The Bridge EP - Tonya Morgan

Brooklyn and Cincinnati are back together again for a meeting on ‘The Bridge EP’. This album has enough head nod worthy beats to hold you down until Tonya Morgan conjures up a full length to captivate your attention deficit and cure you of said disorder. There are a few minor moments where the emcees sound like they’re looking at themselves in the mirror while they’re rhyming. Meh. But honestly, the EP is worth copping sheerly for the shortest track, ‘Filthier Interlude aka Place’ where Tonya Morgan channel supreme Native Tonguesque energy making for a tremendous effort that not only entertains, but pays homage to the likes of De La Soul...

Shaya - Fallen Awake

When you hear Shaya on, ‘Fallen Awake’ you don’t immediately think ‘the west’ in fact if it weren’t for mentions throughout his music about the left coast you probably wouldn’t figure the golden state at all. This album starts on a pretty high note. Production is respectable and lyrically Shaya is pretty tight at moments assuming the stance of a modern day Rakim in terms of style, delivery and conviction. Content for the most part covers a lot of ground in building an image of responsible male taking care of business but then there’s, ‘Take A Ride’, pump the breaks, a screeching halt...WTF! Balance maybe?

The Dusty Foot Philosopher - K’naan

With the song 'Wash It Down' as my introduction to K'naan’s world, ethnic percussion sounds accompanied by a back drop of whooshing waters instead of booming 808's and synthetic basses make me smile and think this is gonna be a good one. Turns out it is. This dusty foot philosopher has a lot to share about life back home as well as life around the globe today. Sure K'naan has a pitch and nasal speech that rivals the likes of Magoo and Q-Tip both, but I'm willing to adjust due to the fact that this Mogadishu born griot has some musical intel I stand to learn a lot from.