Convos in the Dungeon with Loaf Muzik (Interview)

The league of lyrical assassins that is Loaf Muzik, (Shadow the Great, Oso Dope, Kidaf, Shine Sinatra) has been secretly demolishing shows from New York to Cali. Armed with atom bombs of funk that could silence any naysayers or imitators; You can imagine their music as a spiritual gun locked and loaded to your dome slapping your senses silly with irreverent passion and honesty. The energy held within each well excuted punchline proves that these tried and true gladiators of gusto could turn the impossible probable with a mic in their hand. With their upcoming independent album Live From The Dungeon looming over the horizon I got a chance to catch up with the four man crew to wax poetics and find the driving force behind Loaf Muzik. Check out the Converstation below

Def Soul: Tell Me about the history. How did Loaf Muzik get started?

Kidaf: It was like competition bro. I was doing my thing in queens Shadow was in Bushwick. I would post my music up, he’d see it and give feed back. I watched his work and it would be about them being better, or me being better then one day he hit me up to do a track. I came thru to Bushwick and recorded a track in his basement, smoked some bud, after that I started chillin with the homies.

Oso Dope: Irving square is where I met my son Shadow, met my son dope, met my son Shine. Pretty much Kindred block had a skate board and skating became an everyday thing. When shadow started rapping, battling people in the park, I was like yo this n***a could rap. My son over there started tagging up books and thats where the base came from like yo lets stick together. Then it started turning into what do we want to do as we got older. Started going to open mics, doing more shows, linked up with Kidaf and traveling more.

Kidaf: We had like a network for ourselves, using each others resource to get better on an independent scale, then one day we just decided to come together to become Meatloaf Music. Like we grew on each other, now its like a fam.

Shadow the Great: Facts…

Def Soul: How did you get the name loaf music though?

Shadow: Loaf means one. like everyones loaf. loaf is the whole. Everyone gets a slice, like a meat loaf. Know what I mean?

Def Soul: I like that “everybody gets a slice.” If you had to describe the musical DNA of Loaf Muzik what would you say is your sources of inspiration?

Shadow: New York City a hundred percent. Everything around us, the trains, the graffiti, the people, just our environment. Thats our inspiration more than other artists. Everything we put in out lyrics is our surroundings and a reflection of our reality. My inspiration comes from my sorroundings. As in music I feel, like everyone has their own music inspiration. I like Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Smiff and Wessun a lot of those cats. A lot of producers like Mad Lib and Flying lotus.

Kidaf: Me personally, I’m a real habitual person. If I’m doing it one day I’m probably doing it the next day. I really just like to pick apart things that people think but they don’t say. Like when you listen to a comedian right, he’ll say something you know already in your mind but never said out loud, thats what makes it funny. I think its the same way for me. I like to think about the things I care about and try to reflect that in my art. Just get people to understand where I’m coming from. I think thats the most important thing. Translating, not even languages just one lifestyle to another. That way people can broaden their horizons and you don’t have to be one set person. You can be versatile and elusive and be who you want be.

Oso: I interpret different things and manifest them in my creative self. Like taking the train, seeing the people, running in the rain like just now, I feed off that. My environment, wherever I’m physically stationed, I find a way to release it in an artistic way. Musically I grew up on Grand Puba, Audio Two simply because I had this game called Tony Hawks underground for Xbox and I used to play that heavy. It had mad tracks, it had me rocking. I was young I didn’t even know what type of music that was at the time I just really like it. When I got my first computer I remember going online and looking up the names in the music credits. Grand Puba, Top Billing, Nas. Other than that my parents would listen to southside s**t. My pops is a big 50 cent fan, he would come home with the old bootleg hot 97 CDs that would have a woman crouched down in a yellow thong, lil Wayne tapes, and mad random music he would just cop cruising thru the street and I would listen to it all. I came across Jay-Z like that I came across Mos Def like that. Not even knowing it was just hip hop. Getting older I recognized this was the culture and I’m living in it. Living in Bushwick you see the b-boys, you see the freestyles in the park, you see the graffiti and it’s like yo this is what I’ve been around. I’m a product of my environment with out knowing it. Now that I understand it I can contribute to it.

Def Soul: What would you say is the philosophy of Loaf Muzik?

