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 – Ke$ha ft. Wiz Khalifa, Andre 3000, T.I., and Lil Wayne, Get Sleazy 2.0

get-sleazyBack in 2011, Ke$ha let us know that she did not need your brand new Benz, or your Booshy (???) friends. I have to admit, this remix has some incredible rap verses on it. Wiz Khalifa was in his prime (well, better than he is now), Andre 3000 was Andre 3000 (and still is), T.I. hadn’t fallen off yet, and Lil Wayne has one of his better quick verses on this song. It is quite lovable for any mainstream Hip-Hop/Rap fan.

The winner of each would probably be T.I. if you ask me, mostly because that was one of the first verses that I learned. Andre 3000 and Lil Wayne tie for next, though. I almost wish I could hear a version without Ke$ha, but we have to thank her for the remix. The beat is drum-y and percussion-y as well.

Overall, I would rate the remix at 9.5/10. Ke$ha messes with the song, but otherwise an enjoyable listen. You can check out the song below:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – Mr. Probz ft. Chris Brown and T.I., Waves (Remix)

Of all of the popular songs on Billboard’s Hot 100, Waves has been my favorite and stayed in that spot for the last several months. There are plenty of fine songs that have popularity, otherwise they would not be selling well (Well, except for Anaconda. I don’t know how that is still there). Waves however appeals to my music tastes the most out of any song.

Naturally, adding two artists I like to an already excellent song can make it even better. Or it can make it worse. Or, there is a third option that is rarely considered: It could still be good, but remain pointless to not listen to the original. I feel as though this remix does that.

The remix is solid overall, especially Chris Brown’s added vocals. T.I.’s rap verse is decent but misplaced, as his is not really the best track to put Hip-Hop into. Chris Brown sounds better than he has in a while, but it is not anything different from what we heard by Mr. Probz.

The song is great and I recommend a listen, but in the end I believe I like the original Waves better. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it; or if you try to fix it, set out to make it better. Even a change in the lyrics by Brown may have made the song better. Overall, I would rate the song at 8.75/10. I love the original Waves, so obviously if you have yet to hear that I would recommend a listen to that first.

So what do we think of the remix? Is it better or worse? Or do you agree that it brings practically the same amount of enjoyment as the original? Let me know what you think and check out the newly-released remix below:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – DJ Holiday ft. Meek Mill, Future, T.I. and Stuey Rock, Flexin’ On Em

First off, how come there is an apostrophe after “Flexin” but not before “Em?” Is the whole song subliminally aimed at Eminem and I just missed it the first couple of listens?

Whenever I see the words “flex” or “flexin” I instantly compare the song to “No Flex Zone.” In other words, I assume that each of these will be way better. I actually find Flexin’ On Em a solid Hip-Hop track despite a couple of shakey names (notably Future and Meek Mill).

I cannot decide if I actually like Meek Mill’s verse. When I first heard the hook I was a bit put off, as it is annoyingly repetitive. The fact that Meek Mill kept me around meant he did something right, despite hearing many complaints about his verse. Future was also on point with his flow, though I have to admit his voice induces an immediate throat-clear for me. T.I. sounded back in shape after a few inconsistent and disappointing months (save for announcing the dual album with Jeezy, that was pretty rad news). And we all know how I feel about Stuey Rock on the hook, who has virtually been silent up until now.

DJ Holiday keeps the track relevant and provides an appropriate beat, and there are not really any bad verses on this track. Overall, I would rate it at 9/10. If you are a Hip-Hop/Rap fan, you should go over to HotNewHipHop.com and give the song a listen:

http://www.hotnewhiphop.com/dj-holiday-flexin-on-em-feat-meek-mill-future-ti-stuey-rock-new-song.1959113.html

-Austin Heath

Hear It First – T.I. ft. Pharrell, Paperwork

T.I. brings Pharrell on to his new single, which just came out very early this morning, and I wanted to share it before it gets too big. I think T.I. goes in pretty well and the hook is decent, sounds typical of Pharrell though.

The song has potential to be a hit, and I can see plenty of people liking it. Not really my favorite song but still worth sharing. Fresh track, so you can see what you think below:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – DJ Drama ft. Future, Young Jeezy, T.I. and Ludacris, We In This

We In This is one of my favorite rap/hip-hop songs out there, and DJ Drama is one of the most underrated artists in the game. This track is sick and a real pump-up song. Every verse is consistently solid, especially T.I. and Ludacris, who absolutely slay their spots. The beat is hard-working and production was successful in making the song excellent.

This was one of the singles off of DJ Drama’s debut album, Quality Street Music. The sequel, Quality Street Music 2, is on its way and should be here next year. I will be recommending other DJ Drama tracks as time goes on, as overall some songs are not my thing but there are a few that are worth sharing. This is one of them.

Unfortunately, Jeezy’s verse is a bit bland and Future’s hook, while catchy, is impossible to understand. The song is very easy to listen in full, it is entertaining and definitely worth a listen. Overall I would rate it at 9.5/10. This is an all-timer for me, so I seriously recommend a listen 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