Aaron Cohen – See Red (Official Video)
Aaron Cohen – See Red (Official Video)
It is so great to hear new music from Stash Marina! The wildly talented rapper, singer’s and all-around-awesome person’s latest Xposed is absolutely her best work yet. The whole EP feels like a sort of personal essay or poem. Really Stash describes Xposed the best on the Ep’s Intro. Over a new age slow jam of a beat, Stash sets things up for us: “I like to keep it upbeat, happy. But that’s not the reality of things. There’s a time to show people they can have fun, but still express how I feel about shit.” And Stash truly is expressing how she feels. She totally bares her soul on Xposed. The Ep is a mediation on relationships, The good, bad and ugly. And, how they go from good to bad to ugly.
One of the standout tracks later on Xposed, is the dark, wavy R&B of “Swoop’d.” Stash tells the story of a relationship starting out with infatuation: “everything about you I had never seen before/pants, shoes, attitude.” But, as the song goes on we see things fall apart: “you just making shit up to a twisted reality/you don’t want me and/you sabotage it again and again and again.” At this point Stash is angry sad, maybe confused, but then we get to the aftermath when she sings “Yeah I got my heart broke/I don’t give a fuck/because at least I got to try this shit out” Stash’s music has always been self aware and insightful, but Xposed is really next level. Those lines at the end of “Swoop’d” are an important theme throughout the whole project. Stash is right there in the moment feeling these powerful emotions, but at the same time she is taking a step back and reflecting on everything she has been through.
Right after “Swoop’d” is the the EP’s saddest moment, “lovelost.” Stash opens the track the very heavy and very real statement “This is a sad one. It was the only one that actually mattered.” And, she goes on to rap about reconciling memories of an ex who she has feelings for– “visualizing your face thinking of you as nothing but that gold,” –but who she knows has hurt her and will do it again: “you still didn’t hear me/tore me up to watch it/you knew me too well/and you still jumped out of pocket.”
I know I described Stash as a “rapper and singer,” but really her music is unique a hybrid of both. On one of the Ep’s more playful moments, the excellently named “you betta be muh fuckin jesus,” she raps for the most part, but sings her adlibs in the background effortlessly. Stash has always mixed singing and rapping in her music, but her vocals on Xposed are the strongest they have ever been.
The production also is a perfect fit for Stash’s balance of emotional depth and introspection, but also just her downright grooviness and swag. Over its 8 tracks, Xposed features a diverse batch of soulful and complex production with contributions from many of her frequent collaborators. Feathermeal, Don D, Froze and Blown (of Candy Drips fame!) and Stony Willis all have beats on the project. The production ranges from the ethereal reggae of “RosyHips” to the lo fi jazz rap of “you betta be muh fuckin jesus” to the bass heavy funk of “muerte del amour.” Not to mention that unique synth anthem for the aforementioned “XPOSEDintro”, and the solemn, minimal sounds on “Lovelost.”
Even though she is being very open and vulnerable on these songs, we should in no way take that as sign of weakness. As Stash points out in the intro: one side of Xposed is exposing her feelings and experiences, the other is about exposing folks who have wronged her. “fuk boi” has got to be one of the most beautiful R&B songs calling out shitty men. And, the more songs calling out shitty men the better. The whole song is full of great lines, but one of my favorites is: “And you bragging to your boys how your money game specific/but you show up to my crib with a beer/asking can we split it/oh you ballin now.”
The righteous anger continues on the triumphant “free.” Stash once again goes in on people who are her way: “excuse me? Do I need to go get my peeps and kick your bitch ass on Canal Street?” It’s a hilarious line, and it’s clear Stash is not taking anyone’s shit. But, Even though this track is much more aggressive than other moments on Xposed , Stash still keeps things positive: “stop hating on us get your shit up with us.” Having “free” as the EP’s final track is a brilliant way to sum up the project. Stash has gone through a lot. But, in the end she is moving forward with her head up, handling her shit. She’s free.
You can listen to Xposed, and all of Stash’s music on her bandcamp
L.A.-based producer and musician Nedarb has one hell of a discography. Not including production features, Ned has released over 100 songs on his own SoundCloud, including tracks with artists like Slug Christ, Yung Bruh, Eric Dingus, Cat Soup, Little Pain, Lil Peep, Wifigawd, and countless others. Now, as he prepares to tour through November with Ghostemane, Wavy Jone$, and Chxpo, as well as planning a few more releases before 2018, we decided to reach out to Nedarb and talk about his process, his drink of choice, and the influence of cloud rap.
Candy Drips: Hey man, how’s it going? Care to introduce yourself to the reader?
Nedarb: Yerrr. I’m Nedarb or Ned or just plain old Braden. I’m 24, live in Los Angeles and am primarily a producer among other things.
