Gimme Leaks #4: Four Twin Cities hip-hop albums you may have missed

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Photo courtesy of the artist
There's a glut of hip-hop coming out of the Twin Cities, and it can be a lot to try to digest. In the spirit of the Gimme Noise Mixtape series that ran on this blog, we now present to you a more focused album roundup, selecting recently released albums by local rappers that deserve recognition. Welcome to Gimme Leaks.

This week, we delve into new releases from Up Rock, Rich Garvey, Killstreak, and Big Wiz.

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Gimme Leaks archives


Up Rock - Let That Bass Shake

The latest from Abstract Pack alums Dundee and RDM, collectively known as Up Rock, is aptly titled Let That Bass Shake -- this is one for the sub-woofers. In an alternate universe where Run DMC never hijacked hip hop's early electronic leanings in favor of giant rock anthems, this St. Paul duo would be '90s golden-age rap. It's simultaneously futurist and throwback music, conjuring new sounds from drum machines and boom-bap flows that will appeal to fans of rap and electronic music of any era.

Check out Up Rock at the Old Arizona Theatre, with Villa Rosa and Glo Pesci on Sat, July 13. 7-10pm 21+ $5 cover.


Rich Garvey - Rich In Spirit

Rich Garvey spits with an evident passion for rap, telling stories with straight-forward flows and punch behind every line. His taste for choppy, smoked-out beats -- provided by Psymun and Damacha, Brando of 925ve, Garvey himself, and more -- fits his gut delivery and soul-bearing subject matter. It's a quick but effective listen, touching on his experience as a Liberian immigrant trying to make it in an America in recession. 


Killstreak - Janus

Rapper Tony the Scribe and producer ICETEP are dropping their debut Janus, a mingling of EDM and open-book Minneapolis rap, on July 11 at 7th St Entry. The radical rallying cries of Guante, the heart-on-sleeve openness of Slug, and the tongue-twisted flows of Eyedea are all present in Tony's vocals, but alongside the youthful intensity of Odd Future and some challenging electronic beats. It's a heavy listen, a personal and political journey using rap as blanket expression of a myriad of difficult ideas. But it's inviting and engaging, and a powerful debut from an emerging team.


Big Wiz - The Highs and Lows of Nic Swisher

Introduced by KMOJ's Smoke Dee as "The Mayor of Minneapolis," Long Doe's Big Wiz is undoubtedly a rapper deeply rooted in the Minneapolis scene. The beat selection is consistent head-nod smoothness, perfectly timed for Minneapolis summer smoking sessions. With an impressive roster of guest verses and producers, this is Wiz's best record yet and one that will likely live on as a Southside classic.



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