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 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
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 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
Living Legends
Legendary Music

Rating: 7.5/10 ?

January 31, 2005
DF: What's up, this is Dan, and I'm here to talk about this new Living Legends album, Classic. But I'm not going to do it alone - I've asked my friends to help me out. Crew, introduce yourself.

SM: Yo, this is Sean Love from the Dirty Jerz.

TT: They call me Tommy Time.

MK: I am Martin. My friends call me Martin.

DF: These are my people. We just had to get together to let you know about this new collection of West Coast independent hip-hop from the Living Legends family.

SM: Living Legends are a large crew, for real. Murs, The Grouch, Eligh, Luckyiam, Scarub, Bicasso, Sunspot Jonz, Aesop the Black Wolf and Arata.

MK: Nine MCs. Just three short of a full NBA roster.

DF: Most of them started out in the Bay area, but now the whole crew is based out of Los Angeles.

TT: You can really tell just from their sound. I hear a lot of the best of the West Coast underground: Jurassic 5, Blackalicious, Freestyle Fellowship. The influence of all of the "Classics," if you pardon the pun.

SM: Nah, son, because that pun was weak, and Classic is anything but weak.

DF: I agree. Classic is really solid, especially for a full crew album.

MK: Those full crew albums can tend to get a bit bloated. This does not, for the most part.

TT: Actually, having all the different voices throughout the album provides a great deal of variety. It really helps to keep things from getting monotonous, something that tends to plague most single MC rap records.

SM: It really helps that the beats are tight as hell, too.

DF: Definitely. And all these MCs avail themselves on the mic real well.

TT: I really like that one song, "Blast Your Radio" giving props to all things Classic from when they grew up. You don't hear too many hip-hop songs name-checking Judy Blume, Beverly Cleary, and "The Bridge to Terebithia" along with the usual late eighties-early nineties nostalgia.

MK: "Down For Nothing" has a kind of futuristic, Anti-Pop Consortium sound to it that really stands out to me.

SM: "Tears and Pain" is wild, talking about survival, and using that Kanye West-like high-pitched soul singing for the chorus.

MK: Did Kanye produce it? The guy is the embodiment of ubiquitous.

TT: Yeah, and it'd be nice to know which MC is on which track, especially since I don't know each voice well enough to distinguish them.

DF: Well, all I got was the promo version, which didn't include any of the credits, or much information at all, honestly. Neither did the web site.

SM: They better put all that on the regular release, then. People could get confused.

DF: I'm sure they will. We need to wrap this up, so any last thing to say, my people?

MK: Classic is a fine record, sure to please any underground hip-hop fan.

TT: Living Legends have created a really cool retro sound here, yet it all still sounds new. That's how I like it.

SM: This ain't gonna blow up radio or anything, but who cares about that when the shit is this good?

DF: I'm on board. Classic is about as good as you're going to find in an album of its type. Thanks for the help, fellas.

Reviewed by Dan Filowitz
Dan Filowitz is Toronto-born, New-Jersey-raised, Indiana-University-educated, and Chicago-residing. In addition to his Lost At Sea contributions, Dan is a senior staff writer for political humor site TalkStation.com and the president of ChicagoImprovAnarchy (The CIA) a Chicago-based improv theatre company. We are not mentioning the 9-5 corporate job. Apparently, Dan does not sleep much. Dan Filowitz is the perfect dinner party guest - fun, witty, intelligent, with wide-ranging interests, ecclectic tastes and a winning smile. Just make sure you have coffee available.

See other reviews by Dan Filowitz



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