Mixtape Radio Volume 2 (Hosted by the Young Gunz)
This isn't the
best mixtape I've heard in awhile, but it's far from being the worst. I think
the problem I have with this mixtape is the South tracks. I know y'all think
I'm a hater for not loving C-Murder and Lil' Jon, but I don't feel that. The
tracks I'm feeling is the Grafh and Stat Quo "I Ain't Playin" and
the Primo joint with Pitch Black. G-Spot is a big mixtape DJ, he won Best Midwest
Mixtape DJ at the 2005 Justo's, and it's definitely a reason for that he
holds the Midwest down with artists like 4-Ize and Twista.
and DJ Resident Fear and Loathing
This is a very
dope records. So far I've been very impressed with everything Neblina has done.
They put out a very dope K-Hill 12" last year, and they follow that up
with this. DJ Resident does a dope job mixing the mixtape. Monov War does a
dope job opening up the mixtape with "The Fuel Up." Storm the Unpredictable
and Priest da Nomad hold it down as usual. Supastition and Soulstice come through
for some dope tracks as well. The K-Hill "Diesel (Remix)" is dope
as shit. If you want some fresh music, cop this. You may not recognize all the
names, but wouldn't you rather be put on to new music than hear the same ol'
and DJ Swishocolate The Emissaries
Southpaw and Swishocolate
combine by splitting the tape in half. Swishocolate takes the first half. Dude
loses major cool points for playing Smilez N Southstar. I don't care if they're
you're brothers no one should ever play a Smilez N Southstar track. Ever.
Even if Smilez and Southstar wanted to put out a mixtape, there shouldn't be
a Smilez N Southstar track on it. Swishocolate loses more points for playing
Amerie. It's almost impossible to get a good review on HipHopGame playing Smilez
N Southstar and Amerie not to mention Ciara I'm sure a lot of other
people like this side, but personally I'm not feeling it. Southpaw's side is
definitely more Hip Hop-based, with Shells and Cashmere spitting fire over a
Liveson track. There's some Game, Bump J, and Comp, not to mention Ghostface I
like Southpaw's side better, but at the end of the day if you got a long ride
with your girl this can be a decent compromise unless your girl happens
to be a 300-pound ogre and then you're screwed no matter what because she'll
probably eat the mixtape
Jones Mask and Gloves (Hosted by Roscoe P. Coldchain)
Dow Jones is one
of my favorite DJ's period, not to mention one of the top on the West. This
is a great mixtape if you want that banging West Coast shit. The Yukmouth "Catch
a Round" produced by Kanye West is a banger. So is the Messy Marv feat.
Guce "50 Explanations," a 50 diss. I don't know exactly why Messy
Marv is dissing 50, but it's cool. The new Sly Boogy shit is dope, but word
is he's close to getting dropped. You also can't go wrong with the Strong Arm
Steady or Roscoe material either.
This is something
that you definitely don't want to breeze through. This shit is official. Amplafire
comes through with 15 tracks that play more like an album than a mixtape. "Hold
Me Down" is a dope story about a dude fuckin up and goin to court. "Dear
Abby" is another dope track about love. "Ear Hustlin" is dope
too, which features Poison Pen. Pen comes through on "Lethal Ink"
which is crazy. Overall I'm loving this mixtape, definitely one I co-sign and
Chicago's Hardest Working Volume One
is a dope group from Chicago. This mixtape shows their potential as a group
that can do extremely well in the underground. "Chicago's Hardest Working"
starts off with an incredibly wack version of "Breathe," titled "Leave."
Here, the duo spits about if you're spreading negative energy you have to leave
the club not something that sounds dope as the first track of a mixtape.
Maybe they coulda snuck this in somewhere else. Tracks like "Soulful 4
U" easily make up for any mistakes. Those tracks are butter-smooth head-nodders.
The Kanye West-produced "Insanity" is another laid-back groove. Overall
I like this mixtape because Abstract Mindstate deals with real issues. They
don't rap about that bullshit and this isn't the typical punchline-infested,
Wow. The intro
alone is worth copping this. Lennox kills this mixtape with remixes of Biggie,
Big L, and Big Pun. Not only does Lennox play the classics, but he plays 'em
all with new verses. This is definitely better than the Biggie "Rap Phenomenon"
tape that Vlad did. I could get into the dope tracks and whatnot, but honestly,
this is just a good listen from front to back.
Oddisee - Instrumental
Mixtape Volume One (Halftooth Records)
Oddisee is one
of the best underground producers in the game right now. He's got a laid-back
style that just makes you wanna nod your head. He's done a lot of dope tracks
for artists like Wordsworth, and this mixtape shows his potential. Tracks like
"Head High," "Krylon Kraft," and "Long Time Comin'"
really show his talent. MC's should also cop this so they can do some original
tracks instead of those bullshit freestyles that are everywhere right now. I
definitely recommend this mixtape and co-sign for one of Halftooth's Records
Jae Millz -
Jae Millz to me
is overrated. He's decent, but I don't think he has what it takes to be next.
He's still only known for the P-Diddy battle, where he only had a couple nice
lines. This mixtape, which has 24 tracks, is mostly freestyles. "Statue"
is a good song, and the "By Your Side" freestyle is good. I think
this is a decent mixtape if you really like Jae Millz, but this doesn't compare
to Grafh or Saigon's mixtapes.
