IV the Polymath x Thirtyseven - "The Frame"

IV the Polymath x Thirtyseven - The Frame

World Around Wednesday #7 -- another free single from World Around:

From Komodo Dragons on leashes to putting Oliver North on trial...this cut pretty much covers everything. IV the Polymath smashes. Check out his latest album: New vs. Old


Man Mantis - "Red Dragonfly"

Dark visions and future funk. This treatment by Joe Ramos enhances the track with some nightmare techno-shamanism. (The incarnation of Man Mantis who makes a cameo here has since been replaced by the 2012 mutation.)

Check out Cities Without Houses and stay tuned for way more Man Mantis material this summer.


American Style Cardboard - "Driveway"

American Style Cardboard = Godforbid & Doc Delay. This is one of the finest cuts off their album, a stripped-down but detail-packed narrative song that's basically a short film.


Alaskan Fishermen - "Fire and Ice"

One of the best rap albums of all time. Easy. Over the course of the next month, we will probably post every single track, but definitely go and hunt it down anyway.

Here's a review from 2003 -- probably the only review to get written. Spoiler: "...this is a lyrically rich gem that will have you rewinding all over the place."

UPDATE: Turns out there's a sequel on the way. Got a preview and that shit is facemelter status. Those Jeremy Page productions are huger than ever: completely insane. No word on when the album will drop but there are at least finished tracks that exceed expectations. Big thanks to Godforbid.

Joey BADA$$ x Capital STEEZ - "Survival Tactics"

I love this kind of nihilism. Real Yeti Rap will always have a soft spot for angry youth, and this is a primo dose. Joey has a lot of buzz going but hot damn if Capital STEEZ didn't steal the whole show on this one: killer flow and way more memorable lines...you know, that New York shit. Dig it.


Czarface: The Cynicism of Keeping it Real

No doubt about it, this is a smart move. Czarface is an album-length recreation of the moment that established & defined the career of 7L & Esoteric -- a collaboration with Inspectah Deck, Speaking Real Words.

That shit was The Fucking Blueprint for indie rap success: you buy a feature verse from someone with serious credibility, you get them on the best beat on the album, and you tour on that shit until the money runs out. Right at the dawn of the Internets Era, 7L & Esoteric were there, ready and...well, ready and fully funded. That was over a decade ago, and since then the 7L & Eso brand has gotten drowned out as 100,000 other indie acts attempted to follow in their footsteps.

So how do you plot a comeback? Pretty much exactly like this. The press release for Czarface reads like an updated Blueprint for the 2012 Blog Rap scene. Deck insists they're keeping it realer than real: "The industry doesn’t need another well packaged, put together 'act'" he says...but when your project has guest spots from Roc Marciano, Action Bronson and Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire it's hard to pretend there's no packaging involved.

Now, any project in 2012 should feature all three of those cats. Don't get me wrong.

Is there still an underground? Esoteric desperately wants to have an Empire to fight against: "CZARFACE is a vigilante, anti-hero character who serves as the face of the project, and his focus is on annihilating the media darlings that the mainstream caters to." In an era where Rhymesayers and Def Jux (RIP) artists are placing on the Billboard Top 10 album charts and major label rappers are selling fewer units than ever, what the fuck does "underground" even mean in 2012?

The underground won. Rap is just a huge open-air slaughterhouse now, and there are more rappers than actual hip hop fans. Every open mic avenger in the 90's wanted it to be about skills, and now they're all coping with the consequences of getting exactly what they wanted. The underground blew up, the industry burned down, and now we're pimping ourselves like it was part of the plan all along.

Nice try.

Sene - "exit,us."

Pretty fucking genius. Not a new track but important enough to re-visit. Interesting to note that it remains the only song on his Bandcamp -- always nice to see an artist resist the Constant Content philosophy. This cut is a legacy unto itself.

Sene runs with good company and makes smart moves -- looking forward to new material in 2012. Meanwhile, enjoy this here and pass it on.


