Music Recommendation – Single – T.I., B.o.B and Kendrick Lamar ft. Kris Stephens, “Memories Back Then”

memories-back-thenWhile the song did have a brief run on the Billboard Hot 100, “Memories Back Then” is one of those mainstream Hip-Hop songs that you can toss in the category of “Good Rap Music” Or “Rap Music That Isn’t Rae Sremmurd Or Bobby Smurda”. I hate playing the “Popular music is awful” card, but when it comes to Rap, that has become the case with acts such as Sremmurd, Smurda, and Young Thug. But I’m sure I have gone on that tangent before.

The song features three expert lyricists, who set the bar for real verses and use their flow to their advantage. While I had yet to hear a great story by any of the three, this one did not disappoint from any of the camps. One by one, they go into a story from their younger lives, and open up the vault of memories based on other women and their last encounters with them. Each verse is superb as it is fascinating and focused; In fact, the chorus takes away from the song’s credibility more than anything else.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

9.25/10

This is definitely a song with excellent lyricism and some of the best work by each of the three rappers. You can check out the song below:

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Hear It First – B.o.B ft. JaqueBeatz and T.I., “Graduation Camp”

bobI was a bit conflicted on whether or not to write about the ever-falling-off B.o.B’s new song Graduation Camp, but I figured a catchy hook was enough to give it a mention. B.o.B brings on some Atlanta (well, Jaque is from Georgia, but I don’t know a damn thing about the state except for oranges and Atlanta) friends to make his follow-up to his Trey Songz-assisted disappointme – erm, song Not For Long.

The song is decent, and T.I.’s verse is one of his better spits in the bucket in a while. Production is also solid and finds the right amount of balance, making me glad to see JaqueBeatz’s presence on the track.

However I am worried about where B.o.B’s career is going the way he has been sounding lately. All I can say is I miss his music from Strange Clouds. Never understood why I liked it so much though, always just felt like easy listening. Regardless, you can hear Graduation Camp first below after enjoying my rambling by going over to HotNewHipHop.com:

http://www.hotnewhiphop.com/bob-graduation-camp-feat-jaquebeatz-ti-prod-by-bob-and-jaquebeatz-new-song.1961357.html

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Music Recommendation – Single – Juicy J ft. French Montana, LoLo Monroe, Wiz Khalifa, and B.o.B, Bandz A Make Her Dance (Remix)

I think we can all agree one of the most annoying trends of 2012 was the Bandz A Make Her Dance craze. That being said, one good thing did come out of it: The remix. No, not the one with Lil Wayne, or any others that I have heard except for the one I am writing about now.

Normally I would make a snarky sarcastic remark, but I do want to focus on this track as I have a lot to say about it. Poor French Montana slips his way onto songs with artists who I actually like as if he’s nudging me like “Will you talk to me now please?” to which I respond “Ugh, fine.” But this is only because this is one of the few decent French Montana verses. I did say decent though, that does not mean I want to go to your house for a sleepover.

LoLo Monroe, meanwhile, came out of nowhere. I had never heard of her and just assumed when I first heard of this remix that she would be similar to a Honey Cocaine clone, where I would have walked away immediately. I was pleasantly surprised by her verse, which may be my favorite on the song.

Wiz Khalifa raps about things that aren’t weed (well, mostly). That’s different, but the verse is a little overrated. I hear a lot of people talk about how his verse was the best, to which I respond a firm “hahahahaha no.” His flow is decent but the verse just feels like it is topically all over the place. At least the other verses stay on focus (for the most part). I do not want to say it is the worst, but I just feel like anyone who says Wiz Khalifa’s Bandz A Make Her Dance verse is better than LoLo Monroe or B.o.B is doing the listening thing wrong.

Speaking of B.o.B, his verse is excellent. B.o.B has the power to either seriously surprise me or just make me slouch back and click out of my YouTube tab (See Not For Long or Play The Guitar, but I still say that Play My Guitar was one of my favorite Andre 3000 raps. Actually that’s a good song to go listen to, B.o.B’s raps aren’t great but hey Andre 3000 is in it). So back to reviewing Play Th – Bandz A Make Her Dance, I mean. B.o.B sounds good if not more of the same above.