DJ Scene - On
Fire Part 2 (Hosted by Jae Millz)
DJ Scene, one of
the heavyweights from the Northwest, comes through with some nice heat. Shells
and Cashmere rip "What Would You Do" and Scene gets a nice freestyle
from locals The Boom Bap Project. Q-Unique and Kardinal Offishall come through
with some heat too. Scene is nice on the blends, as he remixes Cassidy's "I'm
a Hustla." The M.O.P. "Instigator" joint is fire too. The Jae
Millz material is decent too. Overall, this is a quality listen.
Skyzoo - Ghetto
Celebrity: The Mixtape
me. He sent me his album and mixtape, and he's definitely got some great music.
Besides getting original production from heavyweight producers like Madlib,
9th Wonder, Kanye West, J Rusch, and Hi-Tek, Skyzoo's got a great style. He
doesn't rely on a lot of punchlines and wack similies to make a record, as he
relies on his high-level lyricism. Tracks like "I Got It Covered,"
"Up Close and Personal," and "Let Me Be" show Skyzoo's talent.
"No Chaser" is also a dope track featuring Chaundon of the Justus
League. Definitely one to watch in the underground coming out of NY.
- Assault on DJ 13
a decent mixtape, playing a lot of underground and Cashmere joints. The Bun
B, Cashmere, and Shells track is dope. The Juelz Santana freestyle is definitely
below average. Putting the Oowee and Petey Pablo is a big mistake, even if it
is at the end of the mixtape. That is not a good song and does not look on any
mixtape. Victorious saves himself with some BCC music which is always a good
look. The Heltah Skeltah "Stress" track is pretty old but it's still
good. Overall, not a great mixtape and not a wack mixtape
DJ Scream -
Only the Crunk Survive Part 8
If only the crunk
survive, then I'd be dead. I just don't feel Southern music. However, I have
a lot of respect for DJ Scream because he's been on his grind ever since we
met, and every mixtape he puts out has a lot of new South music. Listening to
this mixtape, I can definitely see it doing very well at parties, but the only
joint I really like is the Geto Boys' "G-Code." But if you want that
South shit, I definitely recommend you goin with DJ Scream.
DJ Juice - Hip
Hop Mixtape Volume 13
This is not a mixtape
that I would ever buy, unless I missed hearing commercial radio for the past
year. There is nothing that makes me want this mixtape, from the "Go DJ"
to "Westside Story" to "Disco Inferno." At first, I thought
maybe it was an old mixtape, but there's enough new songs on here that shows
me it's just a bunch of radio shit.
DJ Rolifingaz and Smooth Denali Present Fire Blends Part 9
Whenever you hear
the names Rolifingaz or Smooth Denali, youre gonna wanna check for them
because theyre mixtape DJs with actual skills. Its always
going to be an interesting ride with them, as they always like to mix it up
and show off their blending skills. Rolifingaz and Smooth D provide dope blends
throughout, and then showcase dope unsigned heat like the Block Controllers.
These guys actually make songs like Disco Inferno sound good. Definitely
check for this if you want something current and different.
DS and Big Drew
Present Live and Direct Volume 4 (Hosted by Pack FM)
DS and Big Drew
combine for a dope mixtape which will definitely please the hardcore underground
heads. Hosted by QN5s Pack FM, this mixtape is full of joints from Jean
Grae, Maino, and Stimuli. Some of these tracks are mad old, but a lot of them
are dope. Saigon kills When Animals Attack leaving everyone else
in the cold over a fire Scram Jones beat. Theres a lot of joints on here
for the underground heads, but those looking for the exclusive exclusives and
the new Dip Set are going to have to check elsewhere.
Next In Line Volume 6 (Hosted by Stat Quo)
What I really like
about DJ Obscene is that he always puts me on as to whats going down in
Miami. Theres the regular tracks on here that everyone has, the Cassidy,
Remy, Game but theres a lot of other stuff that Ive never heard,
like the Pitbull 3 Kings freestyle and the Do Wrong featuring Freeway.
Obscene always does a good blend or two on here, as well as showcasing unsigned
talent like Lunch Money. Dont sleep on Obscene, hes a young kid
who just got into the game but Ive watched him take giant steps since
I heard his first mixtape over the summer. Hes grinding hard right now,
which is the main thing needed to win in this game.
Unleashed Volume 4
a pretty dope MC who I think would sound a lot better if he wasnt signed
to TVT. Working with Lil Jon puts you in a box right out the gate, because
how are you supposed to do other music besides crunk when you got him executive
producing your album. This mixtape is ok. Its got a lot of freestyles
on it, but Pit doesnt go with all these beats. Sometimes it sounds like
he just does them because theyre new and he has to drop something. Overall,
not a bad mixtape but not that heat I was expecting either.
DJ Warrior and DJ Hideo Present Crooked I: Cali Untouchables Radio Part 4
Two of Californias
biggest DJs, Warrior and Hideo, team up to give you 20 tracks from Death
Rows latest refugee. Crooked I, who just became a free agent, has been
relatively quiet the past couple of years, gives us 18 tracks on here as a reminder
of why he was looked at to carry the torch for the west. Freestyle tracks like
Real Talk and Renegade are crazy. Crooked I also teams
up with one of Jerseys finest Young Zee for the bouncy Zee and Me
track. This is a great mixtape which hopefully gets some of Crooked Is
DJ Surv Presents
The Mic Volume One
What I like about
Surv, whos also got beats, is that he plays everyone, regardless of their
name. Hes not one of those dick-riding DJs that dont show
love to the underground. However, hes also one of the DJs who talks
too much over tracks. With DJs and talking, less is more, and none is
usually best. Reef the Lost Cauze and Chief Kamachi both come through for dope
tracks, as well as their Philly counterpart Side Effect, who drops a crazy freestyle.
