Saturday, May 7, 2011

Z-Man and Dan the Automator? Sign Me Up!

This 12" came out at the end of 2010, but I only just found out about it browsing around ughh for other stuff. I blame all the rap blogs that can't stop blabbing about useless celebrity gossip long enough to tell us about the actual, good music that's coming out. I don't care when Tyler the Creator says something disrespectful about Charles Hamilton on his twitter page... I care when Z-Man hooks up with JtheSarge to make a 12" with Dan the Automator!

JtheSarge, if you don't know, is Mykah 9's partner in Magic Heart Genies, the group they formed with DJ Drez... that's why this 12" was put out by M9 Ent. So this is a great combination of several very talented camps. You know, speaking of Odd Future (what? I mentioned Tyler up in the first paragraph), I always thought they were sort of redux of 99th Demention, which is a good thing, because I like them. But listening to some new Z-Man, I gotta say the hip-hop world still hasn't come up with an adequate replacement.

So, yeah. This is a super fresh 2-song 12". The A-side, "On a Hunt for a Show" is not produced by Dan, but JtheSarge himself. It's a really fresh, upbeat, modern-sounding track. This is the kind of track Wiz or Lupe would love to rap over, but unfortuantely for them, it went to some MCs who know how to ride over it a lot better. In fact, if you told me the label got it wrong and Dan actually produced this one, I'd believe you.

Then you get the B-side, which was produced by Dan. Surprisingly, this is a darker, moodier, bass-heavy instrumental that sounds much less reminiscent of his past work than the song he didn't produce does. It's got a really nice horn sample on the hook, though. It all serves as the groundwork for "What's It All About," which pairs J up with two guys I've never heard of: Big Pers and Matt Gamin. They come pretty nice, though; but disappointingly, Z-Man is not on this one. They manage to make up for it, though, by having Tapemastah Steph provide some fresh scratches.

One thing you can't knock this 12" for is quality of presentation. It's pressed on marbleized hot pink vinyl, and comes in a brown M9 sleeve with a sticker cover. You get Clean, Dirty and Instrumental versions of both songs, plus a TV Mix of "On a Hunt for a Show." There's a few bonus stickers inside the sleeve and best of all, it comes with a download card, so you can get all the mixes as high-quality mp3s, too. That's first class all the way, and they don't charge any more than the standard coach 12" price.

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