Alison Wonderland Drops Highly Anticipated Single “High” Featuring Trippie Redd with Music Video

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Alison Wonderland has had an insane past year and some change on her path to becoming an EDM superstar. Taking over Mainstages and Clubs across the globe are just a few of the feats she has accomplished along the road. Taking pride in her femininity and power as a female DJ/Producer, she has gained fans

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Logic and Marshmello Drop Spring Anthem “Everyday”

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This is what music is all about right here. Bringing together two powerhouse artists at their respective crafts and creating a damn shwinger. Since taking on the industry, there has not been a second to breathe for the man in the Mello helmet. He has been traveling the world playing at the greatest festival and

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A-Trak & Young Thug drop off vintage skate demo-inspired music video for ‘Ride For Me’

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Recently A-Trak and Young Thug linked up for a throwback to the Low Pros days, dropping off their grinding new collaboration, “Ride For Me,” via Zane Lowe on Beats 1. The track was met with equal parts surprise and praise, with Young Thug delivering one of his most aberrantly eccentric vocal performances in recent memory, complemented by rising rapper 24hrs’ tempered contribution, all wrapped up and packed tightly into a slow-burning A-Trak trap beat.

The pair have now released an official video accompaniment that ties together genres, styles, cultures, and even generations. Thugger and A-Trak rope in a heavy dose of 90’s nostalgia, linking with renown skate video director and Zoo York founder Eli Morgan Gesner for “Ride For Me‘s” one-of-a-kind concept.

The video clips together Gesner’s archived footage of legendary NYC skaters from two decades ago with cuts of A-Trak and Thug revisiting the same spots in the present day, filmed with the same Hi-8 camera, making the clips of 1994 and 2018 nearly indistinguishable. The feature’s visual aesthetics, which A-Trak describes perfectly as, “both nostalgic and post-modern,” play right into the track’s sonic appeal, juxtaposing a retro snapshot of life in the urban underground with a soundtrack of futuristic, new wave hip-hop.

Towkio narrates his existential coming of age story on debut album ‘WWW.’ [Album Review]

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Remember the first time a kid from Chicago really challenged hip-hop’s status quo? He showed us how swapping 808s for chopped soul samples might actually be cool and that skinny jeans and neon Polos could be just as hip-hop as football jerseys and Cartier. He ushered in a new era of hip-hop by allowing himself to be weird and detailing his journey through the come up across three coming-of-age themed albums that have since cemented their places in the hightest echelons of modern hip-hop history. That kid was Kanye West, and nearly two decades after his emergence, his influence has shaped three of the genre’s brightest new torch carriers: Chance The Rapper, Vic Mensa, and now undisputedly, Towkio.

Each of these three young forward-thinkers are now pushing hip-hop into the future on those same principles, and at times, experimental appeal — though now Towkio is officially planting his flag with his debut LP, WWW. One listen through the new album, and it becomes clear that Towkio’s definition of hip-hop not only sets him apart from most of his contemporaries’, but also that it doesn’t necessarily adhere to current hip-hop conventions either; he doesn’t seem phased in the slightest.

Conceived between the journey from an emerging Chicago rapper to lamping at Rick Rubin’s mythical Malibu recording sanctuary Shangri La, Towkio sets the narrative in WWW.‘s first bars on “Swim,”

“New chapter, new page, made some money off the first mixtape. Now I’m living, good chillin by a beach that’s not a lake. Said the earth controls the moon so we control the waves.”

Relying heavily on these ideas of perspective, frequency and resonant connectivity, the foundational motifs go beyond just the track titles and lyrics. They are weaved into the record’s eclectic complexion of genres, roping together dreamy psychedelic intros, footworking breaks, funk, trap, R&B, and a healthy dose of his throaty vocal hopskotch. Creating the album took the “Drift” rapper to pyramids in Mexico, winding Hawaiian hills, and ultimately 92,000 feet into the atmosphere to quite literally drop his album from a visual vantage point that only a microscoping group of humans in history have ever witnessed.

Sonically, the record plays upon hip-hop’s new wave versatility, with a welcomed serving of pop appeal on tracks like “Hot S**t,” the Teddy Jackson-assisted “Symphony,” and a cheeky breakbeat cut on “Disco.” Louis The Child‘s contribution to the album, “Loose,” opens like it’s the much needed mid-record breather, before quickly tightening down and breaking into a rambunctious collection of bombastic kicks and tenacious spits.

The real respite, however, comes as one of the album’s final additions — a sleepy R&B piece alongside Grammy-nominated SZA called “Morning View.” Throughout its 13-track span, celestial trains of thought play a key aesthetic role in WWW.‘s compilation, culminating on pieces like “Alone” and “2 Da Moon.” Such a theme is not unlike the early outputs of fellow unconventionals like Kanye and Kid Cudi.


photo credit: Lenny Gilmore

Towkio showcases his inextricable acceptance of weirdness, and unapologetically declares it cool in his own way as well. It isn’t cookie-cutter rap music, and it wouldn’t be true to Towkio if it was. If still not skeptical about the Yeezy coming-of-age parallels, listen to him and Vic Mensa go in with brilliant, youthful defiance on “Forever” and tell me it doesn’t sound like the logically matured progression to West’s seminal classic, “We Don’t Care.”

