Archive for June, 2005

This is for La Raza…

Kid Frost

La Raza
from Hispanic Causing Panic (1990, Virgin)

La Raza II
from Smile Now, Die Later (1995, Relativity)

La Raza (96 Remix)
from Relativity Urban Assault (1996, Relativity)

Kid Frost cut some of the first latin hiphop records in history. Raised in the barrios in East LA, he also spent a lil’ bit of time in military camps in Guam and Germany. Kid Frost began his rapping career in 1982 at the age of 18. He also honed his talent as a BBoy, joining the infamous Uncle Jamm’s Army Crew. He took great influence from his mentor in rhyme, Ice-T, and the name Kid Frost is a dedication to the hardest repping light skinned rapper, whom he frequently sparred and cyphered bars with during the formation of the West Coast sound. Around this time he dropped a number of 12-inch releases that flew under the radar, as far as a widespread audience is concerned. “Rough Cut” ft/ Yella & “Terminator” are notable mentions. He took a leave of absence and returned in the late 80s back by producer Tony G.

It was from a Tony G blessing that Kid Frost dropped his largest selling and most respected single “La Raza”. This being the focus of this post, The smooth mellow flowing track became an anthem for the Chicano persuasion of west coast America. Frost’s debut album “Hispanic Causing Pain” followed the same year, released by major record label, Virgin. After the smoke had cleared from “La Raza”, Kid Frost formed a collective of other bilingual rappers named The Latin Alliance. It was followed by a second Kid Frost album “East Side Story”, which contained the classic “No Sunshine”. Unfortunately, This release was seen as a corporate flop and after lackluster sales, Virgin dropped him. Kid Frost returned in ’95 time with the shortened name ‘Frost’ and signed with Eazy E’s label Ruthless shortly before that Eazy fatality.

The 1995 release, “Smile Now, Die Later” practically re-invented Frost as a hardcore rhymer, utilizing hispanic influenced G-Funk beats. It was sadly his only album to appear in the top 40 chart. The remaining releases were a little below average. 1997 saw “When HELL.A Freezes Over” which brought about the parting of ways between Ruthless and Frost. Between 1998-2000, He released two albums, “That Was Then, This Is Now” Volumes 1-2 on the minor record label Celeb. In 2002, Frost released “Still Up In The S+” on Hit-A-Lick and was later distributed by Koch. That same year he dropped the mixtape of Latino rappers, “Raza Radio” on 40 Ounce Records. Read the post-script…

-Matt B

La Raza. I can remember when I bought the tape for $4 at the Coliseum Swap Meet in Oakland. Frost spoke the truth about Latinos/Chicanos, the day to day struggle and what you have to go thru to survive in this concrete jungle. The title itself, La Raza, motivated alot of latinos and all races in general, by its captivating style and grace. To me, It made me proud to be a latino… to stand up for myself. At the same time, His music inadvertedly promoted the gang lifestyle. I look back now 10-15 years back and see how his music could have had a negative impact on some but at the same time, you had to learn things the hard way. I can remember being 12-13 trying to be a gang banger… trying to get jumped into A St Locos (XIV Hayward). You live and you learn.

As Frost moved on to later recordings, His style grew even more mature. He never was trying to be negative on a record but had to give you a dose of reality, like many artists, then and now, to make people think and realize. Matt and I spoke about this record for a minute before we made this post. It’s a trip that 15 years ago, I was experiencing this sound as a youth and 15 years later, A cat from the UK showed some interest. That’s the power of music. Enjoy the 3 versions of La Raza and check for the bonus from Kid Frost, circa mid-80’s…


Bonus Track:

Frost back in the day… Terminator

presenting X-zibit paparazzi

Pimp my blog!

from At The Speed Of Life (Loud, 1996)

X-zibit’s come a long way from rockin the mic to flyin out of airplane commercials. This was one of the first hiphop songs I ever bought, you know that feeling when you’re a kid and you have the most freshest beat stuck in your head for days? This was it, and in hindsight I guess X coulda been attackin the array of big willie rappers during that era. Same shit different year, funny thing I remembered this track off of some pop song who ganked the opening violin, who took it?