TFM x IV The Polymath - "Winter Instro Mix"

Very tasty mix right here. The Find has always been a Quality Over Quantity kinda operation and they made a smart bet having IV The Polymath compile and mix this collection of instrumental hip hop.

IV The Polymath is a quality producer in his own right -- check out his latest album, New vs. Old, which just got released. He's also done a dope Audible Hype interview that's worth the read: IV THE POLYMATH ON DIY HIP HOP PRODUCTION AND BUSINESS.


Gonjasufi - "The Blame"

One of the most beautiful weirdos in hip hop. What keeps him so compelling, of course, is the fact he's completely sane and tapped into a rich vein of living, breathing Meaning. This cat is busy raising kids & teaching yoga -- his work is grounded in reality and animated by the Tarot cycle.

That rapper shit is for children. This is something altogether different.

Milo Takes Baths

This wins on many fronts: innovative beats, original and intricate lyrics, and creative but creepy cover art, too. Full package art rap, we dig it. Thanks to Lesson 6 for the heads-up on this cat.


The Best Love is Free 3: The Cypher

Why couldn't they get a third mic in the mix here? Watching rappers pass that shit is always uncomfortable. That being said, this video was put together to promote this year's The Best Love is Free event/compilation, and features some of our favorite MPLS artists, including Phillip Morris, Toki Wright & Mally. The cypher has a decidedly genuine vibe: it has some spectacular, shining moments, but they come with a bunch of verses that are otherwise mostly forgettable.

The secret hero of this whole shebang is, without a doubt, the homie Carnage, who layers up some pretty fresh live beatbox jams with the aid of a loop pedal.


Keeping it Real on "Hyperbolic Chamber Music"

This is neither groundbreaking nor acceptable. It is, on the other hand, a good way to get people talking. That's about Mishka's brand, though...or at least, it's definitely got nothing to do with 25 forgettable rappers and 1 Isaiah Toothtaker. There's nothing wrong with the beat, courtesy of Ryan "Extended Remix" Hemsworth: it's a warm synth bath that frankly outshines most of the dudes here.

Just kidding. This song is fucking legendary. You will still be listening to this in 50 years and it will be the most meaningful soundtrack your life could possibly have. All of these young poets will go on to staggering success, critical acclaim and thousands of groupie pregnancies on every continent. This is the future of everything: marketing, music, even sex itself. Everywhere you go this summer, you will hear this song playing...and you will only say: "TURN IT UP."

This is a joke, right? It has to be. This song comes with a press release that actually, literally, seriously contained the following sentence: "A beastly rendition of what happens when rappers can only keep it real." Nobody writes something like that with a straight face...do they?

Fuck it, though, I'm already over it. It's been hours since that shit dropped and there's a couple thousand new mixtapes out since then. I got a facefull of coffee and blunts and I have very important opinions to tweet about, I can't be living in the past yo. Submit all tracks to YoHumpJones@gmail.com


Notes to Self: "Nobody" ft Evidence

The best part about being a real deal sleeping-ass hater? I'm always surprised by dope shit. No shocker that the track itself rocks -- we've covered Notes to Self already and Evidence is a legitimate legend -- but this video? This video right here? Holy shit, yo. This is ninja grade rap nerdery with an autistic devotion to detail. Facemelter status.

These cats are definitely one of the best crews to show up in the past few. Hopefully they don't release anything else for 3 years like Tool or Pink Floyd instead of getting caught up in the zombie hype cycle that passes for "success" in 2012. #CHEERS to dope art from dope artists.


Godforbid & Thirtyseven - Big Day for the Little People

Godforbid & Thirtyseven isn't an official name -- it's more like deliberate copyright infringement. Two rappers who have had their names usurped by mere rock bands teaming up to reclaim reality, or something. This cut is a demo from 2007, which represents the 6th installment of World Around Wednesday, which is a sentence I just typed with 5 fingers. There are no coincidences in the Kali Yuga.

Get familiar with That Handsome Devil and American Style Cardboard.


