BEST NON-2016 STUFF of 2016
I’ve been a fan of both Open Mike Eagle (@Mike_Eagle) and Serengeti (@serengetidave) for a few years now but somehow, their 2015 collaborative album, Time and Materials, managed to slip beneath my radar at the time of its release.
Dubbing themselves Cavanaugh, the conceptual album imagines both MCs as maintenance workers inside of a fictional mixed-income residence.
From their bio: “In a new urban development on the far west side of Detroit, Florida, it’s mandated by a 5-to-4 city council vote that a new housing structure be erected that has both luxury condominium units available for private ownership and section 7 housing in the same building. Via separate entrances, the Cavanaugh building services two very different populations. And though the lifestyles of the residents vary, each unit relies on the same system of pipes and wiring and are serviced by the same crew. Mike and Dave have a combined 14 years of experience in Cavanaugh maintenance. They usually work drunk, mumbling greetings to the residents, soaking up all the disdain that the higher and lower income inhabitants have for each other. They talk shit to each other all day. Complaining about their home lives, spinning passive aggressive tales where they pretend to be angrier, stronger, more expressive men.”
A fun and deeply textured listen, this also marks Open Mike Eagle‘s first project where he is responsible for all of the production work. On the whole, the album is a little more left-field / progressive from your average hip-hop but the dystopian beats and sociological themes make for a compelling record that warrants multiple listenings. Really hoping this won’t be a one-off.
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This track will be a summer jam for years to come. And with each star-studded remix version going so hard, it should help to extend the overall replay value of the song itself.
- Remix – featuring T.I. (@Tip)
- West Coast Mix – featuring Snoop Dogg (@SnoopDogg), Too $hort (@TooShort), E-40 (@E40)
- Texas Mix – featuring Paul Wall (@paulwallbaby), Bun B
- East Coast Mix – featuring the Lox (@thelox)
Smokin’ on the best loud!
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Sometimes, you forget how good certain album are, and goddamn, those early Outkast (@Outkast) and Goodie Mob records still knock to this day…not to mention mega-hits such as TLC‘s (@OfficialTLC) “Waterfalls“…
The documentary is a worthwhile watch for any serious music fan as the insight offered into the production techniques and studio conditions add a new context to the compositions. If you’re not already familiar with genius of Organized Noize (@organizednoize), that is reason alone to check the flick out – the entire collective heavily made its way back into my rotation last year because of it!
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Due to its December 30, 2015 release date, Vessel just missed out on contention for a place in my top albums list. Dude rules.
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You know you’re losing touch when an artist can rack up hundreds of millions of plays on YouTube and you don’t even learn of their name until a year after the hype began. Sucks. However, I had no idea that she was “discovered” on The Voice so I’ll use that as my excuse.
One way or another, Melanie Martinez (@MelanieLBBH) was one of my favourite finds of last year. Her lyrics can get a bit silly at times but her blend of pop, electronic, and hip-hop is quite engaging and highly memorable.
Upbeat but always with an ever-present air of the morose, I can only hope her subsequent efforts will provide as many satisfying repeated listens as Cry Baby has managed.
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I’m not sure what brought it on but I listened to a ton of Sepultura (@sepulturacombr) again last year; specifically, the Max era from Beneath the Remains through until Roots. I just can’t get into the Derrick Green / Andreas Kisser-led version of the band. They’re good but I’m likely biased due to growing up with the original lineup.
One of the best metal bands of all-time.