Round One?: On My Own – Consequence ft. Kid Cudi [Full Song]

Beef is never a great thing when it goes too far, but…

Beef is never a great thing when it goes too far, but there are some beefs in Hip Hop that are good for the progression and the competitive spirit of the culture.  If it can be kept on record and off the block this could prove to be a good 2011 – 2012 battle between two very creative artists.

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Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

Consequence Exposes “The Puppet Master”

Some stories end in sweet success…

Some stories end in sweet success. There are people in life who are born with a gift to control the masses through a magic known as… self expression. Here’s the problem… you have some who think they have this ability and others who are robbed for it… But by who?

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What are your thoughts on this recent so called beef between Consequence and Kanye?  Leave a comment below and let us know.

 

Turn Your Speakers Way Up: Boat Check In (Otis) – Skyzoo

I’ve heard quite a few freestyles over this…

Salute to Kanye for the sample.  I’ve been hearing a lot of opinions about the track from “It’s Great” to “It’s too heavily sampled”, but being partial to sampling we can hear the complexity or what was done and hear the dopeness of the beat.

 

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I’ve heard quite a few freestyles over this, but in my opinion Skyzoo is doing it the most justice by far.  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

The International Movement – Hip Hop In Japan

The Japanese have fully adopted hip hop as…

So I was in Sportie LA in Los Angeles, Ca. looking for a new pair of kicks,  I think I went with a black and grey Air Huarache, when I noticed how a few of the store employees were waiting on one cat hand and foot.  It wasn’t really a big deal until he pointed at the kicks I was test driving and said “kore o kudasai”.  At that moment, being a “silly American”, I nodded and kept stepping.  Not long after that the people helping him disappeared into the back of the store.  20 minutes or so passed and when they came back to the front it looked like they had the entire stockpile of every shoe in hand.  It took about another 5 minutes orso for them to separate and count everything before ringing him up to a multiple thousand dollar bill.  In those stacks of shoes I saw a box of Air Huarache’s.  I payed closer attention and noticed not only did he have the same black and grey Huarache’s that I had, but he had every color that the store carried.  It was the same for every other shoe that he tried on.  He walked out with all the colors.

This sparked my interest in the Hip Hop culture and how it has spread to and in Japan.  What better way to find out than look?  So I started looking…

Although rather informal and small scale, the early days of Japanese hip-hop provide the history for the emergence of the cultural movement.  Early hip-hop was not led by corporate interests, but rather was largely ignored by large record companies and performance venues.  In this respect, Japanese hip-hop offers a representation of cultural globalization, as it expanded despite criticism on the part of record companies and major media outlets. The history shows that certain kinds of cultural exchange are not initiated through cultural understanding, but instead from some interaction that can incite a desire to learn, to participate, and to contribute individuality. In Japan, this motivation to represent individuality was breakdancing, which was one of the leading edges of hip-hop at the time. An important spark for Japanese hip-hop occurred in 1983, when breakdancing appeared in Tokyo through film and live performances even though American hip hop records could previously be heard in Tokyo discos. According to Takagi Kan, a first generation Japanese MC, “I couldn’t tell what was with the rap and the DJing…but with the breakdancing and graffiti art, you could understand it visually. Or rather, it wasn’t understanding so much as, ‘Whoa, that’s cool’ [kakoii]. With rap and DJing, I couldn’t imagine what could be cool about it.” Dancing has a visual impact that everyone can understand, when it comes to dance there is not a language barrier. Break dancing represented the foundation for the spread of Japanese hip-hop and served as a medium for globalization.

As in Germany, Japan was introduced to hip hop in the fall of 1983 in the movie Wild Style. The film is “the classic hip-hop flick, full of great subway shots, breakdancing, freestyle MCing and rare footage of one of the godfathers of hip-hop, Grandmaster Flash, pulling off an awesome scratch-mix set on a pair of ancient turntables”. The popularity of the film led to many of the artists involved in it to make a trip to Japan to promote the film and they even performed in some of the department stores while they were there.  Shortly after, Japanese took up breakdancing in Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park, where street musicians gather every Sunday to perform. Crazy-A, now the leader of Rock Steady Crew Japan,” was one of the pioneers of break dancing in Yoyogi back in the early 1984″. Crazy-A organizes the annual “B-Boy Park,” which happens every August, and draws a large number of fans and dozens of break dancing groups. This was all considered the Old School Era of rap in Tokyo. There was much of what they called Soul Dancing, which helped the Japanese culture accept the street dance culture.

