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Norfeest "Yes Yes Y'all" (Winchester VA USA)

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Still Rising
Still Rising
Offered by marvelio-ca
Price: CDN$ 8.46
11 used & new from CDN$ 8.46

4.0 out of 5 stars The Prophet Can Still Reach And Teach {4 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
This review is from: Still Rising (Audio CD)
Jeru's first release in 4 years is definitely on point. The production is what I'd call stripped down. Lyrically, Jeru is still in good form when he tackles topics that deal with the black community, history, religion, and philosophy. "History 101" showcases Jeru in peak form while examining the history of slavery over a so-so beat. "Dirty Bomb", "Quantum Leap", and "NY" are other highlights that bring that raw b-boy material. I'd label "Airplay" as the standout track though. There are a lot of points there that should be heard. The strengths here definitely outweigh the weaknesses.

There are forgettable tracks on the album though. There are a good number of joints where Jeru comes off kind of dull. Not because what he says doesn't have merit or isn't worth hearing, but because the presentation is kind of lazy. I'd say "Ghetto", "Hold Tight", and "Kick Rocks" are perfect examples of that. I wouldn't call the wack though. And "Murdera" is just plain boring to this listener. The rest of the album is solid through and through though.

Still Rising is a solid release from Jeru The Damaja. The lyrics are still in tact for the most part, and the beats are a good backdrop for Jeru's delivery. So, if you like your rap music heavy on the boom bap and lyrics, this album should find its way into your collection. I recommend checking it out.

Standout Tracks: Juss Buggin', How Ill, History 101, NY, The Crack, Quantum Leap, Dirty Bomb, Streets, and Airplay (My Favorite).

Vermilion
Vermilion
Price: CDN$ 17.48
13 used & new from CDN$ 14.08

4.0 out of 5 stars Vancouver's Finest? {4 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
This review is from: Vermilion (Audio CD)
I can't speak for anyone else, but I'm not too keen on rap music from other countries. I do have a love for Canadian rap that I can't even explain though. When it comes to Canadian rap, there seems to be a sound and feel to it that draws me toward it. I mean, there's some wack Canadian rap out there, but that can be said about any place that puts out music. Either way, whenever I hear of a new Canadian cat, I automatically give it a shot because, with the exception of Sweatshop Union, none of it has let me down yet. I'm not really up on the Canada scene, but I do find myself looking north for new stuff quite a bit. Moka Only's '07 release, Vermilion, continues the streak for this listener. The production, handled by Moka himself, is smooth, but not boring. The lyrics are telling, but not preachy or self absorbed. There's a fine line that he walks and he walks it well.

I have a small gripe though. The biggest problem I have with this album is that some of the best songs are also the shortest. There aren't any songs that I would call wack, but the teasers do just that. Standouts like "Cheeka Cheeka", "Do", "Taste", and "Banana Pancakes" struggle to reach the the two minute mark. Also, I found joints like "Search", "Hibiscus", and "Let Me Down" to be kind of bland. And the bonus track after "Speakers" (I'm not sure of the name) was kind of lame. I'm all for 80's rock, but he should have left that to the pros. Outside of that, the rest of the album is great.

Vermilion is one of the better rap releases of 2007. Like I already mentioned, the production is mostly smooth and the lyrics engage without dragging on and becoming boring. I don't know much about Moka Only, but I'll definitely be looking out for more material from the guy in the future. I highly recommend grabbing this album if you see it in stores.

Standout Tracks: Shoofly, Vermilion, I Could Give A..., Shake Dat Neck, Banana Pancakes, Speakers, God Bless, Do, Cheeka Cheeka (My Favorite), So Kona, Taste, and When...?

Get Back
Get Back
Price: CDN$ 19.01
25 used & new from CDN$ 4.88

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 9th Who? {4 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
This review is from: Get Back (Audio CD)
With their third album, the NC trio turned duo release what could be called more of the same upon the masses and the end results aren't bad. Of course, there's a certain dude missin' and a lot of heads wondered if Phonte and Pooh would be able to create anything worth hearing without the notorious kicks and snares that folks have come to love them over. Honestly, after hearing them over other producer's beats (Khrysis, Nicolay, Illmind, etc...), I didn't really think it was a big deal, so I was just expecting the same feeling I got from those other songs. Suffice it to say that they did that and then some. In all honestly, I think it's refreshing to hear them over someone else's production. The beats are tight and the rhymes from Tay and Pooh have relevance and show a good amount of range. Highlights like "Extrahard", "After The Party", "Two Step Blues", "Dreams", and "Sirens" are proof positive of that. Of 11 joints, I'd say 8 of them are good.

