Heath McNease-Straight Outta Console: The Nintendo Thumb Mixtape (2011)

My Rating: 95% (A+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 95% (A+)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Tanuki
  2. Make That Paperboy
  3. Konami Kode (Bill and Lance’s Excellent Adventure) featuring Playdough
  4. 40 Hard Bars
  5. Bomberman
  6. Do the Rambo
  7. Chopstlevania featuring Red Cloud
  8. Mmm…Donuts!
  9. Style Points featuring Playdough and Manchild (aka The Dangle Brothers)
  10. First Person Shooter
  11. Mayor McCheese
  12. The Day My Bars Dropped featuring Sev Statik and Freddie Bruno
  13. Kain’t Moov Nuthin
  14. LATFH
  15. Toads Magoats featuring Cas Metah and Sivion
  16. Bonesaw’s Ready
  17. Turtle Van Damme
  18. Glass Joe vs Gabby Jay featuring Okwerdz (Grind Time)
  19. Nintendo Thumb Remix featuring KJ 52

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Nostalgic for the Nintendo 64 days.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Fits the concept perfectly.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

If it exists then yes.

Final Thoughts:

What a brilliant concept, Nintendo and Hip Hop were a huge part of my childhood so having the two on one album is a quick way to my heart. Honestly, this album feels like it was made specifically for me. But from a marketing side of things it’s a great way to reach a wider audience, like it or not a lot of hip hop fans are actually nerds who blast it while getting some sick pwns, the gangster side of things doesn’t really fit the typical hip hop head. Heath McNease is one of the most underrated Christian emcees, he’s witty, fun, and gets serious when it’s called for (not at all on this album). Straight Outta Console: The Nintendo Thumb Mixtape is so so so much fun, any gamer or hip hop fan should give it a spin.

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Homeboy Sandman-Kindness For Weakness (2016)

My Rating: 86% (B++)

Pitchfork Rating: 67%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 77%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Heart Sings
  2. Eyes
  3. Real New York (feat. I Am Many)
  4. Seam by Seam (feat. Until The Ribbon Breaks)
  5. It’s Cold (feat. Steve Arrington)
  6. Talking (Bleep)
  7. Gumshoe
  8. Keep it Real (feat. Mystro)
  9. Earth, Wind, Fire (feat. yU, Tah Phrum Duh Bush & Shad)
  10. Funhouse
  11. Sly Fox
  12. God
  13. Nonbelievers
  14. Speak Truth (feat. Kurious, Breeze Brewin & Aesop Rock)

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Looking for some great hip-hop similar to Aesop Rock’s style.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Yeah, it’s not great, but it’s not awful either.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yes!

Final Thoughts:

I first heard of Homeboy Sandman through his song Not Really, I played it a lot and was impressed by his really laid back flow. I then saw him live with Aesop Rock and loved his show. Kindness For Weakness is a surprisingly solid album, I usually find with rappers like Homeboy their albums can be really hit and miss from track to track, I kind of expected to pick and choose with this album, but I ended up really finding myself invested in the album as a whole. From his well known slow style, to really fast rapping, to catchy courses, Kindness For Weakness may just be the perfect spot to start when investigating the Sandman.

Howlin’ Wolf-The Howlin’ Wolf Album (1969)

My Rating: 80% (B+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 80%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Spoonful
  2. Tail Dragger
  3. Smokestack Lightning
  4. Moanin’ At Midnight
  5. Built For Comfort
  6. The Red Rooster
  7. Evil
  8. Down In The Bottom
  9. Three Houndred Pounds of Joy
  10. Back Door Man

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Eating BBQ and drinking whiskey during a hot summers day.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s hilarious, I’m assuming this is the inspiration for The Black Keys album Brothers.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

It’s great to have on the go, but don’t really wanna mellow out to this one.

Final Thoughts:

You can’t think of blues without thinking of Howlin’ Wolf; a truly innovative and influential artist that was as cool as they come. The Howlin’ Wolf Album does a great job at showcasing his talents, and no song is too grating or disappointing. But the problem with most Blues albums of the time is that after a few tracks it just kind of sounds the same. It’s to be expected, and he keeps enough originality for it not to become a huge pain, but a little more diversity could’ve made this a true gem. Still a good listen nonetheless.

The Human League-Dare (1981)

My Rating: 80% (B+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 80%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. The Things Dreams Are Made Of
  2. Open Your Heart
  3. The Sound Of The Crowd
  4. Darkness
  5. Do Or Die
  6. Get Carter
  7. I Am The Law
  8. Seconds
  9. Love Action (I Believe In Love)
  10. Don’t You Want Mett

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

In the mood for easily danceable electronic from the 80’s.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Hilarious. It’s weird. I like it.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Already own it on vinyl and it’s a lot of fun.

Final Thoughts:

The Human League is so much fun, but more than that they are political and heartbreaking as well (check out Seconds off this album). Dare is a great introduction to this band, it’s so 80’s sounding in the best possible way. Like somebody singing over Sega Genesis soundeffects (especially Do or Die) Dare has enough substance and interesting beats to make this album worth your time.

Honeycut-The Day I Turned To Glass (2006)

My Rating: 88% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 88%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. The Day I Turned to Glass
  2. Tough Kid
  3. Shadows
  4. Butter Room
  5. Dysfunctional
  6. Dark Days, White Lines
  7. Polaroid Lullaby
  8. Silky
  9. Aluminum City
  10. Crowded Avenue
  11. Exodus Honey
  12. Fallen to Greed

Favourite Song on Album:


Listen to This Album When You’re:

Feeling like an uplifting funk/electronic album.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Classic. Love the electronic look to it.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Oh, you know I do.

Final Thoughts:

Honeycut was an exciting find for me, I loved Quannum Projects growing up and seeing that they primarily release Hip-Hop/Rap albums I was surprised to see a Funk/Electronic group being introduced, I’m so glad I checked em out!

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