The Spooks Bigger than Life is also on here, and they drop a crazy
track that will bring you back to their first album S.I.O.S.O.S. Overall, this
is a good listen with a dope cover, definitely a recommendation for those looking
to hear new music.
Switch of Pottersfield:
Switch has game.
Not to sound sexist fuck it it is sexist, a lot of girls cant rap,
period. Switch has found the right combination between making herself appealing
to the fellas and incorporating real lyrics into her songs. This EP, which has
six songs and two freestyles, is a dope introduction for those who havent
heard of Switch yet. Push Dat features St. Laz of Pottersfield,
and thats a dope intro track. BK Girl is another banger, as
is her freestyles with Babs and Trinity. Definitely dont sleep on Pottersfield,
because the PF Movement is real.
Hostile Takeover Part 3
Kurupt, who calls
himself the Master Jedi, is best when he blends. This new mixtape,
Hostile Takeover Part 3, is a decent mixtape if youve been
living under a rock this past month and missed out on tracks like 50s
Disco Inferno and Eminems Toy Soldier. The unsigned
heat section is ok, there is definitely some untapped talent in artists like
Fahim, Lie Focals, J-Cruxx and Nue, and Absolute Rec. The Southern part of the
tape is just wack in my opinion because I dont see what all the hype about
Slim Thug is all about. Thats just something I will never understand.
Illa Ghee, the
Brooklyn kid whos riding with Mobb Deep, has never impressed me that much
with his lyrics, but his overall presentation is what keeps me listening. Illa
Ghee doesnt have the greatest rhymes in the world, but his flow, voice,
and beat selection all work together to make him worth listening to. War
featuring Antimos and Prodigy is a stand-out track on here, as is the Alchemist-produced
Recognize Strength. Go Hard featuring Beem and
Antimos is another banger. Havoc comes through for Ghee behind the boards on
Eye Level. Overall, this is a good mixtape to hear Illa Ghee because
most people just know him from his verse dissing Littles.
- Nas - The Prophecy (Hosted by Nas)
This is probably
the best Statik Selektah and Nas mixtpae that I've heard. Everyone and their
mother has tried to do a "Best of Nas," which is really the corniest
idea out there. The man is a legend, you seriously can not even fit all of his
best songs onto one disc, and even if you could, it's too easy. Those DJ's need
to pick a more challenging concept. Anyway, this has a lot of dope tracks, like
the "Yeah, Yeah, Yeah" freestyle and the "Breathe" freestyle.
Scram added his verse to the "Yeah, Yeah, Yeah" beat, which he made,
but it doesn't sound right. Scram's "I've been rhyming longer than giraffe
necks" doesn't mesh with Nas' style at all. Statik Selektah does a good
job on the "Eastside Story" remix with Ghostface and Biggie, as well
as the "Wiseguys" track he produced which features Styles P. Definitely
check this one out, one of the only mixtapes I recommend checking.
DJ Warrior, and Da Riffs - Coast Control: Defend Your Border
Da Riffs are a
production duo from Cali, Warrior is from Cali, and Clinton Sparks is from Boston.
It's an interesting concept for a mixtape. Clinton Sparks took the first half
while Warrior held down the second, and Da Riffs had their tracks rotating throughout
the mixtape. Young Zee and Sly Boogy's "Talk Shit" is one of my favorite
tracks on the mix tape, but I've always liked Zee's music. Immortal Technique's
freestyle is decent, it's good to see him finally getting on major mixtapes.
Busta and Nore both dropped decent freestyles, but what impressed me the most
on this mixtape was Clinton Sparks' production. His track for State Property,
"State Prop Boys" was really hot. Sparks just signed with Koch for
an album so it'll be interesting to see how that turns out. Scipio and Planet
Asia both dropped some heat on Warrior's side. Good concept, good tracks, good
artwork, definitely a quality mixtape.
and Troi Media Group Present Armageddon - It's About Time
Southpaw, one of
Florida's nicest DJ's, drops an interesting mixtape here. There's something
on here for everyone. The first half of the mixtape has a lot of underground,
unsigned artists, and the second half has classics from the likes of Gangstarr
and Mobb Deep. Southpaw does a good job on this because one minute you're hearing
some new artists like Bliss of Fire, next minute it's some Tribe Called Quest.
Props to Southpaw for this mixtape.
Judah and Why?
Entertainment - She Flipped It Volume 3
This is a dope
mixtape. Why? Because it's all chicks. Isn't that what every guy wants? Jean
Grae is the standout on here. Ma Barker's (G Rap's wife) ok. I'm surprised there's
no Jackie-O on here, not that she can spit or anything. There's some Remy on
here, but I don't see what the hype about her. No Lady Luck on here either.
It's real hot though, surprisingly. Let's hope this doesn't encourage women
to start rapping though, because who's gonna cook me dinner then?
