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Music

The Top 10 Definitive Breakup Albums

When you feel bombarded with overpriced consumerism disguised as love, here are ten albums that look at love's hangover.

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Music

Otis Junior and Dr. Dundiff Tells Us "When It's Sweet" It's So Sweet

Neo-soul singer Otis Junior teams with fellow Kentuckian Dr. Dundiff and his hip-hop beats for the silky, groovy "When It's Sweet".

Music

Konqistador and HanHan Team for Darkwave Hip-Hop on "Visaya"

Detroit-based electronic/industrial outfit, Konqistador team with Toronto hip-hopper HanHan for "Visaya", a song that blends darkwave and rap into an incendiary combination.

Music

Georgia Anne Muldrow's New Jyoti LP 'Mama, You Can Bet!' Is a Revelation

Jyoti's Mama, You Can Bet! is a revelation -- of time, of rhythm, of sound. It takes the free-ranging jazz sensibilities of Georgia Anne Muldrow's previous outings under the Jyoti moniker and gives them a next-level boost.

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.

Music

After Nine Years Away, the Streets Returns Without Much to Say

None of Us Are Getting Out of This Life Alive finds Mike Skinner, aka the Streets, staring at his phone and ignoring what made him interesting all along.

Music

The Wisdom, Worry, and Wonder of Hit-Making Producer Ricky Reed

As the go-to producer for everyone from Lizzo to Twenty-One Pilots, Ricky Reed is at the top of his game. Discussing his new solo venture, The Room, the hitmaker opens up about his inspirations, collaborators, and hopes for a better future.

Music

What Old School Hip-Hop Has to Say About Our Political Moment

Beyond NWA and Public Enemy: rappers have been sounding the alarm about police brutality since the birth of hip-hop.

Music

Canadian Producer Whipped Cream Captures the Zeitgeist on 'Who Is Whipped Cream?'

Whipped Cream's debut is a perfect tonic to all the bottled-up rage and pent-up energy many of us are feeling this year while reminding our bodies of the dancefloors to which we will one day return.

Music

Gromo and Rhea Raj Make Seductive Electrosoul on "Slowly" (premiere)

Electro/hip-hop producer, Gromo teams with pop/R&B singer Rhea Raj for a beat-filled, Latin- and Indian-influenced electrosoul stunner, the winning "Slowly".

Music

BTS' "Dynamite" Defies the West Much More Than It Bends to It

It's easy to depict the song's all English lyrics and music video tribute to Western pop culture icons as searching for Western validation, but "Dynamite" hints mostly at the type of semiotic disruption that BTS has been notable for.

Music

Hip-Hop Since the Don of Rhyme: Shabazz Palaces' 'The Don of Diamond Dreams'

With the release of Shabazz Palaces' The Don of Diamond Dreams, producer-rapper Ishmael Butler envisions yet another lunar world of sound disturbed by his anxieties and desires.

Music

L'Orange and Solemn Brigham Bring Dissentient Experiments and Dangerous Poetry in 'Marlowe 2'

On Marlowe 2, L'Orange finds an inventive range, interleaving the hip-hop with textures that bring his landscapes into tuneful definition; Solemn Brigham, brings his deft skills as one of hip-hop's brightest poets.

Music

Jamila Woods' "SULA (Paperback)" and Creative Ancestry and Self-Love in the Age of "List" Activism

In Jamila Woods' latest single "SULA (Paperback)", Toni Morrison and her 1973 novel of the same name are not static literary phenomena. They are an artist and artwork as galvanizing and alive as Woods herself.

Music

Hip-Hop's Raashan Ahmad Talks About His Place in 'The Sun'

On his latest work,The Sun, rapper Raashan Ahmad brings his irrepressible charisma to this set of Afrobeat-influenced hip-hop.

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

​​Beyoncé's 'Black Is King' Builds Identity From Afrofuturism

Beyoncé's Black Is King's reliance on Afrofuturism recuperates the film from Disney's clutches while reclaiming Black excellence.

Music

Flo Milli Bottles Pure "Bad Bitch" Energy on 'Ho, Why Is You Here?'

The idea that a female rap project is a failure for being one-note -- especially when that note is confident and sexy -- ruins what a project like Flo Milli's Ho, Why Is You Here? has to offer: fun in its purest form.

