Monday, October 26, 2015

Corner Spotlight: Mirrorz Edge- Dream

Dream, the fourth and final single of their highly acclaimed, self titled debut, shows the duo of D.S Williams and A.I  wittingly, reminiscing and prognosticating over a celebratory, Puzzle Productions beat. With an infectious tone, coupled with sharp lyricism, Dream is the perfect way to close out on what has been a successful , initial outing for the two MC(s). -CgN

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Art of The Matter: H.E.R

"Tennis Anyone"?!

I've stated that question so many times in recent years
That I  no longer need to rehearse those emotions
It's a handicapped optimism that
Hobbles to step in the name of love!
Which recently  has become so unfamiliar.

In  fact, It needs a lapel tag
For me to recognize the stranger it has become
Hello, my name is_______  (Scratch that),
(Ahem) I meant to say, my name is _____
No, "X" that with a sharpie that has become  rather dull
So why don't you just pencil me in
So that I can erase those memories
Because I sure as hell miss my spotless mind...
Now stained With calico blemishes of overweight gray-scales
Resembling the shadowed beats of the heartless.

But what can I do?
I meet square pegs that don't fit in my circle!
And squares may be cool for some people
But that never was my angle,
That "Grow to Love Notion"
Which eventually becomes stunted,
Reaching a height that isn't tall enough
To look over her imperfections while projecting my own!

They say "If you look you will never find"....
Well it is hard when you leave the house with three eyes..
Constantly scanning for a picture that matches the one in my gallery
The face has become faded due to longing prints
Smearing a canvas that has dried for sometime...
So pardon if I undress you with my eyes,
I'm just seeing if your wings match the ones in my portrait,
And your jacket prevented me from doing so...

Coupled with charming humor, knit with sharp wit
That threads the needle between conceit and confidence
Vintage style that's ahead of its' time,
Colors her rhythm with shades of blue stencils
That have me drawn to her quirks
Perfectly placed outside the box....

A box that is next to this landing strip
That I've crashed on for too long,
Insatiably watching lovers fly be.

With twilight providing candle light, 
stars flickering as they are caught in glass jars 
only to release them when they are seen in each others eyes..
While Green are in mine....(Go On)
Don't worry, she's out there, was written in my yearbook,
Well I have years worth of books filled with
plans, gifts, soundtracks and invitations are all marked
With the same message: "Sorry, You Just Missed Her"
Maybe her reservations are just earlier than mine 
Or My watch is set to the wrong time.......

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Corner Spotlight : Georgia Anne Muldrow- Great Blacks

Shout out to my man Cyril for putting me on to this anthemic tune. The horns act as a rallying call as Muldrow melodically navigates us through her own personal evolution to enlightenment and discovery. All the while, chronicling her radiant legacy that she aspires to emulate. This song is the perfect anesthetist to the counterproductive offerings we are served on a daily basis. Great indeed! CgN

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Reel Talk: Bridge of Spies

by Da CogNegro

SynopsisAn American lawyer is recruited by the CIA during the Cold War to help rescue a pilot detained in the Soviet Union.

Review: Bridge of Spies is a taut and acute, international chess match that is adroitly crafted by legendary director Steven Spielberg. Even with its' grand scope and Cold War 
setting, Hanks earnest humanism keeps the historical account grounded and accessible. Now, if only the rest of my World History II  class could've been this entertaining! (B+)

Bridge of Spies will be released nationally on October 16th.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Reel Talk: Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

by Dante Morehead

Synopsis: After having escaped the Maze, the Gladers now face a new set of challenges on the open roads of a desolate landscape filled with unimaginable obstacles.

Review:  The second installment of this trilogy didn't disappoint ,as sometimes sequels tend to do. It picks up where  the previous film left off and comes out guns blazing with fast paced chase scenes and high action yet the pacing is not too overwhelming, I'm looking at you Michael bay! We find out more about why the antagonist are kidnapping and testing children as a means of survival in a post apocalyptic world. There's plot, drama, character development, and of course violent, infected zombies! The ending had a feel reminiscent of The Hunger Games but with a science fiction edge to it. You don't have to know too much about the books to understand the second movie , thanks to a great exposition of the film's main characters! (B+)

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Classic Corner: To Sample or Not to Sample ?!

