dubldragon. - Synthesthesia

dubldragon. is the San Francisco duo of emcee Skeptik and producer Danny G, formed back in 2014. Most recently, they dropped an EP called Funcoland, in June of 2020. Now they are back with a full-length album, Synthesthesia. As you might infer from the title of the album, a play on the word for when people visualize music when they hear it, this is a largely philosophical album. Danny G is laying down some beats built off of 8-bit production and synth pop, creating this dreamy soundscape that feels like there’s a hazy sense of wonder to the whole album.

The KBCS - Color Box

The KBCS is a group of four musicians from Hamburg who had been primarily working as sidemen and session musicians. The quartet, consisting of Lucas Kochbeck on drums, Nicholas Börger on keyboards, Lar Cölln on guitar, and Daniel Stritzke on bass, came together a couple of years ago to release their first LP, Phô Sessions Vol. 1. They are now back to solidify and expand upon that sound with their sophomore album, Color Box.

Deca - Source Material

Deca is an artist originally from Denver, now based in New York, who has been releasing music since the mid-‘00s. Over the years, he’s worked with everyone from Mane Rok to RoQy TyRaiD to Eligh. His latest full-length came just a little over a year ago, when he dropped Snakes and Birds. Now he’s back with the latest installment in Def Pressé’s KPM Crate Diggers series, Source Material. In case you missed the first installment from Damu the Fudgemunk, Conversation Peace, the essence of this series is that London-based label Def Pressé has reached a partnership with KPM/EMI to open up the KPM music and sound design library for the first time.

MexStep - Vivir

MexStep is an emcee from San Antonio who is one-third of the group Third Root. Third Root released their latest album, Passion of the Poets, in June of last year. Now MexStep is back with a new solo album, Vivir, his first since 2018’s Resistir. For Vivir, MexStep is sticking to what works, and by that, I mean he’s collaborating with a lot of his usual suspects, namely producer Adrian Quesada.

BRZOWSKI & C$BURNS - Seditious Acts

Back in 2017, Texas-by-way-of-Maine emcee BRZOWSKI dropped an album called Enmityville, produced by 80HRTZ and C Money Burns. While there were other projects in between, it was in fall of 2020 when BRZOWSKI teamed back up with C$BURNS to deliver the album that extended the sound and conversation of Enmityville with The Subjugation of Bread. Now BRZOSKI and C$BURNS are back to put a proper epilogue on what they started with an EP called Seditious Acts.

Five Steez & SonoTWS - Quietude

Five Steez is an emcee from Kingston who has been releasing music for over ten years now. Over that time, he’s worked alongside such artists as Mordecai, Nomad Carlos, and J-Zen, just to name a few. Most recently, he worked with Nomad Carlos and The Sickest Drama under the name Council of the Gods to release an EP called Trilogy. Now he’s back with a new album done in collaboration with Brazilian producer SonoTWS, Quietude.

Masai Bey - The Panacea Goldmind (15th Anniversary Edition)

Masai Bey emerged as part of the New York undergound scene in the late ‘90s as a part of the storied group known as The Weathermen. In keeping with the tradition of legendary underground hip hop crews, there were a couple of singles, a handful of compilation tracks, and one mixtape before most of the group stopped trying to get everyone of the same page and just focused on solo material.

Sivion - Spring of the Songbird: Beats

Sivion is an emcee from Dallas and a member of the DeepSpace5 Collective. He’s over fifteen years into his career, with his last full-length album, Dark Side of the Cocoon, coming in 2017. Since that time, there have been a couple of singles, such as “Blinders,” which came out in October of last year. Recently, though, he’s been battling through some health issues due to complications with aplastic anemia that have seen him in and out of the hospital and seeing various specialists.

BLKrKRT - Black Rock & Roll

BLKrKRT is a producer from Fort Worth who has been releasing music for about the last decade, and he’s worked with artists like Tornup as well as maintaining a solo career. He’s also been fairly prolific, especially recently, with Ancestors II (B-Sides) coming just this past June, and another project, Blacker II coming just last week. Now he has another solo project, Black Rock & Roll. Black Rock & Roll is an interesting project in that it can simply be described as a collection of breaks and loops recorded in 2014 that went unreleased, but you would be sorely mistaken to consider this some sort of beat dump or a cash grab.

Hectic Zeniths - The Clock King (Deluxe Edition)

Philly producer Hectic Zeniths first came on our radar back in 2012 when he released his brilliant instrumental self-titled album. Since that time, he’s released some beat tapes and other smaller projects, but we were still waiting for that proper follow up to the album. Now the wait is finally over with the arrival of The Clock King (Deluxe Version). Essentially, since the release of the his self-titled album, Hectic Zeniths has slowly been chipping away at this album, working with a combination of software, vinyl and digital digging, analog synths, and live instrumentation.