Will Tesla drops Childhood Fantasy

Following his debut Ghost in the MPC Vol.1, Will Tesla is back with another project with a strong, conceptual project called Childhood Fantasy.

Brooklyn’s own, Will Tesla plays on listeners heart strings’ by  rhyming over samples every 80’s and 90’s baby are familiar with.  Open Letter contains a magnificent sample from Super Mario World that’s definitely worth checking out. Ride is a beautifully composed song and Tesla rides the Marvel vs Capcom 2 sample flawlessly. No pun intended.

Tesla opens Childhood Fantasy with Redemption. The way this Attack On Titan sample is flipped is bananas and Will does a great job complimenting the track’s energy with his flow and lyrical ability. “Flow been dumb/ In my old bag; now you in one/ I give it to ’em and then some/ Seen friends change like Shang Tsung/” Tesla rhymes with conviction and passion.

Childhood Fantasy showcases Will Tesla’s growth as lyricist and dedication to his craft. In the short time Childhood Fantasy has been released, it’s been streamed over 4000 times on digital music platforms. These ten songs are sure to make a fan out of anyone unfamiliar with the Brooklyn wordsmith.

Check out Will Tesla’s tracklist:

1. Redemption
2. Ride
3. Open Letter
4. Triggered
5. Remain
6. Lyrics Hidden in the Beat
7. Find A Way
8. Once Upon A Time
9. Childhood Fantasy
10. Sanctuary (feat. Treazon)

Click this “Childhood Fantasy” link, press play and enjoy.

Bishop Brigante x Legacy Album Review

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Back at you with with another review. This time we’re going international and vibing out to Canada’s own, Bishop Brigante. For those who don’t know, Brigante has been in movies, TV series, and is very known on Canada’s hip hop scene. A lot of you may just know him as the face next to Organik on King of The Dot’s battle rap league, but I assure you he’s much more than that. So grab your poutine and enjoy this summary of Bishop Brigante’s Legacy.

Bishop Brigante kicks of the Legacy album with his single, “That’s the Way.” This song has a 90’s basement party type vibe. In these days where trap beats and mumble rap reign; its refreshing to hear someone stick to their roots and take it back to a good time in rap. This song is definitely for the underground clubs; hip hop heads will definitely rock to this. Next, the Section 6 family does a great job on “About to Change”. This melodic, uplifting song is definitely a song the crowd will sing along to and needs a video. Big Zeeks, Mikey G, and Bishop made an incredible track. I’m surprised this isn’t the last song on the album. 6 Up definitely solidifies my opinion that I’m not getting a radio friendly album. I feel like I’m back in the grimy 90’s era where street anthems were preferred over top 40 hits. Bishop definitely is doing his thing so far and presents solid material. It’s easy to see that his style is very New York influenced but Scarborough helped developed his style and story. Moving along; we get into “Hard Times”. This soulful biography paints a vivd picture of life in poverty and stereotypes. Bishop can paint images with lyric very well. Hard Times definitely needs a visual as well. I was incredibly shocked when I saw the features on “That’s the way” remix. This song features the legendary MC Lyte and Onyx’s own Sticky Fingaz. This remix just exudes energy and excitement with these two on it. I have no idea how Bishop got this collaboration to happen, but I love it. Brigitte turns up on his verse immensely compared to the original. JD Era and Drake lend their talents to Shorty Grindin’ and I must say its very dope. Bishop definitely has a couple club bangers on here that went unnoticed by the world and I can’t see why, or how? If it was up to me I’d make “It’s fo Twenty” the lead single. Nate Dogg on the hook makes this track absolutely special; the beat is definitely a club banger. This song definitely has hit potential and deserves to be a club banger. Finally we have “My Style” Bishop gets on this street anthem and is reminiscent of The Game and 50 Cent with his flow. I love this song its got a very gritty vibe that you can groove to. I’m disappointed the album is ending here because I’m really vibing out.

Overall, Bishop Brigante puts out a solid project and good music. The songs have substance and lyrics are on point. I love the fact I didn’t get an album oversaturated with features because I came for a Bishop Brigante album, and thats what I got. I really expected more than eight songs on this album, but I can’t complain because I enjoyed them all. Just wish this project was a little longer. I dig the music and can’t wait to hear more from the King Of The Dot co-host. You should have seen my face after finding out how old these songs are; a lot of artists now can’t make music that ages this well.After hearing this I definitely need to keep my ear to Canada’s hiphop scene a lot more.

