New Jehst. This has actually been circulating for a few weeks now but it needs air on this site. Anything by this guy instantly floats to the top of the pile when it comes to UK hip-hop. We all wait with rabid anticipation for a new LP. Even the Menghi Bus Mixtape seems a LONG time ago, Jehst!
Thursday, 21 April 2011
Sunday, 10 April 2011
Its amazing how a collective of artists, who individually are no better than average, can come together as one to create a whole movement and generate enough hype and material to create a legacy. Some collectives have talent running throughout and couldn't fail if they tried. The Wu-Tang Clan was as much an advert for each member's solo ability as it was for the group as a whole, and the success of each individual from that group is testament to that.
The Diplomats never had the talent that the Wu had. Not even a single member. They never had the lyrical story-weaving of Raekwon or Ghostface. They never had the commanding aura or intelligence of GZA, nor the presence and individuality of Method Man. However, one thing they did have was charisma. Charisma, the whole of Harlem, and the Heatmakerz.
Its strange to think back to the early 2000s and notice just how dominant Dipset were in the rap scene. Their gully songs, peppered with the odd radio-friendly club track was a snapshot of where hip-hop was at in those years.
The sped-up soul samples that Kanye West supposedly ushered in were being used to just as good effect by the relative unknowns that backed up a large proportion of the Dips' output. And this production crew, The Heatmakerz, were arguably the secret ingredient in Cam'Ron's successful recipe. Sure, it was ignorant, the samples were often lazy and well-known, and they were often repetitive, but they were catchy as fuck. And they were catchy in an acceptable way (ie. guys are going to get a slap by their mates if theyre seen humming a Nelly song, and rightly so...but Dipset? They'd join in).
Today, the Diplomats are a fragmented collective who announced their long-awaited return with a few leaked tracks and freestyles, and most of the extended membership has been shorn. Vado seems to be Cam'Ron's new artist he wants to push, and thats left his old pupils out in the cold.
Juelz Santana and Jim Jones are still working alongside Killa Cam, but not with the same togetherness they had 8 years ago, when they ran NY commercial rap radio. Jim Jones, incidentally, has just released his new LP, and its utter bollocks.
This post is to highlight the lesser known tracks by the Dipset Collective, away from their "Diplomatic Immunity" album, or Cam'Ron's big hits. We're celebrating their weed carriers today, from 40 Cal to Hell Rell, JR Writer to Purple City, just as much as we're celebrating their bigger names. Even these so called "minions" contributed immensely to the movement at the time but can probably found today, homeless and jobless, curled up on a broken couch in a crackhouse somewhere sniffing lines off the inner thigh of a prostitute.
Lets remember them for the good times, the ridiculously over-the-top gangster posturing, the chipmunk soul, the barely literate wordplay that was somehow endearing because of that. I present to you a collection of songs that are ludicrous, amazing, rubbish and entertaining in equal portions. Here is The Diplomats.
Its a big tracklist, because one album's worth of material wouldnt be enough to highlight the OTT epicness (is that a word?) of the Diplomats. This is a monster collection, one that you should listen to ALL DAY EVERY DAY while walking down the street and slapping random bitches and dickheads who give you black looks. This is a gift from me to you, a labour of love, and a collection of songs that I will always love, no matter how silly they are...all four hours and twenty minutes of it. Enjoy.
Click on the album title or the "download" at the bottom of the post for enough Dipset to leave sprinkles of cooked crack round your nostrils without you even realising.
All The Chickens (feat. Juelz Santana) (from "S.D.E.")
