Just when we thought the Winter was over for good, Jack Frost decided to hit us with one last go ’round of snow and cold weather before finally going bravely into that good night. Over the past week, seven more notable independent releases from the likes of Blu, Durag Dynasty, Von Pea and more hit the Internet, digital music marketplaces and store shelves that deserve mention but they oftentimes go largely ignored by mainstream Rap publications and websites.
Some of the artists mentioned here, like Zilla Rocca & The Shadowboxers and Quelle Chris, may sound completely alien to you. But what’s the point of only reading about music that you’re already familiar with?
Here’s what you may have missed, while you were sleeping… Make sure you go back and peep While You Were Sleeping: Top 6 Underground Hip-Hop Albums From March 2013 (Part 1), too.
Quelle Chris – Too Dirt For TV 2: Nigg*s Is Men (Mello Music Group/Bandcamp) 3.19.2013
Quelle Chris (Blue Mondays & Shotgun & Sleek Rifle) is part of one of the most underrated groups in Hip-Hop right now, Crown Nation. He’s also one of the most brilliant and creative MCs currently in the game. The second installment of his Too Dirt For TV series was just released last week as a precursor to his upcoming Mello Music Group LP. NIM features Crown Nation members Denmark Vessey and MosEl in addition to Cavalier with guest appearances from Tanya Morgan, Fresh Daily, Bwameeks and DJ GroWeyez. You can stream and cop it directly from Mello Music Group’s Bandcamp.
Zilla Rocca & The Shadowboxers – Weak Stomach EP (Three Dollar Pistol/Bandcamp) 3.21.2013
Zilla Rocca has been a mainstay in underground/indie Hip-Hop going back to 2007 as half of the group Clean Guns. Back in 2009, Douglas Martin (Blurry Drones) & Zilla Rocca established a new genre, “Noir Hop,” which blended the feel and aesthetic of Pulp novels and Film Noir with Hip-Hop, thanks to a project called The Slow Twilight LP. The Weak Stomach EP is the sequel to said project. Boasting production from Blurry Drones, Zilla Rocca, Has-Lo & Small Professor and features from Curly Castro and Alex Ludovico, the Weak Stomach EP is not a piece of work you can choose to ignore any longer. So don’t.
Blu – NO YORK (York) – (New World Color/Nature Sounds) 3.26.2013
As we all know, Blu signed to Warner Bros around 2010 and worked on his major label debut for quite a while. The aforementioned project was titled N O Y O R K. Eventually after several false starts and pushed back release dates, the entire album was leaked online back in August 2011. The album has been remastered and finally given a proper physical release via New World Color/Nature Sounds for all the fiends that have looked forward to owning it since 2010. This album features production from Madlib, Exile, Flying Lotus, Shafiq Husayn (SA-RA Creative Partners), Samiyam, Daedelus, DIBIA$E & Knxwledge. Features come courtesy of Edan, U God (Wu Tang Clan), Exile, Jimetta Rose, Suzi Analogue, Andy Allo, Nia Andrews, Pac Div, UNI, J*Davey, TiRon & Ayomari amongst others. You can find NO YORK (or York) on iTunes, Amazon, Fat Beats (vinyl), Sandbox Automatic, UGHH or cop it directly from Nature Sounds. F I N A L L Y!