The Rap-Up is a weekly round-up of all things hip-hop. Check it out every Wednesday.
Reks Becomes A “Rebelutionary”
It’s been a busy 2012 for Reks. The prolific Massachusetts rapper released the impressive collaborative album “Straight, No Chaser” with Statik Selektah in April. Now Reks returns with the equally stellar “REBELutionary." The 18-cut collection was produced entirely by emerging production powerhouse Numonics and features such standout selections as the cautionary “Ignorance Is Bliss” with Termanology and the insightful “Unlearn."
Although Krondon (“The Jones”) and J NiCS (“Bang Bang”) are among those who deliver stellar guest performances, the album is clearly Reks’ and Numonics’ platform to shine. As should be evidenced by the title, “REBELutionary” (which can be streamed below, via HipHopDX) has a political bent, which is intensified by Reks’ lyrical precision and Numonics’ stout beats. It’s edutainment with an attitude.
Has-Lo Puts ‘Em On The “Glass”
Despite being the home of gangster rap pioneer Schoolly D, box office juggernaut Will Smith (formerly known as The Fresh Prince) and a host of other noteworthy artists, Philadelphia often gets overlooked in discussions about significant rap cities. But Philly continues to produce remarkable rappers. Among them is Has-Lo. The rapper-producer has been releasing quality material for a few years now and just unveiled two new singles.
Produced by Apollo Brown, the muscular “Stained Glass” features Has-Lo delivering rugged rhymes with a controlled flow, while the illMind-produced “Make A Bet” finds Has-Lo rapping in a reserved manner over the stark collage of synths and percussion. Following-up 2011’s sublime “In Case I Don’t Make It” with two strong new singles, Has-Lo shows Philadelphia rappers still make noteworthy music.
Streetz-n-Young Deuces Makes Milwaukee Proud
Coo Coo Cal helped put Milwaukee on the rap map with the 2001 hit “My Projects," but aside from an occasional local hit, there hasn’t been a breakthrough artist from the land of the Brewers and Bucks. Streetz-n-Young Deuces is out to change that. The Wisconsin duo released the potent “Next Day Air” mixtape earlier this year and just dropped the video for standout selection “Just Like That.” These cousins flow precisely over a variety of high caliber production that ranges from raucous to soulful. Regardless of the beat’s demeanor, Streetz-n-Young Deuces deliver quality punchlines and demonstrate tremendous confidence on the mic.