To my surprise super rockin rap project BLAKROC is not new. How The Black Keys, Mos Def and Jim Jones can hook up, do a record under my nose without me noticing, hearing or receiving any inkling about it is a mystery to me. This album released Black Friday of 2009? I feel duped. This must have been deliberate, like The Truman Show.
The mind behind the brilliant collaboration is Damon Dash, remember Jay-Z‘s former comrade and co-owner of the Roc. Now this project includes a hip-hop’s dozen of rappers: Pharoahe Monch, Ludacris, NOE of ByrdGang, Billy Danze of M.O.P., Nicole Wray, the mighty Abstract aka Q-Tip , Wu-Tang wonders RZA, Raekwon and the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard. Yes all on one super record. Even Jay-Z cameos on the record.
Mixing all of these talented rappers with the smooth drums and guitar of Ohio-based The Black Keys is complete genius. Damon Dash proves that his ear for greatness is as sharp as ever. Borrowing the Roc from his former teammate AND including said former teammate on the record? WHAT? The drama over this is so intense Victor Newman was nervous – only for a moment.
In early 2009, Jim Jones had just partnered with Dash to start the label Splash Records so was among the first of the projects confirmed contributors. In true Brooklyn form Mos Def mugged a session, and ended up recording with them as well. Together they produced the projects first single and signature track “Ain’t Nothing Like You (Hoochie Coo)“.
The Future aka The Good News
The Black Keys are collaborating on another Blakroc album with guests including the coolest Chicago-based hip hop duo The Cool Kids, Wiz Khalifa, Jay Electronica, The Disco Biscuits, Curren$y and Stalley and there are sure to be others.
It is quite a shock that Jay-Z and Damon Dash are working together still at all. Hova allowed quite a bit of Roc-a-Fella artists onto the project. That hatchet has been buried apparently. Love to see this and can’t wait for the new album. Stop and Take Notice of the MAMMOTH Blakroc project, don’t be a Truman like me.
Photo courtesy of MADEBYCHINA on Flickr.
- DOWNLOAD: Black Keys & Big Boi Mashup! (spin.com)
- Watch now: Dame Dash steps outside of “Wack World” (timeoutny.com)
- Mos Def is Not a Fan of the New York Observer, Claims Story Fabrication [Feuds] (gawker.com)
- Roc Nation rookie J. Cole on the keys to success (timeoutny.com)
- What Jay-Z’s Book Doesn’t Decode (forbes.com)