- Black, Brown, and White: 3 Shades of Rap Part 2
Strong has never
been one for naming mixtapes. You may remember he dropped a mixtape called "H.I.V."
But one thing Strong does have is a good ear for music, as he's working with
Abstract Rude, Mr. Brady, and Wildchild on his label StrongHouse Records. This
mixtape doesn't have much music, as there's only 7 tracks, but it's some of
the freshest L.A. underground music I've heard in awhile. Ab Rude, who's dropped
A LOT of hot shit with Project Blowd before he signed to BattleAxe has a very
dope single "Got It Like That." Abstract Rude is definitely not an
MC you want to sleep on, but check his older stuff that he did with Aceyalone
and albums like "South Central Thynk Taynk." Mr. Brady drops two dope
tracks, "No Love" and "Soul." Brady can spit, but he, too,
did not drop a great album with BattleAxe. Wildchild is another MC who's got
a nice flow. You may remember him from his LootPack days. His track "Youzafiend"
is dope, and the beat is crazy. Epidemic Massive's instrumental to "Death
Becomes You" is sick . One of the best beats I've heard in awhile. I like
what Strong's doing, how he's putting out some real underground tracks, because
people have been sleeping on L.A. Hip Hop for too long.
DJ P-Cutta -
Takin' Da Industry By Storm Volume 4 (Hosted by Jim Jones)
P-Cutta is known
for his beef mixtapes, but his other mixtapes are not bad. With Jim Jones hosting
it, it's funny that P-Cutta plays Nas tracks, but I'm not surprised by the move
being P-Cutta makes his name off beefs. Hearing Jim Jones talk is worth the
mixtape alone. I think the best mixtape would be letting Jim Jones, Juelz Santana,
and Cam'ron all talk with no beats for 80 minutes. You know how funny that shit
would be? The Beanie Sigel freestyle is mad old. I really liked the Pryme Tyme
freestyle. Not a bad mixtape, but P-Cutta is best when he sticks to his specialty.
DJ Purfiya -
Stop Sleepin' Volume One
You can always
tell a new mixtape DJ from a veteran. The first indication is the cover. If
it looks like it was designed with clip art and printed out of a computer printer,
but that's nothing to sweat. If the DJ is serious, they'll upgrade and learn
as they go along. The important thing is the music, and if the mixtape flows.
Purfiya drops a good mixtape mixing everything from Ill Bill to Sean Paul together.
That's not the easiest thing to do, but Purfiya pulls it off. Concentrating
mostly on reggae but also on Jean Grae and Ill Bill, this is not a mixtape I
would constantly bump but it's not bad. I see a lot of potential in Purfiya,
but he's not at the point yet where he can get his mixtapes bootlegged everywhere.
DJ Drama - Gangsta
Grillz XIII (Hosted by Nelly)
Everyone who knows
me and reads HHG knows that I do not fuck with the Dirty South much. I don't
have anything against it, its just not my type of Hip Hop. But DJ Drama definitely
deserves some props for the work he's putting in, not only on the mixtapes but
as T.I.'s tour DJ as well. Vibe asks if T.I. is the South's Jay-Z, I don't know
if that's true but he's one of the only Southern rappers I listen to. Despite
Nelly hosting the mixtape, he has no tracks on here! But the T.I. music is dope
on here, not really feeling Bad Boy's Southern group "Boyz N Da Hood."
Mannie Fresh's production on "Wipe 'Em Off" is dope. If you like Southern
music, you'll definitely wanna mess with DJ Drama because he's one of the only
ones holding it down for the South.
Born Unique and
his DJ, DJ Rerok, put this together for Howard University’s Homecoming,
which is huge if you’re in the D.C. area. There’s 15 tracks on here,
and there’s some sick original songs and freestyles. Born’s got
a crazy style and a nasty voice. He kills Grafh’s "Food" beat.
Nickel Us F. and Canayda come through to bless Ja Rule’s "New York,"
instead flipping it to "VA." Born’s single "Who’s
the Best" is a solid track produced by Pete Twist. Born also does Primo
justice on "Call Waiting." There’s a lot of dope things coming
out of the OK Kid camp. Check out www.okkidentertainment.com when you get a
Kick Drums - The Shady Experiment: Encore Edition w/ Joey Fingaz
The Chemical Kick
Drums are a production team from Ohio, and they are dope. Trust me when I say
that, these dudes got beats. They remixed Eminem, 50 and G-Unit, and Dre for
some dope tracks that sound like they could have come from Dre and his ghost-producers
instead. The CKD's got beats for every style, though they sound best on the
comercial/south tip. The "Stomp (Remix)" came out dope The remixes
for "On Fire" and "In Da Club," which features Redman, came
out crazy. There's not many producers I co-sign for now, but CKD's are legit.
Check out www.ckdrums.com too.
- Street Wars Part 11: Street Wars or Die!!!
I've never been
a fan of these mixtapes, because I don't think a lot of these beefs are worth
listening to. Like who really gives a fuck about Big Sty? His dis songs are
meaningless. And Maino. His "Rumors" track is hot, but Maino is not.
The Yukmouth/Game beef is interesting. Game just seems to have beef with everyone.
I'd give it to Yukmouth. 50 and Lloyd Banks dissing Nas is retarded. Nas is
the king, and dissing him when you're 50 is the dumbest thing he could have
done. Murda Mook beats Cassidy, that was interesting. This mixtape will get
people talking, but don't look for anything ground-breaking on here.