The rise of DJs was really the next step for the Japanese hip hop scene. Before 1985, there weren’t very many DJs on the radio, but with the increase in the number that year, it led to the opening of the first all hip hop club in 1986. But despite the fact that DJing caught on rather quickly, it was initially thought that rapping wasn’t going to have the same cache as it would be hard to rap in Japanese.

Street musicians began to breakdance in Yoyogi Park, including DJ Krush who has become a world-renowned DJ after arising from the Yoyogi Park scene. In 1986 an all hip hop club opened in Shibuya. While interest in hip-hop in Japan grew some during the 1980s and early 1990s, the rap scene remained fairly small and rather marginalized.  One reason for the rap scene to remain so small and a little bit less popular compared to hip hop is because of the fact that the Japanese language does “not contain stress accents and sentences must end with one of a few simple verb endings.”  Ito Seiko, Chikado Haruo, Tinnie Punx and Takagi Kan were rappers that emerged out of Japan at this time, and they proved to be rather successful.

The years 1994 and 1995, marked the beginning of hip-hop’s commercial success in Japan. The first hit was Schadaraparr’s “Kon’ya wa būgi bakku” (Boogie Back Tonight) by Scha Dara Parr and Ozawa Kenji, followed by East En X Yuri’s “Da. Yo. Ne.” and “Maicca,” which each sold a million copies. This sudden popularity of J-rap, which was largely characterized as party rap, sparked a debate over ‘realness’ and authenticity between commercial and underground hip-hop artists.  “Keep It Real” is definitely a global campaign.

An example of an underground attack on mainstream J-Rap is Lamp Eye’s “Shogen,” in which rapper You the Rock disses the more pop oriented group Dassen Trio. Writer Ian Condry argues that the rappers on this track are closely emulating the traditional macho posturing of rap, citing influences such as Public Enemy and Rakim. The video reflects this image in its roughness and tone Dassen Trio, and other pop rappers, respond to such attacks with the argument that their subject matter is more culturally appropriate and accessible for Japanese fans, and question the standards of “realness” put forth by underground rappers.

With a lack of ghettos, Japanese youth consider hip hop the soundtrack to international fashion–baggy jeans, medallions, dread locks etc. Actual Japanese rap lyrics have a tendency to refer to mundane subjects such as food, cell phones, and shopping. Since 2000, the hip hop scene in Japan has grown and diversified. Hip-hop style and Japanese rap has been enormously commercially successful in Japan. In a 2003 interview with the BBC, Tokyo record-store owner, Hideaki Tamura noted “Japanese hip-hop really exploded in the last two, three years. I never thought there would be a time when Japanese records could outsell American ones but it’s happening.” Additionally, a huge number of new scenes have developed. These include “rock rap to hard core gangsta, spoken word/poetry, to conscious, old school, techno rap, antigovernment, pro-marijuana, heavymetal-sampled rap, and so on.” Tamura points to a shift in Japanese hip hop, when artists began to focus on issues pertinent to Japanese society, versus previous styles and subjects that were copied from US hip hop culture. For Japan, the style of hip hop was much more appealing than topics popular in American hip hop, such as violence. Ian Condry, on the other hand, focuses on an interplay between local and global hip hop within the genba of Japan. For Condry, Japanese hip hop was born out of simultaneous localization and globalization of hip hop culture, rather than a shift between the two binary factors.

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Previous to the inception of hip hop, soul dancing became popularized in Japan in the 1970s. Shows like ‘Soul Train’ spread the African-American style of on-going dance that would soon be picked up by varying cultures all over the world. It is this style of dance that laid the foundation for the globalization of African-American culture due to its universal criteria. Anyone can dance to soul music, which is not the case in terms of rapping, b-boying, etc. As movies like ‘Flashdance’ (1983) reached the islands, more and more young people began dancing on the street and other public arenas, which added to its cultural integration. Soon, Japanese culture was ready to alter the very structure of their language in order to partake in hip hop.