There are few tracks here that make this listener reach for the skip button. "Can't Win For Losing" (despite a decent Phonte verse), "Breakin' My Heart" (more so because of Pooh and that beat) are those tracks and "Step It Up" is a real yawner for me. If you're a fan of LB, then you'll probably dig every track here, but those three simply didn't do anything for these ears. Aside from those two hiccups, the rest is good to go. And, like someone already mentioned, (with the exception of the throwback MC Hammer reference right after "Dreams") it'd be great if Phonte didn't spend 15 of the 50 minutes prefacing every song and just let that sh** drop already. Yeah, I know that's a minute gripe, but I do my best to point out everything I notice, so...

Getback is a good album from a group that, despite the loftiest of expectations, continues to stick to their guns and make the kind of music that they know how to make. This time they come through without relying on the one guy that heads said they couldn't do it without. I can't be mad at that. Getback is good stuff and I'd say this album is a definite touchdown. I recommend giving this a listen.

Standout Tracks: When Everything Is New, ExtraHard, Good Clothes, That Ain't Love feat. Jozeemo, After The Party feat. Carlitta Durand, Dreams (my favorite), Two Step Blues feat. Darien Brockington, and Sirens feat. Carlitta Durand

V2 Dream Merchant
V2 Dream Merchant
Offered by Vanderbilt CA
Price: CDN$ 24.89
5 used & new from CDN$ 24.89

4.0 out of 5 stars The Merchant Got The Dope Product {4 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
This review is from: V2 Dream Merchant (Audio CD)
9th Wonder is one of those producers that's hit or miss for me. Well, this time, he hits and he hits hard. People, me being one of them, have made complaints over the years that 9th's beats start to sound the same after you hear enough of them. I don't know if 9th was listening, but he brought some heat this time around. The production, of course, is handled by 9th wonder (even though I thought I heard Phonte shout out Khrysis for the beat on "No Time To Chill"). Since he doesn't make wack beats, the only question mark was the rappers and they fill their lanes and do their thing for the most part. I think "Saved", "Brooklyn In My Mind", and "The Milky Lowa" are unquestionably dope. "Backlash" showcases an improved Sean Boog and Buckshot getting nice over a mellow creation. In my mind, "No Time To Chill" is the obvious standout on the entire album -- Little Brother do their thing and remind me of why I liked them to begin with. The Dream Merchant rarely disappoints with the roster picks and the end result is an album that will be in rotation for months.

The only drawback I can think of is the occasional boring rapper, but there really aren't any wack tracks to be found here. Not that I'm calling them wack, but "Merchant Of Dreams" (despite a great Chaundon verse), "Reminisce (Take Time)", "It Ain't Over", and "Shots" didn't do anything for the ears of this listener, but fans of 9th Wonder should dig them just fine.

The Dream Merchant Vol. 2 is an album that surprised me in a good way. 9th Wonder crafted some real winners on this release and gathered a solid roster to compliment them. It's an album that I recommend grabbing when you get a chance.

Standout Tracks: The Milky Lowa feat. Camp Lo, Brooklyn In My Mind feat. Mos Def, Jean Grae, & Memphis Bleek, Special [Remix] feat. Strange Fruit Project & Median, No Time To Chill feat. Little Brother (My Favorite), Sunday feat. Keisha Shontelle & Chaundon, Backlash feat. Sean Boog & Buckshot, and Saved feat. Saigon & Joe Scudda

Songs About Girls (Advisory)
Songs About Girls (Advisory)
Price: CDN$ 12.32
16 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

3.0 out of 5 stars A Love Narrative: Words by Will.i.am {3.5 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
I'll just get this out of the way real quick. I'm a fan of the Black Eyed Peas. Sure, I know this admission will get me slammed by purists, backpackers, and other types of elitists, so that's to be expected (just read the tags for this album for further proof). If you approach this album expecting anything more than the shallow, sugary, pop tunes that the Black Eyed Peas front man has recently become famous for, especially after seeing the title of the album then, not only are you a fool, but you're also going to be let down. Despite what some will tell you, there are some good songs to be found on this disc. There are club ready songs like "The Donque Song" that, despite corny rhymes, has a beat that doesn't quit and has "single" written all over it (Snoop's verse wasn't bad either). "One More Chance" is dope while "Make It Funky" also serves the same party starting purpose and "Ain't It Pretty" just vibes well. "Impatient" is probably my favorite track on the album because there are no words...it's just a nice, breezy instrumental. Will shoulders the bulk of the production duties with Polow Da Don and Fernando Garibay both doing two tracks and Paper-Boy co-producing one.