Kidaf: Good question. I thinks its about knowing your worth and expressing yourself to your highest ability. I thinks its about representing. Representing the personal expression everybody has and some people are afraid to show. Its a lot of people who live life and settle for what they need and never go for what they want, what they desire. Its about dreams. Everybody in Loaf Muzik has a dream and it’s not one of those dreams that’s intangible, we work for them. Every year we look back and a lot of times we achieve our goals. I think about going further and representing what you are and what you stand for.

Oso: The principle is structure and discipline. Loaf means unity.

Def Soul: I definitely see success coming to y’all soon. I hear the versatility in the music from the boom bap style joints to the trap style joints plus your punchline are crazy. Tell me is it competition in the studio?

Shadow: Naw, its like everyone respects each others creative space. The competition wouldn’t be who has the hottest verse it would be its who can keep up. Were quick to tell each other if were not feeling something. Well tell each other you have to spit s**t that over.

Kidaf: In way the friendly competition doubles as a support system. As good as we want to be we want to make sure everyone looks good we want everyone to sound good. Thats what its about.

Def Soul: What was the creative flow for Live from the Dungeon? what was the starting point and how did it all coming together?

Shadow: Before we even new we was doing the project, we were recording music. Everyone had their own song and we noticed yo this would all sound good together, instead of everyone going their own way we should throw all of these songs together. Nitty Gritty was our first single for the whole project. That was Kidaf’s joint. He would perform that at every show. The energy from that song was amazing. Then I came up with Shinobi Wars produced by Shine Sinatra. From that we kept building more tracks and said lets make a collective project, since these songs sound hella good right next to each other.

Kidaf: Word bro its that feel. Live From the Dungeon. Half the stuff that I wrote was in Shadow’s basement. In his basement he has mad vinyl, graffiti, red lights. It was really the platform where we started. When you hear our music you hear that  grit that underground s**t that “oh wait these n****s is real”. Its about Hip-Hop but its about art and where you come from and representing that.

Shadow: We physical turned the dungeon into songs. The dungeon is a real place, we all from the dungeon of New York. Imagine a place where you live from the bottom, of the bottom, of the bottom and manage to get a way out and get yourself heard. Even though we from New York its hard as s**t to be creative here because so much is going on. Everyones voice getting heard, but at the same time no ones voice is getting heard. People like to throw us in a box like boom bap y’all some old school rappers from the 80’s and don’t even know what they talking about. For us to break through that stereo type and break through all of this trap and get our name heard and still get a chance to hit stages across America, Live From the Dungeon is perfect timing for this because were live from the dungeon. It’s a perfect representation for us.

Def Soul: Throughout this process of building Live from the Dungeon what were some memorable moments?

Shadow: I remember we was Cali smoking in my homie’s backyard, around midnight. We had rolled up went outside when all of a sudden an old white guy comes downstairs with a shotgun. All I see is These n****s hit the dip. I dropped the weed and ran. Me and Mudd was hopping over backyard gates. Running through California on our first night out there. All I heard was the cock back and see these n****s run.

Oso: That s**t was crazy.  It was sis because it was mad doors. Except for the one he walked through.  Yo the first thing I saw was the barrel and said “Yo Mudd that a gun?”. He said, “Ohhhhhhh!!! They already knew what the deal was when I started running. Yo I teleported, Zup.

Shadow:  I was running hoping I didn’t get hit in the back. Thats just means we blessed because he could have killed us that easy and could have said we were smoking on his property.  Then the news would have said man shoots gang bangers smoking on his property.

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Kidaf: Yall remember the dude that cried? Yo we had this show in Cali. We pulled up and everyone is walking up to us like “yo what good? lets smoke”. Mad love from everybody. I remember there was this one kid in particular he must have been 15 or 16. He walked up to us and he rapped for us. I’m not gonna say it was good, I’m not gonna say it was bad, I will say he dead spit his heart out. Afterward I asked him about a necklace he was wearing, he told us that his mom gave it to him and that we inspired him, then he started tearing up. It was at that point I began to understand the s**t we do speaks volumes even to the people we don’t even know. Like one mans hell could be another mans heaven and one mans trash could be another mans treasure. Thats why I put as much thought into everything I do because theres someone looking at it somewhere and not taking it for granted.