Hip hop was thought to have originally become popular in Japan because the Japanese people wanted to imitate African-Americans. The Japanese would hear these rapper’s music spinning in clubs, exposing to them a small, narrow view of West Coast hip hop. It was not the only music they latched onto, however. They came to love the entire hip hop culture, including the loose-fitting clothes, graffiti writing, and break dancing. Some Japanese hip-hop fans would even go to tanning salons to darken their skin, and style their hair in afros or dreadlocks to imitate the “cool” looks of African-Americans,although they are ridiculed by others, including other hip-hoppers.

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Not surprisingly, Japan has many emcees and groups that exemplify both local and global culture, as they see it,  in their music. The “machine” has reached the far east and had similar effects on hip hop there as it has had back in the states.

Rhymester

One major Japanese hip hop group, Rhymester, has expressed opinions on various global and philosophical issues through their lyrics. Rhymester has put out motivating messages through hip hop, with songs like “B-Boyism” that emphasizes improving oneself, with lyrics such as “I’m not surrendering this aesthetic flattering no one, I improve myself only the wonderful, useless people get it, and roar, at the edge of the bass.” The group has also written socially critical lyrics, in songs attacking the Japanese government, as well as the United States for invading Iraq.Rhymester is also known for its collaborative work with the Funky Grammar Unit in the 1980s, as well as its participation in hip hop battles.

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King Giddra

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Another major group of Japanese hip-hop is King Giddra. They are one of the few pioneers of Japanese hip-hop. They began their hip hop careers in 1993 and felt hip-hop was needed in Japan. Group members, Zeebra and K Dub Shine, both of whom had lived in the U.S., were convinced of the necessity for hip-hop to be about issues of social opposition.They used hip-hop to address social issues of the time, such as: the inability of college graduates to find employment and the media overload of advertising sex and violence. They also “challenged youth not only to recognize the difficulties faced by Japanese society but also to speak up about them.” Their first album has been cited as being influential in the development of rapping style in Japanese.

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Dabo

Dabo is one of the first hip hop artists in Japan. He sprung to the scene in the 1990s and has fame all over Japan. He is the first Japanese artist to be signed to Def Jam Japan.  However, he is disliked by some in Japan for his style of hip hop, which is said to be imitation of African American Hip Hop.

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Hime

Hime is a very influential female emcee in Japan.  In her music, she employs a strong message to empower women in Japanese culture. Many of her songs combat the common stereotype of women in Japanese culture. She calls herself “the voice of the Japanese doll,” in attempts to challenge and reinvent stereotypes that label women as quiet and obedient. Another common stereotype used to degrade women in Japan is the term yellow cab, which is used to describe a woman who is sexually provocative or whorish. In her song, Yellow cab, Hime cleverly deconstructs the derogatory connotations of this term. By contextualizing yellow cab as defining a woman who is in the driver’s seat, Hime transforms its meaning in attempts to empower Japanese women. Hime has revolutionized the rhyming patterns in rap songs by embracing traditional Japanese poetic forms such as tanka in her song “If the Peony Stands.” In her use of this intricate form, she embraces and fuses Japanese culture with traditional American hip hop styling.

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The Japanese have fully adopted hip hop as a culture and adapted it to fit what they feel, see, and live.  Any and every culture evolves over time and for something as great and influential as hip hop, it’s a given that it will continue to reach into every corner of the world.  It is a strong factor in Japan and will definitely influence Japans future and the Japanese culture as a whole.

Did Breivik Really Act Alone In Norway… Or?

The 32-year-old man accused of Norway’s worst…

OSLO — The 32-year-old man accused of Norway’s worst massacre since World War II now maintains that two cells of extremists collaborated with him, court officials said here Monday, ordering him held in complete isolation to prevent him from interfering in police investigations into potential accomplices. He had previously said he acted alone.

The defendant, Anders Behring Breivik, appeared at a closed arraignment hearing here as Norwegians paused in grief and self-examination for a minute’s silence to mark the deaths of at least 94 people in last Friday’s attacks. Hundreds of ordinary Norwegians filled the narrow streets outside the Oslo courthouse, some shouting angrily at cars they thought might have been carrying Mr. Breivik into the back entrance for his appearance.

