27 February 2013

VIDEO: Pac Div - Savages

We on BITM been supporting a lot of West Coast artists lately and they do not disappoint. The Hip-Hop trio Pacific Division better known as "Pac Div" is back at it and released a visual to their track "Savages." The track is supposed to be apart of their sophomore Album titled "GMB," (Gabe, Mike, Bryan. Which are the government names of the members of Pac Div) The lyrics, track, and visuals are all FIRE! It's a dark track and the video meshes well with it. The scenery is an abandoned neighborhood with graffiti everywhere. Even though Like didn't drop a verse, Mibbs and Be Young still brought enough to the table to make the track hot.

22 February 2013

VIDEO: Kendrick Lamar ft. Drake - Poetic Justice

It's been a long time coming. And even though the majority of BITM won't hesitate to publicly voice our disdain for anything Drake is a part of (then give him props when ain't nobody lookin), we have all been waiting for the day when Kendrick Lamar would finally debut the video for "Poetic Justice."

He has gone on record saying that he wanted Janet Jackson to appear in the video, and even (semi) begged and pleaded on camera asking her to help him illustrate his masterful single. The song has been in radio rotation for awhile now, so it was only a matter of time before Kendrick blessed us with the video to a song that could easily skyrocket his album sales.

The concept for the video will easily go over a casual fan's head, which attributes to the genius of KDOT. He is able to appeal to everyone from the radio head to the eThug talkin shit on a hip-hop blog.

19 February 2013

LOCAL MUSIC: Skipperz Montana - Clickin

Back on the seen in the Metro Detroit area reppin’ Inkster, aka INK-TOWN, Michigan, is Skipperz Montana! He dropped his studio promo video “Clickin” off his upcoming mixtape Dead End 2: Point of no return. Skipperz Montana is also reppin’ BHS (BeeHighSociety) Ent. Skipperz Montana is continuing off his success of his first mixtape "Dead End." Supplying us with punch lines and a smooth flow that will ride any beat, he’s a rapper with a lot of potential so support him and his movement! Be expecting a lot from BeeHighSociety in the near future: mixtapes, freestyles, features. Check out the “Clickin” promo video below!

Contact options:

Email:  skipperzmontana@gmail.com

Twitter: @SkipperzMontana

Instagram: @stcmontana

Facebook: Skipperz Montana

18 February 2013

VIDEO: 50 Cent X We Up (ft. Kendrick Lamar)

Like most of you, I fell…no, jumped off of the 50 Cent wagon years ago, right after Curtis was released. His first album: classic. His second: very reasonable fire. Third? Ugh. Pretty much everything that 50 has touched music wise in the years since 2007 has been seen as either forced or lazy, pretentious or ignorant, or just downright garbage. Unlike many people who just want to see an artist fumble, falter and fail, I have prayed to the hip-hop gods that Curtis Jackson III would get back on his gritty ghetto horse and crank out something that I and other mellowed fans could be proud of once again.

Although he hasn’t reclaimed his former glory (honestly, who has once their flame has ceased to flourish? Besides Eminem…), I do believe that he is on an upward spiral as opposed to heading further into trash. I don’t know about you but I thought “I Just Wanna” was a step in the right direction, despite the appearance of Tony Yayo. And I think his last two singles are an even greater step. “Financial Freedom” saw him trying to reclaim his once fiery flow and “We Up” is his attempt at creating another successful “hip-pop” song that is accepted in multiple venues, such as the streets and Top 40 radio. I like them both.

What follows is the unofficial video for the latter, featuring rap’s new wunderkind Kendrick Lamar and G-Unit’s newest signee (formerly of Young Money) Kidd Kidd. Although Kidd Kidd’s verse is remarkably forgettable, Kendrick manages to bring some relative heat, as expected. 50, however, refuses to be an afterthought on his own track, providing two verses and an extremely catchy hook. 50, keep this shit up and I think you’ll have another hit on your hands, and I don’t just mean commercially. The Niftian, out…

16 February 2013

REVIEW: Uptown X.O. - Colour De Grey


                So, I had this whole write up done about Uptown X.O.’s debut studio album,  Colour De Grey. I was going to be as objective as I could be, compare it to other recent releases and just do my best to come across as official as possible….
                 F@#k that…………

    There is absolutely no way I can be objective about this album. I have been waiting for X.O. to drop his release ever since Diamond District dropped In The Ruff back in 2009. While Oddisee always brings it with his releases and yU has dropped two solid albums, I was always on the lookout for Uptown’s solo release. Four years later I had given up hope…………


      And then I heard the album.

