Tag: DJ Devastate

New Video: Check out Freeway and Dutch Producer Big Ape Hanging out and Performing in Amsterdam in the “Primates” Video

The Philadelphia-based emcee’s latest single “Primates” is a collaboration with renowned Dutch producer Big Ape and it’s a swaggering headbanger of a track that has Freeway spitting fire over a looped and stuttering horn and string sample and tweeter and woofer rocking boom-bap beats and actual scratching from Sweden’s DJ Devastate. Of course the track is full of Freeway telling off wack emcees — reminding them that only is he dope, but that he’s probably their favorite rapper’s rapper as he uses a variety of cadences and flows and a creative sense of inner and outer wordplay throughout, while reminding listeners that not only is he still here and fiery as ever, but that real hip-hop ain’t dead either.

Directed by Ed Jansen, the recently released music video for “Primates” was shot in Amsterdam and features the emcee and his crew stomping around The Netherlands’ largest city, some live footage of Freeway performing in front of an incredibly enthusiastic crowd, and hanging in the studio with Big Ape.

Advertisements

 

Born Leslie Pridgen, the Philadelphia, PA-based emcee Freeway is arguably best known for his stint as a Roc-A-Fella Records artist, his affiliation with Jay Z and Beanie Siegel and as a member of State Property, as well as his commercially and critically successful 2003 debut effort Philadelphia Freeway, an effort that was certified gold after selling 500,000 units — thanks in part to his gruff and raspy vocal delivery, rhyming about his days hustling to survive in North Philadelphia with a world-weariness that frequently suggests a desire to be more, do more and see more than the block. And as a result, much like Freddie Gibbs and a few others, it grounds Freeway’s material in a profound and gritty realism that’s much needed — and in the case of Freeway comes from hard-fought person experience.

Although he’s experienced label issue that begun with the dissolution of Roc-A-Fella Records, State Property going on a hiatus as Beanie Siegel was convicted of federal weapons charges, Freeway has been busy as he’s released a couple of albums including 2007’s Free At Last, 2008’s White Van Music which had the North Philadelphia-based emcee collaborating with Jake One and Brother Ali and was released through renowned indie label Rhymesayers.  2010’s The Stimulus Package represented a major turning point in Freeway’s recording career as it was a return to the basics — one producer collaborating with one emcee on a project specifically meant to be cohesive collaborative vision, and it features guest spots from Beanie Siegel, Raekwon, Young Chris, Birdman, Bun-B, Latoiya Williams, Omilio Sparks and Mr. Porter.

 

Personally, it’s been some time since I’ve heard from Freeway — granted, as a blogger covering music from a variety of angles from all over the world, some things naturally will fall through the cracks; however, his latest single “Primates” is a collaboration with Dutch producer Big Ape and it’s a swaggering headbanger of a track that features the Philadelphia-based emcee spitting pure fire over a looped and stuttering horn and string sample and tweeter and woofer rocking boom-bap beats and actual scratching from Sweden’s DJ Devastate. Remember actual scratching on tracks?  Whatever happened to that?

Of course the track is full of Freeway telling off wack emcees — reminding them that only is he dope, but that he’s probably their favorite rapper’s rapper as he uses a variety of cadences, flows throughout and a creative sense of inner and outer wordplay throughout, while reminding listeners that not only is he still here and fiery as ever, but that real hip-hop ain’t dead either.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Friday marked the 32nd anniversary of Marvin Gaye‘s tragic and untimely death — while Saturday would have marked Gaye’s 77th birthday. Recently as a tribute to Marvin Gaye’s incredible influence on contemporary music, Counterweight Records‘ producer and DJ, DJ Devastate and self-professed synth guru Segerfalk went to Analog Sweden‘s studio to record a rework and re-imagining of Gaye’s beloved classic song “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” that DJ Devastate and Segerfalk have titled “Do You Cry?” And the rework pairs DJ Devastate and Segerfalk’s boom-bap beat heavy production featuring twinkling synths and swirling electronics with Marvin Gaye’s iconic and silky smooth vocals — this time as the song’s hook and chorus — along with guest spots from Joe Lefty and Chapee.

Simliar to  Red Hot + Fela, the Fela Kuti tribute album featuring reworked and reimagined songs from Kuti’s enormous catalog, DJ Devastate, Segerfalk, Joe Lefty and Chapee’s tribute to Marvin Gaye manages to be more than just a fresh take on a song that several generations have been intimately familiar with for quite some time, it’s an adept meshing of hip-hop and classic soul that should remind listeners of Gaye’s how much Gaye and his peers have influenced contemporary music. But perhaps much more important, this rework should remind folks — especially those who were too young to remember when he was alive — of the fact that Marvin was a vital and sensual presence you had to pay attention to.