September 28, 2013

RJD2- Temperamental Featuring Phonte Coleman ("More Is Than Isn't Preview)

RJD2 has been a staple in my Itunes for quite sometime now. As my love for hip-hop and its producers grew, I became fixated with artists like RJD2 and their consistency in beat making. I always get in this argument with music lovers that consistency/ similarity throughout different projects isn't good. "Kanye tries tries to inovate, J.Cole never does". I like J.Cole the way he is and and am confident Yeezus made my ears bleed. Some artists have a formula that people like and they stick by their guns, RJD2 has always been one of those producers for me. With classics like "Ghostwriter", "Beautiful Mine (Mad Men theme song)", "Smoke and Mirrors", and one of my all time favorite study songs "The Highest of Courts", RJD2 clearly has a formula that works. 

With his new project "More Is Than Isn't" coming out on October 8th, RJD2 has called upon rapper/singer Phonte Coleman (formerly of rap trio Little Brother) to add a heartfelt RnB feel to his smooth stylistic beat for "Temperamental". Phonte spent the greater part of his career rapping and singing over beats by 9th wonder so jumping on an RJD2 seems effortless for the classic hip-hop representative. I hope to find some new doing work jams on "More Is Than Isn't" and in case you have been unlucky enough to have never stumble upon RJD2 i've added some of the classics to this post. 


September 25, 2013

Aloe Blacc - Love Is The Answer

Aloe Blacc (great fuckin' name by the way) just dropped his latest project, the 4-track EP, Wake Me Up and it's already receiving positive feedback. Led by the Skateboard P produced Love Is The Answer, Aloe brings back 70's funk in the vein of current chart-toppers like Blurred Lines, Take Back The Night and Get Lucky. This is the catchiest tune he's released since that How To Make It In America theme song (can't believe HBO cancelled that gem). Upon my 3rd listen it reminded me of this joint...and that's a very very very good thing.

Django Django

Django Django.  If that's not a good band name I don't know what is.

I first heard these guys a couple weeks ago in between sets at the incredible Alt-J show down at Echo Beach.  The DJ playing the intermission was doing an unreal job, and this song was one of the highlights. I rarely remember that I have the Shazam app on my phone but I'm glad I remembered this time. Django Django's self titled release is chalk-full of quality music, so check out the songs below and I highly recommend getting your hands on the album.

Lemaitre - Fiction (Mullaha Remix)

This one is for the indie-electronic fans.  Lemaitre is a duo out of Norway that we at Straight Goods have been fans of since their single The Friendly Sound blew up on the blogosphere a few years ago. They released an EP titled Relativity 3 earlier in February that I totally slept on.  To make up for that, I offer you this remix by Mullaha of one of the songs off that EP. The result of this combination has a very Madeon-esque feel to it, so if you're into that, there's a good chance you'll be into this.

September 23, 2013

The 5 Best and 5 Softest Bars from Drake's, 'NWTS'

Let's make one thing one on this site is a bigger fan of Aubrey's music than the kid, but goddamn does he make it hard on the fellas at times. No one has ever come so close to claiming rap's throne and at the same time earn a name like Young Garnier Fructis from a legend like Big Ghost. Nonetheless, Drizzy unleashes his 3rd solo album, Nothing Was The Same on the world tomorrow and like I've called for months...I expect him to push a million units first week (even with the leak). For those who do not understand the magnitude of that statement, only 16 albums in history have done so (Jay-Z's, MCHG and Lady Gaga's, Born This Way are not acknowledged by Billboard Charts due to Amazon/Samsung promotions).

With that being said, how better for SGM to look at NWTS than examining the 5 illest and the 5 whackest lines of Drake's story:

5 Best:

Bench players talkin' like starters, I hate it
Started from the bottom, now we here, nigga, we made it
Yeah, Tom Ford Tuscan Leather smelling like a brick
Degenerates, but even Ellen love our shit

Bunch of journalists been searchin' for a story
My ex-girl been searchin' for a "sorry"
Couple bitches tryna have me on the Maury like nigga 'it's yours'
You should be supportin'

And it's back to L.A. open the mail, starin' at the check
Enough to make you throw up, man it's gross what I net
I'm with my whole set, tennis matches at the crib
I swear I could beat Serena when she playin' with her left

Back rub from my main thing, I've been stressed out
Talking to her like back then they didn't want me, I'm blessed now
Talking to her like this drop, bet a million copies get pressed out
She tell me, "Take a deep breath, you're too worried about being the best out"

Overly focused, it's far from the time to rest now
Debates growing 'bout who they think is the best now?
Took a while, got the jokers out of the deck now
I'm holding all the cards and niggas wanna play chess now

5 Softest:

Next time we fuck, I don't wanna fuck, I wanna make love
Next time we talk, I don't wanna just talk, I wanna trust

When I got Summer a Michael Kors with my momma's debit
A weak attempt at flexin', I'll never forget it

How beautiful our kids would be, girl, I don't need convincing
How every conversation starts with "This time will be different"

And I hate that you don't think I belong to ya

Baby I heat up the stove, you do the dishes ya know?