-Da Homie Shinobi, FTCHHN

Follow Bishop Brigante At:
Twitter: @bishopbrigante
IG: @bishopbrigante

Twitter: @ftchiphopnews , @DHShinobi
IG: @ftchiphopnews

Ms. Hustle “Can’t Knock The Hustle” Album Review

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Can’t Knock The Hustle. Immediately, your thought was the classic Jay-z and Mary J. Blige joint. Well, not in this case. Ms. Hustle showcases her talents on the microphone and showing you the bars aren’t only nice on URL (Ultimate Rap League) and QOTR (Queen of  the Ring) main stages. The Harlem lyricist made it her personal mission to see she gets the respect she deserves with this tape.

DJ Kay slay’s new artist drops her debut mixtape, Can’t Knock The Hustle, with StreetSweepers Ent. The 10-track project has that New York sound that the world lusts for but said was lost and gone forever. Everything from DJ Kay Slay hosting to the features from hip hop elites like Vado, Sheek Louch, Jadakiss, Ransom, Uncle Murda, and more. Hustle completely lost her mind on Warning and Hip Hop Republican freestyles. The bars are completely on point and show the difference a rapper that is a lyricist and a rapper that is an entertainer. Ms. Hustle proves she can go bar for bar with hip hop’s most notable names on this body of work. You’ll see why when you hear songs like, I Wonder Why and Gangsta Muzik.

Ms. Hustle and DJ Kay Slay couldn’t have put together a better mixtape with summer around the corner. Up in Harlem featuring Neef Bucks and Vado is already a certified hit in the streets and gaining massive notoriety by the day. Funk master Flex had it on his playlist starting out as #11 and in one week jumped to #4. Keep in mind Mz. Hustle doesn’t have a big industry label out there paying for airplay. All this is solely off the strength of her project alone. I strongly recommend you go get this tape, NOW! It’s free. Know what, I’ll do you a favor. All you have to do is click here.

Da Homie Shinobi, FTC

Follow MS. HUSTLE at:
IG: @mshustle127

Twitter: @ftchiphopnews, @DHShinobi
IG: @ftchiphopnews

Brizz Rawsteen – RAWTHENTIC x Album Review

C9oGD35XYAAscpFWhen you think of hip hop in North Carolina; a couple names come to mind. 9th Wonder, J. cole, Rapsody, Petey Pablo. Now there’s one more name you can add to the list of the Tar Heel state’s hip hop heavyhitters. Wilmington, Delaware born – Raleigh, North Carolina raised, Brizz Rawsteen, is known for his lyrical ability, unorthodox and aggressive style, and wordplay in battle rap. Brizz is back letting the world know he’s not just nice on stages slaying emcees, but also on tracks too. If you aren’t familiar with his previous project, RAWTAPE, then I assure RAWTHENTIC is a perfect piece of work that can get you familiar and make you join the infamous DARKSIDE.

Black Commission has a mafioso/old school vibe with a lot street knowledge. The song starts off as if he’s having a conversation with a DARKSIDE Soldier or henchmen, not at all. After several listens I realize Brizz in Capo mode talking to you, discussing operations and how business and street etiquette should be conducted. Pretty dope song overall.

Brizz chose to slow things down on For Dat Paper and give you an interesting perspective on how people change when money is involved. Jealousy breeds envy and greed in the hearts of corrupted people. It’s just a sad fact that everyone around you isn’t going to be happy with your success. This track is so vivid with details on actual emotions that it makes it hard to describe. Rawsteen captures those salty emotions of haters so well on this melodic track making it easy to listen and vibe to.

God Status is my favorite song on this whole project. Brizz lost it on this song. Concept. Bars. Metaphors. Perspective. All these factors made this song easy to gravitate to. Frizz proves his pen is just different and mentally can turn something abstract into an audio Picasso. The way Rawsteen incorporates biblical references to his subject matter is glorious. It may take several listens to catch everything. Very unique and interesting song  that I recommend to someone who enjoys bars.

Brizz reaches out to fellow North Carolina emcee, Rain 910, for Godflows. The two lyricist  do a great job going bar for bar on this song. If these two collaborate again, I’d be happy to see it. The rock ‘n’ roll beat is something emcees should lightly tread on nowadays, but this song is good. Shorter than what I expected, I was just getting into the joint.