- R&B Blends Part 36
Doing 36 blend
tapes is crazy. I haven't seen them all, so I don't really know if there's 36
of them, but if there is that' a lot of blends to do. Destiny's Child's "Lose
My Breath" remix is real dope, as are the R. Kelly and Jay-Z blends. The
"Return" blend is dope because Kurupt uses Nas' "Rewind"
beat, which is a hard beat. Allen Anthony's "Alright" over "Lean
Back" is interesting. Overall, there's some dope blends on here. There's
some I don't like of course, but I don't mind putting this in just to zone out
because there's enough twists and turns to make this interesting.
– The Best of 3-6 Mafia
3-6 Mafia is probably
one of the most slept-on groups from the whole Crunk Movement. Their beats are
sick. Yeah, their lyrics suck. That’s not debatable. Good lyrics come
from artists like Nas and Ras Kass, not Project Pat. But I do give Gangsta Boo
her props, because she is nice. Her flow and delivery are good and her skills
are definitely not given the full props she deserves. And Juicy-J and DJ Paul
definitely have the beats on lock with some crazy shit. "Chickenhead"
was hot when it came out, no one better deny that. There’s a lot of songs
on here that might give newcomers a good taste of what 3-6 Mafia is about and
will definitely please old fans, like "Gel and Weave" and "Testin’
My Gangsta." And props to RnS for doing what a lot of DJ’s would
probably never do, and that’s make a whole mixtape of 3-6 Mafia.
- The Dope Game (Hosted by Game)
look now there's a Game mixtape, and they all have pretty much the same tracks.
"HIgher," "Soldiers," and "How We Do (Fresh '83)."
But one thing Mick Boogie does is he'll find some obscure shit to mix in so
it's not completely like the others, plus he gets better artwork so that seperates
his mixtapes too. He's got the original version of "Westside Story"
plus collabs with artists I didn't even know Game has worked with, like Alchemist,
Lil' Scrappy, and Rah Digga. So far, Game has impressed me on some joints, but
when he said "lyrically I'm Kool G Rap on this Dre beat" I stopped
nodding my head and started shaking it. It's one thing to have confidence, it's
another thing to be disrespectful to a legend. Game hasn't reached that level
yet, but he's got a good buzz now so if he's going to do it he's got to make
his move soon.
- All Access: The Mixtape
All Access DVD
is a good product. This mixtape is not. The first sign was Chingy on the cover.
Kurupt does a blend of Nas' "Bridging the Gap" over crunk beats. That
doesn't make sense to me. There's a couple good tracks on here. Yukmouth and
Game's beef is on here, as is Aasim. The RZA's "A Day in the Life"
is a dope song. The drops sound like they were done on a computer microphone.
Overall, there's nothing about this mixtape that makes me want to play it.
I – Shorty Wanna Ride – Rap Y Reggaeton Mix Volume 2
Queens DJ Sleepy
I, who also is one of the editors of Rap Fanatic Magazine, one of the niceset
Hip Hop mags out right now, drops a mixtape that will definitely have the ladies
out on the dancefloor. There’s a little bit of everything on here, some
classic tracks like Kool G Rap’s "You Know I’m Wit It,"
some underground tracks, and a lot of reggae and reggaeton. The reggae tracks
mix in nicely with the radio Hip Hop tracks. The Gemstar and Willie Stubz exclusive
is nice, Stubz always brings it. Definitely check this if you’re looking
for a diverse mixtape with some interesting sounds.
Voice Entertainment Presents This Is Our Country: Politicking with Doc
I might be a little
late on this review, but this is an interesting concept. The dude Doc really
doesn’t like Bush. Doc put together a lot of dope political songs in time
for the election. 2Pac and the Outlawz "Letter 2 the President" opens
the mixtape up nicely. Mr. Lif’s "Home of the Brave" is on here
as well. That track was a banger a few years ago when it dropped and it’s
still relevant today. The posse cut "Dear Mr. President" is on here,
as is PE’s "Son of a Bush" and Jadakiss’ "Why (Remix)."
The biggest mistake on this mixtape is not having Immortal Technique on here.
Other than that this is a pretty smooth mixtape.
Chali 2na – The Fishmarket
The Verbal Herman
Munster, Chali 2na, also known unofficially as Jurassic 5’s top MC, is
jumping out of the water to hit the mixtape market. “The Fishmarket”
has a lot of tracks that he recorded with artists like Linkin Park, Rasco, and
Dilated Peoples. The 2na Fish’s silky flow sounds a lot like no one else
in the game. He kills tracks like “Join the Dots” and “Revolution
9,” both with Roots Manuva. “Full Contact” with the Swollen
Members is a dope track too. Chali 2na is not the typical artist that you’d
expect to find on a mixtape. While these may not be radio-friendly tracks filled
with punchlines and used-up beats, there’s a refreshing degree of freshness
that makes this more like an album than a mixtape. Definitely one to keep in
Jones – Gangs of L.A. – The Best of Strong Arm Steady Volume 1
The Cali Untouchables
are runnin’ it right now. From Strong to Warrior to Dow Jones, they’re
running the West Coast. The Strong Arm Steady Gang is one of my favorite groups
right now, because everyone in it can spit. The most notable members of Strong
Arm Steady is Xzibit, Phil da Agony, and Krondon. Xzibit and Jelly Roll’s
“Muthafuker” is straight heat, as is the Strong Arm’s collab
“Rise.” Mitchy Slick gets some play on here too, he’s someone
Heads should be checking for. Planet Asia and Kurupt drop a sick track “Bang
Our Shit.” Honestly this is a straight banger. First off, if you see a
mixtape reviewed here, it’s either great or wack. I’m not gonna
review anything that’s boring, because there’s nothing to say. All
I can say about this one is that it’s sick. Check it out, www.2ndchanceproductions.com.