Strong effort from Drake and the OVO crew this time around. He's proven he can be more concise with his raps and evolve musically outside of his comfort zone. With a week to sit with the album, I still like the sound/story of Take Care better, but I doubt many will agree. FuckyoubitchI'mmorethanhigh...

September 20, 2013

James Blake- Life Round Here Featuring Chance the Rapper

British singer/ song writer James Blake has decided to enlist the help of the always linguistically entertaining Chance the Rapper for his remix of “Life Round Here”. With the hyper active and somewhat incoherent flow of Chance, and James’ intoxicatingly intriguing voice, this self-made remix has been ingrained in my head. The mysterious and dark vibe that the song portrays creates an interesting aura for Chances’ unique flow which in my opinion, sounds like the most organized/ intelligent drunk rambling ever. It’s almost as if he effortlessly stumbles upon meticulously poetic and unorthodox rhymes that work perfectly alongside this ominous beat. There hasn’t been much done to the instrumentals other than the occasional drum but I do enjoy the addition of Chance’s odd ball singing voice which, adds a bit of rasp and ultimately something new to the always classic James Blake. When I first saw this song pop on the interwebs I didn’t think the combo would work and definitely thought it was a mash-up but it entranced me… and forced me to listen to it all day. 

Danny Brown - Dip (Video)

Danny dropped visuals for the hectic, drug-infused "Dip" yesterday building the hype for Old even higher.  Now let the guy into Canada!

ODESZA - My Friends Never Die [EP]

Seattle music scene continues to impress.  I don't know if there's something in the water over there or whether it's due to shopping exclusively at Whole Foods, but these beatniks seem to know what they're doing when it comes to producing a hype track.  

ODESZA is a production duo made up of Harrison Mills (Catacombkid) and Clayton Knight (BeachesBeaches [shout-out t-sedany]).  With glitched out vocals and sweeping basslines, their sound is as if Dillon Francis and Purity Ring had a love child. Their EP release, My Friends Never Die, has been out for a month and for those of you as late to the party as I, enjoy a free download at their site here.  

Stream the 5 track EP below.  Volume ^ please:

September 18, 2013

Beast Coast Movement: Beyond Bada$$


Swank and a standard of excellence, the Beast Coast movement embodies the essence of Wu Tang, Zulu-Nation, Odd Future, etc with in-house everything and an individualistic, non-conformative formula.  Though Pro-Era and Joey Bada$$ have managed to gain mainstream success through their traditional "Boom-Bap" style reminiscent of the 90's New York hip hop scene, it seems that the rest of the beast coast movement has fallen through the cracks.  The Underachievers and Flatbush Zombies, hailing from Flatbush New York (surprised?), recently released free mixtapes that (similar to Pro-Era tapes) should not be free.  The Underachievers blend smooth flows with infectiously simple production on Lords of Flatbush that will leave any hip hop fan updating their playlists.  The Flatbush Zombies appeal to fans of a slightly darker style of hip hop with harsher flow and cinematic production on BetterOffDEAD.  Check them out below and give their tapes a download (DatPiff) if you like what you hear.

September 17, 2013

Flex Cop - This Is Not Meth (Breaking Bad)

It seems like Australian producer Flex Cop is the latest to be inspired by Vince Gilligan's incredible crime drama, Breaking Bad.  This feel good track is mostly a rework Darondo's ever so smooth Didn't I, but it also contains a sample from a climactic Breaking Bad season 1 scene (Spoiler ahead):

God, I love this show.  Without going into full blown fanboy mode, this latest season has been a roller-coaster of emotion.  With only 2 hours left to air, when it's all said and done there is little doubt Breaking Bad will go down as one of the greatest shows of television's Golden Age. Taking the complexity of modern TV storytelling to new levels,  BB gets increasingly better from episode to episode.  Brian Cranston's is nothing short of electrifying, shifting from family man Walter White to ruthless drug king pin Heisenberg, creating a drama that just feels so real. To prove that these aren't just the ramblings of a guy who watches too much TV, Breaking Bad's fifth and final season has scored an unheard of 99/100 on the review aggregate site, Metacritic.  

Back to the song though.  A lot lighter themed than the show for which it's named, this jam will flow nicely with your work week.  Have a listen below, and please, for your own sake, start watching Breaking Bad.

September 14, 2013

Road Ragin' - Your Ultimate Rush Hour Mix

For the past five years I've lived off student loans and low paying summer jobs. My bank account sucks, my Iphone sucks, my Macbook sucks and in turn my ability to upgrade my music library has been hindered dramatically. Good thing I still have an abundance of Straight Goods and overall life classics that help keep me entertained during the extensive time I spend in my car. These are some of the songs that help me get through the gridlock and prevent the all to familiar process of road rage. Whether it's a smooth melodic beat or a high tempo eccentric track, I would be lost in a haze of anger without these.

