Dope underground Hip Hop blog The Lost Tapes and visual communications creatives The Dice Academy combine to collate bars from a some of Hip Hop’s finest on their new tape The Uprising; Roc Marc, Hell Razah, Paranom & Purpose and Da Beatminerz all get a feature, along with a fresh selection of new talent straight of the street. Front to back this tape packs rap punches that swing hard like the kicks this mix of upcoming and established producers programme, with every MC going all out to give their best. There’s a million mixtapes out right now, but not many of them bring real Hip Hop to the fore with over twenty tracks that mine the underground for boom-bap gold so you don’t have to.
Varan’s Sam Cooke flip immediately brings the heat on his remix of Silent Knight’s This Is It, while Sunz Of Man general Hell Razah drops knowledge over a dramatic melody on The Book Of 7 Fists;Tony Moreaux’s flow rides Numbers On The Board’s jagged pipe clangs and clunky percussion like he’s sailing a smooth wave, and DJ Duke catches a nice flip on Condor, boasting a sound as rare as the bird it takes it’s title from. Paranom & Purpose keep it smooth and lift spirits with a cut off their most recent LP, before Soundsci’s surreptitious verses creep over Ollie Teeba’s dramatic samples on Entrapment, and South African beatmaker The Militia assembles one of the best beats on the tape for Tokyo Cigar to bless with eloquence on Thin Rope.
As the quality tunes resume, Da Beatminerz kick it old school with an Andre 3K-led hook on Boston rapper ASN’s Everybody Got It, then Tokyo Cigar’s production gets some shine as he steps away from the mic for The Iceberg Theory to write some insightful lines on ARC, then cools out on the jazz tip to accompany Keb0’s honest words on Downfall. M-Credible reminded me how overdue I am for an return visit to Malik B and Black Thought’s crew in the early 90’s after hearing his intro loop on Half The Pie, with Manti Carlo showing real presence on the mic with a strong flow like floodwater that runs over into The Spill, as Maryland crew Tribe Of Judah write incessantly ill rhymes over some amazing production from Black Jeruz, making them two names to watch over the coming months. The might of Tragedy Khadafi and Tragic Allies combined with Roc Marciano’s methodical mafioso flow makes Presume The Unpredictable incredibly ill listening; RZA’s Older Gods instrumental sets it off, then Purpose crafts yet another smooth beat to complete this album highlight. Tokyo Cigar seems un-phased by that last banger as he closes the tape with steez on Calling Out, accompanying ASN’s insightful take on the social and physical violence he sees in his day to day and ending on a high. The tape’s not without it’s flaws, (there’s a Diddy beat) but overall The Uprising is essential listening for an up to date overview of the American underground that doesn’t break the bank.
Go grab it for free over at Audiomack.