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Catherine Tyler Graffam

Heems – “Home” (feat. Dev Hynes)

Music is full of breakup songs but few have ever captured the sound and emotion of decaying memories and blossoming heartache and like “Home”. As 1/2 of the former indie-rap powerhouse Das Racist, Heems established himself early as a captain of swagger, flow, and honesty. I guess I just never expected it to ever come out so beautful. But damn I glad it did.  Read more

Kool-A.D

[MP3] Kool A.D. – “Eight Elvises”

i can’t control the butterfly

♫ Kool A.D. – Eight Elvises

When Das Racist’s Kool A.D. dropped his mixtape around new years I listened once and then moved on. Months later I’m doing some iTunes cleaning and stumble on this mp3 with no artist name. Damn, what a smooth groover! A bit of research and I find out it was a mislabeled track from that mixtape The Palm Wine Drinkard. Weird but awesome! So enough fascinating stories from me. Zone out to this one already and just forget everything I said. I already have.

Relax

[LP] Das Racist – RELAX (w/ “Girl”)

my fingers crossed, the small of your back, my head in your chest but i’m taller than that

♫ Das Racist – Girl

People have a complicated relationship with hip-hop jokesters Das Racist and I’m no exception. I have always loved them, but not always loved their music. Their first 2 mixtapes have 37 tracks between them and exactly 3 ever got regular play in my iTunes. That’s not the best track record. But somehow previous projects, solo stuff, and a brilliant blog kept my respect meter high for the guys. So needless to say I was a little nervous about diving into their first proper LP, Relax. First single “Michael Jackson” (below) was loud, spastic, and abrasive and I couldn’t wrap my brain around how it fit into the canon of the Das Racist I knew.

However, once I Relaxed (sorry) and listened to the album I was more that happy. Das Racist really pulled their shiz together here, leaving behind the under-produced beats and fleshing out all the jams. Plus we already know the lyrics are always hilarious and on point. Relax packs a lot of treats into one LP, never relying on one tempo or style for too long. “Girl” (above) brings the beat with a big glossy banger style, “Happy Rappy” packs twisted verses over minimal production that adds just enough rhythm, and “Punjabi Song” goes straight Bollywood on our asses. There are plenty other standouts (“Booty In The Air,” old favorite “Rainbow In The Dark,” “even “Michael Jackson” is getting me pumped lately) but the whole album holds its own. Some fans are turned off by the increased production and poppier shift from their mixtapes but for me that’s only a plus. Guys this sharp would be relevant even if their music wasn’t accesible but having it heard by millions is even better.

Read a great Spin cover article here and then track doen the album if you haven’t. Read more

Heems aka Hitch

[MP3] Heems – “WOMYN aka HITCH (Demo?)”

yo i think they don’t usually like violence, they like to roll their eyes when i tell ’em i be rhymin’

♫ Heems – WOMYN aka HITCH (DEMO?)

As the half of Das Racist who doesn’t already have a side project, Heems gets up to some stuff. And thank goodness that he does because as a result the Hitch-obsessed hip-hop-head has bestowed this gem upon us (curious punctuation included). Heems waxes poetic about the many virtues and facets of the fairer sex, giving dudes everywhere an anthem to sing to their ladies. And sing loud and proud we shall. Thanks womyn. And thanks Heems. Das Racist’s first official album will be out September and appropriately titledRelax.

(And thanks to Stereogum for the album art)

Don’t slumber at Tumblr

TBE-Digest-19

Brandon’s TBE Digest 19 – 2.3.2011 [Peter Bjorn and John, Cold War Kids, Passion Pit, Lykke Li, Joy Formidable, Adele, …]

Careful when you lift the lid on this pot o’ gold. A lot of steamy hot jams ready to jump out and burn you if aren’t careful.

For more jams by any of these artists use the ‘tags’ links at the bottom of the post!

NEW RELEVENT JAMS

Peter Bjorn & John – Breaker Breaker / PBnJ are back and wielding way more buzzsaw like-ability than on their last sleeping pill! Wooo! Second taste “Second Chance” is also a jam! Gimmie Some is out 3/29.

The Forms – Fire To The Ground [ft. Matt Berninger] / A little more Read more

TBE-Digest-18

Brandon’s TBE Digest 18 – 1.18.2011 [Passion Pit, Kanye West, Big K.R.I.T., RAC, Das Racist, BRAHMS, Kid Cudi, and more!]

It’s a new year and a lot of good stuff piled up over the holidays. Considering it’s the 18th Digest, today is the 18th (close enough…), and I have 18 tracks, I think this is some kind of perfect Digest or something. Dig in. But really, dig. There are some real gems in the mix down there.

For more by any of these artists use the ‘tags’ links at the bottom of the post!

NEW RELEVENT JAMS

Passion Pit – All These Trees / Passion Pit drop a new one through American Express ZYNC. I keep waiting for the song to start but it ends up being all build, no climax. Still nice to hear our boys back in the mix.

BRAHMS – Add It Up / New BRAHMS track isn’t my favorite of theirs but I have to say, seeing them at The Brooklyn Electronic Music Festval last month was a Read more

das racist - sitdownman

[LP] DAS RACIST aren’t always AMAZING but they are always fun as hell

rock yabba dabba do, cut swagger dagger do, swing vance bagger do, good pig that’ll do

Das Racist – Amazing (featuring Lakutis) (produced by Keepaway)

If you haven’t caught it yet there is a new free Das Racist mixtape, Sit Down, Man, yes the second one this year. The 20 track collection boasts bigger name producers like Diplo, Chairlift, and Boi-1da and a bunch of guest spots. While there aren’t any standout solid gold tracks like “Rainbow in The Dark” or “You Oughtta Know,” the disk is overall more solid. Das Racist have honed their skills and dropped some of the more grating goofball bullshit in favor of spitting hilarious brain twisting rhymes over all variety of minimal funky beats. You may have caught “Hahahaha, jk?” or “Fashion Party” on other blogs but it’s “Amazing” that butters my bun. It’s just creamy smooth. So read more thoughts on the mixtape if you have to, or read Heems op-ed piece on NBC’s Outsourced pilot, or just do the smartest thing and get yourself the mixtape for free and then kick back and soak in the rhymes.

Bury your face in MySpace

Safe EP

SAFE has a free EP you should GET. It’s ALONG the lines of GOOD, chill music.

we drink liquor, we drink wine, you show me yours and i’ll show you mine

Safe – Get Along Good

Now that Safe’s “Twenty Years On” has landed near the top of the best song’s of the year list, you may be wondering what else this wild-haired goat-enthusiast has to offer? Well wonder no further because he’s got a whole 10 song EP that he is offering for free download! The whole collection is delicate and sparse dreaminess that is perfect for a sleepy Sunday afternoon in the sun or just general mellow time. As if that endorsement wasn’t enough, remember that Safe is managed by, and on the label of, neighboring Best Song alums Das Racist. Completely different musical styles, but both bands landed in the top 3 of this years list. They are doing something right over at Greenhead Records! Anyway, back to Safe. The Safe EP is groovy hazy awesomeness that awaits your ears and is also available on cassette and VHS for those inclined! Get on it and enjoy some music that wont make you sweat so much!

Bury your face in MySpace