Monday, October 31, 2005

Florida: Hip Hop's Best Kept Secret? [Part 4 - Asamov]

"Blow Your Whistle (Remix)" from The Trailer Mixtape (2005, 6 Hole Records)
"Gone Head" from And Now... (2005, 6 Hole Records)

Asamov, an up-and-coming Jacksonville crew consisting of (from left to right in the picture above) Therapy (MC/producer/DJ), J One-Da (MC/producer), Willie Evans Jr. (MC/producer) and Basic (MC/producer/DJ).

These multi-talented artists were the first signees to MLB switch hitter Desi Relaford's 6 Hole Records in 2003. In 2004 they released their first single with the label, "Standing Room Only", which featured an unlikely combination of guests: J-Live, Wordsworth and...Cassidy? The single went through three pressings to accomidate demand.

Asamov really picked up steam in '05. Early in the year they released the precursor to their full-length, "The Trailer Mixtape", which featured several tracks from the upcoming album, along with a few tracks from previous efforts. A standout track from this release is the "Blow Your Whistle (Remix)", which originally appeared on the "Standing Room Only" single in edited form. Additionally they released their second 12", Supa Dynamite, which features Mr. Lif of Definitive Jux. This month they released their full-length release, "And Now...". The album has been met with critical acclaim, receiving high marks from the press circuit. That includes us here at Diggin' Music, this album is as solid as they come. Expect an interesting blend of Jurassic 5 and Little Brother flavor (which isn't a surprise, considering 6 Hole label mate 9th Wonder contributes a beat). "And Now..." can be found at the usual online Hip Hop shops, go out and support if you like what you hear.

Still not convinced? Click here for a free download of their "Gettin' to Know Us" mixtape, a.k.a. "The Return of Otis Holdem", courtesy of 6 Hole Records. More information on Asamov can be found at

Monday, October 24, 2005

Tapedeck #3

Move.meant - "The Rebirth" from The Move.meant EP (2003, Wax Paper Records)

Move.meant, a Los Angeles-based group consisting of Champ (MC), Spider (DJ) and Just Beats (producer). You may have heard their music once before, they did a few tracks for the Crash soundtrack last year. "The Rebirth" served as their debut single and the lead track to their first EP, "The Move.meant" in 2003. For more information on Move.meant, visit their website

Strict Flow - "Move!" from Without Further Ado (2003, Authentic Recordings)

Strict Flow, a four-man crew out of Pittsburg. They got their start with a 12" on Brooklyn's Raw Shack Productions (former home of J-Live, Mr. Complex, Yeshua dapoED) in 1999. By 2003 they had founded their own label, Authentic Recordings and released "Move!" as the lead single to their long-awaited debut full-length "Without Further Ado". Just some dope, no-nonsense Hip Hop here.

The Procussions - "Miss January (Snippet)" from 5 Sparrows for 2 Cents (2006, Rawkus Records)

An advance MP3 leak from The Procussions to promote their upcoming album, "5 Sparrows for 2 Cents". The track can currently be purchased in it's entirety on iTunes and will be out on 12" soon. We've been looking forward to the new album for a minute now, and it sounds like we'll be in for something special once it drops. For more information, visit

Thursday, October 20, 2005

CYNE - Evolution Fight

CYNE (Cultivating Your New Experience)
"Rousseau feat. Rico Suave" from Evolution Fight (2005, City Centre Offices)
"Moonlight" from Evolution Fight (2005, City Centre Offices)
"Running Water (Music Video)" from Evolution Fight (2005, City Centre Offices)

"Evolution Fight", CYNE's sophomore outing, is a versatile, multifaceted experience. In one respect, this album serves well as soothing, rhythmic backround music. This can be accredited to the soulful production of CYNE's pair of producers, Speck and Enoch. The beats are extremely lulling, almost hypnotic, with the aid of tranquil vocal samples and the occassional use of live instrumentation. Expect nothing overpowering here. Furthering the experience, Speck and Enoch make frequent use of brief instrumental interludes in between tracks. It's easy to zone out to this album. Overall you can expect a relaxing, forty-some-odd minute listen.

In another respect, if you make a concious decision to pay attention beyond the beats, you're met with insightful, intelligent lyricism. "Evolution Fight" is laced with vivid commentary on social woes, political angst and the hardships of black Americans from the group's two MC's, Akin and Cise Star. Both MC's have a non-abrasive delivery, which blends well with the production. While this is a plus, the smoothness of their delivery can at times detract from their message. If you make an effort to hear what they have to say, you'll be in for a surprise. Underneath the album's soothing rhythm lies a serious, at times dark view on many of life's struggles.