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

Why Australia's Alice Ivy Doesn't Want to Sleep

Alice Ivy walks a fine line between chillwave cool and Big Beat freakouts, and her 2018 debut record was an electropop wonder. Now, in the middle of a pandemic, she tries to keep the good vibes going with a new record decked out in endless collaborations.

Film

Contemporary Urbanity and Blackness in 'New Jack City'

Hood films are a jarring eviction notice for traditional Civil Rights rhetoric and, possibly, leadership -- in other words, "What has the Civil Rights movement done for me lately?"

Music

The 10 Best Hip-Hop Tracks of 1991

1991's best hip-hop songs lean more towards beats production than the era's increasingly popular gangsta rap genre.

Music

Producer Mux Mool Delivers Groovy Beats on "Latest Sulk" (premiere)

Beats producer Mux Mool returns with Skulltaste II, ten years after the first and delivers the banging new single "Latest Sulk" as his statement of intent.

Music

How the New Jack Swing Movement Redefined an Era

New Jack Swing was the soundtrack to young America of the late 1980s and early 1990s in the same vein that Motown was the soundtrack to young America of the 1960s.

Music

Flying Lotus Goes Purely Instrumental on New Version of 'Flamagra'

On the instrumental version of last year's Flamagra, Flying Lotus makes conspicuous variety feel coherent and ordered.

Music

Ice Cube's 'Death Certificate' Soundtracked the Rodney King Era

It was during the period between the Rodney King beating and subsequent court verdict that Ice Cube cut Death Certificate, a chilling glimpse into the anger and frustration South Central Los Angelinos were feeling.

Music

Benin City Address Structural Racism with "Hostiles"

The brilliant London trio Benin City return with the hard-hitting new track "Hostiles" that articulates what it means to be Black in the 21st century.

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.

Books

Bring That Beat Back: A Course in Hip-Hop Sampling 101

In Bring That Beat Back, critic Nate Patrin argues that hip-hop is essentially a forward-looking evolution of black American music with a deep reverence for its predecessors.

Music

Kev Choice and Fellow MCs Find the "Silver Lining" in Social Distancing (premiere)

On "Silver Lining", Kev Choice is joined by a collective of Bay Area rappers to reflect on positive efforts in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Music

Counterbalance 17: Public Enemy - 'It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back'

Hip-hop makes its debut on the Big List with Public Enemy’s meaty, beaty manifesto, and all the jealous punks can’t stop the dunk. Counterbalance’s Klinger and Mendelsohn give it a listen.

Music

Archie Shepp, Raw Poetic, and Damu the Fudgemunk Enlighten and Enliven with 'Ocean Bridges'

Ocean Bridges is proof that genre crossovers can sound organic, and that the term "crossover" doesn't have to come loaded with gimmicky connotations. Maybe we're headed for a world in which genres are so fluid that the term is dropped altogether from the cultural lexicon.

Music

Man Alive! Is a Continued Display of the Grimy-Yet-Refined Magnetism of King Krule

Following The OOZ and its accolades, King Krule crafts a similarly hazy gem with Man Alive! that digs into his distinct aesthetic rather than forges new ground.

Music

Commemorating the Legacy of Steve "Stezo" Williams

Stezo died in his sleep on 29 April at age 51, leaving behind a legacy begging to be properly commemorated. His 1989 album Crazy Noise has been buried in the annals of hip-hop history, an underappreciated dollar-bin find that serves both as a time capsule for hip-hop's late 1980s golden era and a lesson in keeping it real.

Music

Kill Audrey's "Hometeam" Is a Brutal Working-Class Flex (premiere)

Chicago-based Kill Audrey make hazy, chaotic hip-hop/party music for people who buy tall boys with their rent money. Watch the video for their new single, "Hometeam".

Music

Nicki Minaj Is the Greatest Rapper of the Decade Bar None

2020 and it's finally time to acknowledge Nicki Minaj's right to G.O.A.T. status, as the best female rapper AND the best rapper of the past ten years — no gender preposition required.

Music

Cassowary Debuts with a Jazz-Funk Gem

After debuting on a 2015 record by childhood friend Earl Sweatshirt, Cassowary merges jazz, funk, soul, and hip-hop on his self-titled debut album and creates a jazz-funk gem.


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