                Colour De Grey is already one of my favorite releases for the year. It is one of those albums that I listened to and just knew it is going to be on repeat for a long time to come. I was going to pick up this album regardless simply because X.O. dropped it. I had a feeling that it was going to be good. What was an added plus was the production that came along with the vocals. The entire album was produced by Ab The Pro. I had no idea who this cat was before I picked this album up, but please believe I’ll be keeping an ear out for anything else he puts out. The album is mellow-dope; it isn't a club album by any stretch but it is one you can put on whenever.

                Colour De Grey, the full length release from Diamond District’s Uptown X.O., introduces the uninitiated to Uptown X.O. as more than just another emcee of Diamond District. Colour De Grey showcases X.O. as a lyricist with quite a bit to say. With Diamond District’s In The Ruff released in 2009, the world had been waiting to see what Uptown would do after hip hop heads having been graced with releases from two members from Diamond, Oddisee and yU.  Colour De Grey shows that Uptown X.O. was well worth the wait.

                The album uses the tried and true one emcee/one producer formula and is better for it. Instead of a plethora of producers all trying to throw their best track on the album, Colour De Grey lets the emcee and the producer see what works between them and create an entire album that fits together with no tracks sounding out of place.

These are the tracks in my regular rotation:

·         Everyday – This track features Ab The Pro on vocals as well as production. Ab sounds like he is channeling his inner Jay-Z for his flow delivery but it works. The song actually reminds me of Reasonable Doubt Jay-Z for some reason, but I can’t put my finger on why.

·         Soul Value – There is this sample in there that sounds like it came straight from a Tears For Fears song. As random as that sounds, it works perfectly for the song. The best way I can describe this one is Enya-infused hip hop. Definitely chill, follow the jump here.

·         Salaam – This Under Armour commercial, by way of donutsandmilk.com, uses the X.O. track to set it off. It's not the whole song but you get the point. Check it out right here.

·         Spread Love – This is actually the first song on the album (the track that precedes it is spoken word). The song starts off with a simple boom bap but soon becomes the perfect opener to the rest of the album. If you have never heard of X.O. before now, this is a great intro for you.

When it’s all said and done, this will be one of those albums you keep in rotation almost all year and it will still sound better than some joints you recently picked up. Uptown X.O. has set the bar pretty high for himself with this release. Good thing about that is, he seems content with going nowhere but up. This album definitely deserves a listen. Do yourself a favor and grab a copy. You won’t be sorry.


13 February 2013

LOCAL MUSIC: Vondidat X Millionaire Minded

Press release:

The wait is finally over! Recording artist "Vondiddat!" releases his first solo mixtape entitled "Millionaire Minded,” executive produced by VJ Productions. With his ability to rap, sing, produce and engineer, he's truly what the music industry is missing. He is better known as the true definition of versatility. With determination, vision and enough ambition for the world itself, he will stop at nothing until people fully understand what it is to be "Millionaire Minded…

Vondiddat, also known as Skrilla, is a member of the Richmond based rap trio Fam Thick and also of the producing company The Xpendables. His release can be found at http://www.hotnewhiphop.com/vondiddat-millionaire-minded-mixtape.76002.html 

The Xpendables & their sound can be found at https://www.soundcloud.com/thexpendables.

REVIEW: J. Cole - Truly Yours

Well, well, well look who finally decided to drop some music. J. Cole has been throwing out small verses over the past year thinking that was going to suffice for true fans of him like myself. I don’t know about the rest of you but I’ve been waiting for his album to drop for quite some time or at least a damn mixtape! The Niftian and I definitely think Jermaine is bullshitting and needs to make his self relevant again in hip-hop. Cole has performed at shows with Wiz Khalifa, Kendrick Lamar, and other artists but the biggest question has been, “When are you dropping NEW material!?” Well the wait is over J. Cole fans.  The very talented artist dropped a 5 track EP yesterday evening titled “Truly Yours.”  While I am patiently awaiting “Born Sinner” to drop, which was pushed back, this should hold me over for at least a month until I want more material but I’m not going to be greedy.

