[Teklife] DJ Spinn/Nick Hook/Scatta – Old English (Footwork Flip)

As I’ve said time and time again, Teklife is the most important thing coming out of Chicago right now. They’re an innovative crew comprised of talented Djs and producers that have developed their own sound and is recognized instantly when played. They’re truly authentic. It’s easy to make really fast music sound abrasive and obnoxious and with tempos that don’t usually fall below 160, it’s remarkable how this team makes songs that groove this hard. ‘Old English’ came out in June of this year with high regard obviously since it has 3 of the heaviest hitters in 2015 on it. The song stuck around for maybe like a month and then got drowned out by all the other “hot” releases of the summer and that seemingly was that. The song was good, not amazing, but it was cool to put on at parties and hearing Young Thug and Freddie Gibbs together is theoretically a dream collaboration. Teklife however, made this song incredible. With the traditional footwork groove coming in at about 30 seconds, hearing Thug and Gibbs rap over footwork is beautiful and hopefully this sound can come together as more than remixes someday.

DJ Spinn – Old English


Balcony Life$tyle x Kimblee – Summer Mix

Don’t mess with Texas. Clothing brand Balcony Life$tyle & Lone Star State-based DJ & producer Kimblee come together to release a 43 minute mix, Summer Mix, which features artist’s that have are all either sponsored by BL or have been spotted rocking the brands threads. The H-Town influence is strong on this compilation featuring Freddie Gibbs, Curren$y, Pouya, Denzel Curry, A$ton  Matthews, Yung Simmie, Xavier Wulf, and numerous other buzzing emcees. Pour up a double cup, swang the whip from side to side, and enjoy this nearly hour long mix that’s a perfect fit for anyone’s summer playlist.

Juttin Does P4K 2K15

It’s hard to not get emotional thinking about the 10th anniversary of Pitchfork Music Festival, which took place in the West Loop’s Union Park last weekend. Since it’s beginning, Pitchfork has brought eclectic lineups of indie artists together and has solidified a position as one of the best music festivals in Chicago. In my 5 years attending the festival, I would definitely say this year was the most impressive year yet.
The presence of Chicago music was definitely felt throughout the whole weekend, with Wilco on Friday, Vic Mensa on Saturday, and Chance The Rapper closing out the whole festival on Sunday. With Pitchfork originally from and based in Chicago, this heavy dose of local music was very fitting for an anniversary year and gave the festival an extra glow. The festival also showcased tons of new artists from around the country and the world, like D.C. singer Shamir as well as rocker chicks MOURN from Barcelona. After all was said and done, I didn’t see a bad set at Pitchfork this year (however I was kind of sad Vince Staples couldn’t make it to his set).
Mac DeMarco, feelin’ it

There isn’t a way to describe how it feels to walk through security lines into a world revolving around music. Excitement is probably the closest feeling, but it’s heightened. In that moment, the world is your playground and all the stress from your job or heartbreak from breaking up with your significant other is thrown out the window. It’s an even better feeling knowing you’re in a giant American city feeling this way. This feeling is what has gotten me addicted to music festivals in my short life. Every harsh winter in this city is worth it when summer rolls around and I get to experience that feeling after freezing my ass off for 6 months. Also, being this was the first year I could really embrace the after parties now that I’m of legal age, I WENT BRAZY. Thanks to Boiler Room and 1833, I was able to catch the trifecta of super chefs (Lil B, ILoveMakonnen, and Father) and even hit up some other sweet yadig’s, courtesy of Them Flavors.


When it came to the festivals performances, I couldn’t have asked for a better display of amazing musicianship and showmanship. Whether it was Ariel Pink freaking the shit out of a crowd of people expecting to see Vince Staples or Mac DeMarco flirt with basically performing a stand up routine, I was impressed with every set I saw. I’m also pretty sure you could feel the earth shake from Michigan Ave. during A$AP Ferg’s set. Oh, and how could I forget Vic Mensa’s Saturday night performance? I mean dude brought out damn near half the city on stage with him to perform “U Mad”, creating what Fox News would’ve probably called “a riot”. All jokes aside, the performers seemed to share the same excitement the fans had throughout the whole weekend, which created so many lifetime memories.

