Eddie Caine is a rapper for people who like rap. Listening through his patron Rita tape it becomes obvious that Caine not only has an incredible talent for telling stories but also holds high regard for hip-hop’s young history. ”Oh, I forgot it’s summertime,” he answers to a twisted Kanye sample on “sumHER”. The most obvious comparison that Caine will draw will be Notorious B.I.G. and it’s due to more than just the beer bellied buddha’s deep toned inflection. On “Versace Visions”, the album’s clear highlight, Caine takes a page out of Biggie’s book by opening things with heat-on-the-sleeve directness. ”Imma just say how I feel on this one because a lot of rappers don’t do that,” he opens backed by soft sampled cooing. Later he raps of dreams deferred, christian dior, and dreams money can buy before barking that he’s “almost there” with the kind of urgency that lets us know he has know idea where “almost there” even is. ”Versace Rap” is the kind of underdog story that we usually only get to hear after the rapper has achieved mainstream success. However, Caine is still “one bowl of cereal away from a beat and a rap” that will give him that success. Maybe he’s already found that beat and that rap and all he really needs is for people to start listening.
When I first read about Chicago hip-hop crew Pivot I didn’t expect to hear much more than a Pro-Era inspired group making old school-styled hip-hop. Instead, it turns out that the only thing Pivot and Pro-Era have in common is that they are two young groups with infectious group energy and talent that runs deep. After the hi-hat accented, energetic beat drops it’s not hard to figure out that Pivot hail from the same city that produced Chief Keef, Lil Reese and Kanye West. The five featured MC’s each take their stab at the beat offering different delivery styles and ideas to the track. The easy highlights come from Saba and guest Benjamin Earl Turner who each show off distinct personalities brimming with charisma. Shout out to Beat Culture for turning us on to Pivot.
‘Clique’, the latest single from G.O.O.D. Music’s upcoming Cruel Summer has hip-hop veterans Jay Z and Kanye West trying to out boast themselves and a career filled with boasting anthems. The huge Hit-Boy produced track not only provided a platform for Hov and Ye to remind us once again why they are better than us but also a perfect opportunity for Groundislava to take it and make it all his own. Where the original was grand and fit for kings Groundislava takes it and warps it so that it sounds like it’s bumping from some shitty speakers in a poorly lit warehouse rave. Groundislava takes the Big Sean’s swagger filled chorus and chokes it off right before it would erupt into the all out regal jam that it originally was. The result is an unsurprisingly awesome, tension filled remix that only a crazed genius like Groundislava could pull off.
I had to listen to this song about 6 times before I could wrap my head around all the stuff going on to make some deep social commentary on it about how it is representative about the state of music and hipster culture. While most hip-hop remixes replace the regular beat with something more to that artist’s style, heRobust decided to go about adding layers of glitch, bass and other noises on top of the already heavy beat. The result is incredibly disorienting to say the least and although I may be alone in my room I can’t help feel like I’m at a festival when I turn this one up loud.