The first track to this EP is “Can I holla at ya.” This track was a great starter and he came out hard with Lauryn Hill saying, “One day…you’re gonna understand.” The first verse is about an old flame that he used to have back in Fayetteville. Cole speaks on how he hasn’t spoken to the girl in a couple years but how he still has the utmost respect for her but comes to her being married. She responds to him living his life on the road and how he wouldn’t have waited for her if the shoes were on the opposite foot, but she wishes she could buy back time to be with him. The second verse is towards one of his mother’s exes who played him just as he played his mother. He felt closer to this man more than his own father because he introduced him to certain things, one of which being to Tupac. Cole was hurt because he let this man in his heart but he ended up leaving his mother and in term leaving Cole, being the predominant father figure he had.

Perhaps the deepest lyrics on the song are, “Feeling bitter so these words might seem jumble/ when you left I watched that lady crumble/ I know by now you probably a old man/ but still I feel I won’t be satisfied until we throw hands, for all the ass whoopins/ heard you trynna talk, tell that punk don’t call me/ you ain’t shit and I’m scared it rubbed off on me…I’ll holla at you.” The third verse is Cole talking to his boy from the past who should be with him but he is still home and on drugs. Cole is saying that he doesn’t even recognize his brother now because he had potential but it’s a fatality in a sense because he wasted what he could have been.

The next track is titled, “Crunch Time,” and it is simply about hard work. The first verse takes you into perspective of a drug dealer who is wondering if he would have made different choices. The man wonders if he would have went to college, would he have gotten a degree and would he be married. The man, like a lot of other individuals in similar and/or different situations feels as if he is a product of his environment, “I understand they say you make your own bed, but tell me who supplied these sheets with this cheap ass thread?”  The man states while he is robbing another person, “These are the times/ survival my only crime/ I gotta be on my grind/ a lot of my homies gone/ inside of me lord I know it’s a lot of we gone be fine, but momma I’m tired of crying/ just lie to me one more time…cause it’s crunch time.” The second verse J. Cole is reaching out to aspiring artists who have a passion for rapping but the labels aren't showing any interest but you have to keep working for it. Cole states how he feels the pain of the artists trying to make a name for their self, but it’s Crunch Time.

J. Cole definitely did not disappoint me on this EP. While I am eager for his album to drop, I felt like this was the music I’ve been missing. We at Best In The Mix believe J. Cole is talented but hasn’t been consistent with the releases (still taking into consideration the fuckery that is taking place at Roc Nation), but this is a good start to coming back in the game. I love all five of the tracks on this piece (another titled “Stay” that deserves an honorable mention, which is the track from Nas’ album “Life is Good”) and will be having this on repeat with my Beats by Dre. I think all hip-hop fans and especially J. Cole fans will love this. The story telling is what Cole exceeds at on this tape and what will really capture listeners. Do yourself a favor and download some great music.

12 February 2013

LOCAL MUSIC: King Sterlz X Dreamers

Press release:

Every so often a rapper bursts onto the scene with the flow, authenticity and production to not only bring himself some well-deserved love, but to put the whole industry on notice. With his thoughtful yet hard-hitting new single “Dreamers” on its way to national attention, Boston’s Sterling “King Sterlz” Brathwaite is poised to carry on the legacy of complex, raw and uncompromising hip hop established by predecessors from his Roxbury neighborhood like Gang Starr’s Guru and Edo. G. As a former associate of local favorite Triple Threat, King Sterlz’s rep is built on years of experience recording and performing live on stage alongside national acts like Sheek Louch and J.R. Rider. King Sterlz’s style transcends the tired cliches of hardcore rap with an emphasis on storytelling and a raw honesty about his personal life, legal troubles, and dreams for the future over unique instrumentals provided by his producer DJ Detonate . Through their co-owned Cuttin’ Class Records label, Sterlz and Detonate are working tirelessly to follow-up the “Dreamers” single (and 4o1 Productions’ accompanying music video) with a full-length project to be released later this year. With talent that can’t be faked and a hunger that can’t be imitated, 2013 is looking like King Sterlz’s year.

