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Hip Hop

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Dewey Decibel Opening for Kool A.D. at KFN May 3

Put your hands in the air, and let Sunday Funday take hold of you at Kung Fu Necktie with a crew of Philly rappers paving the way for headliner Kool A.D., formerly of alt hip-hop group Das Racist. On top of psychedelic 90’s hip-hop beats that hit a chill, sweet spot, South Philly emcee/producer/graphic artist Dewey Decibel, a.k.a. Dewey Sanders, relays his existential contemplations out loud on his latest EP Different Drum (World Around Records), produced by Zilla Rocca. The multi-talented Florida transplant also just dropped the 25th edition of his zine, “A Taste of the Invisible,” this past First Friday so grab yourself a copy. YIKES the ZERO, who collaborated on Lushlife's ten-minute opus "Toynbee Suite," and OHM x PLEASE will also be on hand to make the most out your weekend. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St., 8pm, $13, 21+ - Emily DiCicco

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Album Review: Sun E-Shea

Sun E-Shea's debut self-titled album sounds like it should be blasted from a cassette in a Sony boom-box rather than played through an internet link, but I guess that's why the duo proclaims they "are stuck in the past and...are staying for the music." The release boasts twenty tracks, with influences clearly rooted in late 80s/early 90s hip-hop. While they touch upon a variety of different artists' styles, I felt an A Tribe Called Quest vibe the strongest. Some of you may think that's ultra-high praise, but take a listen to Sun E-Shea's songs and you'll hear exactly what I mean. The samples, beats and lyrics are all super-smooth and well-written, with the Quest sound coming through particularly strong in their choice of bass lines and drum tracks.

One of my favorite lines from the record comes from the track "Clive": "More times than often, well-skilled and clean, learned how to rhyme from Shel Silverstein." I think I'll go home after work, listen to a few more of these tracks and try to find a copy of The Giving Tree on ebay.

For more info about these two seemingly unknown MCs, check out their (apparently) new Facebook page.

-Dan McMahon (@dmcmhn)

  

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Dr Bobby Banner MPC

As another run of The Deli Austin's Artist of the Month poll wraps up, we're lookin' at the only artist in the competition that we haven't yet featured on The Deli- the versatile producer Dr Bobby Banner MPC. For those who aren't electronic music producers (which, in Austin, is fewer people than you'd think), the MPC in Dr Bobby's name refers to the Akai Music Production Center, a series of powerful and powerfully badass beat-making machines. Presumably, Dr Bobby Banner MPC makes the slick, dynamic hip-hop tracks he's known for on such machines, and if you go from the artist's social media pages, Dr Bobby might just actually be an MPC. Or at least, that might be his character, but who knows? In the days of hologram Japanese superstars and with music production tech where it's at these days, the idea of a beat machine that makes its own music isn't all that far fetched.

Regardless of who, or what, is making Dr Bobby Banner's music, the recent output from this man/machine has been downright stellar. Particularly, Dr Bobby's new album Musicology, released at the end of March, is a chance to hear one of Austin's brightest beatmakers paired up with an absolute army of quality rappers. Lots of times we see purely instrumental albums come out of the beatmaking scene in Austin, so (as much as we dig those instrumental joints) it's a welcome change-up to get a 12 tracker packed full of both beat and rhyme. That nod toward the traditional hip-hop song structure is about the only place this album is predictable though, as Musicology has Banner et al. letting their creativity and personal spins on hip-hop running free. For an example of the acrobatic musical forces at work here, take track "David Ruffin" below, whose herky-jerky sample-based beat serves as a playground for spitters Scuare and No1Important to let their words jump up and around and play all over. The rest of the album is equally good, and all available what for your listening pleasure over here. If this shit gets ya noddin' like it does us, give the rest a listen, and vote to the right to make Dr Bobby Banner MPC our first human/machine hybrid Artist of the Month.

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LNS Crew Brings the Spring Heat to Austin

If you were looking for the mysterious proverbial “fire” that supposedly resides in so many hip-hop mixtapes, you might think the shit is just myth. Most mixtapes are…well, they wouldn’t help much on a cold day, let’s say that. Not so with local LNS Crew’s new mixtape, which packs enough heat to stop a decent sized blizzard. LNS Mixtape Vol. 2 is the goods from three of Austin’s (okay, Denver now, in the case of Cory Kendrix) hip-hop veterans, a series of 21 tracks which feature a rotating cast of Kendrix, Kydd Jones and Tank Washington showing off their undeniable skills at producing and rapping. It’s just April, but this release is assuredly going to sit near if not at the top of the list of ATX hip-hop releases from 2015 when December rolls into January, and that’s why we’ve nominated LNS Crew for our Artist of the Month poll. Music below, and get yer votin’ finger a good workout to the right y’all.

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Show Alert: Broca's Area at The Spot Underground, Providence 4/1

When a real drummer can imitate that slowed down and choppy groove from 90’s hip hop, it sounds like pure gold. It's a tough pocket to master, that's for sure. Hartford hip-hop/soul fusion group Broca's Area grooves and sways, while Mary Corso’s smooth-like-butter vocals string you along. The interplay between her and rapper Ghazi Omair’s angular flow would be enough for a killer group, but these guys push it over the edge with a groovy drummer, Steven Cusano, whose timing creates a backbeat that puts the world in slo-mo. And that's not even mentioning the absurdly tasty keys. They’ll be playing a show at The Spot Underground in Providence April 1st, don’t miss it! They’re new album is available here, and a portion of the proceeds from each CD goes the Connecticut Brain Tumor Association. - Paul Jordan Talbot

 

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