Bars & Bullets

Album: Bars & Bullets
Artist: UDF
Rating: 4.3/5.0

Bars & Bullets lumbers into your ears like the deliberately sluggish, measured, near vomit inducing pace of a Xanax drip. The saliva taunting and mocking your uvula, as you desperately gasp for some type of relief…there exists none. You lie in bed listening to the violent, irregular, heart rattle…the pressure in your chest is beginning to get concerning. The moisture pooling beneath is indistinguishable.

The emotionless and distant delivery of lyrics dripping with violence and drugs over immensely deprived empty sounding beats is eerie as fuck, and perfect. It’s an uncanny sound riddled with drug induced paranoia. It transforms the most trustworthy situation into something suspicious and mistrusting. The best of friends into weary strangers. Those are difficult feelings to evoke and the UDF crew does it wonderfully. Gothic Goon is beyond mean.

Chicago Heat

Artist: Hollywood Squadda
Album: In the Name of Greenova EP
Song: Oh Yeah
Rating: 4.5/5.0

The humidity in Chicago 3 days ago was 200%. Every breath was like eating a steaming hot Shepard’s pie. Breathing was an enormous undertaking, as the odious, moist and sticky air did not lend itself to easy consumption or expulsion. A morning where you hate everyone and everything. Exchanging perspiration with jaundiced sunken business man next to you sweating through his suit. Each fried hair on his balding head drenched and clinging to the disintegrating root. Very few things are enjoyable on mornings like these, as no one likes to go to work with a saturated stinking ringpiece, that is generally reserved for the end of the day.

The only escape was the soothing sound of Hollywood Squadda’s Oh Yeah. As my breaking point approached, a calm came over me. The peaceful beat of Oh Yeah had somehow tamed some of my frustration. Hollywood Squadda’s auto tuned voice had transcended the heat and like a lullaby put me into a trance like state where I was vaguely unaware of the heat’s misery. It was welcomed, I sat and enjoyed the song until my stop and promptly left the train thinking it was overall a very bearable experience.




Artist: Dillan Ponders
Album: Overdose
Rating: 4.7/5.0

The inescapable night terrors after a three day blowout, making the prospect of sleep unobtainable at best. That film that builds on your tongue, making it impossible to swallow the morning following a night of overindulgence. The suspicion you’ve been dieting exclusively on burlap rope. Opening your eyelids draining the last bit of energy you had as you succumb to their weight… falling back into a deep exhausting and unsatisfying sleep. An ominous feeling of uncertainty. Overdose manifests these and offers them for consumption in a basin of emptiness.

This is the album that Kanye and Jay Z attempted to create. This is the sound they wanted and couldn’t have. I guess you don’t need Samsung Galaxy commercials to make an incredible piece of art. Overdose is gorgeously destitute. The production is concurrently minimalist and extravagantly dense. The verses sound as though their being transmitted through a tin can phone from the moon. Or whispered in quiet echos throughout a labyrinth of caves. Oddly vacant yet somehow incredibly personal, creating an addictive uncanny feeling. Just Drive is unearthly.

Goddamnit…Asher Roth

Artist: Asher Roth
Album: The Greenhouse Effect Vol. 2
Rating: 0/5.0

I can’t figure out who Asher Roth is making music for. It’s likely the same demographic of people that consume Miller 64 while playing beach volleyball. His most recent album was extra upsetting and threw me in to quite the little snit. It’s rare that something on first glance can cause such immense annoyance but what pie-eyed  hesher was the mastermind behind the absolutely inane looking cartoon below? Every song worse than the one before until it culminates on song 23, the largest toilet clogging/staining protein sinker in the last decade.

Far more annoying than Johnny Depp turning every single character he plays, no matter the genre or era, into a face painted flamboyant pirate that prances around like a deflated scarecrow and EASILY more annoying than the guy tilting his 36 oz Evian bottle and filling it to the brim at the gym water fountain, not a care in the world, including  the withering cotton mouths lined up behind him. Prepare to be incredibly frustrated:



Patriarch II

Artist: Deniro Farrar
Album: Patriarch 2
Rating: 4.5/5.0

Patriarch II isn’t an mixtape. It is a devastatingly earnest memoir accompanied by immense and varied production. Aforementioned production from (KIRA, Ryan Alexy, Ryan Hemsworth and many others) serve as the perfect receptacle for Deniro’s rasping twang….the evocative landscape for some truly poignant and beautiful narration.

