Certified Fresh

Let’s be perfectly honest with ourselves. Hip-Hop culture has allowed all colors, sects, creeds, origins and dialects to have a comfortable home underneath the culture’s umbrella, yet there are only a particular crop of MCs who generally lay candidacy for the throne.

To say that there’s a natural bias towards Los Angeles when discussing California’s contributions to Hip-Hop is unfair to a city that’s churned out a fair share of classic albums, but their Bay Area counterparts unquestionably receive an unfair shake in the conversation. For example, Compton native YG’s critically acclaimed debut, My Krazy Life (and DJ Mustard’s sound overall), […]

After years of putting on for Dreamville, J. Cole finally sits at the helm of a label of his own of the same name at Interscope Records. In fact, Light Skinned Jermaine could harbor another major player in Hip-Hop should the proverbial pendulum swing in the right direction. Some of that relies on Bas, a Sudanese […]

There’s a gap between the golden age and today’s Hip-Hop. It’s unarguable, but on the same token, we contend that the south does a better job at staying true to their rap lineage. From true lyricism to straight game spitting — from Outkast to Master P or Big K.R.I.T. to Young Thug — the south’s […]

The idea of a good kid in a mad city was popularized by a certain Compton rapper in 2012, but the concept behind it resonates in cities and neighborhoods across the globe. Art imitates life, and while the aforementioned rhymeslinger took the approach of someone with one foot in and one foot out the the […]

The Atlanta artists who’ve created a stir in the industry over the last five years are a far departure from those we saw when the Dungeon Familiy reigned supreme. That’s changed recently, though, as a new wave of up and comers are embracing a more eclectic sound. In this class is ForteBowie (pronounced for-ˈtā-ˈbü-ē), a 23-year-old artist (it’s […]

Rappers aren’t getting too much credit for their actual lyrics these days. Sure, the rhythms and cadences are more catchy than ever but combining those traits with actual stories to be told in 2013 reveals a deadlier breed of MC. Longtime fans of Problem already know his escalating buzz isn’t a result of anything that’s […]

When good music releases, it’s recognized and respected. Now, imagine if that was consistently true in Hip-Hop culture. Certain artists have actually garnered a fan base that are willing to wait for new material longer than most, because the product will be that damn good. Cue in Overdoz., a larger Los Angeles collective that’s represented […]

New Orleans can be described in many way, but in this case we’ll refer to the city as “flavorful.” It’s a place that’s defined by a rich culture; people, food, and, more particularly, music included. From its renowned big brass bands to bounce music to Hip-Hop, the Big Easy can provide an audible delight perfect […]

Brooklyn is more than a borough that’s produced a notorious MC or two. It’s a prime location in the land of opportunity that’s known worldwide. See how a crowd responds to, “Is Brooklyn in the house?,” at any big event for proof. But that unique position in culture didn’t stop the borough from suffering the […]

In Hip-Hop, the power undoubtedly falls with the youth. And that’s no diss to the veterans who remain viable figures in the game. But tools like social media and the like that were nowhere to be found during the culture’s humble beginnings have yet to be truly championed (or conquered) by any of Rap’s godfathers.

In a whirlwind six years, California rap trio Pac Div – also known as Pacific Division – has released four critically-acclaimed, album-worthy mixtapes, an EP and two full-length projects. Even with the wealth of material found on the Internets and online stores, the MCs Like, Mibbs and BeYoung are floating far too below the radar.