Lantern and Eminem – Shade45: Sirius Bizness
Green Lantern doesn’t
drop a lot of mixtapes, so when he does, you know it’s gonna be tight.
Of course there are bangers on here. “Mosh” was hot for a minute
before the election. Now that Bush won I guess that it’s kinda out now.
Redman and Busta did a crazy track together. Game’s “Higher”
is good, but Game didn’t even do an exclusive freestyle for this mixtape.
Obie Trice kills the “Breathe” beat. Nore does the best drop of
anyone before his freestyle. Someone needs to make a Nore TV show and just mic
him all day, it’d be hilarious. This isn’t as good as “Countdown
to Armageddon” but it’s still better than most mixtapes coming out
– War Volume 1 Hosted by Kurupt
Kurupt has always
been one of those MC’s that’s had a cool voice and crazy flow, but
he’s never said a whole lot. Don’t get me wrong, he has his joints,
and his new shit is sounding good. His track with Tristar and Tone called “Pentagon
Rydaz” is dope and Kurupt disses Snoop for getting a divorce. Kurupt,
Roscoe, and M.O.P get down on “Jealousy.” There’s a lot of
dope Kurupt tracks on here if you’ve been wondering where he’s been,
holla at Strong, www.stronghouserecords.com.
– The Recognizable Name Hosted by Angelous
Exclusive takes on a pretty tough name, as he’s forced to live up to getting
the exclusives. Tapping BK’s Angelous to host, the Jay-Z compared MC comes
through for some dope freestyles. There’s some tracks on here that are
mad old, like Saigon’s “Stocking Cap” and a Skillz freestyle.
Nas’ “Good Morning” is a sick track. The Wordsworth track
featuring Justin Time and Masta Ace is sick. Wordsworth is a sick MC, and anyone
sleeping on “Mirror Music” needs to wake up. While there may be
some old tracks on here, Exclusive laces enough bangers on here to keep it in
Great – 50 MC’s
the Great is best known for his banger “Food” that he produced for
Grafh. His 50 MC’s enlists the help of rappers like Jean Grae, Pumpkinhead,
Scram Jones, Royce da 5’9,” Apathy, and Tribeca. The mixtape is
pretty dope because it’s all original beats. The Royce tracks are remixes,
those tracks were out but Cyrus remixed the acapellas. Tribeca’s freestyle
is nice, as is Scram’s. Apathy’s freestyle is real sick. Cyrus has
a group called Personal F.O.U.L. with MC Spit Supreme, their tracks sound pretty
good. Cyrus has an original sound that’s nice. There’s a lot of
different styles on here, and if you’re looking for some original tracks
definitely check this out.
and Game – The Chronicles
Game is hot right
now. It seems as though everyone down with G-Unit gets red-hot, drops too much
material, falls back, and then who knows. Since Game got down with G-Unit, he
took on their beefs, as he goes after Bang ‘Em Smurf and Domination on
“The Break Down” where he spits fire for over nine minutes. The
Joe Budden beef is on here, I give the victory to Budden though. A lot of Game’s
best tracks are on here, like “West Side Story.” “The Whole
City Behind Us” is a sick beat, and Game and Luda kill it, but Kanye shouldn’t
have been allowed to rhyme on it. If you’ve been sleeping on Game, this
will catch you up on what everyone’s buzzing about right now.
Back to School Volume 2 Hosted by Esoteric and Wordsworth
from Boston, drops a strictly underground mixtape hosted by Wordsworth and Esoteric.
TD3 shows a lot of love to underground artists like Swigga, Dtension, and Poverty.
I haven’t heard much from Poverty since he put out a single almost two
years ago. Black Pegasus has a track on here, “What It Look Like?”
The Colorado MC beat Juice in a Scribble Jam battle. The wack thing on here
is how TD3 lists his drops as separate tracks. No matter who the drop is, they
should never be singled out because they’re not actual songs, and it makes
the mixtape look a lot longer than it actually is. Overall, if you’re
looking for some underground, check out this one.
and Vlad – Beef II
P-Cutta made his
name DJ’ing off of beefs. I never been a fan of the “Street Wars”
series just because a lot of these beefs are real wack. Skillz and Shaq was
not a real beef. It was hardly entertaining. Cory Gunz came back to diss Skillz
but he didn’t kill him ‘til the end. The Joe Budden and Game beef
was good for a minute. The T.I. and Lil’ Flip beef is interesting, as
is the T.I. and Ludacris beef. The Mase and Jim Jones confrontation on Hot 97
was crazy. That shit was crazy. Mase goin “God forgive Jimmy,” and
Jim tellin’ Mase that he’s going to put him in his “Cufi category”
is timeless. While I don’t like a lot of the beefs, I gotta give it to
P-Cutta and Vlad for making this interesting.
I met A-Beats two years ago when he was still a student at James Madison University.