Judge Kim Heger said Mr. Breivik had been charged under criminal law with “acts of terrorism,” including an attempt to “disturb or destroy the functions of society, such as the government” and to spread “serious fear” among the population. Speaking at a televised news conference, Mr. Heger said that Mr. Breivik had acknowledged carrying out the attacks but had pleaded not guilty, because he “believes that he needed to carry out these acts to save Norway” and western Europe from “cultural Marxism and Muslim domination.

Mr. Breivik was ordered to be held for the next eight weeks, the first four in solitary confinement. He told police what there were “two further cells in our organization,” reporters were told. Court officials would not elaborate.

As noon approached, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg stood before crowds in central Oslo and urged them “to remember the victims. I hereby declare one minute’s silence across our country.”

All that could be heard in some places was the cry of gulls as trams stopped, cars pulled over and Norwegians bowed their heads, standing with their hands clasped in prayer. Even after the formal 60 seconds, many seemed reluctant to move on, locked in private thoughts.

Rescue workers in red suits and fluorescent jackets stood in silence on a lakeshore near Utoya island, where most of the victims, many of them youths, were killed.

Mr. Breivik is the only person accused so far in the twin attacks last Friday, in which a huge bomb in central Oslo killed eight people and was followed soon after by a shooting rampage at a camp run by the ruling Labor Party on Utoya. The eighth death in Oslo was reported by The Associated Press on Monday.

The judge said Mr. Breivik had wished to “give a sharp signal” and inflict “the worst possible loss” on the Labor Party, accusing it of failing to prevent a “mass importing of Muslims” into Norway.

The investigation spread to southern France, where, The A.P. reported, gendarmes searched the house of the suspect’s father, Jens Breivik. It was not clear what the officers were looking for or might have found.

The Norwegian police and security services meanwhile faced numerous questions about their slow response to the reports of shooting on Utoya, where the country’s governing Labor Party was holding its annual political summer camp, considered Norway’s nursery school for future leaders. The police took an hour to arrive on the island after the first reports, and officials said that it was hard to find boats and that their helicopters were only capable of surveillance, not of shooting down the killer.

The court appearance was Mr. Breivik’s first since his capture. Through his lawyer, he had indicated that he wanted to use the hearing as a platform and had wished to appear wearing some kind of uniform. But the court rejected those requests.

Shortly before Mr. Breivik’s arrival, the court said in a statement, “Based on information in the case, the court finds that today’s detention hearing should be held behind closed doors.”

“It is clear that there is concrete information that a public hearing with the suspect present could quickly lead to an extraordinary and very difficult situation in terms of the investigation and security,” the court said.

Mr. Breivik admits to the shootings and the bombing, his lawyer, Geir Lippestad, has told Norwegian news media, but he rejects “criminal responsibility.” Mr. Lippestad said that Mr. Breivik told him there were no collaborators in the attack, and that he alone wrote a mammoth manifesto — rambling from a hostile historical look at Islam to recipes (and price lists) for bomb manufacture to his family’s pressure on him to date.

“He has said that he believed the actions were atrocious, but that in his head they were necessary,” the lawyer said. “He wanted a change in society and, from his perspective, he needed to force through a revolution. He wished to attack society and the structure of society.”

In central Oslo, people gathered quietly, some in tears, to contemplate the spreading blanket of bouquets in front of the cathedral.

In the same place on Sunday, the royal family and average citizens alike, some traveling long distances, came to a memorial service for the dead in the cathedral. Long lines of people of all ages and colors waited patiently and quietly, some of them crying, to lay flowers or light candles. Someone propped up a radio on a post so those waiting could listen to the service inside.

Some speculated that Mr. Breivik had wanted an open court proceeding on Monday in order to further publicize his anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim ideas, which center around the conservation of cultural and Christian values in the face of what he sees as a continuing effort by Islam to conquer Europe since the Ottomans were stopped at the gates of Vienna in 1683. His manifesto, called “2083 — A European Declaration of Independence,” seemed intended to reflect the 400th anniversary of the siege.