For this to be a freshmen, independent venture for Brizz Rawsteen; I’m quite impressed. The rise and fall of the whole album kept me engaged and actively listening. The lead single, Better That Way, concludes the album and it’s easy to see the force is strong in the DARKSIDE head honcho. The bars on this song will easily command your attention as Brizz gives rides the beat like 10-speed Schwinn.

Go get that RAWTHENTIC by BRIZZ RAWSTEEN off iTunes, Google, Amazon, and Spotify. Make sure you check his classic battles on Youtube, just search the name and click one. The man won’t let you down, Shoutout to DARKSIDE, Cave Gang, Dot Mobb. Brizz Rawsteen got next, mark my word. And make sure you stay in tune with FTCHIPHOPNEWS, we trying to reach God Status.

Da Homie Shinobi, FTCHHN

Follow Brizz Rawsteen on all platforms:
IG: @brizz_rawsteen
Twitter: @ftchiphopnews , @DHShinobi_FTC
IG: @ftchiphopnews

Q-flo x Poetre’ – Erase Me EP


Today is a day I will forever remember due to spiritually being hurt to the utmost degree. Honestly, I’ve always found refuge through music. The power of rhythm and poetry (RAP) is truly a powerful force when the two combine. Now imagine that power when its fused with the strength of the Lord. In the darkest hour of my day, I was sent an EP from a quite talented artist. A gospel artist, at that.

Philadelphia natives, Q-flo and Poetre’, exalts their Lord and savior Jesus Christ in a manner that anyone from the congregation to the street corner would have to notice and listen to. As an artist, Q-flo, gives you the bars of a battle rapper, but the same message you would get from a minister on his best Sunday. You can definitely tell Q-flo is from Philly; you can hear in the melodic flow, it also has hints of Cassidy and Reed Dollaz. Poetre’ does a great job riding the beat sometimes giving you the feel of Bone Thugs ‘N’ Harmony. At least they do to me. From Track 1 to Track 7, Erase Me is filled with jewels, knowledge, and authentic stories of how people who lived on a windy path found the road of the strait and narrow. It’s amazing how much I enjoyed this tape. Erase Me definitely has replay value and is so refreshing when we are in an era where all artist follow trends and do anything to go viral.

Songs like “Erase Me“, “Got It“, and “Renegade” will definitely grab a hiphop head’s attention, whether backpacker or goon. “You Know” and “2nd Chances” will definitely give you the same feeling you get in church. I wouldn’t be surprised if you did a holy ghost dance while listening to this project by Q-flo and Poetre’. They need a name if they plan on becoming a duo; which I’m highly in favor of. This definitely sparked my interest in Gospel Rap, and I have to ask the man where I can find “The Heart Pt. 1“. Go check out Q-flo and Poetre’ – Erase me EP and let me know what you think.


Will Tesla x A.G.E. mixtape

Finding dope unsigned lyricist is such a great feeling. Being a hip-hop enthusiast that grew up off Wu-tang that’s living in the days where mumble rap and dumbed down lyrics reign; it’s hard to find music with substance. Brooklyn’s own, Will Tesla, gave me an exclusive listen to A.G.E and I must say its NICE! Dope bars. Story telling. Soulful. Artistic and filled with jewels. Songs like “Meant to Be” and the single “Regrets” are guaranteed to have you paying attention to him and following his independent career.

I’ve always held New York emcees to a higher standard and I give the FTCHHN stamp to Mr. Tesla. The Uchiha inspired “Nothing to Lose” is CUH-RAZY! The punchlines, metaphors, and aggression make this song standout easily. Just when I thought Tesla was in cruise control, he switched gears. *wordplay. I love the anime inspiration and lyrical wizardry on this track. This track has so much life that it’s impossible for me not to like it.

Will Tesla definitely caught my ear with “Arrangement.” The laid-back melody appears as a song for the ladies but actually is vivid life story, you can tell every bar is actually experienced. “Anxious Heart” and “Arrangement” definitely are reminiscent of a Skyzoo and Soul Council collaboration. “Journey” deserves its own video. The Mr. Feeney intro definitely caught me off guard, but the message puts me back in junior high school trying to find myself and find my worth.