Def Soul: Dope. How did that Pyrex joint come together?

Shine Sinatra: Basically Shadow sent me the melody and I added some 808s to give it feeling and I wrote to it. It came together that way and became what it is now.

I see Captain Mudd behind a lot of your beats. I checked out his work he gets busy. Whats his affiliation with Loaf?

Shadow: Captain Mudd is a producer for loaf music. Hes dope as f **k, He’s our secret weapon. His beats are a representation of himself and what he goes thru. One time I was in the studio with him and I asked why the drums sound like so rugged over this smooth a** sample. They weren’t crazy crazy but they hit hard and had a constant bang. He said that the drums represent his heartbeat. He said every time I hear the song my heart beats like that. He throws his life into the music the same as all of us.

Def Soul: Do you have any other business endeavors?

Shadow: Loaf Films. All of the video you saw of Loaf we shot them we edited them we did all that. We got our own production team. When we have a track we have a certain way we wanted it captured in video form. Like the video to Nitty Gritty goes exactly to his lyrics word by word. It was representation of what he was going thru when he wrote it. It’s hard. It shows two sides of him. In one scene he has afro and another scene and another he has his hair locked up. That was a process to shoot because we started filming before he had locks. If I could go there, it was shift in our lives when we all started growing our hair, started thinking different, eating different, moving different.

Kidaf: It represents the growth. Like Yo you gotta watch the video bro. It’s Nitty Gritty I wanted some New York s**t, some grimey s**t, some graffiti,  and got it.  We even got Jason Knock a b*****s head in.

Oso: Loaf fest as well. Like yo we gotta give back. In a sense we gotta go back to home. We was like yo lets throw a festival. Everbody took a role and it manifested. It was wavy. Loaf fest 2016 is gonna be lit.

Kidaf: We have a show November 21st with Vince Staples in El Ray theatre in Cali.

redbull shine daff

Def Soul: How do you feel the world will react to this project? Where do you feel you’ll stand after?

Shadow: It’s like dropping a spirit bomb. It’s crazy because everyone is f**king nice and we’re all on one album. Imagine all your favorite rappers on one album and no ones going about it their own way. Every song sounds fire . When it hits you automatically feel it and that’s how we design our music.

Kidaf: I think it’s gonna be breath of fresh air for a lot of people, because a lot s**t follows the same formula to get a result under a certain setting. To us it’s art for your ears regardless of how we do it. A lot of people say we’re trying to bring s**t back and we’re just doing us feel me. I think the album will show people were way more versatile then what the people make us out to be. They try to put us in this golden era boom bap s**t and of course we can do that because it’s the essence of where it started. At the same time We can survive in 2015. This s**t is real, it’s new, and it’s here.

Def Soul: If theres one thing you want people to take away from this project, what would it be?

Kidaf: I don’t want people to look a it and see an album, I want them to see the art we put into it, the time. Theres not a song that sound like another song. Every song has a different vibe. The scheme is poppin. I want people to see our highs and our lows.

Shine: I want people to take away the versatility. Know that loaf is more than one sound.

Oso: With Live from the Dungeon, what makes it special is that its a journey, its a lifestyle. you could listen to it as you wake up, you could listen when you on the train you could listen to it if you in school you could listen to it while you at the gym. Your gonna understand the Loaf style. Your just gonna get it. I want people to find reason in everything. The name of the tracks the name of the album. Its all math on it you just gotta solve the equation. To say the least I want it to speak for itself.

Def Soul: Word the formula that put y’all together is crazy. I gotta ask though are y’all the rhythm or are y’all the melody?

