Pre-orders for North London MC Melanin 9's "Amulets" are now underway. It's a 2014 vinyl release with 2021 remaster. The cover art is a homage to the Bruton Music library series. This time it is on cassette, and is now on all streaming platforms / Bandcamp.
Pragmatic Theory is a collective of artists from all over and is also an imprint within a label. The label being Rhythm 22 which is also a blog. Got that? Right. So what is Verbal Architecture? Its a compilation LP featuring 24 tracks from a diverse set of acts and it is something you ought to check.
Triple Darkness and Orphans of Cush member, and frequent supplier of perpetual rawness Cyrus Malachi, made a return recently with a follow-up to his popular 2011 album Ancient Future. Featuring production from the likes of Hey Zeus, Starvirius, Hellz Echo, and Noize Theivery, with expert mastering from Chemo, Black Athena would appear to have the foundations needed to make a classic album.
Melanin 9's Magna Carta (due to be released on the 3rd of December by Red Snow) has been two years in the making and is the London rapper's first album. The sound is a refreshing return to classic hip hop whilst staying firmly rooted in modern Britain. Magna Carta , at its core, is focused on old school hip hop values. In many ways it's an album that could fall under the umbrella of conscious hip hop, but M9 is set apart from other conscious rappers in the UK by having a greater focus on the stories you can touch with your fingertips.
There's something immediately surreal about pressing the buzzer of a tower block and saying, "Hey, is this M9?" But life is surreal and certainly Melanin 9 felt it more keenly than me. He invited me in and offered me a drink while I took the opportunity to have a nose through his DVD collection. We briefly lamented those times you lend a movie to a friend and it seems to disappear into DVD purgatory. But soon enough we dropped the small talk and got down to discussing Hip Hop and his debut album, Magna Carta.
Expectations will always be high when an American emcee appropriates a British motif, which is highly unusual in the hip-hop world. However, Copywrite's, "God Save The Queen", lives up to regal standards as set by his perivous works with producers like J Dilla, Cool and Dre to name but a few. He seamlessly pays homage to hip-hop-heavy-weights and their key anthems like Nas's, 'Got Myself A' and Biggie's, 'Juicy', by skilfully adding his own twist.
We have been informed that due to unforseen circumstances Onyx show scheduled for tomorrow 4th August has had to be postponed. No reason given, but I guess the use of the term postponed suggests that the gig may be re-arranged sometime in the future. Was looking forward to getting rowdy so its a pity this has not come off, but these things happen.
Ohio's Copywrite drops this banger PYT with the UK's Loudmouth Melvin and Skillit as a pre-cursor to his new album God Save The King, due out late autumn on Man Bites Dog Records. The track produced by Kount Fif also features Jay Notes.
The original bad boys of Def Jam, Fredro Starr and Sticky Fingaz are comin to the UK for a massive gig in August. This should be an event not to miss with a catalogue of rowdy hits from as far back as 1993's Bacdafucup LP which included Slam which should get the whole audience bouncing. Djembe Entertainment have also put some great acts on the support bill so be sure to reach Fabric on the 4th August.
M9 aka Melanin is one half of the Heresy and one third of Triple Darkness. Two of the most renounced conscious British hip hop crews. Strange Fruit is redemonstrating, reamplifying, and just plain reminding us that what makes these crews so strong and sure is that as individuals, each of them excel to another level. And they can all do their own thing and still carry it equally as strong.