Been Threw It” is my favorite track on this tape. The verses exchanged between Cleveland’s, Treazon, and Tesla ride this street banger incredibly. Both brought a lot of energy and made it easy to play this track on repeat. It’s clear that these can hold their own on the mic lyrically with some that are on the Billboard Charts.

Soon as A.G.E is available to the public, you’ll hear it first. Till then…GET FAMILIAR!

-Da Homie Shinobi

Royce Da 5’9 – Layers (Layer by Layer Review)

royce-da-5-9-albumAlright ya’ll so I decided to break down Royce da 5’9, Layers, layer by layer. This is a track by track review. All this is my instant reaction and thoughts. All first verse, All first verse. I chose this because I want all the reaction and emotion to get through to you. Too many people are filtered and political. I’m just going to be real as real can get with each track. Let’s get it.

1. “Tabernacle” (prod. by S1 and J. Rhodes)

This is the lead track and first single off the Layers album. Royce paints the most realistic picture with words of his life that his humanly possible. The song’s details are so deep; its unbelievable. S1 did an epic job on the beat; it gives a church feel and fuses with the emotions Royce’s verses perfectly. I loved this song when Royce first released it and still do. This song has lots of replay value.

2. “Pray” (prod. by Mr. Porter)

Royce and Mr. Porter continue with the church theme on “Pray”. It starts with a child praying for all those who are in need. You have to keep in mind that we live in an age where the third verse is almost unnecessary because so many artist can’t keep the audience engaged that long due to lack of vocabulary and talent; the lack of lyricism in today’s artist is very apparent. Royce hits you with 4 verses that are completely noteworthy and quotable. But what else do you expect from the best quarter of the slaughter. Yes, I said it.

Don’t pray for me, pray for respect
Pray to get something different from rich and away from your debt
N*gga, I’m straight to cassette
Y’all digital, y’all about as physical as finger under some balls, coughin’ while taking a test
Too many artists get mistaken with best
Cause they on the charts, you sleepin’ on me, I’ll come and wake you to death
While I pray against all the violence and shootin’
ISIS got Obama sittin’ down with Vladimir Putin
     -Royce da 5’9, Pray

3. “Hard (What Was I Thinking)” (prod. by Antman)

Ok, Im in the intro and this song already has a feel that would make it epic live. The build up is crazy. I’m waiting for the beat to drop, but the anticipation from the first drum is just wild. OMFG! THIS SONG is NUTS! I’m diggin this song so much but laughing so hard because how Royce goes from his intro to the hook. When Royce said he’d have all his enemies look in the mirror and see the crying Jordan me with all of their tears…Bruh! Royce is showing out on this album.That third verse though. Sheesh! If you love lyrics and got a REAL love for bars; Hard might make you throw your phone at the wall. The song is bananas. Shoutout to ANTMAN!

4. “Starter Coat” (prod. by Mr. Porter)

This beat got that grimy 90’s feel, and I love it. The title alone puts me back in the days when Starter jackets were on every kids’ Christmas list; with a matching hat. If you not from this era, you can’t fully grasp the feel of this song. This song is crazy. Royce telling Billboard to put some Respek on Pac’s name. Talk that TOP 5 DEAD OR ALIVE sh*t.

If ‘Pac ain’t on your list then you ain’t fuckin’ logical
I’m talkin’ up the shit, not no fuckin’ 5 or 4
What you gon’ tell me when I tell you ‘Pac introduced me to the fuckin’ UNLV Starter coat
     -Royce da 5’9, Pray

5. “Wait” (prod. by Jake One)

Royce flow on this just to ill. And the Patois “Let dem wait”. It all just combines with the JakeOne beat so well. I can definitely sit back and vibe to this on my own with no problem. Nickle definitely got a way of putting words together that can go over heads easily. Those over the head bars are what I love and make me play songs over and over.

I get into bitches quick and then I get distracted
I’m like the stock market, just like that, my interest crashes
    -Royce Da 5’9, Wait

6. “Shine” (Skit)

7. “Shine”

The skit through me off but this song comes in with a great vibe. Royce starts singing again. I’m having flashbacks of the Bar Exam days when he did, In The Club. For those who don’t know Nickle-9 can actually sing. I’m trying to tell you. I can’t tell you how Royce can change his flow so many times and NOT fall off beat. Dope song.