This album is the antithesis of the Yeezus. It doesn’t attempt to be anything. It’s not polarizing or alien. It’s exceptionally human, and therein rests the fascination. Specifically relatable is irrelevant.  Every song is abundant with fluctuating and contrasting emotions. More contemplative than any of his previous albums it’s clear that Deniro is morphing into a hybrid rapper…equal parts malice and thoughtfulness. This type of music sits proudly outside the realm of genres, it is itself and that’s it.

Never has there been such a concentrated intro to an album. Listen to the stunning variation between the two songs.





Artist: Waka Flocka
Song: Whole Wide World
Album: Duflocka Rant: Halftime Show
Rating: 4.4/5.0
Free Download:

When listening to Waka Flocka I’m usually either grinding my teeth into used up crayon stubs or putting my head through a brick wall. You could imagine my surprise when I first heard Whole Wide World. A cheerful sample that didn’t pulverize my eardrums and a completely diffused Waka sounding downright festive.

It would be similar to attending the Titanic remastering and discovering Leo had been replaced by Nick Cage. (“I WANT TO TAKE THE CAPTAIN OF THIS SHIP’S FACE…OFF”). Finding out that Dan Brown had penned Siddhartha, Tyler Perry was the visionary behind Shawshank Redemption, or Chad Kroeger had written Symphony No. 9 in D Minor. A lollipop curve. In the case of Whole Wide World it was a truly pleasant surprise.

The lyrics light heartedly shrug off anyone who has doubted or questions his talent, absent of the usual malice and aggression. The blissful sample is the perfect pairing for the lyrics and delivery. Enjoy and cop.


Song: Potency
Album: N/A
Rating: 4.6/5.0
Free Download:

Potency must have been composed with a quill drenched in lean, spilling and disgorging the hazy lyrics and beat all over a parchment obscured by weed smoke. There’s a delicate equation at the root of the song, “Smoking kush, selling kush, gettin money gettin high at the same time” I say delicate because the manipulation of either variable (no matter how slight) and your either smoking too much kush thus becoming way to high and going broke. Or conversely selling all of your kush rendering you perpetually sober. I’m glad they live in such a happy circumstance, achieving both.

I first listened to this while working out and could have sworn a pear shaped man frantic to get his body beach ready was getting blunted on an elliptical machine. The cloudy bass heavy beat couldn’t be more agreeable with the verses being spit, each rapper easily weaving in and out of the drunkening sounds. Can’t wait for an album to drop.


Artist: Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire
Album: Kismet
Rating: 4.5/5.0

A refuse burdened Kismet has risen from the gurgling and detestable filth. In Kismet Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire meticulously obeys the amoral credence we’ve become so accustomed to in both lyrics and samples. An objective coldness settles in during the first track as he calmly spits over a sample that is teeming with on setting madness.

He drowns the listener with forward and masterful yet abstract story telling techniques and incredible descriptors i.e. “Condoms and sewer water filled with regrets.” Each verse and beat uncoils from the speaker as a fantastic belch or gas as he sinks his teeth deeper into your eardrums. A thoroughly pleasant experience indeed and perhaps the most surprising part the absence of a price tag.


Artist: Andrea
Album: Cruising EP
Rating: 4.8/5.0

There is a certain gentle facet in the first notes of My Morning that invoke tranquility, an abyss of contentment and happiness. Meditative and dense with cheerfulness this song and entire mixtape/EP is a true joy to listen to. It’s brief and ripe with remixes but still immensely enjoyable. The beautiful compilation of sounds and samples crash into your headphones, eager to spread an infectious positivity in the case of My Morning.

My Morning demands night cap play. Elated and exhausted after a night of relentless excess. Sitting on a porch refusing to concede an inevitable defeat to the growing fatigue. As you retreat to the fridge and extract another beer, renewing the lease on the night, you settle into this agreeable circumstance and let the gladness wash over.

The Rush

Artist: J. Good
Album: Look on the Brightside
Song: The Rush
Rating: 4.4/5.0

Every great love song ever written is mainly about apologizing for the year 2004 as we all know. And I’m not even sure if The Rush qualifies as a love song in the more traditional sense. It is in fact about love but more about the deterioration of that love crumbling under (among other things) the velocity at which it is demanded. There’s an oddly perfect combination between the seemingly forward motion of the beat and the subject matter being addressed. As the song and beat progress you can almost witness the dwindling hope of the relationship at hand. This coupled with an immensely catchy chorus makes for an incredibly enjoyable listen.