Ariel Pink being…Ariel Pink

When it was time for Chano to close out the weekend festivities, there was a buzz in the air amongst festivalgoers, eagerly waiting to see what the young rapper had in store for his hometown. What we got was nothing short of spectacular. In true Chicago fashion, Chance brought out the Chicago Bulls bucket boys, a church choir, and Chicago legend Kirk Franklin in what most people have dubbed the best performance they’ve ever seen him put on (most Chance The Rapper fans have seen him several times. I’m probably at close to 30 times myself). At one point, when Chance was performing “Everybody’s Something” (just one of all the amazing songs on Acid Rap), I started to tear up thinking about how someone I personally know has such massive influence on his city and the hip-hop community AND WE’RE THE SAME AGE. I mean, seriously, this kid had a whole fucking park full of people singing every word to damn near every song he played and dude would’ve just graduated college (if he had gone). Though I didn’t see Chance at Lollapalooza last year, I imagine I would’ve felt the same way. However, the fact he was THE headlining act this year made the whole festival feel like his, or what he probably would’ve called “all of ours”. And that’s just it; Chance was the perfect pick to close out the 10th anniversary of Pitchfork Music Festival because we all feel our own ownership of his music, like we do Pitchfork. It is truly a festival for artistic young minds to gather and be joyful while the weather is nice and the vibe is right. It was only right the most positive member of our booming music scene got to send everyone home satisfied.

Freddie Gibbs reminding everyone no one is as hard as he is

After three days of dancing, trekking through an unbelievable amount of mud, drinking good beer, seeing ALL of your friends, and nerding out about who to see and what you’ve seen, Pitchfork ended with not a stone overturned. In its 10 years in Chicago, Pitchfork Music Festival has become a hub for Chicago’s coolest to gather and enjoy the better things in life: music, friends, and good weather. As I prepare to move out of the only place I’ve ever called home, I am so happy I was able to experience what I would call was Pitchfork’s best year. It makes it a little harder to prepare to leave, but I know if I ever need a dose of summertime Chi, Pitchfork festival will give me a very hearty dose. Until next year…

Weekend Finds – 4/27/15

I managed to have quite a busy weekend while accomplishing literally nothing to help me pass all my classes to graduate in 3 weeks, but I managed to find some raw new shit…so I’ll mark this weekend as a W.

Freddie Gibb – Pronto (Music Video)

This song isn’t new but I just recently learned of this music video which IS FUCKING B-A-D-A-S-S. The world will never be ready for Freddie Gibbs. He’s simply too real.


My buddy and crazy man D.R.A.M. got his new track “Excessive” chopped up by female DJ, DJ OHSO. Apparently they’ve got a whole project of chopped and screwed music coming soon? Can’t wait for that!

Her – Quite Like

I think I saw Hypetrak retweet this song on Thursday or Friday, but either way, this jam is smooth and melodic. Don’t know shit about the band but they’ve certainly got my attention now!

Teddy Jackson – Too Play

Teddy Jackson is one of the nicer, more humble male vocalists you’ll ever encounter. IF HE EVER DROPS A PROJECT…(where’s it at bro?), you better believe I’m going to be alllllll over that! For now, check out this dope beat Teddy cooked up for this little collaborative instrumental project, Brain Food.

Cashmere Cat – Adore (Feat. Ariana Grande) [MsinngNo Remix]

Cashmere Cat premiered this song at his Lincoln Hall show with DJ Spinn and Different Sleep a couple months back and when he did, I texted my 15 year old, Ariana Grande loving cousin to tell her. She thinks I’m basically the coolest now. I really like what MssingNo did to this track, as MssingNo seems to be able to do no wrong.

