Tag Archives: nujabes

Nitro Microphone Underground Japanese Rap Expose

Nitro Microphone Underground
Down the Line
Akugidenwa (Prank Call)”
10 Muri
(from Straight From The Underground)

J-rap is an intriguing genre if anything. A lot of the vernacular is taken from the US Rap scene, but according to the wikipedia article, Japanese rappers are able to “express themselves in a more Japanese style, both in basic language and in regard to themes”. Yet when I went over there back in 2005, I sampled what was current on the Tokyo scene (aka “The Bay Area”). I heard a lot of shit, and everyone wanted to sound like a Japanese DMX—Barks and all.
But forreals though, Japan’s hip-hop/rap scene is developing into its own, and some of that shit bangs! Some of the pop stuff like the Teriyaki Boyz is aight (think Fast & the Furious: Tokyo Drift), but the real gold is in the underground rap/hip-hop scene.

Nitro Microphone Underground is one of the first j-rap artists who didn’t sell out and pop out their act, and were recognized by the industry for it. With “Down the Line”, the members of the group (Dabo, Macka-chin, Deli, Suiken, Gore-Tex, S-Word, XBS, and Bigzam—its like a Japanese Wu-Tang) take turns passing the mic after 24 bars. Each distinctive flow & swagger is punctuated by a beat the hits the rewind button between each rapper, giving the track a fresh restart each time.

In “10 Muri”, you might recognize some famous samples which are long standbys in the rap producer’s lingua franca. And the memorable, chanting chorus “けっこ、マジ、けっこ、マジ!” (kekko maji kekko maji – “I’m fine. Forreals?”) knocks up the appeal.

“Akugidenwa (Prank Call)” has a lot of the crazy space shit that Japanese producers (and Pharrell) love to include in the background of their tracks. Just as how the Neptunes craft the perfect beat that matches a particular artist’s style, NMU’s hard-hitting delivery matches the repetitive beat perfectly, and shows off the crazy potential of japanese lyricism.

By keeping true to hip-hop (w/o the beats, the MCs are nothin!) NMU makes sure that even if you can’t understand their flow, you can at the very least listen to some high-tempo production with some of the craziest loops since the Neptunes.

Speaking of loops, I also copped some Nujabes shit over there, but couldn’t find anything from Fat Jon or Tsutchie (shoutout to Champloo Fans!). Note: I didn’t look TOO hard.

You see, Japan is a crazy place for hip hop gear collectors. Not only vinyl, but shit from all 4 elements have a strong representation in Japan, whether through special limited editions gear, crazy tech, or bumpin producers. There are even services out there where you pay people to peruse through Japan’s crazy used CD/Book/Video stores to look for that vintage recording/print that you just can’t find anywhere else. I don’t even wanna talk about the shoe/streetwear scene over there. BAPE is a Japanese phenom after all.

PS: Looking at these makes me wanna be a sneakerhead. “Anti-Babylon Equipment” Can it get any more “Crazy Engrish Oxymoron” than that!?

Nitro Microphone Underground Air Force 1s

“Music changes my mood” was gonna be the title, but then I remembered reading that the Title of every post should actually have something to do with the post so… “Life Confusion”

what did i do today?

uh…… time’s wasting away, but i don’t feel guilty about it.
I just wanna eat plants.
.:. my away message the above was
can you make a image with simple css commands? individual cells representing pixels
will that require more bandwidth than a real image?

What is an image? What makes the blue light on my HD blink when it is accessing?

Do I really want to know? How deep, how far do I really wanna delve into this world?
Something, some part of me wants to know and learn more more more…

Some part of me keeps holding myself back… is this because I don’t wanna go deeper into this particular (and may I say, rather impersonal field), or is it my hold-backiness, which holds me back from my true potential?

Why do I procrastinate, hold back, be reserved? What am I waiting for… there is no time like the present. If I don’t “DO IT NAUGH!!!”… is it human nature to always believe in the future? that there WILL be a future? What if there is no future for me? What if I am fated to die in 23 days? What would I do differently?

Like it is written on the mirror….

oLive NOW.

Sigh. I neve was that good at foresight… or maybe I am, and just can’t see it.

I have an “ultimate goal”, but I say I don’t know how to get there. Is that a sign of my age, or of my personality?

Part of me feels as if there is an eternal shark behind me ready to eat my ass up… part of me doesn’t recognize this and keeps on living life, sleeping, wasting, being. Nothing.

Its hard to break outta this cycle. I see other people breaking outta their own respective cycles, ready to jump into their new ones, that will govern their lives for add end.

I don’t wanna jump into THAT… but I feel restless. I need to move on, but I don’t wanna go to THAT. But I NEED to move.

fuck fuck fuck… aww… there plays Nujabes+Fat Jon-Departure-“Mystline”

This song grounds me somewhat. Euphoria end.

Once again… its 5am. Will I wake early to greet my new life? Or will I continue to sleep in?

It seems so easy… why do I make it so hard?

Years later from now, will this make sense? Will I laugh? Will I be puzzled?

It doesn’t matter. I know that this is how I feel— no AM, right now. This is me. This is…why do I not like ever saying this…

Terry Yoshiaki McCall.

what a fucked up anomaly of a name huh? Is that why? Why have I always denied my middle name, seeking that Asian standard?

I take pride in it now though.

Where will I, society, the world, human, everything, where will we be in 10 years?

In 2030, I will be 50 some years old. Will I be OLD? I don’t feel that way…