into a more vulnerable, humanizing, and melodic project.

Music

Dirty Heads Update Their Sound, But Not Enough, with the Charming 'Super Moon'

With Nashville producer Dave Cobb in tow, California quintet Dirty Heads beef up their chill party vibe with some unique sounds on Super Moon.

Music

By Style and Error: M. Sayyid Takes Hip-hop to the Exosphere

Few rappers have been brave enough to try what Sayyid has been doing for years; his hip-hop suffers brutal and fantastic experiments of Asimov-proportions.

Music

Mister and Curt Cataract Release Conceptual Rap Album 11 Years in the Making (premiere)

After a decade-long gestation, a collaboration between Detroit rapper Mister and UK producer Curt Cataract is bearing fruit. Hear their latest track "Holding It Up".

Music

Twenty One Pilots Get Sensitive on 'Trench'

On Trench, arena-pop duo Twenty One Pilots shift to a more tasteful, sensitive approach to mixed but mostly positive results.

Music

Sailing the River Styx with Hip-Hop Shaman milo

milo is an art-house MC who savors the magic of the middle-class, refraining from helipads and bottle service in favor of video games and stewed tomatoes.

Music

Sami Baha Displays How Deep the Roots of Hip-Hop Run

The debut album from producer Sami Baha reveals an undeniable grasp of hip-hop fundamentals and trap aesthetics, while propelling these concepts forward.

Music

Young Fathers Do It Their Way on Best Album Yet, 'Cocoa Sugar'

Cocoa Sugar is an album that retains an enigmatic quality. Provocative when it needs to be, it steers well clear of addressing current world issues explicitly. This album will resonate for years to come.

Music

Young Fathers Create a Powerful Ballad and Dance Track with "In My View" (Singles Going Steady)

With "In My View", trio Young Fathers performs a masterful balancing act, turning a powerful ballad into a lightly banging dance track and back again.

Music

Shabazz Palaces - "Since C.A.Y.A." (Singles Going Steady)

Aggressively experimental, "Since C.A.Y.A." is dissonant and schizophrenic with beats going all over the place and plenty of tasty sonic treats weaving in and out of the track.

Music

Mr. Lif and Brass Menažeri - 'Resilient' (album stream) (premiere)

Rapper Mr. Lif teams up with Balkan brass band Brass Menažeri for a thrilling new genre mash on their new album Resilient.

Music

Brockhampton: Saturation II

Brockhampton has created a new offering that is equally refreshing and enjoyable by pretty much following their original formula to the letter.

Music

Black Milk Gives 'Em 'Hell'

Much of If There's a Hell Below's themes relay anxieties buried deep, manifested as sound when they are unearthed.

Music

U.G.: Portals

Delivered through a mastery of dark spell, Portals finds rapper U.G. ensuring that his telesthetic rhymes are grounded in the loping swings of granite-heavy beats.

Music

Counterbalance: Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2

One of 2014's most acclaimed albums is a dense, challenging effort from two wily veterans. Profanities and profundities abound in this week's Counterbalance.

Music

Counterbalance: The Streets - Original Pirate Material

Geezers need excitement. If their lives don't provide them this they incite violence. Common sense. Simple common sense. So here's the very exciting UK hip-hop debut of the Streets. An early aughts phenomenon is this week's Counterbalance.

Music

Son Lux: Lanterns

Lanterns is full of impressive and admirable post-rock concoctions, but the parts are ultimately greater than the sum.

Music

Doseone: G Is For Deep

On G Is For Deep, Doseone goes for a take on synth-pop that veers between being worringly eccentric and, er, crazily audacious. Then again, Doseone has always been a wild-card, and this might be his wildest album yet.

Music

Brotherhood of the Traveling Parachute Pants

Like lattés, Baby Bjørns, and bicycles, we bookish white boys love hip-hop. What one nerdy white boy from Wyoming learned from hip-hop.

Chris Kjorness
Music

'Like Water for Chocolate': Common's Recipe for Progressive Hip-Hop

In many regards, Common is still caught up in the hyper-masculine universe that has historically pervaded much of hip-hop. But in Like Water for Chocolate, he finds fluidity over stasis.

Mark Anthony Neal

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