Mr. Breivik was said by analysts to have been an occasional commenter on a blog, Gates of Vienna, which is topped by these words: “At the siege of Vienna in 1683 Islam seemed poised to overrun Christian Europe. We are in a new phase of a very old war.”

According to the police, when he surrendered, Mr. Breivik was carrying an automatic rifle and a pistol and he still retained “a considerable amount of ammunition.” Doctors have said that he was apparently using dumdum bullets, expanding rounds designed to inflict the deadliest wounds possible victims.

With no death penalty and the longest prison term possible in Norway set at 21 years, some Norwegians wondered how best to punish Mr. Breivik.

Hedda Felin, a political scientist and human resources manager, said that giving Mr. Breivik an open platform “was more of a reward than a punishment.” He said in his manifesto that he considered killing Norway’s top journalists at their yearly meeting, she said, for not listening to him and his arguments.

“He wants an open trial to be listened to, so journalists will now write about his ideas,” Ms. Felin said. “A real punishment would be not to write about him at all.”

The crowd outside the court house where Mr. Breivik appeared Monday, perhaps as many as 1,500 people, was mostly quiet and pensive on a cold and misty day, as if in mourning.

“People want to see face-to-face the guy who did this,” said Bernt Almbakk, 31, a lawyer. “It’s very personal. This is a small country.” Rather than anger, Mr. Almbakk said, “it’s the sorrow and the feelings — it’s been a very hard weekend with a lot of tears.”

Harald Stanghelle, the political editor of the newspaper Aftenposten, said that “coming here is a way to participate.” Norway, he said, “is a country of grief and sorrow, trying to overcome a great shock. There’s a hope to participate and be together.”

At one point, there was clapping in the crowd. From the front of the courthouse came a newly wed couple. “It was a glimpse of normal life in this film of horror,” Mr. Stanghelle said.

The International Movement – Hip Hop In Norway

Sometimes it’s hard for us to imagine life and culture…

Sometimes it’s hard for us to imagine life and culture outside of our own neighborhoods, let alone our country.  But, hip hop as a culture has manifested in all corners of the globe.  Norway is no exception.

Norway has a bubbling hip hop scene.  The local hip hop scene includes Warlocks, Tommy Tee, Darkside of the Force, Punktum, Klovner i Kamp, Gatas Parlament, Tungtvann, Karpe Diem, Paperboys, Madcon, Thomax, and Erik og Kriss to name a few.  We wanted to introduce the rest of the world to some of Norways local acts.

Warlocks

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Warlocks has been one of the most respected rap acts in Norway for almost two decades, and the group has also been heavily involved in the graffiti and b-boy scene in Oslo since day one. The trio, which was formed in 1992, consists of producer Hawk and the rappers Tech and Karma, who are twins. Warlocks released their debut album, “Lyrical Marksmen”, on a local independent label (dBut Records) in 1995, and the intense street buzz resulted in a contract with Norway’s leading rap label Tee Productions.

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Tommy Tee

Tommy Flaaten , best known by his stage name Tommy Tee, is a Norwegian record producer, rapper, broadcaster, record executive, concert promoter and magazine publisher. He is known as the godfather of Norwegian hip hop. Tee owns the label Tee Productions, which is located in Oslo, Norway and is Norway’s leading hip hop label. As well, he publishes Norway’s only graffiti magazine and hosts a weekly national radio program.

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Darkside Of The Force

Darkside Of The Force is a Norwegian hip hop band made up of the half-brothers Oscar Sepulveda and Salvador Sanchez along with DJ Breakneck. They currently reside in Kristiansand, Norway. In 1998 they released their debut album Darkside Of The Force. On May 8, 2006, they released the follow-up El Dia De Los Puercos. This album gained them Spellemannprisen 2006 in the hip-hop category.[1] Their single “Indigenous flow” was nominated for the 2009 NME Awards.

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Gatas Parlament

Gatas Parlament (English: Parliament of the Street) is a Norwegian group of rap artists. It consists of the brothers Aslak and Elling Borgersrud and DJ Don Martin. All three have strong left-leaning political views, and make their feelings on many things, including American president George W. Bush, a common motif in their lyrics.

Elling Borgersrud has stood for national election as a minor political candidate for the Red Electoral Alliance.