There are a few songs on this album that, despite the light content, are just mind numbingly bad. Songs like "Fly Girl", "She's A Star", and "Get Your Money" will have you reaching for the skip button with lightning speed. The biggest turn off to me, actually, would be the first single. I honestly think "I Got It From My Mama" should've never seen the light of day, but I do understand the need for conspicuous use of a pop star (in this case, Nicole Scherzinger) for the first single. Outside of those bumps in the road, I'd say that the rest of the CD is pretty good.

Songs About Girls is an album about just that. It's a light, fun LP that should get a party or two jumpin'. Anyone looking for some good, clean pop rap should at the very least give this album some consideration. It's not the best you've heard from the B.E.P. camp, but it's suitable if you're not looking for an artist to change your world view. Sure, it's cotton candy background music, but at least this background music will make you move.

Standout Tracks: Invisible, S.O.S (Mother Nature), One More Chance, Heartbreaker, Impatient, Ain't It Pretty, and Make It Funky

Songs About Girls (Edited)
Songs About Girls (Edited)
Price: CDN$ 16.66
17 used & new from CDN$ 10.48

3.0 out of 5 stars A Love Narrative: Words by Will.i.am {3.5 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
I'll just get this out of the way real quick. I'm a fan of the Black Eyed Peas. Sure, I know this admission will get me slammed by purists, backpackers, and other types of elitists, so that's to be expected (just read the tags for this album for further proof). If you approach this album expecting anything more than the shallow, sugary, pop tunes that the Black Eyed Peas front man has recently become famous for, especially after seeing the title of the album then, not only are you a fool, but you're also going to be let down. Despite what some will tell you, there are some good songs to be found on this disc. There are club ready songs like "The Donque Song" that, despite corny rhymes, has a beat that doesn't quit and has "single" written all over it (Snoop's verse wasn't bad either). "One More Chance" is dope while "Make It Funky" also serves the same party starting purpose and "Ain't It Pretty" just vibes well. "Impatient" is probably my favorite track on the album because there are no words...it's just a nice, breezy instrumental. Will shoulders the bulk of the production duties with Polow Da Don and Fernando Garibay both doing two tracks and Paper-Boy co-producing one.

There are a few songs on this album that, despite the light content, are just mind numbingly bad. Songs like "Fly Girl", "She's A Star", and "Get Your Money" will have you reaching for the skip button with lightning speed. The biggest turn off to me, actually, would be the first single. I honestly think "I Got It From My Mama" should've never seen the light of day, but I do understand the need for conspicuous use of a pop star (in this case, Nicole Scherzinger) for the first single. Outside of those bumps in the road, I'd say that the rest of the CD is pretty good.

Songs About Girls is an album about just that. It's a light, fun LP that should get a party or two jumpin'. Anyone looking for some good, clean pop rap should at the very least give this album some consideration. It's not the best you've heard from the B.E.P. camp, but it's suitable if you're not looking for an artist to change your world view. Sure, it's cotton candy background music, but at least this background music will make you move.

Standout Tracks: Invisible, S.O.S (Mother Nature), One More Chance, Heartbreaker, Impatient, Ain't It Pretty, and Make It Funky

Songs About Girls
Songs About Girls
Offered by samurai_media_JPN4CA
Price: CDN$ 17.52
9 used & new from CDN$ 9.96

3.0 out of 5 stars A Love Narrative: Words by Will.i.am {3.5 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
This review is from: Songs About Girls (Audio CD)
I'll just get this out of the way real quick. I'm a fan of the Black Eyed Peas. Sure, I know this admission will get me slammed by purists, backpackers, and other types of elitists, so that's to be expected (just read the tags for this album for further proof). If you approach this album expecting anything more than the shallow, sugary, pop tunes that the Black Eyed Peas front man has recently become famous for, especially after seeing the title of the album then, not only are you a fool, but you're also going to be let down. Despite what some will tell you, there are some good songs to be found on this disc. There are club ready songs like "The Donque Song" that, despite corny rhymes, has a beat that doesn't quit and has "single" written all over it (Snoop's verse wasn't bad either). "One More Chance" is dope while "Make It Funky" also serves the same party starting purpose and "Ain't It Pretty" just vibes well. "Impatient" is probably my favorite track on the album because there are no words...it's just a nice, breezy instrumental. Will shoulders the bulk of the production duties with Polow Da Don and Fernando Garibay both doing two tracks and Paper-Boy co-producing one.