Styles of War (Volume 1)

Styles Of Beyond
Killer Instinct feat. Divine Styler
from Killer Instinct 12″ (1998, Bilawn)

Ambiguous Figures
from Funky Precedent (1999, Loose Groove Records)

Styles Of Beyond, the undervalued Los Angeles outfit, consist of MC’s Ryu & Takbir, with scratch hooks and beats provided by a culmination of DJ Cheapshot, Vin Skully, Divine Styler & Bilal Bashir, who is older brother to Takbir. Their debut album ‘2000 Fold’ didn’t exactly move the infamous LA underground, as they claim “Our own city hates us more than anybody”. Styles Of Beyond emerged with the indie release of the single “Killer Instinct” on Bilawn Records. The track features the aforementioned hiphop legend Divine Styler.

Takbir & Cheapshot were already making minor moves under the SOB name when Ryu and Takbir met and freestyled with one another in ’95. The video game based “Killer Instinct” single created a light buzz with critics and the underground hiphop community, and SOB were branded Best New Artist of 1997 by ‘The Wake Up Show’. The crew released their album ‘2000 Fold’ in the late summer of ’98 independently. Early into ’99, they were signed to the Dust Brothers founded label Hi-Ho and this classic was re-released. The Dust Brothers were responsible for the production of Beastie Boys debut album Paul’s Boutique.

In ’99, Styles Of Beyond featured on the ‘No Mayo’ compilation “Funky Precedent” (Loosegroove Records) on which they dropped the exclusive track ‘Ambiguous Figures’. The “Funky Precedent” showcases starving artists living and working in LA, well worth the pick up. After the 2002 rumour that the crew had broken up over “Creative differences”, Styles of Beyond came back strong with some creative and higher profiled material, which we’ll discuss on a later post. Styles Of Beyond got signed to a major label, Machine Shop Records, under the wing of Warner Brothers. Machine Shop has scheduled the 2005 release of Styles’ debut major label appearance “Fort Minor”, which features Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda, Common, Kanye, Black Though, John Legend, with a notable executive producer as well………Jay-Z!

Styles 3rd crew album is scheduled for release in 2006, “Triple Bitchin'” is the title, and I read about that a while ago on Spytech records, and then the majors came calling. There’s too much to really fit into one post, so I’ll try and post up some info on their second release ‘Megadef’, amongst a couple of other mentions of work from their extensive musical catalogue… ENJOY.

-Matty B

Ice Cream Tee melts the microphone

Ice Cream Tee
Can’t Hold Back
Come On
To Be Continued
from Can’t Hold Back (Uni, 1989)

Everyone who’s up on Bettina Clark aka Ice Cream Tee will know the deal. Apparently from Philly, she was down with the budding hiphop scene there, did a track with Fresh Prince and Jazzy Jeff on “Guys ain’t nothin but trouble”, and dropped this solid LP. Tee’s flow is a testament to the strong (often unnoticed) women reppin the Hiphop scene in the late 80s and belongs with Queen Latifah and MC Lyte for the ability to hold the mic right and spit her views.

Penning her own lyrics, Tee rips the mic with premium production from the legendary Jazzy Jay. I honestly haven’t heard too much of Jazzy Jay’s productions but these have the Brokebboys stamp of approval. I don’t know any recent info about Ice Cream Tee, so if anyone has any leads, post us up!


He’s not Doom’s brother…

..but he’ll Roc your SUBwoofer”

Count Bass D
“Subwoofer (Dumile)”
“Truth to Light”
“Seven Years” (ft. Dionne Farris)
from Dwight Spitz (2002, Metal Face/High Times)

What’s up. This past week I recently turned 22 and when I listen to Count Bass D’s Dwight Spitz album, it’s like me trying to come to terms with the sound of hiphop growin up. With Dwight Spitz droppin this quite recently, the fact is, you don’t hear this boom bap style no more, it sticks out like gold caps on dentures. This is another one of those albums better played straight through as the structure is short but sweet grooves the Count indulges you with. With the beats definitely early hiphop production inspired, the Count’s production overflows with soul to rock his own style.