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Paperboys

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Paperboys is a Norwegian hip hop-duo consisting of rapper Øyvind «Vinni» Sauvik and DJ Ole Aleksander «Pope Dawg» Halstensgård. The duo has released four albums and their debut included Barcelona, a collaboration with Madcon which was a hit in Norway. After this they’ve several hit singles in Norway, including “Moving Up” Featuring Keith & Kleen Cut, “It’s Paper”, and their most recent hit, “Lonesome Traveller”, and they also collaborated with Madcon on their European hit “Back On The Road”. The band won the hip hop Spellemannprisen in 2002 and 2005.

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Madcon

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Madcon is a Norwegian Hip Hop duo formed in 1992 by Yosef Wolde-Mariam and Tshawe Baqwa.

They are well known from the Eurovision Song Contest 2010 Interval Act, in which they performed their hit song “Glow”. Madcon quickly established themselves in the Nordic music industry, and supports various international superstars like Destiny’s Child, 50 Cent, Alicia Keys, Wu-Tang Clan, Xzibit, Saian Supa Crew, Clipse, Redman (rapper), and Busta Rhymes. Madcon supported the latest official European tour with Gang Starr.  Madcon released their first single, “God Forgive Me” in 2000 (Virgin Records), but their first commercial breakthrough came with the hit single “Barcelona” in 2002 with long-time collaborators Paperboys (on the Bonnier Amigo record label). In 2004, Madcon released their first official album “It’s All A Madcon” (AA-Recordings/Bonnier Amigo), for which they won a Norwegian Grammy and several other awards. In 2005, Madcon were TV personalities on the Nordic music channel The Voice, while working on their music in the studio. The show “The Voice of Madcon”, a behind-the-scenes of the duo, was a great success for both Madcon and the network. At the end of 2007, Tshawe was invited to take part in the popular Norwegian version of Dancing With The Stars, and was the last winner.  Their second album, entitled So Dark The Con Of Man, was published in 2007 on 3 December. In the United Kingdom, at the RCA, the album charted on the UK album charts at number 137th  In Norway, the album was certified gold in 3 hours and platinum in 3 days. The album featured soul singer Noora Noor and Paperboys on two of the songs. In 2008, Madcon published a cover version of a 1967 Four Seasons Song “Beggin'”, earning the group several # 1 chart positions in Europe (including France, Portugal, Norway and Russia), and a global position # 2 on the European Billboard Hot 100 chart. In addition, they achieved 9 x platinum in Norway, and were No. 1 on the official Norwegian sales charts for 12 weeks, making “Beggin'” one of the biggest hits of all time in Norway.  Madcon’s cover of “Beggin'” was created by 3Elementz, who also produced the other singles “So Dark The Con Of Man “, and all tracks of the” Inconvenient Truth “album. They led the World Music Awards on November 10, 2008, and won the World’s Best Selling Norwegian Artist Award. After several negotiations, Madcon’s label (Bonnier Amigo) signed a licensing agreement with Sony BMG for Central Europe, Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand, Universal Republic in the U.S., Warner Music in Spain , and Just Music in South Africa. Madcon have also hosted the Norwegian version of Don’t Forget the Lyrics!, “Kan du Teksten?” on TV 2 (Norway). Their third album, “Inconvenient Truth” was released all over Europe in early to mid-2009, and the group saw other major releases, including in USA, Japan and Australia.  Their song “Glow”, was the background of the “Eurovision 2010 Flashmob dance” music video that aired in the Eurovision Song Contest 2010 Interval act.

In 2011, during the gala awards ESKA Music Awards 2011 in Poland, was awarded the International Band of the Year.

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I honestly have to say I was surprised by the talent in Norway.  The videos we posted only scratches the surface of whats out there.  We wanted the world to know that the culture is truly world wide.  We were said to be just a fad at one time, but how can a culture so relative to everybody across racial, national, and social boundaries be a fad?

Just by listening or watching these videos the similarities are obvious.  The rhyme scheme, the delivery, even the style of beats show that hip hop as a culture and rap as a part of that culture are wide spread.   Don’t let this be the end of your discovery process.  There’s so much more information out there about our culture and we will be bringing more of it to you right here.