There are a few songs on this album that, despite the light content, are just mind numbingly bad. Songs like "Fly Girl", "She's A Star", and "Get Your Money" will have you reaching for the skip button with lightning speed. The biggest turn off to me, actually, would be the first single. I honestly think "I Got It From My Mama" should've never seen the light of day, but I do understand the need for conspicuous use of a pop star (in this case, Nicole Scherzinger) for the first single. Outside of those bumps in the road, I'd say that the rest of the CD is pretty good.

Songs About Girls is an album about just that. It's a light, fun LP that should get a party or two jumpin'. Anyone looking for some good, clean pop rap should at the very least give this album some consideration. It's not the best you've heard from the B.E.P. camp, but it's suitable if you're not looking for an artist to change your world view. Sure, it's cotton candy background music, but at least this background music will make you move.

Standout Tracks: Invisible, S.O.S (Mother Nature), One More Chance, Heartbreaker, Impatient, Ain't It Pretty, and Make It Funky

Songs About Girls
Songs About Girls
Price: CDN$ 20.09
28 used & new from CDN$ 6.04

3.0 out of 5 stars A Love Narrative: Words by Will.i.am {3.5 Stars}, Oct. 28 2007
This review is from: Songs About Girls (Audio CD)
I'll just get this out of the way real quick. I'm a fan of the Black Eyed Peas. Sure, I know this admission will get me slammed by purists, backpackers, and other types of elitists, so that's to be expected (just read the tags for this album for further proof). If you approach this album expecting anything more than the shallow, sugary, pop tunes that the Black Eyed Peas front man has recently become famous for, especially after seeing the title of the album then, not only are you a fool, but you're also going to be let down. Despite what some will tell you, there are some good songs to be found on this disc. There are club ready songs like "The Donque Song" that, despite corny rhymes, has a beat that doesn't quit and has "single" written all over it (Snoop's verse wasn't bad either). "One More Chance" is dope while "Make It Funky" also serves the same party starting purpose and "Ain't It Pretty" just vibes well. "Impatient" is probably my favorite track on the album because there are no words...it's just a nice, breezy instrumental. Will shoulders the bulk of the production duties with Polow Da Don and Fernando Garibay both doing two tracks and Paper-Boy co-producing one.

There are a few songs on this album that, despite the light content, are just mind numbingly bad. Songs like "Fly Girl", "She's A Star", and "Get Your Money" will have you reaching for the skip button with lightning speed. The biggest turn off to me, actually, would be the first single. I honestly think "I Got It From My Mama" should've never seen the light of day, but I do understand the need for conspicuous use of a pop star (in this case, Nicole Scherzinger) for the first single. Outside of those bumps in the road, I'd say that the rest of the CD is pretty good.

Songs About Girls is an album about just that. It's a light, fun LP that should get a party or two jumpin'. Anyone looking for some good, clean pop rap should at the very least give this album some consideration. It's not the best you've heard from the B.E.P. camp, but it's suitable if you're not looking for an artist to change your world view. Sure, it's cotton candy background music, but at least this background music will make you move.

Standout Tracks: Invisible, S.O.S (Mother Nature), One More Chance, Heartbreaker, Impatient, Ain't It Pretty, and Make It Funky

Hip Hop Lives (Explicit)
Hip Hop Lives (Explicit)
Price: CDN$ 19.32
25 used & new from CDN$ 9.42

3.0 out of 5 stars Hip Is The Knowledge Hop Is The Movement {3.5 Stars}, June 25 2007
Marley Marl. KRS One. When you mentions those names in most hip hop circles, the reaction is going to one of VERY high regard 9 out of 10 times. So, naturally, when one finds out that the two are going to collaborate to drop an LP, you are going to instinctively expect an album to top all albums. I mean, if this album turned out to be even a tenth of what Kris' collabo with Premier (Return of the Boom Bap), then it's a worthy release in my mind. The results are mixed, but it's a solid release overall. I don't think KRS has ever put out anything that was totally wack. There are topics that are touched upon that you've heard Krs go over a million times, but they get done in a way that will keep your attention. Then there are others that just come off kind of preachy but are solid enough in the production to keep you from skipping.

