The Phoenix Network:
In Memoriam: Magnus Johnstone, 1952-2013
Paying tribute to the unlikely uncle of Boston hip-hop
On February 22, 2013, Boston lost a legend.
| March 13, 2013
Hip-Hop Trivia grows up
Who Shot Ya?
In their fourth year of operation, the Hip-Hop Trivia squad is finally taking the night (somewhat) seriously.
| February 26, 2013
Altered Gee dig the past and turn up treasure
The experience of modern music is synonymous with nostalgia.
| February 13, 2013
The Big Hurt: The Week in WorldStar unsigned Artist videos
In my Year-in-Preview column, I predicted that we'd pass "peak hip-hop" in 2013, and the unsigned hype on the WorldStar hip-hop site would slow to a trickle.
| January 16, 2013
Banger style: Hip-hop ringers of 2012
In recapping 2012, I embraced the chance to parade some recent unsung hip-hop ringers.
| December 18, 2012
Hip-Hop: Get On Down
GIFT GUIDE 2012
The record industry has always treated hip-hop as a disposable commodity, so that even iconic work has gone without the slick packaging of archival rock and pop projects.
| December 04, 2012
GZA explores the universe
Sounds of Science
In the mid-1970s, Gary Grice and his cousin Robert — ages 11 and 8, respectively — traveled for hours by ferry, train, and bus from Staten Island to the Bronx.
| December 05, 2012
The musical activism of Boots Riley
When Occupy erupted last year, politically aggressive artists had the choice either to walk the walk or quiet down.
| November 26, 2012
Crate digging with Hub rap archaeologist Pacey Foster
Pacey Foster used to fly home from college in Indiana, hustle to his Newton bedroom, and reach straight for the radio dial.
| November 15, 2012
You must think first... before you movie
RZA and Roth: Behind The Man with the Iron Fists
It's a snowy night in late 2006, and Hostel director Eli Roth is stranded at Logan Airport with RZA. The two are bound for Los Angeles, on their way home from hanging with Quentin Tarantino in Iceland.
| November 01, 2012
Kitty Pryde takes her chances
Can one artist ruin a genre?
| August 15, 2012
Nas | Life Is Good
Def Jam (2012)
Life Is Good is the album Illmatic fans have browbeat Nas into making while undervaluing an astounding number of achievements over a dozen "other" albums.
| August 07, 2012
Frank Ocean | Channel Orange
Def Jam (2012)
Since the ’80s, when R&B began to lean more heavily on the candid bling-and-booty-centric tropes championed by its plain-speaking hip-hop cousins, the music’s subtlety, nuance, and imagination have faded.
| July 24, 2012
Grinding gears with Wheelchair Sports Camp
Unless you count Summer Jam and other shameless showcases of hack-rap sharecroppers, hip-hop never had a circus until B. Dolan stepped up to play ringmaster.
| July 25, 2012
The Very Best | MTMTMK
Moshi Moshi/Cooperative Music (2012)
"World music" is an archaic label, but there's no better way to describe the Very Best's MTMTMK .
| July 17, 2012
Azealia Banks | 1991
The only downside of Azealia Banks's mildly slept-on debut EP is that her wildfire YouTube classic "212" was anything but subtle (recall: "I guess that cunt gettin' eaten"), whereas the remaining 13 minutes of music here require more time to sink in than the average Grizzly Bear fan would assume.
| July 10, 2012
El-P keeps control of his alt-rap flow
When I interviewed El-P back in 2007, we had a meaty laugh over unfortunate scribes who'd pegged his sound "post-apocalyptic."
| July 03, 2012
El-P | Cancer For Cure
Fat Possum (2012)
"It's like a fresh start in a new world," El Producto repeats on "Works Every Time," a track on this, his least ambitious record.
| May 15, 2012
The Big Hurt: Platinum League vs. Yo! MTV Raps Trading Cards
I spied an exciting story on XXL magazine's website: "Platinum League Releases First Ever Hip-Hop Trading Cards."
| May 16, 2012
Interview: J-Zone’s post-hip-hop life
J-Zone retired from hip-hop somewhere south of the middle.
| April 05, 2012
The Big Hurt: This month in rap ( . . . in 1992)
Twenty years ago, Marky Mark sucked, NOSE EARRINGS(?) ruled, and some blood was found in Dance Floor’s trachea
I'm overdue for a hip-hop news roundup, but it's all so lame.
| March 14, 2012
At the hip-hop high school
In his new book, Hip Hop Genius: Remixing High School Education , Sam Seidel describes a sign hanging at the juvenile detention facility in Cranston.
| March 14, 2012
Photos: EPMD + DJ Scratch at SXSW 2012
Austin TX | March 15, 2012
EPMD and DJ Scratch perform live at Malaia Upstairs at SXSW 2012 on March 15, 2012.
| March 16, 2012
Dirty Hank and Reason tap the bottle and hit the mic
Local lyricists Dirty Hank and Reason revel in drunken debauchery all over The Monty Brogan EP (Poorly Drawn Recordings), released just last week and currently up for grabs as a free download through multiple sites (check the end of these words for links).
| February 21, 2012
Schoolboy Q | Habits & Contradictions
Top Dawg Entertainment (2012)
Without much that can be considered "structure" in terms of the verse-chorus-verse standard, Q confidently wobbles through an album's worth of jaded bangers.
MICHAEL C. WALSH
| January 31, 2012
Juan Deuce and Falside get down to work as The Mechanics
Impossible to ignore
The stars have aligned and the Rap Gods must be smiling down at Juan Deuce and Falside.
| January 31, 2012
Toasting another year of high quality hip-hop
Savor the local flavor
We're saluting another dynamic year of real deal Rhody-based rap music — the diverse community of razor-sharp eccentric wordsmiths and young-gun production phenoms worthy of your attention.
| December 28, 2011
The year 'new battling' took over Boston
Plan of attack
There's one thing that most people know about battle rapping: 8 Mile .
| December 20, 2011
Frat rap is ready to graduate
It's been four years since "I Love College" -- now it's party time!
Despite whatever hip-hop's perceived "intended audience," it's never been a secret that rap music has long been adored by the Caucasian crowd.
| November 23, 2011
Click Animosity and the opposite of the frat rap game
Audacity of dope
In the epic hip-hop mockumentary CB4, Chris Rock's suburban MC wannabe character steals the name and image of a jailed thug rapper named Gusto.
| January 03, 2012
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Not For Nothing
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A Q & A With RI's New "Most Powerful Politician"
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Free Social Media Smarts from RI Food Fights
December 06, 2013 at 11:28 AM
Providence Phoenix 35th Anniversary - TONIGHT at Lupo's
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