“Potential Fans” is the debut mixtape from the Seattle, WA born and bred emcee Aaron Cohen. The up and coming if not flagship artist on Decon recently dropped the free mixtape.
The title track delivers a smooth instrumental with a mid tempo BPM and a silky keyboard melody that drops out during a chopped and screwed hook. “I ain’t got critics. I got potential fans. Cause real motherfuckers know who I am.” Cohen is at his best when he raps over laid back and slow instrumentals.
“Anyways” is another standout track. Once again, a smooth beat is juxtaposed against hard lyrics. Cohen explores his beliefs while a choir sings in the background. “She look me in my face said, ‘What do you belive in?’ I said, ‘Nothing. I’m a motherfuckin’ heathen.”
“Hurt Me” samples Little Willie John’s 1960 single, “Your Hurt Me.” The song features a guest appearance from Kassa Overall, an emcee and producer who has collaborated with Das Racist and Iron Solomen.
NBA references are aplenty throughout the entire project. Cohen references the 1996 NBA Finals, “Girls backing down on D. like Gary Payton.” The Seattle native also spits this line, “Heart on my sleeve, nothing in my pocket. But like a prophet, eye image in the profits. Only had a dream like Hakeem on the Rockets. Winning this year aint’ no bullshit to stop it. Get it? Aint’ no Bull that can stop it.”
At times Cohen is overly misogynistic even by hip-hop’s standards. His crude punchlines border on lazy and unimaginative. “Used to spit game, but now it’s like fuck it. I just whip out my dick and wait for one of you to suck it.”
Still, Aaron Cohen lives up to the Action Bronson and Stalley comparisons given his age. His pacific northwestern influences make him stand out in New York. His style and edge has already helped him gain a following on both coasts. http://indy.livemixtapes.com/mixtapes/24932/aaron-cohen-potential-fans.html
The Deluxe LP Edition of Gotham includes the three tracks that were originally featured on the maxi-single (never released on CD) as well as 10+ rare and unreleased tracks by the duo. This is a must-have release for any fan of Cannibal Ox. Gotham (Deluxe LP Edition) hits stores worldwide on December 3, 2013 via IGC Records / iHipHop Distribution.
1. Gotham (Ox City)
2. Gases In Hell (Inhale)
3. Psalm 82
4. Live from the Planet of Eat
5. Blood Sport (feat. Karniege)
6. Can Ox Freestyle # 1
7. Swing Blades feat. Jean Grae
8. Can Ox Freestyle # 2 feat. Bobbito Garcia
9. Street Reppin feat. C Rayz Walz
10. Think Differently Feat. Casual, Tragedy, Roc Marciano
11.Slow Blues feat. Byata, Timbo King, Prodigal Sunn
12. That Moment Before Crazy feat. C-Rayz Walz
13. Mecca & The Ox
14. Metal Gear
15. Life's ILL feat. Breeze Brewin
Stik Figa performing live at The Bottleneck in Lawrence, KS.
Stik Figa is an underground rapper representing Topeka, KS.
8th and Jewell are his coordinates
in the town also known as Top City. He also claims Memphis while fans in
Lawrence and Kansas City claim him.
As a child his mother noticed his skinny frame and John Westbrook Jr. was
given his nickname. Today his frame has filled out. He personifies cool by
rocking oversized glasses, vintage shirts and New Era ball caps.
His lyrics are unembellished and candid. Stik is more likely to rap about
paying his phone bill than buying gold chains. His style is positive when
mainstream rap is anything but.
He began his career aligned with the local record label INnatesounds.
"(INnatesounds) made me feel like I was a part of an elite group of artist
from the area that was making really good music and really innovative music. And
now if you look back at it it’s one of the most important things because now
D-Will is one of my best friends and we make music together. I got to do a small
tour with Cess Crew who is now one of the larger artists on Strange (Strange
In 2011 Stik Figa was featured on MTV.com. He received national press after
the producer Oddisee signed him to Mello Music Group.
"He (Oddisee) hit me up on MySpace. I remember I just had my son. I was
living in Olathe at the time. I checked my email and he said, ‘Man I really want
to work with you.’ I remember thinking, ‘Oddisee wants to work with me? Why
would Oddisee want to work with me?’ So I wrote him back and I was like, ‘Bruh…
I can’t even afford you. I already know that. I don’t want to waste your time.’
He wrote me back and he was like, ‘if I contact you, I got you.’ He put me on a
plane had me out there. We made 14 records but you only got to hear 5 of them.
I’m hoping we get to work together again."
Stik Figa recently teamed up with label mate L’Orange for an October release
titled The City Under the City. The single received over 25,000 plays on
Soundcloud. This high number of plays was due in part to the popularity of the
more established L’Orange. Face Time and phone calls were used to connect, but
the two artists didn’t meet in person until after the album was completed. The
vinyl is currently sold out according to the distributers’ website.
Free Daps is a hip-hop duo from Orlando, Florida. Isaac Knox and Heir Jordan have toured the battle rap circuit extensively. Isaac Knox has battled in Grind-Time Now, No Coast, Body Bag, Colorado Rap, Voice Box and Cushion Coffin
Their new self titled album was released on Aug.27, 2013. According to Isaac Knox CD sales at shows are matched evenly by free downloads which number a few hundred. It features Manchild of Mars Ill among other artists.
The Kings Offspring are an Orlando hip-hop crew made up of Isaac Knox, Heir Jordan and two others. The group has Christian roots, but Heir Jordan does not like the phrase Christian Rap. “We’re a group of Christian guys who want to make music for everybody. I hate, hate, hate, the term Christian Rap because that’s not what we do. You shouldn’t have to put a religious label on music. What I do is I make music about my life. That means, girls, cars, whatever, but God is also a part of my life. So he’s going to come up, but it’s not like I’m trying to preach a sermon in every song.”