Loaf Muzik: We are the remedy…

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A reflection of a new rising generation of New York hip-hop Loaf Muzik represents timeless lyricism combined with the elevated spirt of kings.  Make sure you grab their highly anticipated album Live From the Dungeon dropping September 28 on website near you. It will most definitely be something you can’t ignore. (All photos taken by Loaf Films)

Def Soul – (@DefSoulNJ)

The Sports Scoff With @SmooveGuyO, Vol. 9

Out of this 3rd Rock, n**** air it out/I am on my Tom Brady y’all n***** is Eric Crouch-Rick Ross Continue reading The Sports Scoff With @SmooveGuyO, Vol. 9

The Sports Scoff With @SmooveGuyO, Vol. 8

As fate would have it, Jay’s status appears/to be at an all-time high, perfect time to say goodbye/When I come back like Jordan, wearin the 4-5-Jay-Z Continue reading The Sports Scoff With @SmooveGuyO, Vol. 8

J. Cole is a Superstar, Deal With It

Photo: JDotShots for Columbia Records

As J. Cole sat atop the faux roof of 2014 Forest Hills Drive–the childhood home he named his 3rd studio album after–at Madison Square Garden in New York City last night, he began to tell a story many rappers tell when they’ve “made it big,” often signified by achieving something as momentous as selling out MSG after releasing an album with no pop records. However, this story was different from the one say, Jay Z might tell, or Kanye West, or Nicki Minaj. J. Cole, along with Drake, Kid Cudi, and a handful of others, make up a small crop of superstars whose meager beginnings lived on the internet. When Kanye West refers to when he was pumping out “5 beats a day for 3 summers,” we have nothing but our imagination to rely on when attempting to conjure an image of a 24-year old Kanye West, huddled over a small desk in Newark, matching synths with samples. However, there are pictures of Drake and 40 dressed in cringeworthy outfits on Facebook and Myspace, dated 2008 or 2009. Every once in a while, someone digs far back enough to share a tweet J. Cole sent out 6 years ago, celebrating his 502nd follower. He now has in excess of 7 million.

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20,000 of them packed out New York City’s most storied concert venue last night, the same venue the man who signed Cole, Jay Z, sold out in 24 hours for what was expected to be his farewell concert 12 years ago. As Cole took the stage amidst brooding blue LED lights, at one point joking about how unaccustomed he is to such bravado–“I don’t even know what the f*ck LED lights means”–there was nary a dull moment. Despite the fact that he relied on his Dollar & A Dream show formula–pick a project, and perform it from front to back–for a show that, one would imagine, doesn’t call for such a unilateral agenda, he had New York’s attention for the duration. Even when he spent nearly 10 minutes telling a story about the metaphoric nature of his song’s titles–“St. Tropez” in particular–or performed some of the album’s less popular cuts (“Hello”), the energy level rarely dipped below electric, and never strayed from fixated. “January 28th,” “Tale of 2 Citiez,” and “No Role Modelz,” shook the building as expected, and even a revisit of his debut album, “Lights Please,” drew one of the night’s biggest, loudest cheers.

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So, as he began his brief rags to riches monologue atop that stage roof, which would precede 2014FHD‘s closer, “Love Yourz,” the song that has prevented at least one person from committing suicide, the sold-out crowd at MSG interrupted him with chants of “J. Cole, J. Cole,” before eventually erupting into a voracious standing ovation, one that left Cole in disbelief. Whatever he was about to say, this crowd had already witnessed. They saw how he was ridiculed for making “Work Out.” They remember when he was forced to drop what was meant to be his debut album a year early because it lacked a “radio hit.” They’d witnessed the jokes from social media personalities, promising Cole would amount to little more than a standout on the mixtape circuit, and the mercilessly circulated memes poking fun at Cole’s perceived lack of a personal relationship with Shawn Carter, who crowned Cole with a Roc-A-Fella chain at MSG’s smaller venue last year.

Cole’s approach to his 3rd album cycle was passive-aggressive, at least with respect to the critiques that had been held over his head following his first two official releases. He’s been called boring by many, but he’s still yet to let anyone rap on his albums, save Jay Z and Bas. 2014 Forest Hills Drive is the first of his albums to have absolutely no features, be it a guest chorus a verse. He traveled everywhere in sweats, his hair grew relentlessly, and last night it appeared to be an ode to The Weeknd. No records were serviced to radio before the album’s December release, and when “Apparently” was finally pushed, it was the only thing like it on the radio. The entire process, culminating in last night’s triumph, prompts a recall of Andre 3000–someone Cole has compared himself to in the past–in one of his best 2010’s guest verses, on T.I.‘s “Sorry.”