Since then, he’s made some crazy moves, from D.C. radio to mixtapes, the
one thing you know you’re gonna get with A-Beats is a quality mix. Doujah
Raze’s new single “Virginia” featuring Thad Reid and Born
Unique was decent. I’ve heard better from Raze’s camp. DMP, another
VA group, hooked A-Beats up with some heat. The Pharoahe Monch / Kanye joint
is sick. Born Unique’s “Call Waiting” is a dope track that’ll
have your head noddin. JS-1, who serves as Rahzel’s DJ, had a decent side.
He put a lot of old records on here, like the “Jesus Walks Remix”
and Redman’s “I C Dead People.” The Rahzel tracks are dope
tho. Check out www.djabeats.com and www.djjs1.com
when you get a chance.
– HardHood Classics
Instead of waiting
for a lot of gay DJ’s to play your music, why not just do it yourself?
That’s exactly what Hitchcock and Ran, who comprise the A-Team, said.
Their mixtape, HardHood Classics Part 2, is full of bangers from the North Jersey
natives. “Greezyness” is the nastiest track on here, which also
features Meedah. Over a rare Young Gunz beat, the A-Team brings a lot of heat.
“Dat’s My Dude (Remix)” featuring Fabolous is a dope track.
The ladies will definitely love “Perfect Girl.” “A-Dub Lean”
is another hot track. The A-Team has a lot of energy and they’re about
to make some major moves without the help of Mr. T.
– Fuck the Radio
finest returns to drop one of the best mixtapes I’ve heard in a long time.
Medd kills it on the freestyles, getting some crazy exclusives. Miami’s
finest, Garcia and Wrekonize, both come through. Reef Da Lost Cauze of Chief
Kamachi’s JuJu Mob comes through and kills Mobb Deep’s “Shook
Ones Part 2” beat. Also Bliss of Fire lives up to his name by dropping
heat. Swigga, Stimuli, and Da Hyytaz all make appearances. An unsigned artist
who really surprised me is Dashah. He dropped some fire. I listen to Meddafore’s
mixtapes because I know he’s got a good ear for music. Anyone can make
a mixtape, and anyone can claim to be the #1 DJ in PA, but if your names not
Meddafore, then shut the fuck up. Oh yeah, hit up www.meddafore.com.
Scene – The Bum Rush
Scene is Seattle’s
most consistent DJ. Every tape he sends is quality. This one is no different.
Whether he’s mixing it up like on Nas’ “Thief’s Theme”
or dropping exclusives, this mixtape showcase’s Scene’s skills.
Giving his left coast some love with Game, the Boom Bap Project, and 213, Scene
also highlights the best of the Southeast (Pitbull, Professor Ecks), and East
Coast (name ‘em). The Cam dis to Ma$e is on here, as is some new Jae Millz
and Stack Bundles. Don’t sleep on Scene. Holla at him at www.dj-scene.com.
– It Ain’t A Game Part IV
There are certain
things you are born with that you can’t help. Some people are born with
three eyes, others happen to have a voice similar to Jay-Z’s. The biggest
setback Angelous has faced since entering the Hip Hop world has been his voice
sounding like Shawn Carter’s. Besides that, no one has any complaints
about him. Yeah he has a voice similar to Jay’s, but listen to his lyrics.
But let’s be real, Ang is tight. “Life Is Life” featuring
K. Sparks and “Can’t Stop It” featuring Lexx are two dope
head-nodders. The Sade-sampled “The Sun Will Shine” is another nice
track. Ang rips the Terror Squad’s “New York, New York” beat.
If it wasn’t for Ang’s voice everyone would be feelin him, but for
now its only a matter of time.
One – Sirius Hip Hop Nation: Channel 40
Eddie One is an
LA mixtape DJ, which is a hard thing to do. Besides the Cali Untouchables, no
one really knows about Cali DJ’s. Eddie One has a dope radio show, and
this mixtape showcases that. The 2-cd mixtape, totaling 49 tracks, has plenty
of west coast exclusives, singles, and blends to keep you head nodding. Eddie
One is a dope DJ who’s not afraid to take risks on new artists, which
is how all DJ’s should be…
– The Mixtape Volume Two Hosted by DJ Ace of Spades
Hasan Salaam is
a member of the Jersey group 5th Column with Hi-Coup. I met these guys two years
ago, and I’ve always been a fan of their music. On this mixtape, Salaam,
who produces as well as rhymes, has an important message. His rhymes leak with
self-awareness, as well originality and heart. Tracks to check for on this include
“Blaxploitation” and his freestyle over the Dip Set’s “I
Really Mean It” instrumental. Salaam won’t go platinum by today’s
industry standards, but he will keep your head nodding throughout this mixtape.
For more info on him check out www.hasansalaam.com.
Kid – The Diesel
Big props go to
DJ Kool Kid right now. He’s really stepped his game up and improved the
quality of his mixtapes. I remember copping his tapes a long time ago, and a
lot of them were just like every other mixtape out…new tracks and lots
of yelling. Here Kool Kid takes it back to the cutting and scratching, as he
does some dope remixes and has enough exclusives to make this a dope ass mixtape.
David Banner and Grafh both give Kool Kid exclusive freestyles. There’s
new Stack Bundles, Jae Millz, Babs, Bathgate (which was premiered on HHG by
the way) as well as some remixes with Nas, Beanie Sigel, and 50. Kool Kid is
back in the building!