Candy Drips: You’re closing out the year with a month long tour. Are you all ready to go?
Nedarb: Yes I’m going on tour with Ghostemane, Wavy Jone$ and Chxpo! I’m as ready as I can be. We’re buying some props and shit so it’ll be fun.
Candy Drips: What can audiences expect from your sets?
Nedarb: Honestly every act including myself on this lineup has crazy lit sets. Tons of mosh pits, crowd interaction, intimacy but mainly blood, sweat and tears.
Candy Drips: The tour goes from Minneapolis to Chicago and passes right through your home state. Are you salty you don’t get to play back home? When’s the last time you were in Wisconsin?
Nedarb: Wisconsin actually isn’t my home state. I grew up in Alberta, Canada throughout my elementary years then mainly grew up in New Hampshire. I’d say NH is my home state. I moved to WI in 2010 cuz of my dad’s job/me going to college there. But nah, I’m not too salty tbh. I have a handful of people I’d like to see but I get to see them enough in other cities so it’s not too bad. I haven’t been to Wisconsin since maybe winter of 2015.
Candy Drips: You’re one of the more eclectic producers in the game, with ties to names like Ghostemane but also Milo and even with a side project known as The Cigs. Are you open to all kinds of music? Does it just depend on the day?
Nedarb: Yes, I listen to all sorts of music which is why I make all sorts of music. I don’t like to stick to one genre. I think more artists should be braver and try out different shit. But at the same time sometimes that ends up being corny. I just make what I wanna hear. Obviously I’m mainly involved in rap music right now but I grew up playing in emo bands and even making techno music on Garageband in high school. But yeah, shout out Ghoste that’s my bro and Milo is a day one homie I’ve known since 2010 where we met in college. More The Cigs stuff in the works too, shout out Cortex.
Candy Drips: Can we expect to see a Nedarb blues album down the road?
Nedarb: Ehhh maybe not Blues, I’m not a good enough musician to play Blues music [laughs].
Candy Drips: Candy Drips is dominantly a cassette label. Do you think tapes will always have a market?
Nedarb: Yes, I highly believe in and support cassettes and any physical copies of music because someday the internet could get wiped like who knows, and all of the digital music would be lost. Physicals are like fossils that people will find hundreds of years from now.
Candy Drips: We chatted for a while after James Laurence from Friendzone passed earlier this year. Can you speak a bit on the duo’s influence on your music, and the cloud rap movement in general?
Nedarb: Cloud rap was definitely the coolest shit to me in terms of rap music in the past 10 years. I love ambient music, emotional stuff, trap, melodic shit, etc. etc. and it was just a perfect mix of all of that.
I’d say Clams Casino and Friendzone are my top 2 production influences for sure. They just made beats that could make me cry. I’d never felt that way about other production before.
Candy Drips: Do you make music every day or does it come in waves?
Nedarb: It comes in waves. I’ll go weeks without making music but everyday I try to do something productive in terms of my career. Life gets hella busy tho, I really have to make time to make shit, but at the same time I never like to force anything. when I was visiting home in NH last week I made the most shit I made in the past few months, mainly because I felt refreshed and peaceful at home. Also whenever anyways says, “Come to the studio” or “Let’s work right now” I never want to [laughs] I just do shit on my own time and send it out.
Candy Drips: What can we expect from you as we close out 2017 and enter in 2018?
Nedarb: I’m TRYING to wrap up an album featuring production from myself with all my homies on the vocals. That’s gonna take a while though. The only shit I have planned aside from random singles produced by me here and there is a collab tape w/ TRiPPJONES dropping around Halloween and a collab EP w/ lil zubin sometime this winter. Oh, and also I’m pretty sure i’m gonna be doing some shit with Chynna, which I’m most excited about. Also just more GBC shit of course.
Candy Drips: What bottle of liquor are you grabbing from the corner store?
Nedarb: Lately I’ve been drinking tequila. I forget what the one I get is called but it’s like hella tall and the bottle is dark blue [laughs].
Candy Drips: What’s your favorite album of the year?
Nedarb: Prolly the new Corbin album.
Candy Drips: Any words of wisdom / final thoughts?
Nedarb: Yeah, don’t let girls break your heart.
Let’s take a trip back in time to this past summer where DC rapper WIFIGAWD released the twelve song project Trenches to Riches. Fully produced by Oogiemane, the cohesive project is a dark and deeply energized trap classic. From the artwork to the host from DJ Smokey, you already know what you’re getting into. “Lickmobb Pt. 2” is straight fire. Sheesh.
