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CunninLynguists

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This is probably the oddest post title on my site. For those who don’t know what it means, they are the names of the artists behind three of the best albums of the year. In a time where it seems really good music is hard to come by, I consider myself blessed to come across three awesome albums that all came out within just a few months of each other. I almost experienced music overload. What makes these albums even better is that they are nothing alike. For those who say all hip hop sounds the same, I challenge you to listen to these three albums and tell me that afterwards. There is something for everyone on this list. I’m not going to give detailed reviews of the albums, I just want to talk about why they are great and why you should buy them. First up is Kno’s Death is Silent.

For those unfamiliar with the name Kno, you might recognize him as the excellent producer behind the group CunninLynguists. Kno has largely stayed absent from the mic on the last couple CunninLynguists albums choosing to hone his production skills to near perfect quality. Death is Silent finds Kno’s trademarked sample-heavy production painting a dark backdrop over the best lyrics we’ve heard from him to date. The only problem with the album is that sometimes the rapping doesn’t live up to the excellent composition behind it. Also, this is a much darker album from what we’ve previously heard from CunninLynguists, so be prepared to get sucked in to a dark place (which isn’t a bad thing as you feel like you’re part of a really good story). I really can’t describe what this album is, other than close to being perfect. This is one of those albums that you can turn off the lights and listen from beginning to end over and over and over. Each time you listen you pick up on something new. It’s an experience that will never end. Make sure you pick up this album now.

The next album is from QN5 newcomer Kokayi. To be perfectly honest, I had never heard of Kokayi before his signing to QN5. He was nominated for Best Urban/Alternative Performance in the 51st Annual Grammys, but I’ve not watched the Grammys in years (and really don’t intend on starting again). He joined QN5 in April of 2009 and I’ve been waiting to hear something from him ever since. Was the wait worth it? Yes! Kokayi’s Robots & Dinosaurs is undeniably one of my favorite albums to come out in years. What sets it apart from other hip hop albums is that Kokayi is able to meld genres to make an amalgam of good music. He’s hip hop, he’s rock, he’s soul. This album contains something for everyone. If you are a fan of good music, you will love this album. Best of all, you can order a Paleo-Pack of his album that includes a bunch of goodies to go with the fantastic music or you can listen and purchase the digital album here.

The last album on my list is a side project from Substantial. The album is called Substantial & Marcus D are Bop Alloy. The album can easily be defined as Jazz Hop. It is a great album utilizing the smooth flows of Substantial on top of excellent Jazz production by Marcus D. This is one of those albums that you can sit back and listen and get lost in the music. You would think this duo would have been making music together for years, but that’s not true. This is their first album together and if all their music together is this good I hope there will be many more albums in the years to come. Not to say anything bad about Substantial’s previous works because they are all good, but I think this is his best to date. He has definitely evolved as an emcee and this album shows it. If you’re a fan of Jazz and a fan of hip hop, make sure you support the artists and buy their album.

blg_cl_sj_preorder

I have some great news for fans who love great music. One of the best (if not THE best) hip hop groups has a new release dropping soon. You can now pre-order Strange Journey Volume One by CunninLynguists now. From the QN5 Blog:

We are now taking pre-orders for CunninLyngists’ Strange Journey Volume One.

Featuring guest appearances from Killer Mike, Khujo (of Goodie Mob), Skinny Deville & Fishscales (of Nappy Roots), Slug (of Atmosphere), Tonedeff, Substantial, PackFM, Mac Lethal, Mr. SOS, Looptroop Rockers, Hilltop Hoods and more! Once again, all production duties are handled beautifully by the incomparable Kno.

Respectively entitled Strange Journey – Volume One and Strange Journey – Volume Two, both full-length discs will be interconnected efforts dropped within months of each other and built around the concept of touring and travel. Both releases feature completely original, new material.

Strange Journey Volume Two will be released 09.08.09 and features appearances by Sean Price, Poison Pen, J-Zone, Blue Sky Black Death, Bronze Nazareth and more!

Pre-Order Volume One now and receive your ADVANCED autographed copy with bonus sticker and instrumentals a full 4-6 weeks before it’s available in stores!

Dirty Acres pre-order
If you love good hip hop, swing on over to CunninLynguists’ website and pre-order their new album Dirty Acres. The pre-order edition is different from the one you will find in stores. Here is what you get:

EXCLUSIVE PRE-ORDER 2-CD EDITION:

* – Autographed ‘Dirty Acres’ CD
* – ‘Dirty Acres’ Instrumental CD
* – ‘Dirty Acres’ Vinyl Sticker
* – Only Available Via Pre-Order – Only 1,000 Pressed
* – SHIPPING INCLUDED IN PRICE

You get all this for $17 ($20 for international orders). A great deal for some great music. But hurry! Supplies are limited.

speaker I’ve not posted a song of the week for a while now. Mostly because there really hasn’t been anything too new that has caught my ear. I have been listening to CunninLynguists’ Dirty Acres almost nonstop for a week or so now. Recently they added the song “Mexico” ft. Club Dub to their MySpace. Many of you might remember Club Dub on A Piece of Strange album last year. They are a very talented band and they fit so well with CL. It is in honor of that and the November release of their album that I now invite you on a trip to “Mexico.”

[audio:http://pieceofshep.com/audio/cl-mexico.mp3]

dirty acres
Many of you know I am a huge fan of an underground rap group called CunninLynguists. Their last album, A Piece of Strange was pure genius. I loved the album so much, I created (and unfortunately didn’t keep up with) a companion site (whatisapos.com) made up of fan’s insights and thoughts into the album, as well as producer Kno’s own words behind the story. They are such a talented group that anytime they drop a new song I am instantly pumped and craving more. A song from their new album, Dirty Acres, was recently released. From the QN5 Blog:

Fresh off 2006’s A Piece of Strange, an album that XXL Magazine compared to “vintage UGK and Dungeon Family“, the Kentucky-Georgia hip-hop hybrid CunninLynguists are back with the first shot from their upcoming 4th album, Dirty Acres. The song, entitled “Yellow Lines”, features Phonte of Little Brother and Witchdoctor, of the aforementioned Dungeon Fam, trading verses with CL’s Natti over a smooth, live guitar assisted beat produced by Kno. Deacon The Villain’s syrupy Kentucky drawl ties it all together on the hook, making this definite ‘must-add’ to your late summer soundtrack. Roll the windows down, notch the volume up…but watch those “Yellow Lines”.


Listen to the song and download it from here.