“Martin” Never Meant Shit To Me

Big Sean feat. Chris Brown & Ty Dolla $ign – Play No Games

Fresh Prince was on after CBBC had finished so that’s where I went to get my black comedy scriptures back when I was a yoot. I never saw ‘Martin’ apart from that one bit where he gets beaten so badly in a boxing match that his head swells up like Quasimodo’s back. Still, this video is fun in spite of the references going over my head; you can tell that they actually had fun making it, too.

Actually, one of my gripes with Big Sean’s album was that it had that self-seriousness that Sean’s soundalike Drake insists on smothering all of his songs in; ”Play No Games” is a throwback in more ways than one, then, and was probably my favourite tune off the album other than the neon Mustard-riff powered ”I Don’t Give A Fuck” and the ”College Dropout” era Kanye channeling ”Outro”.

Rappy Meal (Rap Up Jr.)

Bleezy – Kyrie Irving (2015)

Absolutely love this. Bleezy is from Brookyln, N.Y. Him and his crew are all wearing Cleveland Cav jerseys cos that’s who Kyrie Irving plays point-guard for, apparently. Basketball, eh? It’s just not cricket. Ever since (I’d guess) ”The Bridge Is Over” and right through ”Ambitionz Ov A Ridah”, rap producers have been proving that all you need in this life of sin to make a street banger is a piano melody you can play with one finger and some banging ass drums.

E-40 – Choices (2015)

This song has been a squad anthem for a hot minute and now it’s got an ace video in which various stars of the rap world contribute ”Yup” and ”Nope” mimes while E-40, as rotund men are wont to do, sits at a desk on his computer. Presumably, given E-40’s age, he struggles to understand how the copy-paste function works and has embarrassed himself at least once by accidentally publishing “big boobies video” as his Facebook status. But when it comes to making quirky, funny and yet still hard as Iain Duncan Smith’s heart rap music, this old dog’s old tricks can’t be questioned.

Gunplay – Commas Freestyle (2015)

A short reminder that Gunplay’s lonnnnnnnng delayed album ”Living Legend” is still worth anticipating.

The 10 Tracks I’ve Caned Recently On My Commute

In reality, I’m sweating buckets on the Circle line, squashed between a guy watching American Dad on his phone with his legs splayed out too far and a agony-eyed middle aged woman laden with shopping bags that are, I assume, filled with chocolate and a lethal dose of paracetamol,  but inside my headphones I’m dressed like Rich Homie Quan in the ”Flex” video and I have a full time job and a girlfriend and everything.

Theo Parrish – Falling Up (Carl Craig RMX) (2005)

Young Thug – Halftime (2015)

Young Thug – Check (2015)

Galaxy II Galaxy – Timeline (2001)

Handel – Chaconne for Harpsichord in G Major HMV 435 played by M Perahia

Fetty Wap – RGF Island (2015)

The Vision – Modern & Ancient (1996)

Joey Beltram – Subsonic Trance (1990)

Chic – Everybody Dance (1977)

Rich Homie Quan – Flex (2015)

Loosies As A Goose #1

The Lox – Fuck You (2000)

“whoever feel sad at the funeral – fuck them too!”

This is exhibit A in my ”Swizz Beats is a GAWD” presentation. I used to hate Swizz as part of my ”DJ Premier is a GAWD” attitude. But sometimes you don’t want richly-textured samples and boom-bap beats; you want casio keyboard horns and beats as brutal and lumpen as Jadakiss’s ice-grille. I would love there to be a Young Buck x Swizz Beats collaboration called ”Buck Swizz”, with a video in which a Cheryl Baker lookalike whips off her skirt to reveal 50 Cent’s cheeky smirking face. BUT THERE ISN’T.

To Be Young Is Very Heaven

Today on Fassbook, Ill Blu posted up the latest daytime playlist for 1xtra. They were celebrating their entry onto the C List – which I was happy to see, too, given that they were some of the most outrageously talented producers in the outrageously great genre of UK Funky, and therefore deserve all the success that absolute nonentities like Calvin Harris enjoy. Judging by their entry on the playlist, Ill Blu are nowadays making highly polished, if disappointingly generic, ‘deep house’, of the type enjoyed by people too young to put inverted commas around ‘deep house’ – you know, good-looking, clean-shaven people with their whole lives in front of them. Bastards, basically.

Anyway, being no snob when it comes to music for the yoofz, I decided to check out the complete 1xtra A-List playlist to see if it would help me remember what fun was like. I didn’t hate most of the tracks on it, but I wasn’t crazy for most of them, either. A lot of them are in major key, and obviously aimed at people who can smile without irony. I was going to do a complete run down of all the songs but I quickly realised that there wasn’t much point, given how vague my feelings are towards the majority. I guess it’s nice to see Wiley and Skepta on the playlist, albeit with fairly forgettable tracks (“Shut Down” and “Chasing The Art”). Natalie Le Rose’s ”Somebody” is a Mustard/Mustard-a-like track which loses points for Jeremih doing one of those reprisals of a famous and better song. I couldn’t tell if Shift K3Y’s ”Name and Number” was actually good neo-2-step or not, because the video – of absurdly good-looking teenagers having amazing fun at a house party of the sort I would have been invited to last about ten years ago if I had ever been invited – gave me a severe case of sour grandpa grapes. OMI’s ”Cheerleader” (Felix Jahen RMX) sounds like Crazy Frog. ”Peaches N Cream” by Snoop Dogg is decent, but will – I think – not go down in history as anything close to the top tier of Snoop/Neptunes tunes.