Hip-hop is my house; watch these philosophies win
Around artists I stand out like I locked my keys in
I forgot my goal at twenty-three was make a classic
Walk away like Tiger with my nine iron then take the master’s
    -Royce da 5’9, Shine

8. “Lincoln” (Skit)

….. I don’t need no rubber ’cause I’m raw. LMFAO

9. “Flesh” (prod. by DJ Khalil)

Royce got one of the craziest flows in the game. This beat give me a feel of what Willie Dynamite and Ron O’neal theme would be in 2016. Royce up here losing his mind on this song. It’s just crazy. The punchlines and some of these bars are insane. Hold on, I’m running this back.

My flow so heaven sent
When I go to heaven, I’ma go “Heaven here you go”
I’ma go tell God “I know I promised that I’d never steal your flow”, I lied
    -Royce da 5’9, Flesh

I’m just vibing out to this interlude right now. Be back with ya’ll right after this. Don’t know who singing….but she can sang.

11. “Misses (On My Line)” (prod. by DJ Khalil)

Smh. Ain’t nothing worse than a side chick who want to be the main chick. Side dishes can’t the entree. Bench players can’t be starters. Sorry, but yeah. Royce goes in on this track. First song on Layers, Nickle’s in storytelling mode. Its a dope one. Not your typical love story, and damn sure not a story we aren’t familiar to hearing. Gotta hate when a woman flip the script on you. Shoutout to K-Young coming through on the hook too.

All I heard through the screaming
Was something about me following chicks on Snapchat
And her having pics of me and her in the sack last
And she ’bout to go sell it to a site
She even told me she already sent an email to my wife
Damn, my lil misses blackmailing me and shit
I guess she fell for the hype
     -Royce da 5’9, Misses

12. “Dope!” (prod. by DJ Pain 1)

This dude Lincoln is stupid funny. I’m weak. LMFAO. On the real, the song slows down from the rest of the album but the song comes alive when Loren Oden comes on. Royce rides the track so smooth. This song will be heavy for those in the trap.

I just had a job interview, they asked if I ever been to jail before
I said “Yes” then I got up and left, like fuck this shit I’mma sell dope
Cause right now I’m dead broke
    -Royce da 5’9, Dope!

13. “America” (prod. by S1)

S1 come back and gives a straight banger. Words can’t describe how hype this beat got me. Nickel didn’t hold back on the hook or his verses. The message is deeper than you think, but you’ll see. The track will get everyone on their feet but at the same time excite some minds. So far this my favorite on the album. You’ll see what I mean.

The fact that y’all living is crazy cause alcoholism got black people tapping out quicker than Savion Glover
And we ain’t no Avión lovers
We dying each time that the Hennessy pours
Our plugs are the mothers on the other side of our umbilical cords
    -Royce da 5’9, America

14. “Layers” ft. Rick Ross & Pusha T (prod. by Mr. Porter)

Time for the title track. I’m already hype by Pusha T verse. Son is talking that talk. This one of his best verses honestly. Mr. Porter put his foot in this beat. Can’t stop nodding. Wait! Nickle is second on the beat? He not batting cleanup? What’s going on here? Royce is killing this verse though. Never been that big a fan of Rick Ross but this mafioso/trap style is ill. His voice is overpowering; so I see how he can bat clean up. Dope verse from Ross. Rozay must be studying Cuban Linx 101 right now. This song in my top 5 on the album.

I’m in bed with three major labels
And I ain’t talkin’ ’bout wearing clothing brands
Underground locomotive man
Putting on a global show that no promoter can
I philosophize with wise words from learned lessons
In my world mistakes turns to blessings
The hate turned to destiny
I’m saying Lord Jesus while the Lord’s most gorgeous creatures take turns blessing me

-Royce da 5’9, Layers

15. “Quiet” (prod. by Mr. Porter)

Royce spitting so many bars but out her showing out on this beat. I can picture Royce milli rockin’ in the booth but still barring the hell out of Mr. Porter’s track. This is crazy. Tiara out here with some clever lines. Definitely have to get familiar with her. Nickle back with another verse and some crazy metaphors. Braille spikes? N*gga what?  Best quarter of the slaughter. Don’t make me say it again.

I’m the last of a dying breed that I’m out here killing off
Four of my closest friends don’t know their papas so I pull out rows of dollars to show ’em these real forefathers peelin’ off
    -Royce da 5’9, Quiet

16. “Gottaknow” (prod. by Mr. Porter)

Track starts with a 21 gun salute and Wutang reference. I’m already amped for this. Royce ain’t even a minute in the song already switching flows and haymaker bars. Royce really TALKING to us on this one. Royce switched flows AGAIN and DOUBLE TIMING! Im about to throw this keyboard and leave. This song is top 5. Personally my favorite. I got one more song to go. Mad this album coming to an album.