The Purist – Pyrex Scholar

UK producer The Purist has already worked with some of Chicago’s best, he has recently collaborated with Mick Jenkins and Soul Trap originator & Trap Genius MC Tree. Today he drops Pyrex Scholar via Daupe!, stream before purchasing the vinyl. Pyrex Scholar is a 10 track outing that features Freddie Gibbs, Your Old Droog, Roc Marciano & Tree and a vinyl debut for Buffalo Rapper WestSideGunn. There are two Bandcamp only bonus tracks with verses by Maffew Ragazino and another from Roc Marciano.

The Purist explained that the title of this project and his blog with the same name come from a Ghostface lyric. “Yes, it’s from that Ghostface lyric… on that Ghostface song “Kilo” he says, “Pyrex scholars / Professors at war, killing partners for a million dollars.” I just liked the phrase of Pyrex Scholar in the way of describing someone who is an expert at making crack. In a way, it’s very similar to what I do. It’s not like I’m taking terrible records and making great records. I’m taking really good records, beautifully made pieces of music, and giving them a polish, that extra 10% and adding a rapper to that formula.” In a recent interview with Max Bell for PassionWeiss The Purist praises Chicago, “I think Chicago is just an absolute hub of talent right now. For me, hand on my heart, I would say Chicago is like New York in the ‘90s right now. It’s just pouring with talent.” Great proof of that is on Death & Taxes featuring Tree. Enjoy Pyrex Scholar.

Freddie Gibbs – Pronto (Prod. by Mikhail and Pops)

Freddie Gibbs dropped a surprise 3 song EP Pronto yesterday. This is the title track and it is excellent. Gangsta Gibbs will be performing at Pitchfork this summer with Madlib, who solely produced the stellar Piñata. You can stream the Pronto EP in it’s entirety before purchasing, it’s as good as you’ve come to expect from ESGN’s Freddie Gibbs.

JMSN – Street Sweeper Remix (Feat. Freddie Gibbs)

Today, Detroit RnB virtuoso JMSN delivered the official remix to his hit, “Street Sweeper”, featuring the ever-growing Gary, Indiana MC Freddie Gibbs. And to think the original couldn’t get any better…Gibbs delivers a verse for the females, unlike his usual style, that fits the soulful melody of the track beautifully. Be on the lookout for JMSN’s upcoming album “JMSN (Blue Album)”, due out December 9th.

A-Villa – Carry On Tradition Ft. Big K.R.I.T., Roc Marciano, Freddie Gibbs, Action Bronson, Mikkey Halsted & Many More

“Carry On Tradition is the epitome of a passion project, and was literally created by Villa as a tool to pass on knowledge from one generation to the next.” Alexander Fruchter, Closed Sessions
A-Villa’s long awaited “Carry On Tradition” debut LP is out. He has been working on this for years and it shows. The music and features are crazy good, as is every other detail. The sequencing of the songs and the recording and mixing quality is first class. It sounds big and full and layered. The features are like a who’s who list of hot emcees including Freddie Gibbs, Action Bronson, Big Krit, Mikkey Halsted, Roc Marciano, Scheme, Big Pooh, Vic Spencer and many more. The record tells a story and it’s very cinematic to me. A-Villa’s own story is inspiring. He goes to college to fulfill his parents’ dream for him, achieves success in the financial industry, and at night works on his passion which is music. He enters and wins a beat making contest which encourages him to continue. That win brought a recording session with Mikkey Halsted. A turning point came when Guru from Gang Starr passed. A-Villa said “I didn’t know Guru personally, I was just a fan of Gang Starr’s music coming up. But it triggered something in my own life and sort of put things in perspective, in regards to my own personal legacy. I can be here today and gone tomorrow, but what exactly am I leaving behind for my loved ones or the world to remember me by. I mean money is nice, but you can’t take it with you. But then it hit me, I should create art by making my own music. Competing and winning local producer competitions gave me the confidence to make songs and those songs and the birth of my daughter motivated me into creating my own work of art which is my album Carry On Tradition.” You can stream it before buying on iTunes or ordering a CD or vinyl which includes a bonus track featuring Chicago great MC Tree.