On paper, WWW. is built by a team of sharp industry power players, with Lido behind the console raking in substantial writing and producing credits with Knox Fortune and frequent SZA songwriter Carter Lang, all beneath the legendary Rick Rubin’s watchful eye. Together, a seemingly motley crew of differently-wired creators have come together to aid in the delivery of Towkio’s triumphant longform debut — a relatable narrative of introspection and simultaneous emergence, all wrapped up in the underlying concept of the “overview effect” and how we relate to the daily risks we all take living on this big blue rock with one another.

Nowadays, the burgeoning rapper keeps his head in the stars, his feet in the California sand, and he’s survived a plummet from space that would humble anyone. Towkio has officially staked his claim in his corner of the ever-growing hip-hop empire, and in two more decades from now, who knows how WWW. will inspire an entirely new generation of rappers?


China’s ‘ban’ on hip-hop evidences music’s cultural permeability [Editorial]

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Hip Hop

Quavo, Offset, and Takeoff of Migos collectively brimmed with anticipation on January 26, 2017. Culture, the Atlanta hip hop trio’s second studio album, was scheduled to drop at midnight — a follow up to 2016’s EP, 3 Way.

Its two lead singles, “Bad and Boujee” and “T-Shirt,” had catalyzed just the heavy anticipation for its release that Migos had sought: “Bad and Boujee” ascended to viral status, going quadruple platinum, while “T-Shirt” went double platinum. Their collaborative labor in the studio was poised to pay off, and the music industry was not only watching—it was attentively listening.

Culture predictably earned Platinum certification after crossing the sale point of more than one-million units. Come the beginning of 2018, the outfit found themselves among the nominees for “Best Rap Album” at the Grammy’s 60th iteration.

Migos released Culture II around the same time as their Grammy nomination. Like its predecessor, this new sequel of an LP was swiftly and hungrily consumed by their fan base, who’d been impatiently awaiting it since its announcement. The play count on Culture II must rest somewhere in the millions by now, and that number will have grown by the time a reader of this editorial reaches its end.

Quavo, Offset, and Takeoff  sit atop a musical empire of their own making, and yet, their broad repertoire would rank entirely as “tasteless, vulgar, and obscene” in today’s Chinese media landscape given its hip-hop classification.

The State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television of the People’s Republic of China (SAPPRFT) — the country’s main media regulator—released four new “Don’t” media restrictions on January 19. Television networks are expected to abide by the newly published rules: “1. Absolutely do not use actors whose heart and morality are not aligned with the party and whose morality is not noble, 2. Absolutely do not use actors who are tasteless, vulgar, and obscene, 3. Absolutely do not use actors whose ideological level is low and have no class, and 4. Absolutely do not use actors with stains, scandals, and problematic moral integrity.”

The SAPPRFT’s promulgation of these stringent media rules “specifically requires that programs should not feature actors with tattoos [or depict] hip-hop culture, sub-culture (non-mainstream culture) and dispirited culture (decadent culture),” according to Chinese news source, Sina.

Across the Pacific, hip-hop accounted for a quarter of all music consumption in the United States in 2017, surpassing rock music to become the largest musical genre in the country for the first time in history.

Hip-hop’s rise to become the most popular genre of music for the first time last year speaks not only to the genre’s longevity in the context of the US music industry, but additionally to its continuing cultural and economic prominence. An underground musical movement of the mid-1970s, the genre originated in the Bronx in New York City as a recreational outlet that married elements of MCing, DJing, spoken verse, and break dancing. It offered a vocal platform for the block party artists that identified and used it as a vehicle of expression.

While hip-hop rides a wave of unprecedented centrality to the commercial American music market, it is duly an important, and perhaps a lesser known fact that this music remains only in a nascent stage in China. This germinal state of Chinese hip-hop that renders it vulnerable to the SAPPRFT’s newly imposed media rules. In fact, it’s almost as though these rules err on the nationalist side, seeking shut out a subculture with international roots. Hip-hop has not yet received the opportunity to become a cornerstone of musical commerce in the Chinese market, and is thus more susceptible to heavy restrictions — if not total attempted eradication.

The SAPPRFT’s limitations on the Chinese media’s portrayal of hip-hop will only further thwart the genre’s ability to gain a substantial market presence, being that hip-hop and its accompanying subculture is being written out of the Chinese media by the media’s chief regulators. “Hip-hop’s prospects in China seem dim after Chinese rappers [known by the stage names “PG One” and “GAI”] removed from TV shows,” posited a headline from the state-facilitated tabloid, Global Times. Global Times would go on to identify hip-hop as a “tool for people to vent their anger, misery, [and] complaints.” Another national news agency, Xinhua, stated that PG One “does not deserve the stage,” further remarking that “we [China] should say ‘no’ to whoever provides a platform for low-taste content.” PG One’s music has since been removed from a number of online Chinese music websites.

