We need all the reasons to be happy at the moment; after a year of misery and uncertainty, being able to celebrate the good things in life is more important than ever. One of those celebratory moments is the arrival of Village Live’s fifth birthday and their decision to release a special label compilation to mark the occasion. Featuring a stack of brand new material, from some of the artists who have helped to build the label into the success story it is today, Village Live is Five stands as the perfect testament to Doug and Joey’s ongoing legacy and achievements. The label kicked things off back in 2015 with a collaborative single from Remulak and Cappo, so it makes sense that for the new compilation the duo have reunited to deliver more of the magic they stumbled upon many moons ago. You can watch the video for the track above and then head over to the Village Live shop to reserve your vinyl pre-order.
Blissful bit of soulful, jazzy nourishment here, as Village Live release their latest Live & Direct single. This time it’s Ella Mae Sueref in the cut, as she teams up with Pawcut for Take Some Time. The track is also available to stream from the usual spots.
The latest album from Verbz and Mr Slipz was finally given life last week, and to coincide with the release the duo decided to bless us with another video from the project as well. Decline of Self is just one of the more thought provoking tracks on the album, strengthened by a couple of tight features from Confucius MC and Coops. The video was made by Honey JD. Radio Waves is out now via High Focus.
Today saw the release of the latest single from Verb T and Illinformed, as they continue the rollout for their forthcoming album. City Limits features fellow In The Balance artist, Chillman, as well as another slick video from Parallel Media. The Land of the Foggy Skies is due for release on 11 December via High Focus.
New sounds from We Stay True, as Mr Brown joins forces with Cappo to form Oblique Strategies. They have a whole album en route, one that promises to further solidify Cappo’s reign as the UK’s supreme lyricist, with the first single given life last week. You can hear Bar Cardio above and pre-orders for the vinyl edition are available now. The release date is set for 23 November.
New music from Lunar C and Hashfinger, as they join forces to bring us Pink Lagoon. Fans of the blog will know I’m a big Lunar fan anyway, but I think this is my favourite from him so far. He definitely benefits from sticking with one producer, and his creative chemistry with Hashfinger has been on point since they first started making music together in the early Bradford days. The whole album is a treat on the ears, but there are definite highlights, like the bars-laden Oil Painting, which features not one, not two, but three battle rap legends, as Lunar is joined by Tony D and Shotty Horroh. Lefty also drops in on a couple of tracks, and P Solja brings the grit on Death Row. No Bandcamp streams, but I’ve included the Spotify preview below. Get stuck in.
Another new dose of visual bliss from Verbz & Mr Slipz, as the hype for their forthcoming album continues to build. My Wonders also features fellow label-mate, Fliptrix, as well as video from Parallel Media, which uses a colour palette that Outkast would be proud of. The album, Radio Waves, is due for release on 13 November via High Focus.
Another perfectly crafted lampooning session here from Big Toast and 184, as they release the next video from their new album. This time it’s capitalism’s cheerleaders who are in the firing line, the sort of high-end brand junkies who judge everything by its expense or worth, including you and your miserable existence. Who Shit in the Sandpit? was released in full last week and is now available to download/stream via Revorg Records. Plenty of physicals available too.
Brand new video from Verb T and Illinformed, as they continue to build the anticipation for their latest collaboration. Nothing Is New was filmed on location in Bristol and features a bunch of cameos from some familiar faces (including me). The track is taken from their forthcoming album, The Land of the Foggy Skies, which is due for release on 11 December via High Focus.
For those of you unaware, Joey Deez was one of the co-founders of Village Live Records, alongside Doug Barclay (Remulak). He sadly passed away a few months back, which brought a lot of sorrow to the many people within the scene who were glad to call him a friend. As well as being a hip hop fiend and vinyl junkie, Joey was also a staple part of the Brighton skate and graff scenes, and so when his death was announced, the streets were inundated with tributes. Now Aver is back with his own tribute, an album he has made which draws on a lot of the inane conversations the two of them had over the years, and some of the newly discovered breaks they would send to each other. There are also bits of new music which Aver was working on during lockdown, with fellow Village Live affiliate, Doron Segal. It serves as both a personal memorial for those who knew Joey, as well as an introduction to those who might not have had the pleasure of making his acquaintance over the years. You can listen to the album in all its glory below, and then head to Bandcamp to check out details of the vinyl release, which includes images of the AROE tribute (as above), plus a huge piece that was painted at Brighton’s legendary Black Rock. All proceeds from the vinyl sale will be going to Joey’s family.