Possessing an off-the-cuff absurdity that stacks up against that of MF Doom, Serengeti uses his strange Chicago upbringing (Communist activist mother, suburban father) to produce an equally bizarre, moving, and witty walk through day-to-day life channeled through the hip-hop culture he knows and loves so well. His album Dennehy came out this year on the Bonafyde label, and the whole thing can be streamed via the e-card.
Haiku is a Chicago MC who, despite his relatively young career, has carved out a strong niche all his own. Grounded in the tru-school aesthetics of Native Tongues pioneer De La Soul and its modern day torch-bearers Little Brother, as well as the literate and unapologetically intellectual tongue-twisting of the Def Jux and Anticon camps, Haiku's Blew is a packed-to-the-brim, but never overlong, opus of soul-fueled beats (with Galapagos4's Meaty Ogre lending a hand). It seamlessly complements Haiku's wordy, but rarely pretentious, style of rhyme. Rather than focusing on the usual m.o. of battle raps, Haiku's deep discussions about ills in relationships and elsewhere are composed with a stunning maturity and confidence. Whether your hip-hop tastes lie in the more straightforward or challenging vein, Haiku is the perfect combination of both sides of the sphere. His album Blew is also out on the Bonafyde label and is available for streaming via the e-card.
Marion Raven will release her digital debut EP, Heads Will Roll, exclusively on iTunes on October 24. You might recognize Marion from her guest appearance in Meat Loaf’s video for "It’s All Coming Back to Me Now" from his new album Bat out Of Hell III. Marion wrote her first single, "Heads will Roll" with Nikki Sixx of Mötley Crüe and the streaming video of that track is available now.
Gertie Fox is a group of four L.A. guys who channel the twang of The Band and The Byrds with the modern unkempt fortes of legends like Built To Spill and Archers Of Loaf. In fact, if the U.S. needs its own Wolf Parade, Gertie Fox may be able to take on thee task, but there's a certain sense of restraint and general comfort in the music that sets this quartet apart from the pack. If the sunny daydream haze of Grandaddy was your blanket at night, Gertie Fox's An Imaginary Meeting In The Woods may help ease the mourning and introduce you to a new band of soothing string-pluckers who make laid-back pop for the college set.