On first listen, the combination of serene, calming beats with flowing, non-abrasive lyricism may strike you as boring. Make an effort to let this album play through a few times, you'll be glad you did. This album really grows on you. After having this album in my rotation for several months, there's no doubt in my mind that "Evolution Fight" is one of the very best albums 2005 has to offer.

For more information on this Florida-based crew, visit their website at "Evolution Fight" is in stores now.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

What's Up, Fatlip?

"What's Up Fatlip? (MP3)" from What's Up Fatlip? 12" (2000, Delicious Vinyl)
"What's Up Fatlip? (Music Video)" from (2000, Delicious Vinyl)
"What's Up Fatlip? (Documentary)" from (2000, Delicious Vinyl)

"What's Up Fatlip?", the lead single from former Pharcyde member Fatlip's long-delayed solo debut "Thelonliest Punk" (originally to be entitled "Revenge of the Nerd"). This self-reflective cut is produced by Fatlip himself, under the pseudonym Edy Crahp (Pharcyde spelled backwards).

Following the success of the single, a music video was put together under the direction of Spike Jonze. During the filming, Spike also conducted a mini-documentary on the filming of the video, in which he interviews Fatlip on the lyrical content of the track, amongst other things. Many topics are discussed, including Fatlip's musical influences, his thoughts on past drug use, and the embarrassing origin of his verse on the classic Pharcyde jam "Oh Shit". Both the music video and documentary ended up being released on DVD. The music video appeared on Pharcyde's "Cydeways - The Best of The Pharcyde" DVD in 2002 and the documentary appeared on Spike Jonze's "The Work of Director Spike Jonze" DVD in 2003.

So, why am I making this post? It seems Delicious Vinyl is finally releasing the full-length as a CD+DVD set. Come on, for real this time! One-sheets have been sent out to retailers, including the artwork and a track listing. Keep an eye out for "Thelonliest Punk" in early November (of 2005, I hope). Now that's what's up!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Ohmega Watts - The Find

Ohmega Watts
"That Sound feat. Lightheaded, The Procussions and Noelle" from The Find (2005, Ubiquity Records)
"Treasure Hunt feat. Sugar Candy" from The Find (2005, Ubiquity Records)

Ungh...faunky! Ohmega Watts (one-third of Portland's Lightheaded crew) hits us off with his solo debut, "The Find", an eclectic mix of funk, soul and Hip Hop flavor.

What makes this album dope? For one, its refreshing. "That Sound", a west coast posse cut consisting of Lightheaded and The Procussions, with Noelle of The Rebirth singing the hook, personifies my sentiment. This is one of the most vibrant and upbeat tracks I've heard all year. Can you say "fresh"? This is only the tip of the iceberg, "The Find" is filled to the brim with funkiness.

An impressive detail of "The Find" is that it's completely self-produced. Ohmega Watts often takes a break from the rhymes to show off his talent on the production side of things in the form of instrumentals and vocalist-backed cuts. A stand-out example of this would be "Treasure Hunt", which features the soulful vocals of Sugar Candy. These tracks serve as a welcome departure from the purely Hip Hop cuts, forming a diverse yet cohesive album.

Above all else, what sold me on this album is its consistency. Despite clocking in at over seventy minutes long and being twenty-two tracks deep, all tracks meld together to create a solid, front-to-back listen. It's not often an album of such length isn't met with the gripe of having too many "filler tracks". This definitely isn't the case with "The Find", nothing here is expendable. From its funky, rare groove Hip Hop bangers to its soulful, vocalist backed tracks, this album represents the perfect balance of both quality and quantity.

To learn more about Ohmega Watts, visit his crew's website at "The Find" is in stores now.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Dag' Yo.

"Dé Jà Vu" from Object in Motion (2005, Last Arc)
"Whatever It May Be feat. Cloke" from Object in Motion (Japan Version) (2005, Miclife Recordings)
"No Sheets (Remix)" from unreleased (2005, Miclife Recordings)

Diggin’ Music: Let’s start it off from the beginning. Who were your inspirations musically growing up?

Dagha: Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Kool G Rap, Stevie Wonder, Del The Funky Homosapien, Run-D.M.C., Rick James, John Coltrane...I think I could go on for a while. The innovators, what I would call pioneers of good music.

DM: At what point in life did you realize Hip Hop was something you wanted to pursue as a career?

D: The first time I rocked a show and the told the crowd to say “ho!” and they did it. I realized that I had a voice and needed to use it to communicate my art.

DM: Your first venture into music was with Cloke as the group Cloke-N-Dagha. How did you end up meeting Cloke?

D: He was my next door neighbor in Mattapan. We actually started off as b-boys for this local group then decided that they were whacked and started writing our own rhymes.

DM: You recently announced on your website that Cloke-N-Dagha is back together. When can we expect a release from you two?