Green Lantern and Beanie Sigel - Public Enemy #1
Green Lantern has
dropped three of the best mixtapes this year. First he hit with the Jada mixtape,
then Grafh's "Oracle," and now this. This is more like an album than
a mixtape. It opens with a dope Green Lantern intro and then has Beanie killing
Jay's "A Million" instrumental. Bean's new single with Peedi Crack
and Twista is sick, of course thats on here. Beanie kills the "Who Shot
Ya" beat as well. Being that his legal situation has calmed down now, he
can hopefully concentrate on his music. "The Truth" was one of the
sickest albums to ever come out of the Roc, and "The Reason" was a
disappointment. "I'm Built for the Truck" and "All Eyes on Sig"
are two tracks that are fire. This not only shuts down all the mixtapes, but
also most albums. One of the only must-haves to drop this year.
Whoo Kid - G-Unit Radio Part 8
The G-Unit has
made their living off of not giving a fuck, and what better combination than
joining forces with Steve-O. Although I think Steve-O's probably tought pound
for pound. The hottest track on here is the Game's "200 Bars" track
dedicated to...wait guess who...ok, Joe Budden. Red Spyda came through with
a dope beat on the "Still Cruising" track with Eazy-E. Game takes
Biggie's "Unbelievable" and gives props to Biggie on it and addresses
Bang-'Em Smurf, who's currently incarcerated. This really is Game's mixtape,
as he's on the majority of the tracks here. He's next up outta the G-Unit, but
50 really needs to drop again. Lloyd Banks' best tracks off of "Hunger
for More" are on here, including the Ron Browz' produced "Playboy,"
and the Game-collab "When the Chips are Down." First it was Ja, now
it's Joe, but regardless, the G-Unit gives their fans everything they'd expect
on their eighth installment.
and Black Bill Gates - Sick Wit It Volume 5
Two of Atlanta's
hottest up-and-comers keep that Dirty South music pumpin with the fifth installment
of their "Sick Wit It" series. The T.I. and Lil' Flip beef is all
on here, which was interesting for a minute. I know it's been out for a minute
but the Young Buck joint "Stomp" is hot as hell. Leave it to someone
in G-Unit to pair two rappers beefing with each other on the same track. Luda
killed it though. The new Goodie Mob is aight. There's a lot of artists on here
that don't get a lot of exposure out east like Thom James and Lil' Zay so if
you wanna hear artists like that definitely check for ya boy Scream.
L - Nas - The Last Real Nigga Alive
Let's face it.
Making a Nas mixtape takes absolutely no skill. I don't even consider it respectable
right now to do one...just based on the simplicity factor. Take the best tracks
from all of the God's Son albums and bam...you have it. The only thing easier
than this is doing an instrumental mixtape, which is a complete fuckin joke.
I mean, there's not much to say about this mixtape other than it's got Nas'
best tracks, which is a plus. But for a mixtape, it's got zero creativity, which
is not a plus. I know L could challenge the game more than this.
Men - It's Curtains Hosted by Balance
Impereal and Devro
are two DJ's holding it down for the Bay Area. And the MC getting the biggest
buzz out of NoCal right now is Balance, who's been moving a lot of units of
his own mixtape. He spits hot sit on here with his EA-Ski collab. Talib Kweli
and E-40 combine for an interesting track with "Real Life." There's
a lot of new artists that you'll get to hear for the first time on here, such
as San Quinn and Vincent Price. Da Jacka has a sick track on here with Cormega
titled "More Crime." Definitely don't sleep on Jacka...or the Demolition
Law and Pumpkinhead are Powerman and Iron Fist
on hiatus for a minute as he's been recording and doing live shows, and Cy Marshall
Law has been doing his thing with Everliven Sound, which includes his brother
Skit Slam. Marshall Law and PH combined to drop a mixtape/album over some new
beats and some originals. Law opens up Mr. Meth's "What's Happenin'"
beat nicely and then Pumpkinhead comes in for the kill. "Virgo Anthem"
is another head-nodder over Outkast's "Aquemini" beat. There's 16
joints on here, and it's a dope underground cd. If you're looking for lyrics
and creativity, definitely check this mixtape out.
Past, Present, and Future
You may remember
Blake from Showtime's "The Next Episode" series. If you haven't, the
A-Game affiliated Philly MC is nice. This mixtape a wide range of his catalog,
as it's got older joints he did and some brand new freestyles. The freestyles
over "Stillmatic" and "On Fire" are the best cuts on the
album. Blake's got a good flow that you have to listen to a few times to catch
everything. There's some older trakcs on here as well with Freeway's group Ice
City. There's gonna be a lot bigger things coming from Blake. Shout out to Coz
too for hookin me up with this mixtape.
and Caveman - Killah Blends Volume 3
Blend tapes are
either hit or miss. Either a DJ knows how to do blends, or they just throw beats
over acapellas and hope it comes out good. This is a good blend tape, because
there's a lot of blends on here that sound dope. A good blend makes you forget
about the original song. Kanye's "All Falls Down" is a sick blend,
as is "Lean Back" over "Ante Up" and "Jesus Walks"
over "Gangsta Shit." Rell from the Roc came through for the hosting
duties. Check for more from Lex, and hit his site when you get a chance, www.silentkillahdjlex.com.