Can you tell me a little bit about the group, The Kings Offspring? Can you tell me a little bit about the origin?
Heir Jordan: We’re a member of the crew, “The Kings Offspring.” That’s actually four guys. Isaac and me are touring as a duo. That touring project is Free Daps. The Kings Offspring was in Orlando, just some guys having some fun. It turned out to be something that people were interested in.
Is it secular? I don’t want to ask the wrong question, but is it a Christian group?
Heir Jordan: We’re a group of Christian guys who want to make music for everybody. I hate, hate, hate, the term Christian Rap because that’s not what we do. You shouldn’t have to put a religious label on music. What I do is I make music about my life. That means, girls, cars, whatever, but God is also a part of my life. So he’s going to come up, but it’s not like I’m trying to preach a
sermon in every song.
How Many downloads does Free Daps have? Is it in the thousands?
Isaac Knox: It’s in the hundreds right now. Right now, it’s been kind of even between downloads and sales on the road.
Talk to me about Grind Time and what battle leagues you’ve been in.
Heir Jordan: I’ve battle in Grind Time I’ve battled in No Coast I've battled in body bag and Colorado Rap, up in Colorado. Isaac has been in seven leagues.
Isaac Knox: I’ve done all those, also Voice Box, King of the Dot, Cushion Coffin and I think that’s it right now.
Are you guys signed to a label right now?
Isaac Knox: Nope, independent. We’re enjoying the freedom right now. I don’t want to say it’s on our own abilities,
but, we’re touring and we’ve booked a whole month long tour by ourselves. Right now we’re not in a position to ask enough that it makes since, but we’re doing well for ourselves.
Having Christian roots do you guys try not to offend people with outrageously offensive material? Do you try and play it
Heir Jordan: Naturally things are a bit cleaner that what another emcee would do. But if it makes me laugh and I think
it’s a good line… I try not to talk about race and all that, but if I offend somebody you shouldn’t have been at a rap battle. That’s it point blank. I don’t worry about offending people.
Isaac Knox: We don’t rely on that, but we want to show that we can rap better and be more entertaining. But, if it’s
funny, man, I’m going to say it.
Tef Poe walks into an empty theatre and seems slightly stressed. He’s telling his crew that people are acting like they know him. And why wouldn’t they? After being featured in The Source’s Unsigned Hyped column and stealing the show at Lou Fest Tef Poe is becoming the highest regarded emcee in St. Louis. Tonight he is hosting a discussion with the Alchemist at The Kranzburg Arts Center.
The sound guy is trying to help set the stage, but it isn’t going well. He notices his keys are gone and cannot find the right table for the DJ. He throws his hands up in frustration, "I’m sorry, but I didn’t get a technical advance." The event is underway shortly after, however.
The glass walls and marble floors in the lobby of the theatre compliment the 808 drums and booming bass which is now vibrating the paintings in the art gallery next door. A gentleman begins taking tickets and tending bar on an island near the entrance.
The event is titled A Discussion with the Alchemist, a conversation with a hip-hop icon whose production credits can be found on almost every relevant rappers album including Snoop Dogg, Nas and Eminem. His prolific production has been a staple in hip-hop for decades. His recent releases feature the upper echelon of today’s underground rap artist including Mobb Deep, Prodigy, Curren$y and Action Bronson as well as up and coming rappers like Willie The Kid and Boldy James.
The heat was not a deterrent to people from all walks of life that came to see graf. writers tag along the 1.6 mile Missouri River floodwall in St. Louis.
At 1:12pm on Sunday, June 23 Paint Louis 2013 was still in full effect. In fact, Sunday may have been the best time to see the art because most pieces took three days to complete. Cars were left running just to play underground hip-hop like J Dilla and The Pharcyde. An ice cream truck helped cool down tempers that were flaring within crews because of, no doubt, the heat and the three long days therein.
The graffiti festival began on Friday and lasted until Sunday when a St. Louis city police officer patrolled South Wharf St. from 5:00pm-9:00pm. John Harrington is a founding organizer of the event. He said the police officer was hired to, "…get everybody to wrap up and leave at night."
The first Paint Louis was in 1998. In 2001 it became too large to control. City officials got involved and the event was not welcomed by the city because of excessive property damage outside of the free wall. This year the city offered a legal permit, however it is unclear how long the festival has been going on unofficially.
The XMEN crew from New York, Scribe from Kansas City and Pete Eyez from St. Louis were among the most notable of the 30 graffiti crews painting the wall. Pete Eyez is best known for designing a Mountain Dew bottle that was distributed throughout the nation.
Sponsors included Monster Energy and Momentum Art Tech, which was vending
Some property damage occurred this year. Harrington said, "Hopefully we will be able to do it again because there has been a lot of extra stuff off the wall… as you can see around us, they decided to hit buildings and stuff like that. I’m going to have to come down here in the next couple days with buff paint and buff off some of the businesses."
Aby Wolf is a vocalist from Minneapolis, MN. She has recorded with the indie platinum rap artist Brother Ali. She currently sings back up harmonies for Dessa. A. Wolf is opening the Dessa tour with a set of her own. She has stolen the show on all nine dates across the U.S. including Columbia, Missouri on March 22, 2013.
Aby wolf started singing while she was in her high school choir. She moved to Minneapolis at age 19 from a small town. "I'm from a village of 365 people. I went to school from kindergarten to high school with the same 23 give or take. So, I grew up in this very insular agricultural community bubble."