D: The album is done and it's actually in phase two of its production cycle. We shopping it now for the best deal but most likely it'll come out on Last Arc in the U.S. hopefully by the summer of '06. Believe me when I tell you too it's ridiculously hot! There's a bonus track on the Japan release of “Object in Motion” (Dagha’s new solo album) called “Whatever It May Be”. A little appetizer…

DM: Later in the mid 90’s you were part of “The Legendary Knights of the Roundtable”; a group consisting of you, Insight, Mr. Lif, T-Ruckus, and several others. How was the group originally formed?

D: We all lived in one house. I actually lived in the was crazy man. Insight was like a machine, he would record heads all day and we would just come up with concepts etc.. We came up with The Knights. We actually made a lot of noise with it too. I would love to see that re-released. We actually put together two albums... manufactured and distributed them ourselves and created the ill buzz on the street level…

DM: How about a “Knights of the Roundtable” reunion? That’d be something to hear.

D: Yeah it would! Let me know if you hear anything (laughs).

DM: A few years back you were a part of Electric (Company), which released the highly-praised full length “Life’s a Struggle”. Since then a few of the members have broken off into a new group called Project Move. Is this a product of any bad blood between members, or is it a side project of sorts?

D: Nah, there's no bad blood there at all. I have nothing but love for those cats. I've actually recorded six songs with Anonymous since and I'm still cool with Moe and Raheem. The Electric thing is something that I feel we all grew from and was necessary for us to raise our professionalism to the next level. I'm REALLY looking forward to an Electric reunion. We did not maximize the capabilities of our work for sure.

DM: Can we expect a new Electric album in the future?

D: When you have five cats with five different energies and five different work ethics it's hard to stay on the same page. We're good though, stay tuned...I have a feeling you haven't heard the last of Electric. There's still a bunch of unheard, unreleased tracks that out there!

DM: I remember reading a year or two back that your solo debut “Live by the Dagha, Die by the Dagha” was finished. Is this the album now known as “Object in Motion”, or did you end up reworking the album?

D: It was totally reworked and revamped. Crushed and remolded. I've been sitting on tracks and rhymes for years waiting for this opportunity. “Live by the Dagha, Die by the Dagha” is an album that was done with Ampt Records a few years back. Because of serious business differences I left that album with them. Fuck it, like I said I'm sitting on so many tracks…

DM: “Object in Motion” is due out soon through Last Arc. What can we expect to hear once it drops?

D: “Object in Motion” is the past, the present and future. The path that I have been on while living this Hip Hop culture. I've been through so much personal shit, so many groups and producers and labels and I'm still in motion. So many stop positive movement and become a non-factor.

DM: What’s next for Dagha? Is there anything in the works that you’re willing to speak on?

D: I'm in motion man... On the business tip, I'm co-partner with Insight and Last Arc so we have a lot of plans in store. You can definitely look out for the Cloke and Dagha project, my sophomore LP, Midnight Shipment (Dagha, Insight, and Adad), Soloplexus (Insight as six MC's) and a bunch of raw untapped talent with sick productions. The whole package. I got a lot of thangs I'm sitting on and I'm just waiting for that right door to open at the right time.

DM: As a Boston native, do you think it’s currently being given its due props as a Hip Hop hotbed?

D: Not at all. Not until there are more Hip Hop venues. Not until the true raw talent gets its opportunity to shine. This ain't like NY. Boston is too small and the competition is too big. In addition, the venues are scarce. The scene in Boston will mislead the person looking from the outside. From the outside, you will see Hip Hop nights at bars and pubs but nothing in the urban areas. The same cats always get the same props and there's just so much more here. Fuck it, maybe I'll just do a documentary on wassup!

DM: What music have you been listening to recently, Hip Hop or otherwise?

D: 70's music, John Legend, Michael Jackson, Chris Botti, Insight, Edan, Project Move, Dagha. I try to keep it in the fam. I listen to a bunch of stuff but don't really feel it.

DM: Do you have a favorite Hip Hop album of all time? If you can’t narrow it down, how about a few favorites?

D: Run-D.M.C. - Raising Hell, Slick Rick - The Great Adventures of Slick Rick…, NWA - Straight Outta Compton.

DM: When it’s all said and done, how would you like to be remembered in the legacy of Hip Hop music?

D: Someone who LIVED Hip Hop and did it from the heart. Someone who recognized he had a voice and used his voice to create positive energy. Dagha loves the kids… it's all about the seeds, the hereinafter.

DM: Thanks again for your time. Any last comments?

D: Buy the album. I'm hungry and it's good.

You heard the man. The album can currently be purchased at, and will be available in stores nationwide in November. For more information on Dagha, visit his website Until next time...