The Chinese Republic’s crusade on hip-hop as duly a genre and kind of culture that is “low-taste” in nature arises out of the state’s desire to regulate pop culture, a primary source of influence for youth in China and elsewhere. The SAPPRFT’s media rules that target the development and potential success of Chinese hip-hop seek to control, contain, and homogenize the pop cultural experience in China, as the genre “threatens” to become as substantial an element of pop culture there as it has in the US. On a more basic level,  “pop culture” classification briefly set aside, the SAPPRFT’s movement against hip-hop portrayal in the Chinese media represents a dangerous model of cultural construction, in which a culture is crafted and defined by its forced limitations.

Yet, as hip-hop flirts with Chinese media censorship its power becomes increasingly clear. The title “hip-hop” bespeaks a musical personality that has resonated in both the US and in China. Hip-hop’s subjection to such stringent regulation only evidences that the genre has traveled internationally, arrived, and exhibited its allure on Chinese ground in a sort of musical cross-pollination that evinces its pervasive quality.

Diplo serves up an hour of hip-hop heat in new ‘Give & Go’ mixtape

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Diplo recently added his two cents to the NBA’s All Star weekend, dropping off an hourlong basketball-themed mixtape, Give & Go. Following a recent stylistic shift with DRAM on “Look Back,” the Mad Decent head revisits his firmly planted hip-hop roots, coming through with a souped-up ode to America’s most popular genre.

The new mix rounds together a rhyming highlight reel that includes cuts from Lil Uzi Vert, Drake, Kodak Black, N.E.R.D., Rae Sremmurd, Vince Staples and more. Rifling through the rap crate in honor of the annual weekend NBA festivities, LeBlonde James aka the Moombahton Malone laces up a mix packed with the top trending selects of the moment along with a handful of crossover remixes to glue it all together.

Kendrick Lamar, Baauer, Travis Scott, and Skrillex all make appearances in the new Give & Go mixtape, and with Diplo’s hiatus from solo work nearing an end with his impending California EP, perhaps fans can expect a heavy hip-hop motif on the upcoming release. Until then, enjoy this new 30-track roundup from EDM’s Flairry Bird.


Getter and Nick Colletti drop off the ultimate hot boxing anthem ‘Cruisin’

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getter suh

Getter has donned his Terror Reid moniker to roll up a hazy new hip-hop cut, “Cruisin,” with his Instagram-famous comedian buddy Nick Colletti, and damned if it isn’t tasty. A total recall to hip-hop’s golden moment of the late 90s and early 2000s, the track is equipped with the familiar scratchy bounce of Cam’Ron and Juelz Santana’s “Hey Ma,” and piano chords emulating Biggie Small’s postmortem “1970 Something,” all wrapped up in tongue-in-cheek rhymes about blunts and sandwiches as the “suhh dudes” swap loose verses.

One can’t help but smile and bop along with the track’s goofy, simple hook, “Oh, here we go, head out the window, beats banging in the stereo, ayy” and imagine themselves doing the exact same thing.

“Crusin,” out now via Getter’s Shred Collective, isn’t groundbreaking work by any means, but it’s the perfect for a drive and a toke — so turn this one up, roll the windows down, and smoke ’em if you got ’em.


Watch Drake drop stacks in new video for ‘God’s Plan’

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If Drake doesn’t make you smile, you’re either a hater or a psychopath. Fact.

The man has grown his brand to define a culture that surpasses the confines of hip-hop, and now he’s delivered on what he claims to be “the most important thing [he’s] ever done in [his] career” with the new music video for his dominating new single “God’s Plan.” The track is an enjoyable return to vintage Drake’s mister-steal-your-girl flow, but the real show stopper is the hit’s new video feature, which finds the OVO helmer spreading the love… and wealth, dropping the video’s entire $1 million production budget on a handful of life-changing good deeds. And damnit if it isn’t the most heartwarming thing on the Internet right now.

“The budget for this video was $996,631.90. We gave it all away. Don’t tell the label,” reads the feature’s title card.

The new “God’s Plan” video comes complete with Drizzy’s characteristically beaming smile and dad-cool dance moves, while he goes around purchasing people’s groceries, funding a University of Miami student’s education with a $50,000 scholarship, suprising total strangers with chunky wads of cash and impromptu shopping sprees. Instead of another big budget rap video, good guy Drake drops off an inspiring piece of content to match his latest sonic product that’s undoubtedly bound to make your day.

A-Trak Releases New R&B Infused Track “Ride For Me”

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A-Trak has truly surprised us with his recently released track, “Ride For Me.” Slightly different from his typical style of music, the DJ-producer has not failed to create an outstanding hip-hop infused track. The new music piece also features artists such as Falcons, Young Thug, and 24hrs. If you are one who enjoys the great

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Chillhop Music: These Are The Best Chillhop Songs

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Chillhop music is known to the common listener as chilled music based on hip hop principles. As 2017 came to an end, Spotify announced all of the emerging genres from the past year. Of the 10 emerging genres that Spotify noted in this report, Chillhop took place at the #3 spot next to both Trap

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