Was young and had to choose between you
And what the rest of the world might offer me, sh*t what would you do
Well I’d probably do it differently if second the chance
Only if some cool ass older man would’ve let me know in advance
There’s this quarry, that is dug so deep in a father’s chest
When he feel that he’s broken up his nest
And he figured shit he was just doing the best that he could
Which end up being the worst that he could
And all some p***y n***a on the internet can say is that verse ain’t good
It’s boring? Boring? Really?

I wonder which one of these 20,000 people were bored last night.

-Khari Nixon (@khari92)

 

How Tom Brady Will Not Win this Game

Tom Brady’s 4- game suspension was upheld by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell last week. After learning that his suspension would be upheld, Brady is suing the NFL in order to have his suspension overturned. Brady has thrown for over 50,000 yards and 392 touchdowns while winning 4 Super Bowl rings. He can be considered the greatest quarterback of the modern era. But his case against the NFL will end in a loss.

Brady is appealing for his role in the team using deflated footballs during the AFC championship game in January. Brady is asking for an injunction that would allow the 2x NFL MVP to be on the field for the Patriots season opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers September 4th.

The players association of the NFL (NFLPA), who is suing on Brady’s behalf, believes that his suspension should be completely over turned. According to Sports Illustrated, “The NFLPA says there is no direct evidence in the Ted Wells report linking Brady to deflated footballs and that the discipline was based on a standard to ‘justify such absurd and unprecedented punishment.”  This is well and good, but Brady will not be able to win this case.

The NFL has made the first strike in the case by having the lawsuit filed in New York as apposed to Minnesota. This is a key move because of the belief that the judge who would have over seen the case is believed to show favoritism to the players rather then the league.

Personal information that Brady did not want to show the NFL, might be used in the courts to prove that Brady did have information about the air-pressure in the footballs during that game; yet, that will not be the biggest issue that Brady will face.

Lets look at the situation of the injunction from each side. If Brady is able to win and have an injunction placed in order for him to play, he would then have to spend his free time driving back and forth from Boston to New York to deal with the issues that surround this case. That means not being able to spend every min in the playbook, or being with the family, this could affect his play on the field to the point were the Patriots are losing games because of him. On the flip side if the injunction is not place, then Brady would miss more and more games just due to the case.

It is simply a lose lose situation for Brady that has nothing to do with the PSI levels in the footballs.

King Jut (@KingJut92)

The New Triangle Offense: The Issues Between Ciara, Future, and Russell Wilson

Music and sports have always been intertwined.  Players use music to get themselves motivated for a big game on the field, and musicians try to copy the mindset of an athlete when they’re in the booth making an album. There has never been a mash-up like the one between Ciara, Future, and Russell Wilson. There have been so many up-and-downs, twists and turns involving a #1 album, a new NFL contract, and multiple confusing and misguiding tweets. Here are some of the key points in this love triangle:

May 19, 2014:

Baby Future is born

Baby Future

Ciara gives birth to “Future Zahir Wilburn” on May 19th of last year. The birth of baby Future seemed to be just the icing on the cake for Ciara. She was coming off a year in which she made a true comeback to mainstream stardom with “Body Party”–co-written by Future and produced by his go-to beatsmith, Mike Will Made It–and prepared to release a new studio album. Everything seemed to be lining up for Ciara and her two Futures at this point.

August 13th, 2014:

Ciara and Future break up

Ciara Future

Just a few months after baby Future is born, Ciara and his father split up. Reports were that Future Sr. cheated on the 28-year-old singer. This is a major point in the timeline, not just considering how it altered their personal lives, but how it affected the trajectory of their respective music careers.

October 28th, 2014:

Future drops Monster

After his last album, Honest, failed to meet expectations, Future dropped the Monster mixtape just 6 months later. This was the beginning of Future’s road to becoming the hottest rapper in the game, a run that would rival Lil Wayne’s iconic 2007 mixtape run at its culmination the following year. He would go on to drop Beast Mode in January, and 56 Nights a couple months later, in March.

April 23, 2015:

Ciara links up with Russell Wilson

Russell Wilson and Ciara

Rumor started with Russell Wilson and Ciara becoming an item during this time of the year. Wilson was coming off the worst moment in his career by throwing the game ending interception in the Super Bowl. Seems as a great way to pick yourself up after a lost.