Count Bass D has been in the game datin back from 95, releasin his Pre-Life Crisis Lp with all live instruments, lyrics, and production by himself. He put out some singles between then and Dwight Spitz where he flexes his skills on the MPC. Since then he declared no half steppin in the Rap game as he gained more momentum hookin up with Doom for that sick Potholderz track on “..MM Food” and recently dropped “Begborrowsteal.” Check out as he lets you in the know of his latest whereabouts tryna come through with his genuine music and raisin a family. Peace.


Boogie Monsters at a higher level

Boogie Monsters
Recognized Thresholds Of Negative Stress
Mark Of The Beast
Bronx Bombas
from Riders Of The Storm: The Underwater Album
(1994, Pendulum/EMI)

I’ve been going thru some personal struggles recently and I decided to stop and think about the direction of my life. I put this CD in today and It brought many heartfelt thoughts and emotions. What we have here is Vex, Mondo, Yodared and Myntric, otherwise known to the world as The Boogiemonsters. What they brought to Hiphop is something that I do not think many have been able to recreate. A sonically mesmerizing soundtrack for life, with some of the most incredible beats ever made and lyricism that would make the new pope strike a Bboy stance.

Back in 1994, These cats did the very notorious NY meets VA hookup and got signed to Pendulum/EMI. What came out was “Riders Of The Storm:The Underwater Album”. This is one of them albums (like The BUMS, The Nonce or The Pharcyde’s first albums) where every track is dope and complements one another. They had a sort of religious leaning on some tracks but kept it at a comfortable level without getting preachy. Some of the shit they spit is real dark and twisted (Mark Of The Beast) and then some tracks are bboy type jams (Boogie and Bronx Bombas)… They were definitely way ahead of their time back then and now with some futuristic prophetic type styles (Recognized Thresholds of Negative Stress). I saw this video the other week on Distortion 2 Static and had to dig up from the collection. One of the illest things ever recorded indeed.

Fast forward to 1997 when they released God Sound. This second album flew under the radar and I didn’t really heard much about it. Part II of Mark of The Beast is on there. I’d want to hear what that is like, but haven’t found a copy of that album. Anyone wanna help? Holler. After the 1997 album, I have no idea what happened to them, until I stumbled on a religious website and found the following testimonial:

Ivor Myers was one of the four man hip hop group known as The Boogiemonsters. Appearing on programs such as Soul Train, BET, and in magazines like Vibe and Rolling Stones, they were on their way to stardom. However, while recording their first album of an 8 album contract with EMI Records, they were introduced to the gospel of Jesus Christ. After eye opening revelations both he and his younger brother Sean left the industry. They are now both involved full time in the Lords work. Watch their story, “Escape from the Black Hole” on DVD.

More power to Yodared and Myntric for following their hearts in the pursuit of happiness. At least they didnt go off the deep end like Bizzy Bone. The debut from Boogiemonsters is indeed criminally slept-on. All you new kids who have no clue what cutting-edge forward thinking hiphop is like, Listen to these tracks. Headnodding can make ya get over anything real quick.


Here’s a bonus one for you suckas as well…

Riding inna Kidnapper’s Van

Foreign Legion
Nowhere To Hide
Full Time BBoy
from Kidnapper Van: Beats to Rock While Bike Stealin’
(2000, Insiduous Urban)

Feel The Music
from Deep Concentration, Vol. 4: Wreckin’ the Floor (2003, OM Records)

A small post for today. I was diggin’ thru my old LP’s and ran into “Kidnapper Van” from the bay area own Foreign Legion. Word has it that DJ Design and Prozack grew up together in the 408 and met Marc Stretch at a show and that was that.. They soon became Foreign Legion.. In 1999, They dropped their first 12″ “Underground” (which is one of my most favorite tracks ever) via ABB Records. That soon followed the “Kidnapper Van” album, which was a strong effort for them, with highlight tracks like “Nowhere To Hide” and “Full Time BBoy”. Today you get those 3 tracks and a standout track from the Deep Concentration 4/Wrecking The Floor release, “Feel The Music”… These dudes are real tight (n/h). Great lyrics, metaphors and insightful imagery with some incredible production handled by DJ Design himself. Check the technique!


Peace to John Kelly over at Know The Ledge for givin’ BrokeBBoys a shoutout as one of his 4 top blogs. Nuff respect… Peace to everyone who’s helped spread the word on BrokeBBoys and all the dope blogs out there.