Who said I couldn’t buy my way into heaven?
All I need is a bottle, a couple dollars, a couple people that’ll keep me company
And who love misery as much as me
    -Royce da 5’9, Gotta know

17. “Off” (prod. by Mr. Porter)

Royce is signing off on this track and summarizing all his industry ups and downs. Can’t believe Royce been in the game almost since Kobe became a Laker. Nickle comparing the difference from the times of cassettes to iTunes. Damn, its really fading out. Smh. Is there a bonus track. Wait. Maybe is there a hidden track like back in the days and I have to wait 5 minutes or fast forward? Smh. No hidden track. It’s really over.

I’m a real nigga
I done lost a lot of friends over the years
I’ve been losing a lot of hair
Been told that I’m out my mind
But if you only knew what was inside it
You too would choose to stay out of there
    -Royce da 5’9, Off

Go get layers here:

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/layers/id1086523875?app=itunes



No Slaughterhouse Collab?

Arsonal- You Seen It Coming Album Review

uQXJ-qkgArsonal Da Rebel aka “the most disrespectful rapper in battle rap” just dropped his mixtape You Seen It Coming. You might know Ars for battling on URL, King of The Dot, Dot Flop, Grindtime, and MTV’s Wildin’ Out to owning his own platform, UDubb Battle League. The Newark, New Jersey emcee is here to make sure ya’ll know his sh*t real, his sh*t raw, his sh*t is authentic; and you can’t spell BARS without puttin’ that ARS in it.

Arsonal comes out the gate with a biographical intro detailing life in his Newark, NJ streets; more specifically the Southward section. The beat for this first track is ill and Ars did his thing on it. He tells everything from about he grew up, crippin’, crime, women, to battling. Definitely grabbed my attention and me anticipate the rest of the project.

Next on the album is certified street banger! Wit Da Sh*t is a song that needs a video that give you the vintage Smack DVD and Jordan Towers music videos feel. The nostalgia it provided me was incredible because I miss when music gave you that raw, grimy feel; and wasn’t all about sounding like whoever hot at the time. Definitely top 5 on this album.

The title track featuring Rick Rogers, You Seen It Coming, has a Migos type feel to it. Rick is first on the beat and then Ars speeds up the flow and proceeds to well… lose his mind on the beat. This song might get a chain or two to get snatched; cause a mosh pit in the street; a lady might go upside a woman head with a Stiletto bumping this one. This track is filled with the energy that Lil Jon’s music had in the early 2000’s.

Arsonal hits up Uncle Snoop Dogg and Sammie for Eastside, Westside. Yes, the “I like the way you look at me” Sammie. This song is perfect for a pool party this summer. Gangstas are going to bring their Chuck Taylors out of retirement and boogie to this one. Dj’s put this on your playlist; you won’t be sorry.

Bottom line, Arsonal out to prove battle rappers can make songs. The stigma is gone. You want hood bangers; they’re here. You want club songs; they’re here. No matter where you from there something here for you. Very solid freshman album from Arsonal Da Rebel. The only way to go from here is to the top.

Go get that Arsonal, You Seen It Coming from iTunes and Google Play now. Get in tune now or get left behind.



Google Play:


Favorite Songs:

Wit Da Sh*t

Eastside, Westside

Get Your Sh*t Together

Souf Ward Story

Fucc It Up

-Eugene Landers @ftchiphopnews

Alfred Banks- A Beautiful Prelude EP review

ABP1 (1)Lousiana’s own, Alfred Banks has been a busy man on hiphop’s underground scene receiving accolades from everyone from Complex magazine to Djbooth.net for lyrical prowess and unique flow. Now Banks is back to curb the hunger of his fans with A Beautiful Prelude EP.

March 20, 2014

Alfred Banks’ A Beautiful Prelude EP drops on March 20, 2016 and the first song is March 20, 2014. This track puts you in the same place Alfred was when we he got the bad news of his brother’s passing. The tracks paints a picture where Banks is getting praise and successfully rising in the hip hop scene and has plans for him and his brother to come back together. Alfred has so many questions about his brother’s untimely passing and what lead up to the events. Banks does well bringing that pain and level of emotion into the premier track.