 

 

 

Tragedy In Norway – A Homegrown Terrorist

Never since the Second World War has our…

A home-grown terrorist set off an explosion that ripped open buildings in the heart of Norway’s government, and then went to a summer camp dressed as a police officer and gunned down youths as they ran and even swam for their lives.

Police have confirmed at least 84 people were killed in the shooting spree at the youth camp on the island of Utoeya where hundreds of youth were attending an event organized by the youth wing of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg’s Labor Party. Police voiced fears that the toll could rise as they searched for victims.

Security was meanwhile tightened across potential target sites in the capital, police said on Saturday, but they lifted an advisory that had urged residents to stay home.

The Oslo blast, in which at least seven people were killed, left a square covered in twisted metal, shattered glass and documents expelled from surrounding buildings in a dust-fogged scene that reminded one visitor from New York of September 11.

Norway’s national broadcaster, NRK, has named the suspect in the attacks as 32-year-old Anders Behring Breivik. He was arrested on the island of Utoeya and authorities have begun interrogating the suspect, police said at a press briefing today.

The man, who has been described by police as a Christian fundamentalist, has been charged with two counts of ‘‘dangerous crime to society,’’ which means he could be sentenced to 21 years in prison, Norway’s toughest punishment, Roger Andresen, deputy Oslo police chief, told reporters today.

According to the TV2 channel, Breivik has links to right-wing extremists and possessed two weapons registered in his name.

A police official said the man appears to have acted alone in both attacks, and that “it seems like that this is not linked to any international terrorist organizations at all”.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because that information had not been officially released by Norway’s police.

“It seems it’s not Islamic-terror related,” the official said.

“This seems like a madman’s work.”

The official said the attack “is probably more Norway’s Oklahoma City than it is Norway’s World Trade Center”.

Domestic terrorists carried out the 1995 attack on a federal building in Oklahoma City, while foreign terrorists were responsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Prime Minister Stoltenberg declared the twin shooting and bomb attacks ‘‘a national tragedy’’.

‘‘Never since the Second World War has our country been hit by a crime on this scale,’’ Mr Stoltenberg told a press conference.

‘‘It is a nightmare,’’ he said, speaking of the ‘‘fear, blood and death’’ experienced by young people at the summer camp where the worst of the carnage took place.

At the youth camp, where Mr Stoltenberg had been scheduled to speak today, a 15-year-old camper named Elise said she heard gunshots, but then saw a police officer and thought she was safe. Then he started shooting people right before her eyes.

“I saw many dead people,” said Elise, whose father, Vidar Myhre, didn’t want her to disclose her last name. “He first shot people on the island. Afterward he started shooting people in the water.”

Elise said she hid behind the same rock that the killer was standing on. “I could hear his breathing from the top of the rock,” she said.

She said it was impossible to say how many minutes passed while she was waiting for him to stop.

The shootings happened after the bombing in Oslo, Norway’s capital. A police official who spoke on condition of anonymity said there was at least one unexploded device at the youth camp, and that a police bomb disposal team was working on disarming it with support from military experts.

Ian Dutton, who was in an Oslo hotel nearby where the blast occurred, said people “just covered in rubble” were walking through “a fog of debris”.

“It wasn’t any sort of a panic,” he said, “it was really just people in disbelief and shock, especially in a such as safe and open country as Norway. You don’t even think something like that is possible.”

Police said seven people died in the Oslo blast, and another nine or 10 people were killed at the camp, which was organized by the youth wing of the ruling Labor Party.

Rescuers were to search to blast wreckage through the night for more victims, and Stoltenberg said police fear there could be more victims at the camp as well.

Acting national Police Chief Sveinung Sponheim said a man was arrested in the shooting, and the suspect had been observed in Oslo before the explosion there.

Police did not immediately say how much time elapsed between the bombing and the attack at Utoeya, about 35 kilometers north-west, but reports of the shooting began appearing on Twitter about two-and-a-half hours after the bombing.

Sponheim said the camp shooter “wore a sweater with a police sign on it. I can confirm that he wasn’t a police employee and never has been”.

Aerial images broadcast by Norway’s TV2 showed members of a SWAT team dressed in black arriving at the island in boats and running up the dock. Behind them, people who stripped down to their underwear swam away from the island toward shore, some using flotation devices.

