“Fight the Power”: Two Rappers’ Insight into Politics

Radical politics and musical expression are hopelessly intertwined throughout history and revolutions. The political unrest of many generations is echoed in the music of their respective times: Bob Dylan’s folk is woven within the cultural revolution of the ‘60s; Tupac’s lyrics capture the complex experience of a black man in
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Worst-case scenarios for Friday the 13th

According to Wikipedia, the likelihood of a Friday the 13th is one in every 212.35 days, which sounds roughly the same as the likelihood of UC Berkeley students having a good night’s rest within a school year. Friday the 13th has a notorious reputation for the uncanny. Many people, superstitious or
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Amazing UC Berkeley team decodes rap album in record time

On Friday, a UC Berkeley cross-departmental team announced a historic achievement in the field of spoken-word poetry: Using a complicated algorithm, it was able to decode the entirety of a rap album in a matter of three days. Hans Leaf, professor of the campus linguistics department, headed the team of accomplished scholars.
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J. Cole gets back to his roots in latest album

J. Cole brings it home in his third studio album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive. Titled after the house he grew up in, the album tells a vulnerable story of adolescence and unfolds like a compilation of journal entries. Cole is born into an oppressive system, learns to measure his self-worth
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Keepin’ it real ’93 ’til

The unexpected combination of hip-hop, dark humor and kung-fu made Wu-Tang Clan unlike any group before it. Their breakout album, Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers), turned 21 this past Sunday. The day before the group’s 1993 hits were celebrated along those of A Tribe Called Quest, Pharcyde, Tupac, Dr.
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Book sets out to prove Lil Wayne’s genius

There will come a time in the life of every hip-hop fan when he or she will be called upon to defend the art form. We are told that rapping is not really an art, that it is a bastardized form of gutter poetry or that it is intolerable for
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On Tour: Riff Raff

Riff Raff played a set at the Regency Ballroom on Sunday night where everything went so wrong that it felt so right. The so-bad-it’s-good shit show that was Riff Raff’s show was so absurd, I have to wonder whether or not it was strategically orchestrated. Riff Raff’s aesthetic is over-the-top
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Local artist G-Eazy refuses to take the easy way out

“Might not be on the radio, but this is art,” raps Oakland-born musician G-Eazy on the title track of his 2012 album Must Be Nice. Although the airwaves may be slow to catch on, G’s hard-hitting sound and laid back, dapper style have earned him massive attention online. Local hip-hop
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Former collaborators Jay-Z and Kanye West diverge with their latest albums

Jay-Z's new offering fails to live up to its mother album, 'Watch the Throne'

Sometimes, when Kanye West, Jay-Z, Beyonce and Frank Ocean love each other very much, they form a self-referential and very profitable psychosexual corporation and produce an album. That album was 2011’s Watch the Throne. Since that album, Jay and Kanye have become fathers, Ocean publicly came out and Beyonce’s stardom
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