Review: First featured on Nas' peerless 1994 album "Illmatic" - a classic that really should be in your collection - "The World Is Yours" is a classic Pete Rock production that has never appeared on a seven-inch single before. Mr Bongo has decided to set the record straight, pairing the album version, which includes some of Nas' most potent lyrics, delivered in fine style as you'd expect, with an instrumental take that showcases Pete Rock's brilliant beat and tight, on-point scratches. It's a deliciously baggy beat all told, with sampled pianos and subtle jazz lifts combining cannily to create a suitably laidback, golden-era groove.
Luniz - "I Got 5 On It" (feat Michael Marshall) (4:17)
Review: The Street Knowledge "45 series" appears to have been set up to educate heads on original 1990s hip-hop jams, or at the very least deliver fresh pressings of some seriously classic cuts. This inaugural release begins with Warren G and Nate Dogg's 1994 heater "Regulate", a deep and seductive number that makes great use of samples from Michael McDonald's teary blue-eyed soul classic "I Keep Forgetting". Flip to the B-side and you'll find Luniz 1995 hit "I Got 5 On It", a cut that's been bitten, reworked and re-made umpteen times in the 24 years that have passed since it was first released. As this reissue proves, the Oakland duo's original version is still streets ahead of the rest.
Review: ILL BILL and Nems have long been making their mark in the hip hop world. They represent Brooklyn neighborhoods Canarsie and Coney Island, and have affiliations to the likes of the FYL brand as well as groups such as La Coka Nostra. Now they come together once again for Gorilla Twins, which has beats by Scram Jones, Stu Bangas and ILL BILL, amongst others, as well as features from Immortal Technique, Vinnie Paz, D.V. Alias Khryst and Lord Goat. It makes for a dark and edgy record of hardcore raps, paranoid beats and raw energy that harks back to the genre's hey day while bringing plenty of contemporary perspectives.
Review: "Stillmatic" found Nas take a new direction back in December 2001. After previous standout gangsta rap efforts, he swerved into more politically and socially thoughtful realms that took him back to his seminal 1995 debut, "Illmatic". Next to commentaries on American politics and a documentation of his beef with Jay-Z, there are plenty of emotional moments, incisive rhymes and story telling raps that play out over classic hip hop production. In 2019, many of the issues presented in this album persists, as does Nas' reputation as one of the best ever.
Review: Ras Beats sounds as good as any classic era New York hip hop artist, but is actual a contemporary beat maker who also brings his own perspective to the mixing table. "And I Say" is one of his biggest tunes to date from back in 2018 and now it gets its first vinyl pressing. John Jiggs' boom-bap production is crisp and cavernous, with big hits making for big beats that Was raps over in fine style. An instrumental is also included on the flip of this tidy, limited edition 7".
Review: It's been a long time coming but finally The Nobodies' cult 1997 album "Fables" is available on vinyl for the first time. The band comprised of Equinox, Apocalypse and The Conglomerate headed to NYC to record with EagleMan, Phatboy and Babyhead on the beats for this one. The results are straight up boom bap gold with melodies Roy Ayers would-be proud of, with plenty of on point social commentary in the lyrics. Our favourites: deep, jazz tinged number "Off The Block", feel good party "Hands To The Sky" and flower power goodness "Do What I Got A Do".
Review: Amerigo's The Big Payback series finds him bring together some fantasy all stars for his "J.B. and The Soul Mates" tribute concept. Here, James Brown's music is reworked, edited and chopped together with the work of hip hop giant Notorious BIG. It results in speaker blasting, floor filling, ass wiggling jams that mash up all the most iconic verses and choruses from each singer with their most recognisable guitar riffs, drum breaks and samples. It's a colourful collage that is as fun as it is funky.
Blessing It (feat Substantial & Pase Rock - remix) (3:23)
Horn In The Middle (4:02)
Lady Brown (feat Cise Starr) (3:19)
Highs 2 Lows (feat Cise Starr) (4:32)
Beat Laments The World (4:20)
Letter From Yokosuka (3:09)
Think Different (feat Substantial) (3:18)
A Day By Atmosphere Supreme (4:00)
Next View (feat Uyama Hiroto) (4:34)
Lattitude (feat Five Deez - remix) (3:58)
FILO (feat Shing02) (3:30)
Summer Gypsy (4:19)
The Final View (3:35)
Review: Despite selling out instantly on first press back in November 2018, it is only now that Nujabes' first solo album "Metaphorical Music" makes it to wax once more. This most spiritual of hip hop records - first released in 2003 - brings together downtempo, trip hop, instrumental, classic era boom bap, neo soul and funk into an accomplished collection of tunes that pack a dance floor as well as heartfelt punch. The album showcases some of the best music that the hip hop genre is capable of. Do not miss this, as it won't be around for long.