Regardless of whether you love or loathe your job, It's the unfortunate reality that this "real life" business adds a distinct element of stress. Therefore, I hope one or all of these tracks incite a positive vibe to your rush hour commute.

September 8, 2013

Sol- Jump In & Tomorrow

Until September of 2012, Seattle's hip-hop scene was virtually an irrelevant aspect of popular music. Whether it was top 40 fiends ("God I love Pitbull"), Hypemers ("I'm soooo underground") or hip-hop heads ("all new rap sucks, I hate everything"), I found myself struggling to explain to people how Seattle has more to offer than 8 dollar Starbucks frapamochalattewhatevers. In September of last year everything changed. My then beloved hidden gem Macklemore released "Thrift shop" and thus began his meteoric rise to extreme pop stardom. Now, this is in no means a Macklemore attack. I would never hate on that man or the success he's seen. Does a little piece of me die every time I hear "Can't Hold Us" on the radio 5 times in a 45 minute period? Yes, but It's not my fault. I'm an arrogant hip-hop fan, I had planned on hoarding Macklemore for years... Now I have to pay 80 bucks and fight through a group of drunk tweens to see him live.

But that is neither here nor there. Alongside Macklemore in Seattle's budding hip-hop scene are rappers like Grynch, The Blue Scholars, Grieves and most importantly for the sake of this post Sol. Last year Sol released a stellar album in "Yours Truly" that featured an array of gems, I would strongly suggest the purchase. After the release of that album he toured for a little then went on a year long voyage around the world, Must be nice Sol... Must be nice. Twitter/Instagram really makes following artists lives and music much easier, and slightly creepy.

Anywho, Sol's new album "Eyes Open" will be released Tuesday and will feature both "Jump In" and "Tomorrow". I've personally been bumping "Jump In" on repeat at the desk all day and like most Sol tracks it's uplifting, passionate and features some intriguing brass sections.

September 5, 2013

D-WHY - One Day

I've been waiting for a minute for this 25-year-old, VA native to drop a new track in the hopes that I could share with you the talent of one of rap's most promising unsigned artists. A mix between the boastfulness of Drake and the indie-cred of Childish Gambino, D-WHY aka David Morris has been carefully putting together an independent movement that has caught the eye of many in the online world. Following what can now only be known as the "OVO format", D-WHY and his boys have immersed themselves in fashion, culture and most importantly, music. 

His lifestyle website, The Cleanest Corner features the hippest of menswear and blog entries (so hip in fact, that it actually hurts) and is the main vehicle for his musical releases. I highly recommend you take a listen to his debut tape, 2012's, Don't Flatter Yourself here. Standout cuts are 2000 Miles, Flattery and Good Will Stunting.

His new track, One Day serves as the perfect introduction to new listeners. Combining hip-hop, trap, EDM and folk music, D-WHY and Co. create something that can only be described by the rapper as "Folk-Trap." The sample is absolutely exquisite. I dare you to throw this on in your car and not tap the steering wheel. I dare you. Tap, tap, tappy...

September 4, 2013

Lil Wayne - Dedication 5 (Mixtape)

Back again with my obligatory Lil Wayne post.  However, this is the first time in a long time that I can say I am genuinely pretty excited about a weezy release.   I'll keep my WAYNE IS BACK testimonies to a minimum, but I will say that this is a substantial improvement from what we've heard from him lately.  I'm willing to admit that we'll likely never see another verse like what he did on the Knuck if you Buck Freestyle, but I don't think Tunechi is quite ready to clumsily ride his skateboard into irrelevancy yet.  I think I got almost half-way through the mix-tape and only heard 2-3 lines about pussy. Baby steps.

Weezy raps with a bit of a chip on his shoulder, and the beats are feugo.  The song with Chance might be his best release in years.

Find the full download and a couple of choice favourites below:


September 3, 2013

The Weeknd - Wanderlust (Pharrell Remix)

Arriving a few days earlier than its expected September 10th release, Toronto's own The Weeknd unleashed his deranged drug and sex-filled fantasy world Kiss Land to the masses. While it is an incredibly polished body of work, it is far from digestible on the first few listens. My initial thoughts make notice of a large Portishead influence on the project (which Abel has admitted on numerous occasions). Quite simply, this is one of the most interesting Michael Jackson albums, Michael Jackson never made.

Standout cut, Wanderlust not only provides an incredibly cool word to Tweet out, it gets the remix treatment by none other than legendary producer Pharrell. A big fan of both artists (Pharrell's, In My Mind is my favorite rap album of all-time), I was blown away by the life Skateboard P breathed into the original track. While The Weeknd's sound is distinct and the production on his work is usually world-renowned, I would love to see him start getting in the booth with the legends. I am sure the end product would be nothing short of extraordinary. Precious little diamond...