A film about Northwest hip-hop from

Chemtrails

Kung Foo Grip are a wicked band with an amazing live show, and so I’m damn excited they’re playing this weekend at Barboza. In anticipation, I’ve been spinning their EP Chemtrails, which I always connect with Kylie Jenner for some reason. There’s so much to like here—the epic percussive synth stabs of “Zerkin,” and the guest verse from fellow Cabin Games label-mate Silas Blak on “ANTI-Social,” where the spitting and the beats circle each other in the ring, sparring. “Goin Up, Lookin Down” expresses the band’s frustration with breaking through, repeating the mantra “Gas, Brake, Gas, Brake,” a theme that appears again on “Pyramid” in the lines “break it down and rebuild.”

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A film about Northwest hip-hop from

#TEN

Shout out to DJ Zeta and his ongoing series of All City Chop mixtapes. Pictured here is his latest, #TEN, a sampler of the best the local hip hop scene has to offer, featuring tracks from DoNormaal, Raz Simone, Dex Amora, Nacho Picasso, WIZDUMB and many more. He’s an awesome champion of Seattle hip-hop, has his fingers on the pulse, and has introduced me to more than a few amazing local musicians who were not yet on my radar. Get this sampler free on Bandcamp. Alternately, go see Zeta perform live at Vermillion every third Friday as part of his ongoing “Wild Style” residency.

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A film about Northwest hip-hop from

Aura EP

There’re folks who rap on the beat, and some who rap offbeat, and then there are souls like Dex Amora who cartwheel whatever damn way they please like it’s the most natural thing in the world. A while back I was talking with some local hip-hop luminaries who referenced Dex as a cat to watch out for–and they are on point. The Aura EP pictured here is one of two short, and superb, records he released in 2014. Beautiful vibes, funky verses, and punctuated throughout with comedy dialogue samples that recall classic rap skits. Go get this one on Bandcamp. It was recorded, mixed and mastered by J’Von. Also, I’m just going to put it out there into the universe: I’d love to hear a rap battle/collaboration between Dex Amora and Dave B. How do we make this happen?

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