Thursday, May 17, 2012

Keef Crazy in Chicago

I was about to post about this Joe Bataan reissue I picked up at Logan Hardware the other day, but now that GCI has put Chief Keef on heavy rotation and I've heard two different cars drive past my window blasting "I Don't Like" I thought it was too timely to pass up.

Chief Keef is 16, a CPS student on house arrest for allegedly pointing a gun at a cop. He released some tracks and videos online that have blown up in the past six months. He has been in the Reader, on the cover of the Red Eye, and is is all over Chicago hip hop blog Fake Shore Drive.

This is all small hat compared to the latest news: Kanye put him on a track. "I Don't Like" is a reworking of Keef's "Bang" that also features Big Sean, Pusha T, and Jadakiss. Like the rest of Keef's stuff, this track is "hard", gratuitously vulgar and kind of hard (for me) to listen to. It's also a pean to Chicago rappers like LEP and King Louis. And Chicago in general. All rappers have love for Derrick Rose because, according to Ye, "that n**** nice". (We'll miss you next season D. Rose. Get well.)

Despite all the hype, I don't see anyone anywhere saying that Chief Keef has very much talent. For good reason. Watch him below trying to piece together a verse for the remix with Nael Shehade for G.O.O.D. Music. Whatever, though, he's certainly exciting to watch and it's pretty exciting for all the South Side artists with stars in their eyes.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Beastie Boys, Live 1992

It's sad to think that the three of these guys won't ever bounce around dorkily together again. I'm gonna miss MCA.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Van Hunt

Last month I picked up Van Hunt's first album at Amoeba Records. Have to admit, it was one of those albums that didn't really do very much for me at first. Now that I've sat with it a while, I'm starting to see what makes this man's music so good. The record definitely falls under the category of retro-soul, but it sounds more "full" to me than most other retro-soul I'm used to hearing and that was popular in the 90s. As in, more complicated arrangements, more lush instrumentation, and, well, just a little weirder than I expected. Listen to that driving electric guitar on the upbeats on "Dust". It's just different. Three albums later, Van Hunt released the much weirder What Were You Hoping For? this year and it got a lot of good buzz. I have to go back and take a listen now that I have more of a foundation for his sound, but the funny thing is that what I remember most about that album was: LOUD ELECTRIC GUITARS. Dude's music clearly covers a wide spectrum. Listen to "North Hollywood" below and I'm sure you'll think of four or five superstar, multi-instrumentalist, genre-bending artists that have made their mark on his sound. I'll leave it up to you. If you visit the official site you'll see a new live album is about to be released. Looking forward to hearing it and hopefully catching him on tour!