Dope or Nope #009 features LSD aka Joey Bravo of the group The Illest*Lyricists with his his “Lethal Linguistics”. The beat by Ed Able is has a nice psycho sort of vibe that goes with the fatal nature of LSD’s delivery, and LSD comes at it raw with his concise, narrow, vowels and sharp, pointed consonants that defines his style. I’m reminded of Metaphor Matador somewhat (which I believe is the third in his “Cypher series”, this one being Cypher 4), and can’t help but appreciate bilingual rapping. Vota ahorita wey–Dope o No?
The first Dope or Nope of 2017 comes to us directly from my brother ZERO off of his latest album LFTY DID IT. It’s a melancholy jam with plenty of Boom Bap influence and ZERO, as always, makes the listener not only hear what he’s saying, but makes them feel it too. Hit play on the damn joint and vote Dope or Nope if you know what’s good.
Freakout Festival, previously known as The Psychedelic Holiday Freakout, took place in the heart of…
For Dope or Nope #007 we’ve got Washington native Q Dot with his latest single “State of The Union.” If you’re a fan of conscious, soulful hip hop Q Dot will most def strike all the right chords.
Considering the polarization of our nation, the necessity for music that speaks for the people has almost never been so needed. Q Dot, A pianist, a rapper, a Ph.D student and a Grammy nominee creates a space of authentic dialogue with lyrics like, “Will we be pawns to the game or rebuild our nation?”
Check out “State of The Union” below, and let us know what you think:
Dope or Nope?
I had the pleasure of interviewing Sol after the release of his Eyes Open EP…
“This is the music that we give tribute to – they gave it to…
I enjoy knowledge, and have a deep respect for both intelligence and wisdom. I believe that a person’s most powerful asset is his or her mind, because once a mind’s ideas manifest themselves they can drastically transcend their progenitor in application and scale. A man can move a rock–a big one too, if he’s strong–but an idea can move mountains.
To me, Hip-Hop culture is innately tied to decentralized creative innovation and knowledge cultivation, and it always will be. The best way for me to portray that is to point to Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), as well as the Shaw Brother’s film The 36th Chamber of Shaolin from which the album’s name was derived.
The second release by Andy O. & Weighn, Beyond Jupiter’s Eye, takes the listener on a short and intense journey through The Storm in search of The Righteous Man. The multi-faceted narrative plays with the idea of tempestuous weather as metaphor, calling upon the largest planetary storm in our solar system (the Great Red Spot on the fifth planet, Jupiter) to stand in as the ultimate symbol for what ails mankind. Sometimes it’s going on around you, sometimes inside you, sometimes it feels like you’re weathering it alone, and sometimes it feels like it’s big enough to engulf the entire planet–but everybody is dealing with a storm of one kind or another.
Weighn’s production utilizes warm, vinyl-textured boom-bap drums to propel the EP, layered with juxtaposing instrumental melodies that evoke feelings of contemporary melancholy, dystopian dread, nihilistic rage, and, ultimately, enduring hope. Andy’s lyrical concepts (much like the previous sentence) are complex and heady, providing the perfect compliment to Weighn’s smooth, effortless instrumentals.
The Cornerstone of the Corner Store released October 28th, 2016 featuring legendary emcees such as Ghostface Killah (of Wu-Tang Clan), Jack Frost, Malik B. (of The Roots) A.G. and O.C. (of D.I.T.C.) and Ras Kass to name a few – teaming with producers 7L, Buckwild, C-Lance, Esoteric, J-Zone and more assist in dropping Vinnie’s third full-length solo album released independently on his own label, Enemy Soil Records.
The Labyrinth, the latest release from Zion I follows the releases of mixtape ‘Stay Woke’ and consciousness raising single “Tech $”. With production from Ariano, Mikos the Gawd, Teeko, and Decap, and guest homies Deuce Eclipse and Codnay Holiday, this 15 track (13 with an intro and outro) LP bangs from start to finish, solid solid reminder of the caliber of talent we all know and love. Lyrically agile and powerful as any MC, Zumbi continues to effortlessly create relevant music.