Dipset Forever (from "Purple Haze")
Do Ya Thing (Remix) (from "Killa Season")
He Tried To Play Me (feat. Hell Rell) (from "Killa Season")
I.B.S. (from "Killa Season")
More Reasons (from "Purple Haze")
War (feat. Hell Rell) (from "Killa Season")
Diamonds & Pearls (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 5")
Facts Of Life (feat. Juelz Santana) (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 1")
Pain & Agony (feat. McGruff) (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 2")
Suga Duga (from "Dipset: More Than Music Vol. 2")
Daddy (from "What The Game's Been Missing")
Down (from "From Me To U")
How I Feel (from "From Me To U")
Lil' Boy Fresh (from "What The Game's Been Missing")
Monster Music (from "From Me To U")
Santana's Town Part. II (From "Dipset: More Than Music Vol. 1")
Bandana (from "Back Like Cooked Crack 2: More Crack")
Blow (from "Back Like Cooked Crack 1")
Fat Bitch (from "Back Like Cooked Crack 3")
Mr. Postman (from "Back Like Cooked Crack 3")
So Rude (from "Back Like Cooked Crack 1")
You Oughta Know (feat. Cam'Ron) (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 4")
Your Gonna Love Me (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 4")
Getaway (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 3")
Questions (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 3")
G's Up (from "Harlem: Diary Of A Summer")
Harlem (from "Harlem: Diary Of A Summer")
Talking To The World (from "On My Way To Church")
This Is Jim Jones (feat. Cam'Ron) (from "On My Way To Church")
What Kind Of Life Is This (feat. Juelz Santana) (from "Dipset: More Than Music Vol. 1")
Come On, Come On (feat. NOE & Oshy) (from "Harlem's American Gangster")
Concrete Jungle (from "Hustler's POME: Product Of My Environment")
End Of The Road (feat. TI & Bun B) (from "On My Way To Church")
Dipset City(ft. Hell Rell, JR Writer, Jim Jones & Juelz Santana)(from "More Than Music Vol. 2")
Blackout (from "Trigger Happy 2")
Do It Again (from "Trigger Happy 2")
Fuck It All (from "Broken Safety")
Highway Music (from "Trigger Happy")
If You Want It (from "The Yellow Tape")
Neva Neva (feat. A-Mafia & RU Spitz) (from "Broken Safety")
Real Bitch (from "Broken Safety")
Stick 'Em (feat. Cam'Ron & JR Writer) (from "Broken Safety 2")
Jungle Hood (feat. Su Da Boss) (from "Trigger Happy")
Harlem Blues (from "40 Calories: Get Ya Weight Up")
License To Kill (from "40 Calories: Get Ya Weight Up")
Rain (from "The Eye Of The Eagle")
This Is What I Do (feat. Cam'Ron) (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 2")
I'm The Shit (feat. Cam'Ron) (from "For The Hell Of It")
Streets Gonna Love Me (from "For The Hell Of It")
Intro (from "Streets Wanna Know")
Ruger Rell & Writer (feat. JR Writer) (from "Streets Wanna Know")
Y'All Ain't Ready (from "Still Standing")
The Hiest (from "History In The Making")
Riot Pump (from "History In The Making")
To Be A Diplomat (from "History In The Making")
Xtasy (feat. Nicole Wray) (from "History In The Making")
You Make Me Say (from "Dipset: More Than Music Vol. 1")
It's All Over (from "Still Standing")
Jamaican Diplomocracy (from "Still Standing")
Soul Centric (from "Still Standing")
So Free (feat. Cam'Ron) (from "Diplomatic Immunity Vol. 2")
Built This City Part II (from ""Where Is SAS?")
Ur In Da Army (feat. Juelz Santana) (from "Streets All Salute")
Streets All Salute (from "Streets All Salute")
Missing You (from "Dipset Eurogang: Gang's All Here")
Agallah - Purple City Gangsta (feat. Shiest Bub) (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 4")
Un Kasa - Death Is The Only Escape (from "The Diplomats Mixtape Vol. 3")
Freekey Zeekey - Streets (from "Book Of Ezekiel")
DukeDaGod (feat. Hell Rell & JR Writer) - More Than Music(from "Dipset:More Than Music 1")
Jha Jha & Un Kasa - So Gangsta (from "Dipset: More Than Music Vol. 1")
Coinz (feat. S.A.S.) - Doing Fine (from "Dipset Eurogang: Gang's All Here")
(Note: I have intentionally stayed away from most of their staple favourites and the CamRon/Juelz/Jim Jones hit singles, because let's be honest, if you don't already own them then you're a silly fucker and shouldnt be perusing a rap blog in the first place)
Monday, 4 April 2011
Chester P, one half of UK behemoths Taskforce, has released his new album "New Mic Order Part 2" via his bandcamp website. Its a real return to form (or rather, a return to the music scene, as he was never really "out of form" in the first place) and its very welcome in a UK rap scene that currently stands in a transitional period.
The veterans of the scene are slowly but surely dropping off and retiring one by one, and thus far, there have been very few artists or collectives coming through that can receive the baton and develop the scene further. Chester P has shown with this release, an album I've listened to for the past few hours and enjoyed thoroughly, that he's not ready to pass the torch. Especially not to those who aren't worthy.
The album is called "New Mic Order Pt.2", yet this isn't a New Mic Order at all. Its a return to the roots of Taskforce and UK rap. Its grit and grind sprinkled with inner-city verve and wordplay. Its a highly experienced british emcee (who should get a lot more plaudits and respect than he does) showing the new jacks how its done, and why its important that the UK rap sound stays entirely separate and individual to that of its parent US scene. Its an old mic order that continues to work... and I appreciate that.
The album is a meagre fiver, and for that you get one of the most solid UK rap albums so far this year, so preview the songs below, then head over to the site and get it bought.