Which leaves us with the two of 17 daytime A-List tracks that I actually enjoyed. One is “Trap Queen” by Fetty Wap, which has grown on me more than any rap-club anthem since ”Tuesday”, and is officially fifty times better than ”King Kunta” by Kendrick Lamar. The second is ”Preach” by M.O., a three-girl group who I’ve never heard of before and who have done a couple of pretty forgettable tracks before this one.

M.O. – Preach (2015)

From the start the production is a cut above most of this daytime fare; weird noises and a humming refrain that recalls Timbo the king. A big 808 kicks in for the first half of the hook. Yeah, yeah, it’s alright. But 1.09 minutes in it totally suckered me with part two of the hook which is backed by these lush SWV esque chords and makes me want to cry with melancholy joy. WELL DONE.

I might look at the B and C list later if I can be bothered, but when you’re as old as I am, watching ‘Wolf Hall’ in its entirety is a more appealing prospect than listening to young people enjoying their lives, so don’t hold your breath.

Tunes That Ran My Weekend In London

RAN MY TRIP TO LONDON

On my MP3 player I have many musics and this is one of them.

Terrance Dixon – The Bionic Man (Remix) (2014)

RAN RECORD STORE DAY AT VINYL PIMP

The legendary Equinox was playing a jungle set at this record shop in Hackney Wick to celebrate Record Shop Day. I enjoyed drinking Singha beers alot while he played. Hackney Wick is weird. It’s like it’s an ex-residential area through which gangs of non-threatening hipster youths roam like feral skateboarding cats. He definitely played an early Dillinja tune and it probably wasn’t this one but this one is great so it will suffice.

Kym Mazelle – Genius (Dillinja Remix) (1995)

RAN THE PRE-PARTY

At this stage of the night I had crashed after the Singha buzz and could do little but sit on a couch drinking red wine and being assaulted by ambient guitar-feedback loops. Enjoyed it a lot, and it imparted great meaning to my baleful gazes out over the Shadwell skyline towards Great Cthulu’s Shard.

Robert Fripp – Let The Power Fall (1984)

RAN THE PARTY

Queen of Hoxton, Brackles playing nowt but bangers for a couple of hours. Beer and champagne lording it over the dancefloor level shitmunchers.

DJ Mustard feat. Fabolous & Eric Bellinger – 4 Digits (2014)

Soulja Boy – Whippin’ My Wrist (2015)

Demarco – She Can’t Wait (2009)

RAN THE AFTERPARTY

More Brackles selections tbh in a front-room which we occupied until about 8am. There was a lot of Prince tunes too and me launching into one of my ill advised contrarian rants about how Prince is shite, unfortunately can’t be documented on here cos Prince shuts down youtube videos like Michael Jackson’s ”Baby Be Mine” shuts down Prince’s entire career. #dead

Sarkodie – Down On One (2013)

3rd Vision – Girl Let Me (1996)

RAN THE JOURNEY HOME

Levon Vincent – Woman Is An Angel (2015)

Jazmine Sullivan – Mascara (2015)

More of the same, please

Raekwon – Butter Knives (2011)

Nobody in their right mind gives a single shit about the Wu’s new album, which can only be accessed by removing it from the arsehole of a silverback gorilla with chronic conspitation, or something of that sort, but maybe at least would if it was going to sound like this heater from 2011. Listening to this makes me want to revisit all the Wu’s classic 90’s material, which is actually something which all music by formerly-great artist should aspire to do. Very few artists (in any medium) manage to perfect more than one style, Of course, for a rapper like Raekwon it must seem thoroughly meaningless to repeat past glories, but – from the poor neglected listener’s perspective – he’s the ONLY one who CAN. Isn’t that a thought? Only A Tribe Called Quest can make music EXACTLY like A Tribe Called Quest circa 1993. As Oliver Twist whimpered, his gruel-stained bowl held-out before the glower of a cockney Kommandant: “Give us some more of the good stuff, you bastards!”

Some good rap tunes, apropos of NADA.

G-Unit – All About The Drug Money (2015)

This is the type of music 2015 Mobb Deep should be making. Piano. Bass drum booming. Perfect fodder for QB killa music. I posted this on my tumblr already but now it’s got a video so why not?

Roc Marciano – Pop (2010)

I usually prefer Marciano in laid-back gangster mode but this tune can’t be described as owt but FIYAH.

It’s All Gone A Bit Pete Properly

Kingpin Cartel – Ghetto (2007)

If I ever get around to producing music properlyproperly, ideally it will sound a bit like this. The chords, I mean. Those euphoric-melacholic square waves, flanged to sound jet-like and air-borne, that sound like a come-up and come-down simultaneously. One of these days when I’ve really got nothing better to do I’ll document a short history of these chords in rave music. Maybe I can pitch it to Adam ‘Rogues Foam’ Harper and get him to do the scientific analysis, while I preen, beautifully and uselessly, amongst the CGI molecules like Jennifer Aniston in her advertising anchoring prime. Anyway, this is taken from Bicep’s Essential MIx which I’ve been listening to this week, and which you should listen to this week.

‘Ghetto’ smack-face-obviously (or very slightly, depending on if you’re me or not) resembles Alan Braxe and Fred Falke’s classic track ‘Intro’; the same textural counterpoise of wistful, airy tunefulness with weighty, funky slap-bass. Makes you dance, makes you smile, makes you cry.

Alan Braxe & Fred Falke – Intro (2001)

THE TENSION OF TOWERING SPACES

“The art that hung was mainly color-field and geometric, large canvases that dominated rooms and placed a prayerful hush on the atrium, skylighted, with its high white paintings and trickle fountains. The atrium had the tension and suspense of a towering space that requires pious silence in order to be seen and experienced properly, the mosque of soft footfall and rock doves murmurous in the vaulting.”

Don DeLilloCosmopolis (2004)