We have a lot of the hip-hop superstars circulating in the underground current this week. You already saw what we did with 50 on Friday — and the G-Unit general has a lot more to say. Check for that soon. Today though, we're giving the ball to one of the best rap groups of all-time, the LOX. Obviously we all know they have their crew of artists, D-Block, and we went up to Yonkers to their new studio to check the fellas out. (Sheek, we missed you — catch you on the rebound!) Also, in Streets Is Talking, we have a cat that hasn't been heard from in a while.
Anyway, we had so much content for our Miami Week last week that we decided to drop some gems on you.
This Week's Main Pick
Street Kings: D-Block
Holding It Down For: Yonkers
Independent Album: No Security
Real Spit: "You see the wood floors and all that," laughs Jadakiss. 'Kiss, Styles P and a conspicuously late Sheek Louch recently finished remodeling their D-Block studios in Yonkers. During our recent visit, the lab was filled with the LOX's soldiers as everyone chilled and switched off between "NBA Live 09" or maybe the new UFC fighting game. Just like brothers, everybody chipped in a few dollars to cop it.
"Whoever doesn't put in, doesn't play," Styles joked, looking directly at one of the new D-Block recruits, Bully. The LOX are excited to see how the streets handle a full dose of the guys they are tapping as the next dangerous MCs.
"We got a massive team," Styles said as he and 'Kiss ran through the names on the roster.
"New money, new studio, new artists, new projects — new," Jada smiled.
The roster includes Straw, A.P. (About Paper), Chary Ary, Bully, Snyp Life, Large Amount, Tommy Star, Don D, Ty and S.I.
Who's next and who dominates — right here, all week long!.
|»The LOX Present D-Block
|»Other Notables: 50 Cent and Young Buck
"We always been comfortable with the lineup, because that's our little brothers — it's being comfortable with their work ethic and where their mind was. As far as artists, we felt they was cut from the cloth we was cut. They spit hard, they live what they talk. They know about this game, working hard nights, 24/7, 365. They know that. It's official.
"It most importantly starts in the studio," Jada added. "If ain't a life-or-death situation, you should be in the lab. If you can't be in the booth, be somewhere else with a beat CD playing. Everything else will fall in line."
The gully crew said their compilation album title is self-explanatory. Who would D-Block ever fear?
"We are the genuine article," Styles added. "We are each other's security. It's hard to understand when somebody say they was gangsta, they was on the block — then you got retired cops and other types of people protecting you."
'Kiss says they get so much love, who needs protection?
"When you hands on with the fans, it's better," he advised to fellow artists. "They spending 15 dollars on your project, they love you. They wanna touch you."
After this album gets a chance to breathe, Styles and 'Kiss say they have it all planned out. Jada is talking about dropping another album called Top Five, Dead or Alive at the end of the year and hopefully a LOX album will come before or around the same time.
"Now that this is wrapped up, it's full focus on that," he said about diverting the attention from No Security to the new LOX LP. "After we get this No Security out, you'll hear more talks on the LOX album. It's gonna be ridiculously nuts."
Joints To Check For
» "Like That Y'all." "It's real hip-hop," Jadakiss said. "Big shout-out to Pete Rock on the track. That's just bringing hip-hop back. Not saying it went anywhere, but you don't really get those types of songs on the radio or the video. [We're] just spittin' back-to-back. Sheek, Styles, myself, Snyp on the hook. We got another version with all the new cats on it. Just hip-hop at its origin. Not radio friendly, not club friendly. 'It's like that y'all.' If you know about that phrase right there, you know about hip-hop. That's how they used to warm the mics back in the day. 'Check one, two. It's like that y'all!' "
» "Trouble." "That too — it's real hip-hop," Styles explained.
"Big shout out to Chuck D!" Jada added.
"It's definitely a Chuck D rendition," Styles said. "We did it over ... trouble on our mind ... things be on our mind. Sometimes as an MC, you gotta go in the booth and go nuts. That's what we did. 'Trouble' really reflects an MC getting off his frustrations in a real nice way."
"No matter what, we refuse to lose," Jada said.
» "Let's Get Doe." "We wanted to do something classic and reflect the big homies," Snyp said. "Big shout out to G-Spin. The music spoke for itself. The hook was already done. All we had to do was come in and add our little part. There you have it."
The Streets Is Talking: News & Notes From The Underground
Ashanti got dropped, Lloyd wants off — Irv Gotti's Murder Inc. roster may be decreasing by two, but I.G. has one guy that's hanging loyal: Ja Rule. Yes, Rule is still down and insists he's coming back — but at his own pace.
"I'm working. I'm not in a rush," Ja said about his upcoming album. "I'm doing good work in the community with my Life Foundation. That's always a plus. But as far as the music side, I'm in the studio working every day. I'm about to go in the studio and work right now and finish up on the album. The album's coming out incredible. It's very different. I wanted to make it special. I wanted the album to be out of this world, and it's definitely shaping up to that. I'm not in a rush. I got a new situation — my Empire Music Group. Gotti's got Murder Inc. We're both still together — there's no separation. We're both together doing what we do, but I got my own situation and I got new artists. We're putting it together."
For other artists featured in Mixtape Daily, check out Mixtape Daily Headlines.