Public Enemy at Pitchfork’s Festival

In the annals of classic hip-hop, last week’s Public Enemy show at the Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago has to go down in the books as Historic.

Chuck D., Flava Flav and the boys performed their classic, It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, in its entirety.

Here’s “Rebel Without a Pause”…

I saw P.E. perform “Rebel” 20 years ago at a concert in Milwaukee with LL Cool J and Whodini (and..?) – long before the hipsters grabbed hold of “It Takes a Nation…” Aren’t I awesome?

Hot Stuff: Santogold

santogold

A few months ago I caught some buzz on Santogold as someone to check out. At the time, her record wasn’t out, and I simply forgot about it. This week I found a slip of paper (amongst many) on my desk that said simply ‘Santogold.’ Coincidentally, her album dropped in the US this week.
This might be my pick for 2008 so far.

A knee jerk reaction would be to compare her to M.I.A. However, that comparison is unfair to both parties. Sure, there might be some stylistic similarities in some of Santogold’s tracks, but she’s hardly “this year’s M.I.A.” Rather, Santogold is straddling the fence between indie rock and hip-hop/dance. The current single, “L.E.S. Artistes,” is very much in the rock idiom. Check out the video (she also performed this tune on Conan recently):

Hot track!

Other parts of the album are more in a hip hop/dance vein, and are executed equally well. For example:

SantogoldYou’ll Find a Way (mp3)

Give the album a spin. This along with the new Roots and Jamie Lidell albums are basically all I’ve been listening to all week. Three hot releases in one week – score!

Buy:

Santogold (MySpace)

Transforming Hip-Hop: Flobots

Get Serious. Get Flobots.

It’s been awhile since a tune I heard on the radio made me sit up and pay attention but that’s exactly what happened the first time I heard “Handlebars” by the Hip-Hop collective Flobots. Socially conscious and politically charged and completely live this is the visceral type of Hip-Hop that keeps me believing despite the crap they pass off as rap these days. The group was recently signed to Universal so I imagine you’ll be hearing and seeing a lot more in the near future. Stay tuned and check out the original video for the track that got me hooked.

Flobots Handlebars (Last.fm)

Flobots – Handlebars (Video)

Buy Fight With Tools: Amazon | iTunes

Links: Official Site | on Last.fm | on MySpace

Can I Kick It?

The Tribe That Refreshes.

Yes you can! The annual Rock the Bells tour line up has been announced and it is, for my dollar, the most jam-packed bill of any tour crossing North America this year. Headlining the trek is the reunited members of A Tribe Called Quest, Nas, Mos Def, De La Soul, 1/3 of the Wu-Tang Clan and the master himself Rakim. So indeed, “before this, did you really know what live was?”

De La Soul – Buddy (Native Tongue Decision) (Video)

Check the rest of the line up and the dates after the jump.

Bacon Shoe

It’s time to spread the good word of Bacon Shoe. Out of Kansas City, Missouri, this humorous hip-hop trio is made up of: Lethal-D – the MC whose favorite subjects are disease and sex. ‘Toine – the hypeman of the group who is known to refer to himself as “Cocktopus” (for reasons I’ll let you find out for yourself). And last but not least, half-dog, half-paramedic Mr. Ruggles, who instead of taking the deejay role on stage, prefers to cook bacon on a skillet.

We all need a laugh from time to time, and Bacon Shoe delivers – in that immature, crass, and tasteless sort of way. “Absurd experimental disgusto horror rap”. Right up my alley (hey, I still listen to Howard Stern every day).

Not for kids. And Mom, please move on to the next post.

Bacon Shoe – A New Discovery Shed (mp3)

Bacon Shoe – Soft Bacon (mp3)

Baconshoe.com | myspace.com/baconshoe

Buy their latest, Back from Stinktion.

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Now playing: Badly Drawn Boy – All Possibilities
via FoxyTunes

Ohmega’s Platypus Strut


Ohmega Watts is a hip-hop producer / MC from Brooklyn. Nestled within his impressive most recent release, Watts Happening, is this funky, old-school, afrobeat-licious instrumental groove called “The Platypus Strut”.

Everyone should have a personal theme song or two to play in their head (or iPod) while they’re walking down the street. For me, this may have to join the Commodores’ “Machine Gun”, Kool & the Gang’s “Jungle Boogie”, and Prince’s “Sexy MF” in my list of “walk down the street like a bad-ass” theme songs.

What’s your theme song?

Ohmega Watts The Platypus Strut (mp3)

Buy Watts Happening

OhmegaWatts.com | myspace.com/ohmegawatts

On the Road: Ohmega Watts is spending February on the road with New Orleans funk-jam-meisters Galactic. Details here.