Isaiah Rashad


When Top Dawg released good kid, m.A.A.d city in 2012, everyone expected the label to dominate in 2013. Actually, I don’t know anyone who actually thought that, but if you did, you would’ve been wrong anyway: Top Dawg released 0 albums in 2013. This year, however, the label has an astonishing six albums planned, the first of which comes courtesy of Chattanoogan rapper Isaiah Rashad. The long-anticipated Cilvia Demo features 14 tracks, with guest spots by the likes of Jay Rock, ScHoolboy Q, SZA, and Michael Da Vinci. It’s officially out right meow, but before you drive off to your local iTunes Megastore, check out Rashad’s video for “Soliloquy” above.

Meanwhile, look for TDE’s second album of the year, Oxymoron by ScHoolboy Q, at the end of February, and a new release by Macklemore Kendrick Lamar hopefully sometime later this year.

• Isaiah Rashad:
• Top Dawg:

Hashback Hashish


Stoned: fresh insomniac house from New Delhi. Hashback Hashish is the emphatically pro-ganja moniker of Ashish Sachan, who’s been churning out thoughtful dance-floor bangers since 2005. Stoned is his second full-length, getting its release after deep-hazed, sleepless nights, and intercontinental time zone drifts between appearances at SXSW and IndiEarth Xchange last year. Sure enough, the release starts off slow within that zone between dusk and dawn, where the occasional rude scrape of an analog synth along the eardrum reminds that you’re still conscious in the dreamscape of canned piano licks and stock four-on-the-floor subs. Highlights include the album’s centerpiece “Burn,” a murky low-end slowburner done with Serbian producer Minitronik, and “Comfort,” a disassembled arp-funk jam co-produced by fellow Delhi sonic sculptor Audio Pervert of Teddy Boy Kill.

Stoned dropped online at the end of 2013, and gets a worldwide release January 31. Keep an eye on Hashback’s label REProduce for updates and more far-out sounds from the Subcontinent.

• Hashback Hashish:
• REProduce:

Eric Slick


Early next month, 200 LPs and 100 cassettes will be released into the wild by short-run label Soild Gold Recordings. The records and tapes will contain music made by multi-instrumentalist Eric Slick, who’s probably most recognizable as the drummer for Philadelphia rock outfit Dr. Dog, but has played in countless other groups and has a sizeable catalog of solo work. This time, he’s not on his native drum set, but has picked up a dusty old steel-string and is going all Americana ape-shit on it. Our first taste of his new release Out Of Habit is a track called “Release” and is accompanied by a splendid video that was created with the help of Zia Anger (who has directed fantastic videos for TMT-faves like Julianna Barwick, Jenny Hval, and Angel Olsen). A breakfast-time daydream features classic American scenes of misty farmlands, grungy girls dancing, creepy masks, and good ol’ close-up footage of people getting pied in the face. Slick’s free, intuitive handle of the guitar is comforting and natural. Get on the Soild Gold Recordings email list and find out when you can snag a copy for yourself.

• Erick Slick:
• PIAPTK & Soild Gold Recordings:…



Blackhoods await in lethargic patience. Violent wind whips around their robs and dark cloth snap and echo in abandon. Dirt scrapes along the forest floor. Crickets chirp, but are heard merely as a feint steady rhythm to the blasting wind. Screeching notes seer in pensive fury around limbs, trunks, and branches, Blackhoods stand firm in the gust of weather. Then outcries the “Doomhound.”

All at once, their robes are caught from under their legs and are ripped off them both. And as a match catches light on the rough-strike pad, Blackhoods – once robed – are now ablaze, raising their hands open, beholding the moon between fingertips. Flames flicker into blue and white as their skin sizzles and silence swelters. Being is believing when the “Doomhound” sirens for a kill: roasted.

Stream”Doomhound” track tease below off the new Blackhood’s tape Sunk on Not Not Fun that came out close to the end of the year.

• Blackhoods:
• Not Not Fun:

French Fries

“Forward Action” / “This Kind Of Setup”

Parisian-club gawd French Fries has released two (inter)stellar sneak-peaks promoting his forthcoming LP release Kepler. The two tracks “This Kind Of Setup” and “Forward Action” propel French Fries’ delicate and heavy-hitting style, manifested in favorites like “Hugz (feat. Bambonou)” and “Yo Vogue,” into the extra-terrestrial. Perhaps alluding to the developing Night Slugs aesthetic overseas, “This Kind Of Setup” and “Forward Action” employ corrosive galactic percussion grooves and eerie high end synth decor. In “Forward Action,” a driving boom pushes the track steadily through a marching, computerized chant. As with the rest of French Fries’ œuvre, “Forward Action” and “This Kind of Setup” provoke a powerful inclination to dance. Kepler will be available Feb 24 through Clek Clek Boom, a label co-piloted by Fries himself. Listen to the two sneak-peaks below:

• French Fries:
• Clek Clek Boom:


CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we'll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.