Thursday, November 20, 2008

Panacea - The Scenic Route

Panacea’s sophomore effort, The Scenic Rout, is a journey. Yes it is a hip hop LP, but more than that, it is a surreal, deeply musical and incredibly unique concept album. From start to finish, the listener is able to follow the evolution of not only the character on the journey, but of Panacea as artists. The result is something so new that its creativity will intrigue even today’s most jaded listeners.

1. Intro
2. The Scenic Route
3. Flashback to Stardom (ft. Raheem DeVaughn)
4. Pops Said
5. Epiphany
6. Between Earth and Sky
7. Bubble
8. Square 1
9. Blue Ice
10. Walk in the Park
11. Aim High
12. Katana
13. One Shine
14. Outro

Rating 8.5/10

Amazon :

Download Link :

Panacea - Pops Said

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Large Professor - Main Source

Large Professor still keeps busy DJing and producing, and this year sees the release of a new album, Main Source.

Anybody that remembers the clanging sleigh bells of "Halftime" and the glorious saxophone over synths from "It Ain't Hard to Tell" knows that Large Professor is capable of fantastic beats, and Main Source confirms that right off the bat. "The Entrance," starting with a scrambled-up mélange of noise, morphs into a stinging guitar solo over thumping drums, with a well-delivered rap by Large Professor making for a fantastic start to the proceedings.

Elsewhere, "Pump Ya Fist" boasts energetic horns, R&B shouts, and wicked scratching, "Ru Dope" gives Jeru Tha Damaja a jazzy, mellow flavor to wrap one quick verse around, and album closer "The Hardest" sounds like something straight out of the mid-90s hip-hop heyday, with buzzing, heavy bass and mellow synth lines rolling in and out. The entire album has a laid-back vibe throughout, with Large Professor showing off his talent like a painter using his entire palette; the beats sound like the same man made them, but they don't sound the same.

1. The Entrance 2:15
2. Hot: Sizzling, Scorching, Torching, Blazing 2:57
3. Maica Living (feat. Killah Sha And Guardian Leep)3:47
4. Pump Ya Fist (feat. Mikey D Lotto) 3:13
5. Party Time 2:44
6. In The Ghetto 2:49
7. Hardcore Hip-Hop 3:18
8. Frantic Barz 3:02
9. Swein' Love 2:58
10. Ru Dope (feat. Jeru The Damaja) 1:01
11. Dap (feat. Lil Dap) 0:41
12. Noyd (feat. Big Noyd) 0:47
13. Classic Emergency 2:31
14. Rockin' Hip-Hop 3:22
15. Large Pro Says 2:02
16. To The Meadows 1:46
17. The Hardest (feat. Styles P And AZ) 4:42

Rating 7/10

Download Link :

Large Professor - Main Source Interview (Gold Dust)

Large Pro - Hardcore Hip-Hop

Monday, November 3, 2008

Q-Tip - The Renaissance

When the best rapper/producer in hip-hop history spends almost a decade without a record on the shelves (despite his best efforts), it has to be considered a crime — if not a tragedy. Difficult to tell, though, is why Q-Tip was bounced to five different labels within six years. He never pronounced himself angry about the situation, saying only that he continued to work, reportedly recording three full albums that were never released.

His long-awaited return on The Renaissance is no disappointment, offering more of the same understated, aqueous grooves and fluid rapping that the Abstract Poetic has built his peerless career on. Although it has a few more message songs than his dance-heavy debut from 1999 (Amplified), many of these tracks are club grooves painted with the same production touches as ten years earlier; his work is still excellent 20 years after his career began, Some of the songs are built with a live group (including guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel).

One thing is for sure: Q-Tip is still a master of pacing and atmosphere, structuring the first half of the record so smoothly that listeners may not notice a transition until the sixth track, "We Fight/We Love," which contrasts the perspective of a man in the middle of war with a woman left alone. Sounding like a latter-day Midnight Marauders and The Love Movement, and very similar to the unreleased Kamaal the Abstract, The Renaissance is a worthy comeback for the man who's arguably done more to make hip-hop enjoyable than any other figure.
- Allmusic

1. Johnny Is Dead
2. Won't Trade
3. Gettin' Up
4. Official
5. You
6. We Fight/We Love (feat. Raphael Saadiq)
7. Manwomanboogie (feat. Amanda Diva)
8. Move (prod. by J Dilla)
9. Dance on Glass
10. Life Is Better (feat. Norah Jones)
11. Believe (feat. D'Angelo)
12. Shaka

Rating 8.5/10

Download Link :

Amazon :

Album Review :

Q-Tip "Move"

Q-Tip - Getting Up