May 4, 2015:

Ciara album flops

Ciara album was clearly a disappointing.  The album failed to produce much success in numbers, as it only sold approximately 20K copies. Billboard noted in a review that although the album was filled with uptempo dance songs and vulnerability, the album has been seen before by Ciara.

July 10, 2015:

Future drops “Like I Never Left” video, Ciara responds

In a video doc, Future goes on to talk about how he didn’t understand why Ciara didn’t want to work with him on her upcoming album. Many believed that this was a  shot at Ciara. Ciara took to twitter feeling some type a way about the comments.

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July 16, 2015:

Future sits with the Breakfast Club

Before his new album Dirty Sprite 2 dropped, Future explains his feelings towards his situation with Ciara and her new boo Russell Wilson. He express how it is weird for another man to be around his son at such a earlier age.

July  31, 2015

Russell Wilson signs new contract.

Russell Wilson, Baby Future

Wilson and the Settle Seahawks agreed to a contract extension of 4 years-87.6 million dollars. After the contract was signed and sealed, the 26-year-old quarterback was able to get back to football, and have his girl right by his side. Pictures surfaced of Russell Wilson holding baby Future in his arms, playing daddy.

These pictures seem to get back to Future who responded with a classic twitter rant.

Many people have already pick their sides or “Hive” if you will, but it seems as if the beef that is in the air between them is just getting cooked up.

-King Jut (@KingJut92)

The Summertime Snooze: Ways to Stay Woke During The Sports “Off-Season”

It’s the summer, time for cookouts, beach trips, and festivals. Whats not included in those plans are sports. Unless you’re still holding on to the idea of baseball carrying the sports world, sports are in the cellar. Both the NBA and NFL are in complete summer break mode, and trying to follow the off-season moves is like doing the summer reading assignments from school. For a person like me who loves talking sports 24/7, this is driving me crazy. No more touchdown dances, slam dunks, or ear blows from the likes of Lance Stephenson. What is a brother to do? I sat down for a bit and tried to decide that I have to do something until the fall. So I made a list of things that can get you through the months of “who won the offseason”, and “baseball power rankings”.

1. Actually go out and play a sport.

Being from New York I know first hand that we get about 50-80 really great days out of the year. Whats a better way to spend them then actually going out and balling. Basketball, football, soccer, it really doesn’t matter just do something that you know you’ll have fun doing. Great way to stay in shape, work on your game, and meet some new people. Spending just a few hours every week  balling will make you forget what cornerback your team signed to their roster.

2. Movies are on FLEEK

I love watching movies, and Hollywood puts out it’s best products during this time of year. Blockbuster premier each and every week, and give movie goers something to talk about around the water-cooler on Mondays. Some of the best movies of the year come out during the summer time.

3. Party and B*llSh*t

This is where you find Mr or Mrs right now. Parties are going to be LIT during this time. Rooftop parties, outdoor festivals, and cookouts are just some of the places to enjoy some liquid courage. Make sure you turn up because before you know it, the school bells start ringing.

4. Albums drop and Concerts go UP

Drake, Future, Nicki, Meek, and Trey are all set to take over the summer touring scene. These big acts and more take their shows on the road all though out the world. The music is here to be played at those parties, in the car ride back from the movies, or  at the blacktop while you ball.

I know football is weeks and weeks away, but so is the fall season. While football is God to all the other sports, having a break will allow you to enjoy the other things in life. Sports will return and make your weekends and holidays enjoyable, but summer is here and now. The more you miss the sports, the faster the season will slip away from you.

King Jut (@KingJut92)

Atmosphere Inspires, Logic Entertains, and Bishop Nehru Flows Days 2 and 3 at Governors Ball

It was clear from the lineup that there would be some huge hip-hop stars performing at this year’s Governors Ball but there was definitely a strong lean towards the rest of the genres when you broke it down over the four stages and three days. Regardless, the acts that they booked represented the culture on many levels and there was plenty of head nodding and hand waving side to side throughout.

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Atmosphere was the focus on Day 2 for us. Slug, with a “Black Lives Matter” t-shirt on, was joined by Ant as well as another DJ who would scratch on a turntable. The set was a mix of positive and solemn vibes as Slug shared some inspiring words that everyone is special in his/her own way while dipping into his own life and his hardships. The set list drew from their extensive discography but the crowd was definitely jumping when they pulled out “Road to the Riches.”

