Album Review, Emcee, Issues

Twenty Years Later: Illmatic

Story originally published on The 5th Element Magazine Spring/Summer 2014 Issue Do you remember Hip-Hop in 1994? Some key events may come to mind:  Warren G heralded the G-Funk era previously established by Dr. Dre, with his West Coast anthem, “Regulate.” Southern hip-hop flourished with OutKast’s debut and the release of Scarface’s The Diary . […]

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Album Review, Emcee

2015’s Best: The Album Picks of the Year

As the year comes to a close, I can’t help but be completely in awe of all the music I’ve encountered, for reasons that are pretty obvious. In 2015, we witnessed a resurgence of music that was not only diverse in genre, but culturally and politically resonant. One of the biggest landmarks in music was […]

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Emcee, Video

The Top 5 Bad Boy Records Music Videos

If you grew up in the early 90s and liked music, there’s no doubt that you’re familiar with the ubiquitous influence of Sean “P.Diddy” Combs’ Bad Boy Records. Regardless of its controversial past, the iconic label is important to hip-hop for a lot of reasons. For one thing, it left a significant mark on the […]

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Emcee, Events

FOMO-chella: April Show Calendar

A new epidemic is spreading, and it has nothing to do with the flu, or any kind of superbug; it’s called FOMO, and during Coachella season, it’s particularly rampant. However, there are advantages to not spending all of your funds on one weekend of music. Why not spread it out a bit? I’m personally one […]

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Emcee

Album Review: CJ Trillo – Undrafted

“Cohesiveness, elegance, tranquility,” – these are three things that LA-based MC, CJ Trillo urges his fans to find in his latest full-length album, Undrafted. The recent and long-awaited release follows his 2013 mixtape, Volume 1: Nostalgia, which had fans patiently waiting, and we can see why. Ever since we caught ear of his Heavy mixtape, […]

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Emcee

Rockin’ With The 5th: CJ Trillo

What kinds of things do you think of when you think of Pomona, CA? Some immediate things that may come to mind are, of course, music-related. It’s home to great music venues like The Fox and The Glasshouse, and propping its ever-evolving cultural terrain is a blossoming hip-hop scene. One such emcee contributing to its […]

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DJ, Emcee

2014’s Best: The Top Ten Hip-Hop Albums

Creating a hip-hop-centric end of the year list always gives me a bit of a challenge. For one thing, almost 20 years later, our post-Golden Era musical landscape has shifted dramatically — and understandably so. As we look forward to entering 2015, more producers and emcees have shifted their focus from reverberating the throwback sounds […]

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DJ, Emcee, Issues, Lifestyle

Single Life Musings: Listen to Him

There are two things in the modern world that I still find overwhelming. The first thing is the volume of music that I have to continuously sift through, whether I’m digging through crates or browsing the internet. Erykah Badu got me down to a science when she sang “Analog girl in a digital world,” because […]

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DJ, Emcee, Events

Dilated Peoples – “Word of Mouth” Tour

Marking their triumphant return from an eight year hiatus, underground hip-hop legends, Dilated Peoples are back. The LA-based crew, consisting of Evidence, DJ Babu and Rakaa Iriscience are releasing a new LP, Directors of Photography, on August 12, and will be promoting the album on a North American Tour. The tour will span nineteen major […]

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Emcee

Rockin’ With The 5th: Balancing Light & Dark with DLRN

In darkness there is light, and no one knows this better than Sacramento’s DLRN, a hip-hop duo with some serious cinematic and futuristic leanings. Just in time for your weekly nightcap, the duo, composed of emcee, Sean LaMarr and producer, Jon Reyes, just put out a new EP. Earnest in storytelling, heavy on synths and […]

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DJ, Emcee, Media

D.I.T.C. – The Remix Project

New York Hip-Hop collective, Diggin’ In the Crates (D.I.T.C.) released a special remix album today aptly titled, “The Remix Project”. The album will be available for free on the D.I.T.C. website, and will feature remixes by studio heavy-hitters like Buckwild, The Alchemist, 9th Wonder, and DJ Premier. Can’t wait until tomorrow? Hit the jump to […]

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DJ, Emcee, Lifestyle, Media

The 5th’s Favs: J Dilla Edition

As any well-informed Hip-Hop head would know, Dilla month is upon us. The groundbreaking producer, who would have turned 38 last week, has undoubtedly prompted music fans across the globe to make personal, often deeply meaningful, connections to his timeless productions. We here at The 5th are no exception. That being said, I brought together […]

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Emcee, Media

Jam On It: Phife Dawg – “Dear Dilla”

February is just around the corner, which means a few things: President’s Day, Valentine’s Day, and Super Bowl XLVIII. But aside from paid time off, flowers, and sports, February also represents Dilla month, and just in time to celebrate, A Tribe Called Quest’s infamous Five Footer has put out a personal J Dilla tribute aptly […]

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Issues, Lifestyle

Single Life Musings: Discover a New Sound

I thought I found my soulmate. Again. This was probably the second or third time in the past year (but who’s counting). Dude had it all. He was ridiculously attractive, smart, ambitious, and loved music as much as I did. The chemistry between us was seriously on some otherworldly “Prototype”-type shit. This was the one. […]

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Emcee, Events

The Outkast Effect: How Outkast can change Hip-Hop in 2014

It’s safe to say that Outkast has been on a media high as of late, and for good reason. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re probably aware that our favorite Southern rap duo is making a comeback, and the resulting media storm triggered by last week’s Coachella announcement seems to be proliferating social […]

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Emcee

2013’s Best: Sash’s Top Hip Hop Songs

2013 was an interesting year for Hip-Hop. Aside from it being the year of the mixtape, a number of major Hip-Hop singles came out this year, pleasing both older and younger generations of fans. This year, more than any other, we were able to witness an interesting juxtaposition of releases from Hip-Hop’s veteran and rookie […]

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Emcee

One Year Later: good kid, m.A.A.d city

It’s been a year since Kendrick Lamar’s critically lauded major label debut album, good kid, m.A.A.d city, took the hip hop world by storm. Without question, the album is one of the successful hip hop releases of the past five years, and it has been deemed an insta-classic by rap die-hards and casual music fans […]

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DJ, Emcee, Issues, Media

Yancey Boys – Sunset Blvd

Not many things in this world last forever, but a J. Dilla beat is one of them. Ever since his tragic passing in 2006, his soulful legacy has been carried on through a number of posthumous albums, tributes, and covers. One album that has always stood out to me was 2008’s Yancey Boys, a collection […]

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Issues

Pete Rock & Camp Lo: 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s Pt. II Mixtape

What’s your favorite Pete Rock-produced album? Mecca & the Soul Brother? Soul Survivor? The Main Ingredient? If you’re a regular reader of this site, you appreciate that classic Hip-Hop sound (and you also probably have a very elaborate answer to this question). Luckily for you, Pete Rock and Camp Lo are back with a new […]

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