K'naan, born K'naan Warsame in Mogadishu, Somolia, emigrated to the U.S. in 1991 on the last commercial flight out of his civil-war-torn home. For others, arriving in New York during the early '90s would have made an excellent introduction to a seminal era in rap history, but K'naan already knew how to rap. Listening to CDs sent by to him in Somalia from Stateside members of his family, he learned to imitate New York rap verses and rhythms before he understood a word of English or stepped out of East Africa. Fittingly, his music is informed by a life split between North America and Africa, occasionally taking stylistic cues from Mos Def or Lil Wayne, along with dropping some lyrics in Somali. The Dusty Foot Philosopher, to be released in the U.S. on June 24, features tracks like "What's Hardcore," which offers the violent reality of Somalia as a comparison to the hyperbolic gangster image in American hip-hop. This track, "Struggling," is a melancholy but articulate coming-of-age gem. Wyatt Williams
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The Glitch Mob got ahold of this track from fellow L.A.-based noisemaker Nalepa and turned the ambient composition, which is taken from his forthcoming Flatlands release, into an electro-infused glitch fest that would wake even the heaviest sleeper up on a Monday morning. Forget coffee, this is what you need when you roll out of bed at the beginning of the week. This week also marks your final chance to enter some beats for Glitch Mob's contest. The winner will open for the crew at their S.F. show on May 9.
Domer is a Brooklyn MC and producer who doesn't seem too concerned with looking back to the storied history of New York hip-hop, or even that interested in the city's new musical directions. Rather, Domer wants you to shake your ass and have a good time without thinking too much about what you're doing. With a few years of experience throwing parties in NYC, as well as some success licensing beats to TV commercials, this guy knows what he's doing. This track comes from his second album, Vaguest Vacation, a release full of catchy hooks and poppy beats for a spring break at the Domer resort.
Detroit, historically, has had two great Read more »
"Take Your Time" is considered one of Spectrum's ultra-rare songs, and thanks to a collaboration that happened in Mississippi with Jim Dickinson, a.k.a. Captain Memphis, the track will be in wide circulation as part of the duo's Indian Giver album. The release also features a fuzzy rendition of a Mudhoney song, a new Spectrum number, and contributions from the Tate County Singers.
DJ, producer, and visual artist Odd Nosdam Read more »
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