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Our Unsigned Hype alum, Bishop Nehru, had the early slot on Day 3 at 12:45 PM. Although the set started slow with Hot 97’s DJ Juanyto on the 1’s and 2’s, more and more people slowly made their way to the stage and rock out with the young emcee. The sound had an odd echo from the start but the stage engineer fixed it as the set continued. Towards the end of his 45 minutes, one member of the crowd shouted out “Light Leaks!” and Bishop caught ear of it. Unplanned, he had Juanyto play the instrumental for the track so he could perform it live for the crowd. The majority of his set was composed of Strictly Flowz and Nehruvian DOOM.

logic

Logic proved that he’s not only one of the quickest on the mics but he’s also one hell of a live performer. You should already be familiar with his rapid flows that rival Twista, which he showcased confidently without a beat during his set a few times. Logic took moments in between songs to interact with the fans near the stage and lightheartedly make fun of the way they would tell him their names. He and his DJ also took a break to decide which half of the crowd was louder with the instrumental of DJ Kool’s “Let Me Clear My Throat” playing. He also decided to freestyle a few lines to mention the fact that he was in NYC for Governors Ball (#OnBrand). Near the end of his set, he performed one of his favorite tracks, “Gang Related,” and you could feel the emotion in his voice.

Other notable happenings include Kendrick Lamar making a brief appearance during Mayer Hawthorne’s set and A-Trak spinning mostly Dance music with super trippy visuals and occasionally doing short scratch routines. Overall, the Governors Ball proved yet again that other summer festivals should strive to have the diversity and execution it did in 2015. Until next year…

Rae Sremmurd Survives (Literally), Future Escalates and Drake Finishes Strong on Day 1

It wasn’t all peaches and cream, but Hip-Hop hits its stride on day 1

The reports first came in on Twitter, via a few bloggers. Then some Instagram pictures began to surface, and one particularly gruesome snapshot of one-half of Rae Sremmurd, Slim Jimmy, lying on a gurney with his knee split wide open, began to circulate. It was a somewhat appropriate microcosm of what Rae Sremmurd’s career has been to this point: turn up the party or injure yourself trying. Thankfully, he’ll be just fine, but it came at the expense of most of their set. No worries, we don’t doubt that they’ll be back.

slim jimmy

Future brought the sun out on Day 1, and a crowd bummed out by rain and cloudy weather quickly forgot the mud slowly seeping into their Chuck T’s. The Atlanta rapper, donning somewhat of a cowboy hat, ran through a bevy of his hits, both old and new, eventually warming up the crowd for his grand finale of “Commas.” There’s something to be said about Future‘s current set. Whereas his huge radio hits and pop efforts were previously what huge, outdoor and arena crowds gushed over, it’s now his deeper cuts, songs like “March Madness,” and “Monster” that get the biggest reaction. Not to mention “Commas,” a mixtape cut that has blown up so much, Epic Records has released it as a one-off Hendrix single.

fewtch

Drake hit the stage at exactly 9:30 to a feverish crowd that had just witnessed Florence and The Machine tear it down as the sun set. Donning a lime green hoodie and a jacket–it was a bit when the sun went down–Drizzy took off from “Legend,” went straight into “Trophies,” and never looked back…until he did.

For whatever reason, his set hit a bit of a lull during his features segment. Whether it was because people were let down when Big Sean didn’t trot out for “Blessings,” or because of “Tuesday”‘s elongated introduction, the crowd didn’t appear to quite enjoy that particular bit of Drake’s set, and they weren’t exactly elated when he went straight from his assists to his Top 40 efforts, featuring an acoustic version of “Find Your Love.” “Madonna” would’ve been good here, especially if he threw in the “Rihanna” replacement, just to draw some “OMG he did do it” screams from the crowd, but alas, to no avail.

drizzy trophies

Still, a win is a win, and Drake knows how to close out a show. “10 Bands,” “HYFR,” and “0-100” all reinvigorated a restless crowd, waiting for “Know Yourself” to cue up so they could prove that OVO Fest’s next stop has to be NYC. And when “Know Yourself” dropped. It dropped.