Download Radio Version: http://www.hulkshare.com/xpzndt4so934

LOCAL MUSIC: RichCityTC X Before I Wake

Press release:

After a year and a half RichCityTC is back with his follow up to 2011's "#FlightEP". Led off by the Sade sampled banger "Smooth Operator" TC is sure to make waves with the brand new tape. "Before I Wake" presents an onslaught of raw lyricism backed by top notch production from some of RVA best producers. @CainMcCoy, @KDGMusic, @KeyBoyy @DjDonRicky all contribute on the newest effort, executive produced by @JetMuzik. Formerly a part of the RAK/TTF movement TC's now branching off into a new chapter showing he's more then capable of standing on his own two. With everything from the brutally honest "Don't Care A Lil Bit" to club bangers such as "Know What You Want" & the punchline driven "9 P.M." RichCity makes sure he has all bases covered. Head over to RichCityTC.com and download "Before I Wake" ASAP!


11 February 2013

VIDEO: Pusha T - Millions ft Rick Ross

Pusha T's second video off of his Wrath of Caine mixtape. Song is still hard. He keeps up the production with this one and is able to visually compliment yet another song. Even though it seems he used google translate at the end..come on Push..it's "el dinero".

07 February 2013

VIDEO: Joey Bada$$ - Underground Airplay ft Smoke DZA & Big K.R.I.T.

The Ecko Unltd clothing brand (remember them?) is set to drop a mixtape titled Underground Airplay. The title track features Joey Bada$$, Smoke DZA and Big K.R.I.T. 
Got that Protect Ya Neck vibe to it. Def feeling the grimy 90s type black and white video.

05 February 2013

VIDEO: Nitty Scott, MC - Bath Salts Freestyle

Last summer Ra'z hit uall with a post about this on-the-come-up femcee Nitty Scott, MC (view post). The video is an abstract noir piece to go with her freestyle Bath Salts. Any video with her in it is welcome..even if it is a bit weird. Flow is fuego.

"rather have my people going ape shit/ face lift for the a-list/ pay bitch/ whole world caught up in the matrix/ 3 eye wide now back to the basics..."

02 February 2013

REVIEW: Joe Budden - No Love Lost

What makes a great studio album in Hip-Hop? The answer to this question seems to change every four to five years as we watch artists either fade into obscurity, or find alternate routes to success in order to maintain relevance. With Joe Budden, whose debut album of the same name is about to celebrate its ten year anniversary, Hip-Hop has evolved (or devolved) into something almost unrecognizeable to the fanbase that has supported him over the years. Following the five year theory, two generations have passed since Joey told the clubs to "Pump It Up," "Focus" and "Walk Wit Me." But even after all of his personal struggles with labels, drugs, and commercial success, he finally unleashes the finale to a four part series of albums, letting his fans and haters alike all know that there is "No Love Lost."

As much you may want to reciprocrate those sentiments, after listening to the first couple of tracks featuring the likes of Kirko Bangz, Lil Wayne, and French Montana, you quickly learn that it's difficult to understand the direction Budden is going with the album. Not only are the first four tracks featuring run-of-the-mill radio artists, Budden himself lowers his own standards lyrically and attempts to match status-quo cadences similar to the likes of 2 Chainz, Juicy J, and Wiz Khalifa (the latter two also making appearances on the album).

It's clear that Budden wishes to at least catch the ear of the young generation who may not necessarily seek out quality music, but instead wait for music to come to them. The major problem with this is, there are absolutely zero hits on the entire album. Not one. Even the standout tracks where Joey is rolling solo, or accompanied by his Slaughterhouse brethren, the songs still do not shine anywhere near as bright as to be expected from such a seasoned veteran.

The album isn't all terrible though, there are several personal heartfelt records that illustrate what's really going on in Joey's life. If the autobiographical subject matter of some of his songs appeal to you more than the actual quality of the music, then maybe this album is exactly what you were looking for. If these were the only songs on the album, it would fall right in line with the mixtapes and poorly promoted albums we've come to know and love from Budden. But including so many radio rappers to boost mainstream appeal soured any possibility of this album being tolerable.

