The Ack did an excellent job yesterday of previewing the little showcase we help curate (oooh, curate, we’re fancy!) for the National Campus and Community Radio Conference taking place here in Halifax right now. That said, because talented Halifax duo Uncle Fester & Ambition will be hitting clean-up tonight at the show, I thought I’d re-up our post on their awesome mixtape K.R.E.A.M. from last year. If you don’t have this, go and grab it, and keep your eye on the hill for news of K.R.E.A.M. 2 this summer, as we’re hoping to help the guys spread the word when it drops. Enjoy.
What makes a great mixtape in 2010? Don’t ask me, after all, I’ve spent years saying I don’t write about mixtapes here on the hill, which is, as you can see for yourself, patently false. I can tell you one thing though, if you’re trying to get me interested in your upcoming projects via mixtape, the main thing you need to worry about is this: quality.
Skip the 300 features, don’t worry about using beats that are currently peppering the top 40, and don’t have your DJ or “host” scream random shiz in the middle of the songs. More precisely, you can do exactly what Backburner affiliates Ambition and Uncle Fester have done on their new mixtape K.R.E.A.M. (Kicks Rule Everything Around Me). In fact, the description on their Bandcamp site says it better than I can:
This is a Hip-Hop Mixtape. 1 MC and 1 DJ, live mixing, blending, scratching and rapping. All original lyrics, cuts and concepts.
Hey now, authentic hip hop! What a novel concept! Although it’s likely thought of as quaint or old-fashioned in today’s hip hop climate, but the notion of an MC spitting some rugged rhymes backed by a skilled DJ cutting up classic records warms my curmudgeonly heart, so I love this mixtape. Ambition has the kind of pleasing baritone flow that makes songs about sneakers, girls & rap more enjoyable than similar songs by other MC’s would be. Add Uncle Fester to the mix, one of Halifax’s best & busiest DJ’s, and you’ve got yourself a potent duo.
Speaking of potent duos, we’ve got a solid, back-to-back pair of songs to give you a sample of what Ambition and Fes are working with on this mixtape. Not sure why exactly, but after hearing Just For Kicks I had the intro lines repeating in my head: “The last kid that said he wanted to battle me, was at a houseparty til I threw him off the balcony. They said you can’t throw kids off decks, Police showed up, Ambition lefffft”. That’s good times right there.