by Damone Kelly

    Now I don't normally do this, but it is with great sadness that I announce  that the music of today has all but died. I am not saying that all the artist in the industry today are ghosts but most lack the ability to move the masses or make a loud noise like a poltergeist. I remember the time when big singles were backed with super albums and there wasn't a need to skip a track. But nowadays, the exact opposite has occurred. The listener either is treated to one hit wonders or misses the opportunity to experience an amazing album due to  poor promotion. So artists attempt to sample some of the past hits in hope to bring nostalgic memories of when we use to pay for an album instead of downloading it for free. Today's artist are just obsessed with fads and  refuse  to exhibit original thoughts that will stand the test of time. I am not saying there aren't any worthwhile artists but they're few and far between. The new trend  seems to lean towards mimicking cross country acts like Sam Smith, Adel or Amy Winehouse. However, they don't offer original music or lyrics that can touch that place in our souls! If they did, we as patrons of the industry would be willing to move mountains for them. I now understand what our parents were saying about how we, as a generation, have tarnished their music with bad samples and re-imagined stabs at converting new listeners into the musical cult of "yesteryear".I offer up three different examples of how this has been done correctly, egregiously and  just shockingly ineffective to the point  where I just don't care anymore!

    Let's start with someone  who has done things correctly:Kendrick Lamar  and his take on Anytime Anyplace. This track is clearly him paying proper homage to the queen of my 30 something generation :Ms.Janet Jackson. Now some may argue that Ms. Jackson is not a queen but to us, growing up in the 90's - 2000's ,she reigned supreme due to her dropping hit after hit that inclined everyone to sing. For that reason, I crown her alongside the likes of Mariah Carey, Sade, and Celine Dion. Now this is my personal list so "judge thee not"! I am certain you could add or subtract a few names of your own! Now back to  Mr. Lamar and how he is becoming a legend in his own right. For for him to tackle such a beloved track and do it justice (no pun intended) is an amazing feat within itself. It was this track that put him on my radar and made me want to know more. Kudos to you Kendrick! The lyrics were on point and told a story that went wonderfully with the video while Drake's verse maintained the overall velvety feel of the track.

 Now onto the bad.! During my bi monthly scan of YouTube, I ran across this absurd duo by the name of  Krept & Konan. The only reason I gave them the time of day was because the title of the track was Freak of the Week. Immediately, I was reminded of my,  party all night and still make it to work by 6am, dance-hall club nights. By the way, I pulled off those memorable times sporting a tank top, jeans and a scrunch...go me! So I was curious, to say the least, on how these two would go about reinventing my jam. I must admit,the beat is just as infectious as the original. Still, it  pales in comparison. I mean, how you could begin to challenge the original  track, which had a 14 year vicious holding on the music scene! Not to mention, a guest appearance by hip hop pioneer , Doug E Fresh? I know the answer: you can't! With their debut album cracking number 2 in the UK, this duo had already made quite the name for themselves in London and in the underground hip hop community!I suppose that success prompted them to release this track in a feeble attempt to find success in the states. Unfortunately, despite that infectious beat, which isn't theirs to begin with, the song really doesn't have any redeeming qualities.  The lyrics are sub-par and the video reminds me of a throwback Puffy effort with Jeremih playing a less than stellar Mase, and I actually like Jeremih!

Finally, *Sigh*, I really don't see why people enjoy this song and I would rather not discuss it.However, people are smitten with this track so I will entertain their preference for the next 2.5 seconds. The song in question?  Lil Mama's Sausage! I could use a bevy of four letter words and obscene hand gestures to express my feelings about this song but I will refrain from doing so. I guess the premise is admirable, the promotion of safe sex ,but come on now! To me, she has just taken several popular songs, from my generation, and threw them together like soup after the holidays. Not only did she sample old school hip hop,but she had the audacity to borrow from the queen of soul herself: Mary J Blige. She even went as far as to recreate her look! I just don't understand how you can take a  selection of great songs and turn them into this ugly production so that the masses  can enjoy and play it loud & proud in their vehicles. I have nothing nice to say about this song and only gave it a chance due to sheer curiosity and my sister's affinity with the track. As quickly as it was made popular, it was forgotten, sort of like Lil Mama's career. So yes folks,  this is my opinion and you can like , love, or ignore it! Believe me though, I will survive longer then some of the artist I have mentioned and may even go on to greatness like Mr. Lamar.