PremRock & Willie Green - "Jogger" ft. Open Mike Eagle

Yes. Willie Green and PremRock delivered something special with their album....the title of which is...yeah, "PremRock & Willie Green." Still, that's the kind of brand messaging that makes it easier to book tours. Anyone smart enough to tag in Open Mike Eagle for a track is worth paying close attention to.

The video is perfectly paced, and the photography shines every frame. Dig it.
Also check out the project itself: iTunes link. #WHALAM

Fashawn & Exile - "Life as a Shorty"

Classicalicious. Oh, you've seen it before? Watch it again yo. Definitely looking forward to their next album. While I don't think Boy Meets World was as good as Below The Heavens, I also like Fashawn a lot more as a rapper. The fact he's humble enough to keep respecting Exile says a lot about his future, too.

This is a great video plus a standout track. Fashawn cuts a line perfectly over this, from the casual visuals to the flow pattern itself -- flawless victory.

Brother Ali - Room With a View

Not a fan of this beat, but Ali carries it. It's a testament to how fucking compelling he is that I still like it enough to post it. A flawless video definitely helps. Despite being basically "dude in a hotel writes raps" -- the Dave Wilson / Ryan Thompson team manage to keep the video fresh.

Here's a toast to grown-up rap. Brother Ali is one of the best living.


The ILLZ - To Know Your Place In The Universe

This whole video has the look and feel of a TV ad for a singles chat line or a dating website, and that's unfortunate. But also kind of hilarious.

The music is spacious enough to carry itself - they could have just done 2 minutes of amorphous, unfocused shapes in front of a black background and it would have been an effective video. The verse has the cadence of hypnosis yet still wouldn't sound out of place in any given cipher.

The ILLZ is living proof that you don't have to follow the formula. DIY hip hop heads, indie artists - do some research on the past 2 years of this cats career. He's made interesting moves and most of them have worked. It's rare to see an artist build his career around his identity...all too often, it works the other way.


Mad Flows - Fo' Leaf feat. TASK1ne, Konkwest, Chuuwee & Lifted

This is an instant classic: an insane posse cut from the West Coast squad Cypher Cyndicate. Even the video is timeless, basically consisting of live footage and studio antics. It's just like it was 1994 all over again.

We've been fans of the homies Chuuwee and Mad Flows over here for a minute now; it comes as no surprise that the other dudes they roll with are also on some real yeti shit. #TWENTYTWELVE y'all. Enjoy.


Oneiric Field Mandala - Dr. Quandary

Raw, dark, psychedelic boom bap that draws from African deserts and Indian cities in equal measure. I fucking loved this track.

Dr. Quandary is, of course, a founder of World Around Records and an instrumental artist with serious bona fides for 2012. If you're digging this, his debut album is highly recommended: Beyond All Spheres of Force and Matter.

Grind Mode Cipher V. 7 ft. Sneaky Pete

Sneaky Pete is a comic book character. He did one of the funniest Audible Hype interviews ever and despite his frustrations, believes in his talentses and never stops moving. This appearance in the latest Grind Time Cipher installation is case in point. He alternates between "over it" nonchalance and poly-syllable hunger through his 16 bars and, you know, keeps it interesting.

I like the platform format of this Grind Time Cipher shit. It also reminds me why going to hip hop shows hurts my soul in 2012, but I have faith all these kids will grow up and learn to dress and act like adults before this decade is through. Humans keep learning and that's a beautiful thing.


Busdriver ft. Aesop Rock? Nuff Said.

Busdriver is hit or miss for me -- but he's been hitting non-stop for at least a full year, so maybe I'm just a fan now. Time will tell. Meanwhile, this shit goes. New Aesop is always welcome, especially this post-None Shall Pass incarnation with the tight raps.

Biff Tannen - Shottie

New material from 95labs guru TeV95 and Miami emcee Shottie. Delorean is dropping soon. The planning and execution behind this warmup promo has been worth studying.