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New Upcoming Artists - Required Audio

Heard Before The Herd

Joel Marasigan
Dec 18, 2006
0601_impp_01_z_+smash_rockell+album Photo 1/1   |   New Upcoming Artists - Required Audio

Casual Presents Smash Rockwell
It was in 1992, at a Gavin Music Convention, when a freestyling Casual and Pharaohe Monch first turned heads, establishing him as a premier battle rapper. More than 12 years later, he (along with Del Tha Funkee Homosapian, Souls of Mischief, Pep Love, and Domino) sits as co-owner of one of the most successful indie hip hop labels of all time-Heiro Imperium. Casual has dropped 3 official albums and a host of limited-edition vinyl and cassette tapes (remember those?) and this year, he's poised to remind folks just who he is and why you should know him. There's a good set of winners on this one, but the standouts are: "OAKtown," which brings back to the limelight EMac, Too Short, and Richie Rich, and "Styles," where Casual lets you hear why he's good by giving a quick rundown and a little history of rhyme styles, patterns and cadences. Check out that "free association" style on the last verse.

This Is How We Do Vol. 3
DJ SWB & DJ Reese
This is it guys; technology has edged the mix tape into the video world. As soon as masses find this DVD at the local mom-and-pop, collecting compilations will never be the same. This is NOT a 2-hour collection of back-to-back videos burned to DVD-this duo does a relatively great job of blending the music (audibly, it IS a mix tape) with the video. I wouldn't have believed it if I didn't see it for myself. Hosted by Tony Yayo, the DVD features videos from Nas, Teiarra Mari, Fat Joe, Jay-Z, Mariah, Ciara, Cam'ron, Brooke Valentine, Amerie, and Gwen Stefani among others. Don't go thinking that this is going to be some shabby- sounding alley tape. This is the real deal AND it gives all you SUV owners with the headrest monitors and 15-inch hater screens something to actually play instead of driving around obnoxiously showing off your selection of porn.

Children Of Possibility
Some things are just better together. As in the case with the Oneself trio of DJ Vadim and MC's Yarah Bravo and Blu Rum 13. Vadim himself could have chosen to produce for many other different MC's but chose the pairing of the Sweedish-Brasillian Bravo and American Blu Rum who've rhymed alongside everyone from Canibus to Kid Koala. Their complimentary talents (Blu Rum's bouncy cadence and Yarah Bravo's octave-hopping spoken word style) paired with Vadim's off-center hip-hop styling (using inspirations from middle-eastern instruments), make for an album listenable from beginning to end.

The Lo-Fi Chronicles
Omega One
Oh my, the soundscape on this one. Part funky, part dreamy, but mostly an instrumental down-tempo hip-hop project. Omega One has been spinning records at New York City clubs for years and has been working with mainstream underground artists like: Aesop Rock, Cannibal Ox, Atmosphere, and MF Doom. On this album, he invites I Self Devine (featured on "I Want It All") and LoDeck (featured on "Coup d'Etat") who kill their respective cuts. This one could be your audio backdrop when trying to wrap up that last-minute project or relaxing to a 50-minute headphone session.

By Joel Marasigan
28 Articles



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