Atlanta rapper UnoTheActivist continues to climb. His newest album is an absolute problem. At sixteen songs in length (with one bonus track), LiveShyneDie features heater after heater. While I’m unsure of production credits, the project features Lil Duke, Famous Dex, Kodie Shane, and Tripe Redd, all who help establish UnoTheActivist as one of the hottest rappers coming up right now. If you need more, check his ‘Sorry for the Wait’ EP from this summer.
Chicago rapper MFn Melo has finally delivered with his debut project Melodramatics. The Pivot Gang member (Saba, Joseph Chilliams) enlists some of Chicago’s finest for the eleven song rundown. Bar heavy and full of smooth production (courtesy of Saba, Cory Grindberg, and DaeDae Pivot), the album is yet another fine addition to the Chicago hip-hop scene. If you need more, be sure to check out the music video for “White Cheddar”. Go.Absolutely.Crazy.
JoeyBagaDohNutz – AVALANCHE! (prod. by BLOWN)
TOO LATE DONT READ by NATTYMARI
Go ‘head Nattymari. I’d really love to see him live with a few projection screens, fog machines and promethazine. He is the beast in the house of witch just melodically plodding through, one uncategorizable thump at a time.
I wrote this seven years ago and it still rings true. The uncategorizable thump connoisseur Nattymari returns with a new album out now on the equally underground Clan Destine Records. Both stalwarts in the witchhouse scene but known for so much more than that labeling, Natty and Carl Clan Destine have pushed real vibes, championing DJ Screw, obscure southern rap, house, techno, minimal synth, LoFi and basically all things experimental. Much like this label Candy Drips, and its creators. It comes from a crystal clear love of rap and electronic music, all its filthy aspects, a desire to explore them, cultivate them, contaminate the mainstream from fissures in the depths while never engaging much with it, except to maybe snatch a sample, illegally. Which brings me back around to that wanting to see him live bit, it wasn’t meant to be, Nattymari is a ghost in the machine, a recluse, transmitting from a self commited exile.
I don’t want things to go back to any Golden Era in music, I just want progression through experimentation and Nattymari has never let me down. Through tracks and visuals he has been throwing down the gauntlet for over a decade. And this album, Too Late Dont Read is no slouch in the throwed department.
From the jump, its already a journey. Gypsy Woman is a mellow, warped percolator that begins to jack like a raver dragging themself from the floor once the ecstasy high has burned off a little. The bass on His Masters Whisper is ominous and Nattymari utilizes hi-hats like the Legendary Traxster did in the 90s, he weaponizes them. I’ve Seen The Greatest Minds Of My Generation Destroyed By Meme Music gives me chills, a fully layered jaunt that reminds you, if you were fortunate enough to see them, of the videos he has created to accompany his sonic mutations. Its that fleshed out. Speaking of flesh (trade) And Super Creep sounds like a sex droid malfunctioning, humping the floor, crawling spider-like towards its horrified client (soon to be victim) while it’s insides violently bleep glitched music snippets as sparks shoot from its orifices. On If This Was Seven Years Ago All You Rappers Would Be Juggalos, a monster synth line is accompanied by a hilariously angry diatribe.
The B side starts with the slow burn of Her Smell and the Impact of Evil then immediately revs up next with Hose, an off kilter beat with uptempo club touches and the title track, T.L.D.R has that post footwork urgency too. Next up, Cubby Ting is a dubby ting, a King Tubby ting, skanking along at a real rude pace. Slowing it down even more, Fuck Everybody hits that boulevard cruising speed and plays like a DJ Screw grey tape that has been warped in the heat of a Cadillac glove compartment. Complementing the chaotic flow of this album Bama Ghost is the only feature on the next track, Got All That Somethin with a delivery like a based Brotha Lynch Hung or more accurately, a Houston freestyle like my personal favorites, Big Wen from Beltway 8 or Al D from S.U.C. Kaybar closes it all out with a ghetto tech and breaks adventure clocking in at a minute and a half. Its not just some beat tape. It’s different. It’s Nattymari.
-CECIL BLAM DEMENTED
We’re getting dark with this one. Take a trip to hell with the five song EP Dystopia from Wavy Jone$. Fully produced by STILL, the EP is a testament of the power of evil ass trap music. The kind of music to play to terrify your neighbors, to blast in the car as you conduct a seance, to worry your family members at this year’s Thanksgiving. While you’re at it, be sure to check out Wavy Jone$ with Ghostemane and Nedarb in November.
Chicago rapper Adot went absolutely apeshit with his newest set of visuals. The 85 second animated music video feels like a virtual reality mushroom high, taking you through wormholes and new dimensions. Courtesy of Nick Visuals, the animation does nothing but assist the already strong song, which comes produced by Draedaskimask and which you can stream below.