Gibson Guitars Under Investigation by U.S. Police for Using “Illegal Wood” to Manufacture their Instruments; Remains Unclear Whether or Not this “Illegal Wood” Was Norwegian in Source (In Other News, Stream that Version of “Norwegian Wood,” It’s All in Pan Flute) [NME]
Brooklyn’s Small Black to Release Two Singles Over the Next Couple Months; I Use Small News Story to Plug My Review of Small Black’s Debut EP, Our Recent Interview With Small Black, and to Take One More Moment to Say Small Black is a Really Awesome Band [Pitchfork]
Formerly Elusive MC DOOM up to Old Tricks, Never Showing Up to a Concert in L.A., and Having a Doppleganger Fill on a Laptop…Watch the Depressing Footage Here. Depressed? Well, Check Out Doom’s Madvilliany 2 Snippets, and Remember that Most Hip-Hop Sucks Live, Anyway [Prefix]
Stream New Track, “Press Corps” From Canadian Garage Duo/2009 Blog Darlings Japandroids, Which Sounds Lifted from You’re Living All Over Me, and Merits (Most of) they Hype This Band Has Gotten [The Tripwire]
Watch Video for Indie Rock Legends Polvo’s “Right the Relation,” off their Recent Reunion Album In Prism — I’m Fairly Sure This Entire Creepy, Montage Video Is All an Enormous Reference to the Made For TV Adaptation of Stephen King’s It…Don’t Ask Me Why [Pitchfork]
The Roots and David Byrne Joined Dirty Projectors on Stage during their Fourth NYC Show on Sunday Night; Brooklyn Vegan Posts Great Pictures of it Here – Did ?uestlove and David Byrne Get Along Amicably? (Yes, Probably, Both are Pretty Good Guys, and Nothing Brings Dudes Together Like a Mutual Love of Funk) [Brooklyn Vegan]
U2 Set to Headline England’s 2010 Glastonbury Festival, the Biggest Music Festival in the World; I Make Early Prediction: 2010 Glastonbury Festival Will Be Boring, In Light of U2’s Music Being Performed [NME]
Stream Track From Cameron Stallones’ (of L.A. Noisemakers Pocahaunted) Sideproject PLATOON, Which Sounds Like The Doors Covering the N.W.O.’s Entrance Music (Obscure Wrestling Reference; Get Down With It) [Gorilla vs. Bear]
compiled by Max Sebela
Stream New Single From Brooklyn’s Own Psyched-Out Tearjerkers Suckers, “Save Your Love For Me,” Which I Continually Feel Is Going to Bust into a Warrant-esque Guitar Solo, With David Lee Roth Yowling Over It – Oh Wait, That’s Basically How it Ends [Pitchfork]
Texas Quiet Rockers Midlake Announce Third Album; I Confuse Midlake With New Jersey Pop-Punk Outfit “Midtown”…Decide Midtown Should Announce New Album; The Courage of Others Released February 1 [Gorilla vs. Bear]
Watch Almost Disturbingly Earnest Punk Ted Leo Run Through a Folk Rendition of New Jam, “One Polaroid a Day,” Which I Believe is Some Kind of Dated Hipster Reference (Polaroids Are Out; Carnival Caricatures, In (Make it Happen, Williamsburg)) [You Ain’t No Picasso]
Stream Snippets of the Long Anticipated Follow-Up to Madlib/DOOM Collaboration Madvilliany; I Usually Avoid Hyperbole, But “I Sip a Hot Tea Watchin Archie Flippin’ Meathead” Is the Best Line Ever Spoken in Hip-Hop [Pitchfork]
The Killers To Release Cover of the Eagles’ “Hotel California;” By Comparing Selves to the Eagles, Killers Determine Fate to Continue to Sell Massive Amounts of Music, and Be Despised for Generations to Come [NME]
Good Music Journalism Prevails! Jarvis Cocker Never Meant to Claim That Pulp Is Getting Back Together at Glastonbury…That’s Right, People, As Little Pulp at Glastonbury as There is In My Orange Juice [Idolator]
Watch Porn New, Extremely Naked Video For Girls Single “Lust for Life;” Less Arousing and More…Just, Really, Really NSFW (What Kind of Microphone is…Hey, Wait a Second. That’s Not a Microphone. Put That Down!) [Stereogum]
compiled by Max Sebela
October 3, 2009
THIS WEEK IN HIP HOP
All week MTV has slowly been releasing their list of 2009’s top 10 “Hottest MC’s In The Game.” The first question that comes to my mind is: “How well can an organization dedicated to the advancement of pop music and trends rank hip-hop artists?” In the world of MTV, popularity comes first, and if an artist has a popular song, who gives a fuck if he/she is a talented MC?
