Karmin & Watsky – “No Flex Zone (Remix)”

BY TER STAFF

Photo by Jean-Marcus Strole

Two two rappers who give thanks to YouTube for their growing popularity, Karmin (a duo consisting of Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan) and Watsky, have combined for their own spin on the rap banger ‘No Flex Zone’ (by Rae Sremmurd).

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2011 XXL Freshman List: Where Are They Now?

BY WILL LAMPLEY

Courtesy of XXL
Courtesy of XXL

Yearly, hip-hop magazine XXL does a freshman cover, showcasing nearly a dozen rising stars. Sometimes, these lists are underwhelming, leaving obvious choices out (Drake, Young Thug, Tyler, the Creator, A$AP Rocky, etc) but sometimes they can also be packed with to-be stars.

Now that a couple years have passed, it would definitely be interesting to observe how well some of 2011’s freshman have fared, because frankly, the gap between superstars and unknowns is huge.

Let’s begin.

Meek Mill

At the time of the 2011 XXL Freshman cover, Meek Mill was just a young guy entering a game with a fierce voice, a record deal from Rick Ross and an allegiance with the promising producer Jahlil Beats. Mind you, the 2011 XXL Freshman cover was published before the release of Meek’s first singles through MMG (“Tupac Back”, “Ima Boss” respectively) so looking back now, you can see the hunger and charisma in the young MC. Since the cover, Meek has been one of the leaders of street music and while his authenticity has helped him, it has also harmed him- he’s currently in jail.

Lil B

The mysterious, illusive and always positive figure known as Lil B (or the BasedGod) has survived what many expcected to be a short career. He still releases music regularly to entertain and inspire his fans, as well as becoming an omniscient figure to pop culture, even getting co-signs from Katy Perry, Wiz Khalifa and others.

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration
Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Kendrick Lamar

Since 2011, Kendrick Lamar has definitely turned heads and leaped past his peers and competitors. In early 2011, Kendrick wasn’t really known to a large audience, besides a co-sign from Dr. Dre and a few features. The cover was issued before his independent album Section.80 was even released, but since then, K. Dot has built his fan base across the world, as well as dropping a phenomenal Interscope debut, earning 7 Grammy nominations and going Platinum in the U.S.

YG

West coast MC YG has had his fair share of ups and downs, going from hit singles to jail time. While it seemed like he would forever just be looked at as a regional artist, YG, Rich Homie Quan and Jeezy challenged that notion with a worldwide hit- “My Nigga”. Soon enough, YG had another hit, with the help of superstar Drake-“Who Do You Love”. After doing well with both singles, the time seemed just right to execute his plan and drop his debut album My Krazy Life. With fellow Pusha Ink collaborators DJ Mustard and Ty Dolla $ign flourishing and his album recieving some of the best reviews for a rap album this year, YG is finally on top.

Mac Miller

Mac Miller went through a real transformation since his appearance on the 2011 XXL Freshman cover. He sold 145,000 copies of his debut album Blue Slide Park in one week, making history-but that wasn’t enough for him. Mac went back to the drawing boards, moving to California, learning how to produce and linking up with LA based labels TDE and Odd Future, to find his sound and make the best music possible. Since then, we’ve got Macadelic, Watching Movies with the Sound Off, Faces and countless EPs, beat tapes and one-off projects.

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Travis Scott Working with John Mayer

BY TER STAFF

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration
Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

In what is probably the most unlikely collaboration we have heard about in a long time, Travis Scott, producer Vinylz, and none other than John Mayer have been seen in the studio together working on music. We have no idea when we will hear was came from this studio session, but let us hope we don’t have to wait too long.

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Atlanta Rapper Key! Bullies Trinidad James on Instagram

BY TER STAFF

Photo by Alex Russell

After being one of the easiest rappers to hate to one of the easiest rappers to feel sorry for, Trinidad James has seen a lot of ups and downs in his young career. Today, to make matters worse, fellow Atlanta rapper Key! dissed Trinidad on his Instagram by sharing a text conversation between the two.

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Common ft. Vince Staples & Jay Electronica – “Kingdom (Remix)”

BY TER STAFF

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

After teaming up at Chicago’s first annual AAHH! Fest to perform the song live, the remix for Common’s ‘Kingdom’ featuring Vince Staples and Roc Nation’s Jay Electronic has surfaced.

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Kendrick Lamar Freestyles On Power 106 Los Angeles

BY TAYLOR POPE

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Yesterday Kendrick dropped the single “i” off his upcoming followup to 2012’s Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City. Earlier this morning, he stopped by the Power 106 station in Los Angeles as a part of the “Big Boy’s Neighborhood” segment. Kendrick was interviewed about his life recently and dropped a freestyle. Check out the interview at Power 106  and watch the freestyle below.

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Album Review: Syro | Aphex Twin

BY TAYLOR POPE

The internet boom of the early 2000’s seemed like the perfect platform for Richard D James’ Aphex Twin persona. Becoming increasingly technical and calculated, Aphex’s albums were a soundtrack for those obsessed with early internet culture in the late ’90’s. However in the blink of eye after releasing 2001’s ambitious Drukqs, the artist known as Aphex Twin was gone. While the electronic music pioneer didn’t quite disappear into obscurity over the past decade, having released work under different monikers, thirteen years is many lifetimes when it comes to the musical landscape in the internet age. Coming out of his cryogenic sleep, Aphex returns with Syro, a work that doesn’t quite pick up where he left off as much as reaffirms us why we’ve missed him. It may not be the revolutionary album some were expecting, but it demonstrates James’ effortless ability to create a fluid, dynamic work encompassing thirty years of dedication to his craft.

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Soulja Boy and K. Michelle Take ‘Twitter Beef’ to a New Level

BY TER STAFF

Photo by Lucas Farrar

Rapper Soulja Boy and R&B singer K. Michelle have taken ‘Twitter Beef’ to a new level when exchanging a number of disses at each other on social media, with absolutely no filters. See the tweets for yourself, but while they are pretty humorous, they are pretty graphic as well (in just 140 characters each).

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