Sponheim said police were still trying to get an overview of the camp shooting and could not say whether there was more than one shooter.

He said several people were injured but he could not comment on their conditions.

In Oslo, most of the windows in the 20-floor building where Stoltenberg and his administration work were shattered. Other buildings damaged house government offices and the headquarters of some of Norway’s leading newspapers.

Oslo University Hospital said 12 people were admitted for treatment following the Utoeya shooting, and 11 people were taken there from the explosion in Oslo.

The hospital asked people to donate blood.

Stoltenberg, who was home when the blast occurred and was not harmed, visited injured people at the hospital late Friday.

Earlier he decried what he called “a cowardly attack on young innocent civilians.”

“I have message to those who attacked us,” he said. “It’s a message from all of Norway: You will not destroy our democracy and our commitment to a better world.”

Sponheim would not give any details about the identity or nationality of the suspect, who was being interrogated by police.

Stoltenberg said “we don’t want to speculate” on whether a terror group is responsible, and said some groups may take responsibility “to appear to be more important than they are”.

The attacks formed the deadliest day of terror in Western Europe since the 2005 London bombings, which killed 52 people.

C-Rayz Walz – All Blvck Everything: The Prelude

C-Rayz Walz has never been short on…

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Blvck Glory produced by LexZyne Productions.  Salute to C-Rayz!

Yeah.  No…HELL YEAH!  As a big C-Rayz Walz fan, this release is exciting! It has been a long time since I have heard some new music from this ever talented emcee.  Not only that, but I feel this freebie may contain some of his best songs,…ever.   This bodes really well for his upcoming album.  Just a few weeks ago, Canibus, released the album that everyone knew he could make but was since missing from his discography.  Now I have the feeling that C-Rayz Walz himself may be on verge of that vaunted, yet elusive, classic album.

C-Rayz Walz has never been short on dope lines and flow.  Where the albums have been lacking in my mind is on the production tip.  With that being said, this album is brimming with dope production from start to finish.  When that production mingles with C-Rayz Walz lyrical creativity, sparks fly with this release.

In a world full of copycat emcees in un-originality, C-Rayz Walz sets himself apart verse by verse.  The first track, Blvck Genesis is produced by Goke.  The beat is laid really nice with a chopped up vocal sample and piano loop.  C-Rayz Walz then reminds you with the first few lines that he is one of a kind in a world of carbon copies.

“Black Genesis, acknowledge me as God Body biology / You want proof? You can check my discography / Green regime, the Science of Life, Eloheem / The Prelude, Exodus of Sun-Cycle Energy

It’s his ability to put his thoughts together within the staccato flow that makes it all the more impressive.  This track serves as a reminder or introduction (whichever you prefer) to all his previous work.  To those of us who have followed him for his entire career it just puts into perspective how prolific the man has been throughout the years.

Blvck C.O.T.S. is another standout track to this ‘pre-album’. The track utilizes a guitar riff to push the track and in the background there is some wind instrument samples used to give the track some depth. And then it’s just C=Rayz Walz dropping some ill bars like “…you trying to throw salt in the wound AND black pepper“.   This song illustrates his ability to put phrases together that can only be termed as “clever”.

Blvck Rock Lockdown has a production team lace together different rock riffs from Queen’s sport’s anthem, We Will Rock You, and then give them a hip hop flavor.  And to me this sounds like a hip rendition of Johnny Cash’s, Live From Folsom Prison.  It’s an ill dedication to those who are locked down with a little advice laced inside the verses.  This song addresses the fact that C-Rayz Walz was locked down himself recently, so he knows what he is talking about and speaks from an informed position.

All Blvk Everything is filled with dope rhymes, which could always be expected from C-Rayz Walz.  You can also expect a sharp wit and a dagger tongue as fires of barrage after barrage of dope lines.    What we haven’t been able to count on in the past was an album where the production was on par with lyrical content.  With this ‘pre-album’ you are getting both.  You hear C-Rayz Walz at his absolute best over some neck-snapping and enjoyable beats.   If this is just the foreboding of things to come then I think we are all in for a treat.

Salute to HipHop Decency

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