Another questionable aspect of this list is that it’s only the beginning of October. Last time I checked there are three more months left until 2010! Lebron wasn’t crowned MVP with twenty games left, so why decide on the most important MC’s now?
In all honesty the list isn’t horrible, but it isn’t definitive either. For example, including Raekwon is a great move by MTV. The Chef doesn’t have a hit video or single, but he got the internet buzzing like a teenager after 40 oz of Mickey’s [Editor’s Note: Think Ballantine’s for all you East Coasters], got live audiences across the country banging their heads and throwing up W’s, and has succeeded in releasing one of the most anticipated hip-hop albums in the past five to ten years. On the other hand, to include artists like Drake, who spend more time singing than rapping, is shameful in my opinion. Yeah, hooks and singing are essential to hip-hop’s success, but you would have never heard someone argue that Nate Dogg was one of the best MC’s in the game during his heyday.
With all this in mind I thought that it would only be appropriate to give my own, very opinionated top 10. After reading it, drop a comment and let us know who made your list:
1. Jay-Z: Regardless of how you feel about The Blueprint 3, it’s undeniable that Jay-Z has had the most impressive year in hip-hop. The album became Jay’s eleventh #1 record, the third hip-hop album this year to surpass one million sales, and has sat atop the charts since it was released three weeks ago. The singles have been incredibly popular as well, with “Run This Town” spending the eight weeks since it’s release in the top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100, and receiving around 15 million views on YouTube between its various video incarnations. “Death of Autotune” clocked 6 million YouTube views itself, and single-handedly murdered, or at least crippled, one of hip-hop’s most vomit-inducing trends. His benefit concert also sold out Madison Square Garden in less than 15 minutes. Top it off with a 20-minute interview with the queen of hip-hop hate on Oprah and a big article in her magazine, and there really isn’t much else you could ask of Not-So-Young Hov.
2. Eminem: At the beginning of 2009, Aftermath Records announced their plan for regaining control of the music industry by releasing a string of albums from Eminem (The Relapse), 50 Cent (Before I Self Destruct), and Dr. Dre (the fabled Detox). After taking a five-year hiatus since his last solo disc, Encore, Eminem was the only artist out of the trio to actually get his album to the people. On The Relapse, Eminem got Dr. Dre back behind the boards and the mic, but more importantly proved he is as creative, angry, and culturally relevant as ever. The album spent two weeks at the number one spot of the Billboard 200, eight weeks within the top 10, and became the second hip-hop album this year to sell over one million copies. His YouTube popularity has been off the charts as well, with 31 million combined views for “We Made You,” 17 million views for “Beautiful,” and 13 Million views for “Crack A Bottle.” Yet the man is not done with the last single digit year in the millennium: he has announced that he will be releasing The Relapse 2 before the end of ’09.
3. Slaughterhouse: When Royce Da 5’9, Crooked I, Joell Ortiz, and Joe Budden announced that they would be forming a supergroup, hip-hop fans didn’t know how to react. There are always rumors of some incredible collaboration that never actually takes place, but if these guys actually could make it happen, the world better take notice! Then the tracks started leaking, and out of pure excitement, hip-hop heads started to leak in their pants. Audiences began to declare that this was the most talented group in rap. Although the sales for their self-titled debut album were underwhelming, the disc itself was inarguably one of the year’s best. They then walked out of the studio, and tore down The Paid Dues Festival and the Rock The Bells Tour alongside the biggest names in rap today. While each of the four artists have been expected to be the next big solo act for years, Slaughterhouse flipped the script, and brought the group mentality back into hip-hop.