Must Watch: Pig Food Records’ “Beef Patty Freaks”

As I mentioned earlier this past week, Pig Food Records teamed up with Seasons Skate Shop for their second annual collaboration. This year, they called upon the master Jeremy Fish to design the artwork for a special edition skateboard deck and it came out awesome. It’s now available at Seasons and online via PFR. And to round out the release, PFR also debuted their music video for the posse cut (available on flexi-vinyl with the purchase of the collaboration deck) titled, “Beef Patty Freaks.” I’ve watched this video at least five times now and I still can’t decide who has my vote for favorite verse. Check it:

Listen: PJ Katz – Ear Food Volume 1

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I’ve been listening to the latest release from Pig Food Records all weekend and then some. If you’ve become familiar with my writing and tastes over the past couple years then you know this is definitely my style – plus the type of music that I want to share with everyone.

Ear Food Volume 1 is a compilation of 23 brand new instrumental beats by producer PJ Katz. I’m glad I’m not a rapper or DJ because if that were the case I would definitely be interested in stopping what I’m doing immediately to work with these beats. That being said, this release isn’t solely for the music and tastemakers, it’s one for fans of simply good music too.

PJ Katz is a thoughtful producer who thinks about the experience of listening both as a whole and of individual components alike. Each track is balanced, creative, interesting and perhaps one could even say organic. It bangs and it flows.

In addition, the guys at Pig Food Records have taken a unique take on the release, making it available locally first and digitally secondary. They want you to get out of the house, which I am in full support of, especially since it’s for the purpose of seeking out music.

Ear Food Volume 1 is available exclusively at local businesses, Fuzz Records, Seasons Skate Shop and Some Girls Boutique.

Go pick it up. All you have to do is ask the staff for a download card. If you live outside of the Albany area, the release will be available for a free download sometime next month. But until then, go take a walk down Lark street or in Troy. You’ll be glad you did.

Review: Sev Statik – Sophy EP

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Perhaps one of my favorite parts about listening to (and consequently supporting) music created in the 518 is the opportunity for intimacy as listener. Simply knowing that the music was created locally, from its inspiration to its conception to its recording process to its release, automatically makes it more appealing to me. It’s impossible to say but maybe I’m unlike other people or maybe I’m like every other listener in that regard. Simply, if I enjoy or connect with the music, I want to know more about the musician. And vice versa. That desire for curiosity happens less often for me in the mainstream music sphere and that’s why I place value and emphasis on focusing on discovering music on independent, underground and local levels.

It’s all subjective, of course, and that’s why a big part of me fights the urge every blog post to not simply say “Here’s music I recently found and here’s the download link. Listen.” Perhaps some people would prefer that method of writing about music but to me there’s value in spending more time crafting reviews and I hope at the very least, you do take a minute to listen.

A recent example comes from the latest release from hip hop artist Sev Statik. His EP, Sophy, is out today on Sub-Bombin Records and is available for free download. The EP is entirely produced by PJ Katz of Pig Food Records, features a track with Animal Cracker and cuts by J-Live. The EP is in advance of a full length record which will be released later this year. By the people, for the people.

Hit the jump to read my full review.

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Masai’s Music Monday: Top 5 MCs of the 518

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My friend Masai, a local music enthusiast moonlighting as a rapper himself, compiled a list of his top five MC’s of the Capital Region and I couldn’t help but ask if I could repost it here.

I’m in total agreement with Masai in that every day I learn a little bit more about music in this area – whether in the form of a new show announcement, an artist I’ve never heard of before, new material, old material and so on, there’s so much out there. I haven’t heard of every MC on Masai’s list prior to reading it and that fact alone reinforces the importance of doing a little research on the music that’s being made in our own stomping grounds.

As you check out the artists on this list, you’ll start to see exactly why it’s an exciting thing to be a fan of hip hop/rap while residing in the Albany area. It’s going to be a good year for music in Albany, as it already has been.

Additionally, I recently previewed a couple of Masai’s tracks from his forthcoming album, “Almost Home,” which is available for pre-order. Also be sure to add February 28th to your calendar to celebrate the release officially, at the Bayou Cafe.

Thanks again to Masai for always speaking honestly, for humbly not putting himself on this list (no worries, you’re on mine!) and for doing his part in supporting the local music scene. Check out his feature after the jump!

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KC’s Music Monday: PJ Katz

When it comes to the genre of hip hop, I’m lazy.

A quick glance at my iTunes library will reflect that inexcusable flaw of mine. I’ve got Dilla, Biggie and the Beastie Boys in heavy rotation, plus a couple albums from left field, such as Mr. Complex’s latest on local label Sub-Bombin. As for the rest? For some reason, I want tastemakers to bring quality hip hop to me, when I least expect it.

Luckily, there’s crew like Pig Food Records and an extended family within 518 hip hop looking after me. If you don’t know much about the genre and are willing to admit it like I am, rest assured that while you’re sleeping, countless people are working hard into the night contributing to the genre and helping to build and sustain an important cog within local culture.

The latest example is one-man band and producer extraordinaire, PJ Katz.

Katz’ new album, ’92 Renault Music, (which drops tomorrow on Pig Food Records), is about to show you firsthand why he’s one of the areas best kept secrets that just can’t be kept quiet anymore.

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