Anticipation Builds… Rhymefest ‘The Coolness’
January 14, 2009, 3:55 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous

Rhymefest – ‘The Coolness’
taken from El Che: The Manual (Unreleased)

Shock horror, it’s another post covering some brand new audible treats here at FDB.  I gotta give Zilla props on hipping me to this Rhymefest track from his upcoming mixtape that anticipates his upcoming album (take a breath) simply because I can never make it through my RSS reader with enough patience to keep tab of Nah Right and 2dopeboyz who seem to have been amongst the first to drop it.

‘The Coolness’ is a great throwback joint with a hard uptempo beat and ferocious mic display that touches on ideas relating to the current Uptown/Downtown debate.  Regardless of all that though, this is a straight banger.  Can’t wait for the album later this year.

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Beat To Tide You Over
December 9, 2008, 10:12 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous

Yaggfu Front – ‘Hold ‘Em Back’
taken from Action Packed Adventure (Mercury, 1994)

The laptop issues are yet to be concluded. I’m hating it. Revisiting Yaggfu Front’s Action Packed Adventure has cured the blues on numerous occasions over the last week, so savour my favourite cut from the album whether you’re familiar with it or not. Ah, ‘Sing A Simple Song’ drums make everything better… kind of.

Regular programming still a week or so off.

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Random Reflections On The Roots @ Bristol Academy
December 4, 2008, 10:11 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous

The music blogger in me wanted to attend last night’s performance by the legendary Roots crew, make a mental note of all the finer nuances of their set and put together a comprehensive, analytical review that would do the Philly boys justice on what might be their last tour ever (I’m not convinced they’re gonna be able to stay away from it after all these years on the road).  Alas, I was enjoying myself far too much to indulge in such anal nitpickery, so here are some of my scattered, somewhat chronological thoughts and memories of a truly exceptional performance.

– Seeing a sousaphone resting behind one of the speakers and feeling the inital glimmers of what was to come.

– Reflecting on why promoters in Bristol make such bad programming choices on nights like this.  In short, the support acts sucked gonads.

– Hearing said sousaphone play out a three note riff from behind stage, the lights drop and seeing Black Thought, ?uest et al making their first appearance.

– Pondering after 20 minutes or so whilst on my way to the bar whether the show was necessarily going to be all that.  Realising after 40 minutes that it was.

– Obligatory rendition of ‘Proceed’ breaking down into a five minute percussive extravaganza with the question and answer format executed to an astonishing level of musicianship with some reverb effects thrown in for good measure.

– Hearing ‘Long Time’ after listening to it almost non-stop for the last two days.

– Admiring the adaptability of the saxophonist/guitarist/vocalist who switched effortlessly between all three roles.

– Thinking how much fun it must be to play a sousaphone and hop around on one leg doing 360 spins in front of a live audience.

– The blazing bass solo during a fantastic rendition of ‘You Got Me’.  Reptilian looking bassist in argyle sweater done good.

– Realising that for the first time in years I was at a hip hop gig without feeling constantly annoyed by those around me who were younger or resent for those of my age and above who look to be taking it all too seriously, man.  The Roots cure overt self-awareness!

– A ten minute Fela Kuti tribute that hit the ball out of the park.  I see you Jeff.

– Stamping my feet as the group made their way off stage in anticipation of the encore.  Apologies to the man stood behind me whose toe I may have broken.

– The band reappearing on stage, performing a cover of ‘Love Lockdown’ and ?uest goofing around on the mic.  Auto-tuned laughter sounds similar to children overdosing on helium and yet manages to be even more bizarre and infinitely more disturbing.

– Rocking out to a final barrage of classic funk breaks with Black Thought still runnin’ tings on the mic.

– Leaving with the knowledge that I may never see this group perform again but feeling fine about it given that this was one of the most awe-inspiring, faultless sets I’ve ever seen in my life.

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Ludacris on FDB?!
November 18, 2008, 9:40 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous

Ludacris – ‘MVP’ & ‘I Do It For Hip Hop’ feat. Jay-Z & Nas
taken from Theater Of The Mind (Def Jam, 2008)

I gotta say that I didn’t ever anticipate this moment passing, but two of the leaked tracks from Luda’s upcoming Theater Of The Mind are worthy of your attention. The Premier produced ‘MVP’ is extremely dope despite the shabby quality of this radio rip and ‘I Do It For Hip Hop’ has its charms as well with verses from Nas & Jay-Z (nice score Chris). Although most people’s focus is inevitably on the high-profile guest spots here I really like the beat, but would have liked it even more if producer Wyldfyer had let the Mountain drums do the talking solo throughout instead of adding in additional skittering hats and snares. However, I can appreciate that this would have also killed the song’s commercial appeal. Damn those ignorant masses.

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Open Letter To GZA
November 15, 2008, 9:39 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous

That’s right mate, you think about what you’ve done.

Dear Mr Grice,

I have to admit that it was with some trepidation I attended your show last night at the Bristol Academy. At £18 a ticket the entry cost felt a little steep and to be honest with you I have some reservations about the current trend for long serving members of the hip hop community to tour on the sole premise of performing their classic albums, but you know what? I love you man. I love Liquid Swords even more. I own every album you’ve ever released and I want to support you whenever possible. I mean damn, the last time I saw you at Subterania in ‘99 it was sensational. Why would anything be different this time around?

But I got to be honest with you Gary, you sucked ass last night. Major ass. Your cause wasn’t aided by the shambolic organisation of the show in general terms, but I know that wasn’t your fault. I was even willing to forgive you for coming on stage nearly an hour late because I love you. Have I mentioned that already? But how can you expect me to leave satisfied when yours was one of the most achingly tired performances I’ve ever seen? I mean, did you even want to be there? At all? I know Liquid Swords was thirteen years ago, but apart from anything else it kinda looked like you’d forgotten half of your rhymes. Your usually impeccable flow was inconceivably pedestrian and you just sauntered around on stage a little. Is this really all you’ve got left in the tank? What happened to the live presence of one of the greatest MCs to ever do it?

I want you to know that I will always remain a fan. I also want you to know that I will never attend one of your live shows again. Ever. I mean, I might not even bother paying for your albums anymore. Cheated doesn’t even begin cover it. I’m so sorry things turned out this way, but you’ve left me no choice. You’ve torn my heart out of my chest, so why not stamp on it while you’re at it?

Your massively disappointed fan,

Dan Love

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Jaw On The Floor – Mayer Hawthorne & The County
November 13, 2008, 9:37 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous



Mayer Hawthorne & The County @ Stones Throw

Mayer Hawthorne & The County @ MySpace

Just stumbled across this care of Phill and it’s blown me away. New artist signed to Stones Throw, 29 year old white man who sounds like Gil Scott Heron on ‘When I Said Goodbye’ and isn’t ashamed to throw some ‘Get Out My Life, Woman’ drums onto the smooth ‘Just Ain’t Gonna Work It Out’ to give it a sumptuously gritty edge. Very pleased to meet you Mr. Hawthorne.


Still having problems embedding video… check both tracks out at Phill’s spot.

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It’s Phife Friday
November 7, 2008, 9:33 pm
Filed under: Miscellaneous

Phife Dawg – ‘Ben Dova’
taken from Ventilation: Da LP (Groove Attack, 2000)

Because I’m on a serious trawl through the Dilla archives after bumping Yancey Boys and it’s Friday. Hit the weekend running people.

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