As Chocolate Grinder’s resident rap guy, I could use this occasion to bitch and moan about how Scion AV incorrectly refers toThe @MCTREEG EP as TREE’s third project; the Toyota brand’s insistence on releasing only songs with clean lyrics almost ruins the line from “Soul Trappin / I Believe” that goes “Malcolm was an addict and Versace was a—;” the cover of this release looks a hell of a lot like the cover of billy woods’ Dour Candy… But what good would bitching and moaning do?

I’ve said a lot about soul trap impresario TREE since first hearing him in early 2011, but as El Viathan can attest, my favorite thing to say about TREE is … “TREE!” [Editor’s note: Samuel is a liar, but yes this is true.] You can do it too, listener. Simply prep your voice to sound as gravelly and twangy as possible, then press your tongue to the roof of your mouthpiece and shout it out, short and sweet: “TREE!” You’ll see this works best in crowded elevators, subway cars, and other confined spaces where you find yourself in the company of complete strangers.

Download or sTREEm The @MCTREEG EP below:

• Scion AV:

SUNUP Recordings

Living Room Visions Winter 2014

Where do I even begin? That’s the problem with writing about compilations. Especially when they are 50-tracks deep. I could go through the list of artists and mention the ones I’ve heard like luxury elite, Giant Claw, SAINT PEPSI, lockbox, and AyGeeTee, but then, for brevity’s sake, I’d be leaving out a bunch of the names I’ve heard of like Metallic Ghosts, Wakesleep, and Infinity Ghost. And that’s not to mention the other 41 names I’d be omitting like baseball cap, Cats in the Basement, and MEGA MASTER, among others. Every time I start to think I’m finally starting to catch up, batch releases, collaborations, or compilations like this happen, and I realize there is no end. The more you know, the less you realize you know. When internet storage space reaches infinity, I suppose that Faustian desire for unlimited knowledge will be at our fingertips, if only we had the time to eternally scour its depths.

Let’s see. Which track to embed here? I’m going to have to give it to Adderall Canyonly, based almost entirely on the name. I hope you didn’t have anything else you were planning on listening to today.

• SUNUP Recordings:

Princess Nokia


The ever-illustrious Princess Nokia, formerly Wavy Spice, has declared her prominence in the NYC music scene through a tenaciously pompous swagger, exuding allure not only through her persona, but through a casually manifested musical adeptness. Her latest effort “Dragons,” exemplifies her unique artistic dexterity and exuberance by transitioning from her wonted (yet diamond) rapping abilities, instead employing a refreshing patience and care through her singing. Terrifically produced by NYC’s OWWWLS, “Dragons” begins with a quick drum and bass break beat, swiftly expanding while remaining primed for Nokia’s vocals to gently lay. The tasty combination is only complimented by its’ video which combines anime images from Dragon Ball to Winx Club with lovable footage of Princess Nokia and her sweetheart Wiki (of the very ill New York rap trio Ratking). Directed by Milah Libin and Arvid Logan, the video ends in a steamy, 40 oz shower scene; a bold cherry-on-top encapsulating the simple beauty of love, in its’ entirety. Definitely something to vibe to.

• Princess Nokia:

Les Cousins Dangereux


CDX, the fifth physical release by Les Cousins Dangereux (born Tim Thornton) invites you into a hermeneutic chamber of throwback acid techno — all strictly analog, all recorded live to cassette — and seals the pod bay doors behind you. In your tabula rasa world, newly bereft of historical context, Aphex Twin never made music, video games never existed, and Arrested Development never aired. Feeling liberated (✿◠‿◠), you load the tape into the chamber’s deck. Synth melodies, complex rhythmic grids, and propulsive song structures fly at you faster than you can process them. The tape airs its collage of hypnotizing major-key leads, slamming break beats, and noise-blasted effect manipulations as you sit cross-legged in the pod’s circular atrium. When one side ends, you flip the tape. When that side ends, you flip the tape. When that side ends, you flip the tape. Many moons pass.

Starved, desperate for sunlight, you crack through the pod’s glass and escape back into the world of 2014, still clutching CDX. Flooded again with memories of Analogue Bubblebath, Mega Man X, and the forbidden relationship between George Michael and Maebe, the tape in your hand makes less sense than it did before. You imagine its creator surrounded by synthesizers and drum machines, programming the album’s components in a basement studio somewhere near Cleveland. With the elements in place, he performs his compositions in bursts of extreme multi-tasking. You put the tape back in your deck at home and let it loop again, thinking fondly of your days in the pod.

CDX is physically available now from Thornton himself via his Bandcamp page. His remarkable music as Tiger Village, the exploratory synth / drone project that runs parallel to Les Cousins Dangereux, also demands your attention.

• Les Cousins Dangereux:

Tigerwing x Barnaby Bennett


Peering out the wilderness of Canada, ‘xela pops off at lounge-pace relaxation from the minds of Tigerwing x Barnaby Bennett. Which is opposite of what the teaser trailer made listeners think, however, it looks like the two took everything from ‘xela and smashed it into one entire one-minute bit:

In ‘xela, Tigerwing x Barnaby Bennett paint sound with colors used from the unknown, drawing upon vocal technique and collaged melodies to transgress both MC hoarding and mixer mania. There’s a LOT going down in ‘xela, but contrary to how that reads, Tigerwing x Barnaby Bennett stabilize their functions to please listener’s to ears. Most importantly, their plethora of sounds together do not sound like a struggle. Seamless doesn’t even correctly pinpoint their initiative here in collaboration. Though, the intent of this being a collaborative project is all the more valuable to their work together, considering the sheer amount of solo musicians who never reach out to jam with others; ‘xela is the shining example of why working together in music changes/progresses art.

So grip on this major rip ‘xela by Tigerwing x Barnaby Bennett below, and become relaxed as part of the journey unfolding:

• Tigerwing:
• Barnaby Bennett:


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.