The release date for "No Love Lost" is February 5th, 2013

Hit me up on Twitter @TwonJonson

SONG: Drake - “Started From The Bottom”

Ok, so Drake was going to initially drop his lead single on Grammy night, but for some reason he changed his mind. Leaking “Started From The Bottom” Drake takes a decidedly different turn in his delivery on this one, and I’m not entirely sure that I like it. As my roommate put it, it sounds like something he would have come up with before he made it big.

Of course, Drake sounded nice before he made it big. At any rate, give “Started From The Bottom” a listen and tell us what you think. The Niftian, out…

01 February 2013

MIXTAPE REVIEW: Pusha T: Wrath of Caine

How do you follow up your first mixtapes' (Fear of GodFear of God II: Let Us Pray) success after moving to a high profile label like GOOD Music? Easy..don't to try to reinvent yourself..if it ain't broke don't fix it. Pusha T has been busy since signing the dotted line of Mr.West's contract back in 2010, and gaining most of his main stream notoriety with the Cruel Summer album. But can he keep the momentum up? Let's see...

As most mixtape connaisseur's know, the mixtape medium allows artist to present their work with less drama than a regular LP. You don't need execs to cosign every movement or approve the message/vision of the album. That being said, we expect you to go hard off the break. And that is exactly what Push did. The generic titled Intro is anything but. It is another high octane track warning all other punk ass rappers that the line in the sand has been drawn. Pusha "preaches facts" about his life and makes sure all other hip-hop gangster know that they just "laptop hot" and "internet porn" to him.

Then next track picks up where Intro left off. Millions features Rick Ross and has the most simple and catchy hook ever: million-millions in the ceiling, million-millions in the ceiling, million-millions in the ceiling, million-millions in the ceiling, choppa-choppas in the closet, choppa-choppas in the closet, choppa-choppas in the closet, choppa-choppas in the closet. Believe me, this will be in the your head ALL day. Kanye co-produced this track and really was able to merge that dark gritty gothic style that Push has with some of that Mercy track feel. The song ends with Pusha T saying, "This that shit that uall wanted. This shit sound like God don't it?" Don't get tougher than that.

Revolution is a Neptune laced track that def has that early Clipse feel. Push rides that track with ease, and this should come as no surprise since they have been working together for so long. He recalls his street days "From Virginia/ never raided/ before us no one ever made it/ dope boy lane a n**** paved it/ when every n**** was afraid to say it." Then making it in the rap game, losing fake friends and the ups and downs that come with success, "I was lost/ I was jaded/ Malice found his way to our Savior/ now author/ he offers/ way to view before I see coffins/ way to view to see it before we see vultures." Then of course the signing with Kanye and brighter future that he is able to have with the next chapter in his life. But this track is also to remind him that he was come a long way, "I'm back in the P (Pharrell) now it's full circle."

The last track on the tape is I Am Forgiven. Producer B!ink provides Push with a Mama Loved Me type beat to lay down his thoughts. It come across as an extremely introspective track. With one of the themes being the juxtaposition of his underworld life and the righteous person he hopes to be. He wants to move to a better place but haters "gonna make me bear these arms like a Chippendale/ squeeze off on em/ leave cross on em/ by the time the bodies found there's peat moss on em." The crime life has been a part of his life for so long, but he acknowledges that he "asks for forgiveness Lord." He is great-full of where he is and knows that his outcome could have been much different, primarily prison or death. 

This short 11 track tape is meant to be an appetizer to his GOOD Music debut LP My Name is My Name. Taking all 3 mixtapes into consideration I think one can assume if he stays with the blueprint, his solo debut will be solid. I still think Fear of God is slightly better. But I would place this tape at #2, and that is not a bad thing. Pusha has been an emcee that has grown with each of his musical offering throughout this career. There are many hip-hop thugs on record but few can actually paint the masterpieces that Push can. The emotion is raw and genuine. The track Only You Can Tell It has a sincere Push saying, "I wish my imagination was this good. I can't make this shit up. This is really my life." Do yourself a favor and run through this one, def made to bump hard in the whip or anywhere you just want that hardcore gritty hip-hop. 

4 tapes.

Stream tape here.