A Beautiful Song

A Beautiful Song truly lives up to the title. I didn’t think Banks could possibly get any more in-depth or vivid until I heard this. 3-20-14 tells you how it was receiving the news of his brother’s death. This time Alfred takes us before the event and what conversations with his brother were like. You are supposed to be close to your siblings, but Banks shows that they both had a mutual love for hip hop and respect for the culture. The way Alfred Banks captures his memories lyrically makes this song really special. The mellow vibe and calm flow makes this song easy to help cope with pain and carry on when the pain is at its worst.

Bless You

Banks is talking to his recently departed brother and updating him on everything that has happened since his death. You can almost say the song is written in the form of a letter. Banks is updating his brother on life as a rapper and how he feels of his passing. Very soulful and upbeat melody to a very gloomy topic; that right there makes this song much more special. Most artists want you to feel their agony of losing a loved one. Banks does this as well as, let you feel that he can still look to the sky and smile and know that his brother is smiling on him also. Out of the three songs this is my favorite.

Overall, this project has intrigued me to see what a LP from Alfred Banks would be like. Not a mixtape, but and album. He has the talent and skill to catch more fans from outside the underground. Alfred has the ability to make himself unique but still can find yourself comparing him to underground greats like Charles Hamilton and Mickey Factz. Do yourself a favor and go get the Alfred Banks EP: A Beautiful Prelude EP at https://underdogcentral.lnk.to/FTLLM

T-top: Bear Witness II Album Review


Following the powerful debut of Rain910, Mr. “Before you watch this battle, you gotta hear my track first”, another of North Carolina’s elite emcees step up to the plate. T-top hits the streets with Bear Witness II. What rock I was under when Bear Witness I dropped I don’t know. The freestyle Friday champ most notabily went viral for his 3rd vs Sno drops Bear Witness II. Appearances seem quite limited on this project. T-top shares bars with King Mel, Kronik,  fellow North Carolinians; Shyst Vadar, Rain910, and Brizz Rawsteen.

T-top starts the album with “Destruction”. The song starts with someone chanting “please help me to understand lord, I’m trying to make it as a man lord.” The Park Lyfe general takes you down memory lane where you see how the trap really took its toll on T-top. Lots of real life bars; not too much wordplay. One line that did stand out was when Top said “It might not make sense to you how I had a basement filled up with attics(Addicts).” The tone for this album is already set; lots of dopeboy talk, lots of hood experiences, betrayal, hoes, and trapping’.

As a new artist, T-top shows he can really write with the best of them. Thinking feat. Chris Mills is a song that can ignite a trap nigga’s PTSD. Song is too real. Can’t you tell is a song that boasts how Bizzy’s team get money and the hardships that come along with it. Very dope track. Used to is my favorite song on the album. The collar of Rain910, T-top, Shyst, Acashondeck, make for a dope trunk banger. Grammy has a very dope trap beat and Top does great riding the beat and can easily be played in a club or a turn-up. Nothing to Something has a real grimy hood vibe; Needs to be used for Respect Life or Money and Violence. *HINT! Wooda Black batting clean-up on the song. Shoutout to that man.

T-Top ft. Shyst Vadar, Rain910, Acashondeck- Used 2 Visual

When I saw Brizz and Top on the same track, I had so much hope for this track since it features two of NC’s best battle rappers. Brizz runs anchor on the song and completely wrecks this track. The aggression and passion made this verse one of my favorites on the project. The Come Up has a soundtrack vibe to it and ABSOLUTELY love it. If you been in the streets and need a lic, then you can identify with this song. Its cinematic. Anytime you see someone struggling and needs to make money, this song comes to mind. AGAIN *HINT, Money and Violence Boom P., Cloud 9! Make it happen.* We reach the end of BWII with Benjamin; the outro has a very orchestrated and classy beat. Love the piano. T-top raps telling you how people envy his success but still true to what he is. Something we all go through at one time or another.

Overall, GREAT FUC*ING PROJECT! As a first time listener I will say I have to get Bear Witness I and stay looking out for future music and battles. Go get BWII on iTUNES now. Don’t miss out on this. Do it for Park Lyfe, North Carolina; most of all For The Culture.

Purchase T-top BEAR WITNESS II here

-Eugene Landers