Juicy J gives us another rap verse that sounds much better than the original in my opinion, but I have heard others say he put his better work in the first. So if I had to rank these artists in the song, it would have to be:

1. LoLo Monroe

2. B.o.B

3. Juicy J

4. Wiz Khalifa

5. French Montana

None of the verses are really bad, but sorry French, our relationship is going to be a long and bumpy road if you want to gain my love. Overall, I would rate the song at about 9.5/10. I think I have gone over everything, 500 words later. Give the remix a listen below:

-Austin Heath

P.S. Oh and might as well listen to Play The Guitar, which I may or may not rate at 8. – no, just sharing the song for Andre 3000’s part:

Music Recommendation – Single – Trae Tha Truth, I’m On 2.0

There is honestly no point of listing all of the rappers in this song. I just wrote about I’m On earlier, which is the original Trae song. The “remix” (even though it hardly sounds like the original, so I just call it a sequel) is actually quite good. Any rapper who you may call “crap” or “not good” could prove you wrong with this song, as the verses are rather good, if not unfocused.

I said my complaint in the last one and I will say it again, what is this song trying to convey? You are on what, exactly? The verses sound excellent and the music is good but it feels empty. Even though the second I’m On is the same length as the first, 2.0 features several more appearances.

So now I go through that thing where I rank the verses, though this one is a bit easier than the first I’m On because there are actually some not-so-great parts in this song here and there:

1. Kendrick Lamar (who else did you expect me to pick?)

2. B.o.B

3. Bun B

4. J. Cole

5. Jadakiss

6. Big K.R.I.T.

7. Gudda Gudda (actually not bad)

8. Tyga

When I say rapfest about these songs, it is not only because of the amount of popular rappers on two tracks, but also how many are in the music videos (a lot, by the way). So overall, I would rate the song at 9.5/10. Some very solid verses and a great song, but no chorus sadly and a couple of a disappointing Tyga verse (but then again, what did you expect?).

Give it a listen below:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – Tech N9ne ft. Hopsin and B.o.B, Am I A Psycho

With Halloween creeping up this month, now is the time to show off the perfect hip-hop song. Am I A Psycho features a few chilling verses from Tech N9ne, Hopsin, and B.o.B. Despite the bizarre statements from the song from all three rappers, it features unmatched and creative raps from all three artists. Am I A Psycho is quite the song, and I’m about to make a bold statement about it.

Earlier today I said in another post that Tech N9ne was one of the all-time greatest rappers, and Hopsin almost made my Top 10. And of course B.o.B is a solid rapper. However, with all three on this track together, I can say that Am I A Psycho is one of the all-time best rap songs to be released in several years.

Every verse is completely original and each passes off the insane act very well in their own different ways. Acting through music is a skill that many artists cannot achieve. It truly is awe-inspiring how deep Tech N9ne, Hopsin (especially) and B.o.B (for a very long time and on the hook) go in.

Overall, I have to give this one a 10/10. Yes, this is one of my top-rated tracks. This already has a lot of views but not nearly enough for a perfect song. I seriously recommend a listen to it below:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – B.o.B ft. Chris Brown, T.I., Arena

This is just one of those songs that you can’t get out of your head for months. I still listen to it here and there two years after first hearing it on Strange CloudsArena features a dream-worthy collaboration of B.o.B with T.I. and Chris Brown.

The hook is killer, B.o.B is consistent and solid for having over two minutes of rapping, T.I. absolutely murders his verse, and the beat/piano is just chill-bearing. This is one of those high-up songs in my favorites list, but I wanted to share this one early so people could get a good idea of how good of track this is.

This is a great motivational song. Overall, I have to give it a 9.75/10. B.o.B is good, but his rapping can get tedious towards the end. However the rest of the song is simply perfect and I am still in shock that Arena never caught on. Video below hasn’t even passed 1,000,000 views yet! Check it out below:

-Austin Heath