I think one of the obvious flaws is Kris constantly beating his chest on track after track. I love KRS One. I grew up on him. I remember what I was doing the very day I heard "My Philosophy" for the first time (I mean to the exact hour) and lost my mind. Dude is a legend without question. This is why it's hard for me to say this, but I found a lot of what KRS had to say to be pretty repetitive. I haven't been this disinterested in a KRS affiliated album since the Spiritual Minded album. Maybe disinterested is the wrong word. I mean, the lyrics are still entertaining, but I guess what I'm getting at is that the replay value just isn't what you've come to expect from a legend like KRS...especially when he pairs up with another legend like Marley Marl. On tracks like the aptly titled "Nothing New" Kris steps into the aforementioned braggart role and on "I Was There" KRS waxes nonstop about how long he's been around and how he was a witness to many, many milestones within hip hop culture. The thing is, fans of KRS already know these things so a lot of this album sounds to me like he's preaching to the choir. I noticed that a few reviewers were mostly unimpressed by the production from Marley, I pretty much loved it. There are a few that miss the mark. "Musika" sounds like a rehash of "Funky Child" but with way less appeal as the L.O.T.U.G. hit.

With all that being said, Hip Hop Lives is still worth looking into. If you're like me and grew up on both KRS and Marley you'll find this joint quite enjoyable. I'll always support KRS because he's never let me down and he supplied the beats and rhymes that were the soundtrack many of my summers. Newer heads may find the production somewhat tired, but despite the hit and miss quality, I still like it. I suggest you leave all expectations at the door and listen with open ears.

Standout Tracks: All Skool, Rising To The Top, The Teacha's Back, Hip Hop Lives (My Favorite), The Victory feat. Blaq Poet, and Kill A Rapper

Hip Hop Lives
Hip Hop Lives
Offered by samurai_media_JPN4CA
Price: CDN$ 21.62
15 used & new from CDN$ 21.62

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hip Is The Knowledge Hop Is The Movement {3.5 Stars}, June 25 2007
This review is from: Hip Hop Lives (Audio CD)
Marley Marl. KRS One. When you mentions those names in most hip hop circles, the reaction is going to one of VERY high regard 9 out of 10 times. So, naturally, when one finds out that the two are going to collaborate to drop an LP, you are going to instinctively expect an album to top all albums. I mean, if this album turned out to be even a tenth of what Kris' collabo with Premier (Return of the Boom Bap), then it's a worthy release in my mind. The results are mixed, but it's a solid release overall. I don't think KRS has ever put out anything that was totally wack. There are topics that are touched upon that you've heard Krs go over a million times, but they get done in a way that will keep your attention. Then there are others that just come off kind of preachy but are solid enough in the production to keep you from skipping.

I think one of the obvious flaws is Kris constantly beating his chest on track after track. I love KRS One. I grew up on him. I remember what I was doing the very day I heard "My Philosophy" for the first time (I mean to the exact hour) and lost my mind. Dude is a legend without question. This is why it's hard for me to say this, but I found a lot of what KRS had to say to be pretty repetitive. I haven't been this disinterested in a KRS affiliated album since the Spiritual Minded album. Maybe disinterested is the wrong word. I mean, the lyrics are still entertaining, but I guess what I'm getting at is that the replay value just isn't what you've come to expect from a legend like KRS...especially when he pairs up with another legend like Marley Marl. On tracks like the aptly titled "Nothing New" Kris steps into the aforementioned braggart role and on "I Was There" KRS waxes nonstop about how long he's been around and how he was a witness to many, many milestones within hip hop culture. The thing is, fans of KRS already know these things so a lot of this album sounds to me like he's preaching to the choir. I noticed that a few reviewers were mostly unimpressed by the production from Marley, I pretty much loved it. There are a few that miss the mark. "Musika" sounds like a rehash of "Funky Child" but with way less appeal as the L.O.T.U.G. hit.

With all that being said, Hip Hop Lives is still worth looking into. If you're like me and grew up on both KRS and Marley you'll find this joint quite enjoyable. I'll always support KRS because he's never let me down and he supplied the beats and rhymes that were the soundtrack many of my summers. Newer heads may find the production somewhat tired, but despite the hit and miss quality, I still like it. I suggest you leave all expectations at the door and listen with open ears.

Standout Tracks: All Skool, Rising To The Top, The Teacha's Back, Hip Hop Lives (My Favorite), The Victory feat. Blaq Poet, and Kill A Rapper

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