Thursday , 18 January 2018
Home » Author Archives: Arasia Magnetic

Author Archives: Arasia Magnetic

Arasia is a contributing writer at and resides in Chicago, IL.

Peanut Butter Wolf Discusses Preserving Charizma’s Legacy and If Stones Throw Would Be Different If His Best Friend Were Still Alive

It has been a little over twenty years since visionary Peanut Butter Wolf, lost his best friend and music mate, Charles Hicks AKA Charizma, who was tragically shot and killed while sitting in his car. Devastated by the news, Wolf stopped making music and retreated for several months before he got up the gumption to set forth on the path to getting their music out to the masses. He created the legendary record label, Stones Throw Records in 1996, and released their 12” single, “My World Premiere;” which set the groundwork for fans and “a-alikes” to know Stones Throw as one of the most artistically varied (and critically acclaimed) enduring labels of our time. To celebrate Charizma’s legacy and life, Stones Throw Records recently released Charizma & Peanut Butter Wolf (Circa 1990-1993), a commemorative box set with rare photos, unreleased tracks, and ephemera; curated by Peanut Butter Wolf. We caught up with the legendary label head in which he discusses why he decided to release the box set now, if he kept in touch with Charizma’s family and what artist from his hometown (San Jose) inspired him. [Make sure to also check out the feature-length film: Our Vinyl Weighs A Ton (This is Stone Throw Records,) which is a [phenomenal] introspective look into the history of the renowned record label.] Read More »

Jay-Z: Magna Carta… Holy Grail [Album Review]

It’s June 8, 2002 at the Pyramid Arena in Memphis and Mike Tyson is losing steam after eight rounds of jabs from Lenox Lewis. As Tyson is wearing down, Lewis hits him with a heavy right sending him to taste canvas for a second time. And instead of getting up and pushing further, Tyson throws in the towel and accepts defeat.  Unlike many emcees, Jay-Z has been around since the late eighties and is still at the forefront of Hip Hop. I applaud Jay for his longevity, for staying relevant and becoming someone that the new generation still checks for regularly. That’s an enormous accomplishment for a 43-year-old rapper whose most defining moments took place almost 15 years ago. And should his age play a factor? Absolutely not, but it does; and the question of if he is too old or if he still “has it” continues to come up. So does his latest release Magna Carta… Holy Grail lead us to believe that he’s done or give us clues that Jay isn’t ready to taste canvas? As the album opens, we are greeted with a concentrated energy as Justin Timberlake bellows over a melodramatic piano consumed with murky sentiments that set the tone for the rest of the song [and album] while Jay surreptitiously lays the blueprint by introducing us to MCHG’s theme: the duality of fame and “regular” life.  And on “Holy Grail,” even in all of its worn out “I Used To Love H.E.R.”-esque glory, we learn ... Read More »

The Bloggerati’s Top Ten Rappers In The Game (2012)

  Oh MTV…I’ve shared some great memories with you. From the time you first showed me a black woman
 with a English accent to the classic finale episode of Yo! MTV Raps, I’ve rocked with you damn near half
 my life. But like most from my generation [that is ironically named after you], we fell out like the result of a 
bad perm and things haven’t been right since. So I can’t say I was too shocked when your list appeared on 
my news feed followed by complete and utter outrage. Not because you haven’t been a huge part of Hip
 Hop because you have. It’s more because you forgot those formative years when your heartbeat matched 
the pulse of the streets… My first initial reaction is that lists like this are always [completely] subjective so there is no such thing as
one true list that is accurate trumping the rest. If you place 20 fans and writers in a room, you will probably 
get about 30 different lists. However, as a journalist, I completely understand why media outlets like MTV 
do lists like this. KN and tons of other sites have done them also because they bring forth tons of traffic and 
get people talking and debating about who we personally feel are the best the culture has to offer. And like
 most writers that are fans first, we also know that the only Hip Hop connoisseur that is right [in their mind] is
 the one arguing their individual point ... Read More »

Kendrick Lamar: good kid, M.A.A.d city

A film without picture could be exasperating enough to throw your device into an abyss full of carnage unless you got a hold of the latest film starring Kendrick Lamar. Despite coming in a different package, it has all the fixings needed to be a high-quality movie minus any visual scenes witnessed on a big screen: an endless list of haunting characters, a titillating plot, potent message, and a phenomenal soundtrack. At the start of the “filmalbum,” we meet the main character; a 17-year-old boy from Compton who struggles to maintain his virtuousness in a city that absorbs his innocence. Brimming with gang violence, drugs, and flowerless concrete dreams, he also has an intense appetite for a young girl named Sherane. It’s important to note, this story is nothing new but that doesn’t make it less appealing. This tale is attractive due to a deeply rooted account of a relatable kid who tells his story in an unorthodox way making it sound as if our ears are virgins to these proverbial words. It’s the inconceivable way he moves between styles, his unsullied cadence, the intricate lyrics filled with mystifying double (sometimes triple) entendres, and the precision used to create a story you have to see to its end. good kid, m.A.A.d city kicks off to the sound of a VHS tape disappearing into a VCR before we hear a group of adolescent boys reciting a prayer. As they ask for shelter from the aftermath of their sins, this eerie recital ... Read More »

KN Remembers: Heavy D (May 24, 1967 – November 8, 2011)

Last year, Hip Hop lost one of its most precious and often under appreciated emcees Dwight Meyers BKA Heavy D. Or as my mother called him, the “a diddley-diddley-diddley man.” Unfortunately, we’ve lost plenty of Hip Hop legends through the years and I’ve lived through quite a few of them but not too many pierced like Heavy D. Not only was I completely stunned that we had lost such a precious soul and talent so unexpectedly but a bit of my childhood left with Heavy when he took his final breath. See, to many of us, Heavy was that big dude at school that everyone knew and loved because he was charismatic, vivacious, funny, entertaining, and above all, cool as hell. And as Hip Hop gets older and not always the wiser, many emcees lose these key qualities that made Heavy so damn loveable and respected. In addition to his captivating personality and stage presence, Heavy’s music got the party started because it was fun, authentic, and true to his persona and what it meant to be a Hip Hop teenager. He would often times dance circles around anyone when it was cool to actually dance and have a good time in Hip Hop despite his large frame and this was also one of the many reasons that he was one of my favorite entertainers beyond just Hip Hop. Like many of you, I have so many great memories of Heavy but one that stands out the most was when ... Read More »

Top 10 Albums of 2014
Top 10 Mixtapes/Free Albums of 2014
Top 10 Slept-On Albums of 2014
Top 10 EPs of 2014
Albums / Mixtapes Instrumentals New Singles Sponsored Releases
Ben Boogz (of 2 Hungry Bros): Soleil (feat. DJ M-Tri)
MarQ Spekt & Blockhead: Devil’s Island Storyteller (feat. Sadat X)
Hassaan Mackey & Kev Brown: That Grit [EP Review]
Big K.R.I.T: Cadillactica [Album Review]
Black Milk: If There’s A Hell Below [Album Review]
Stalley: Ohio [Album Review]
Ras Kass Talks Blasphemy LP, Working with Apollo Brown and Longevity in Rap
D.S. Interview At 90.5 FM [Video]
Artist Spotlight: RF3RD
Otis Brown III Talks The Thought of You, Jazz & Hip Hop’s Symbiosis and Donald Byrd
Lazarus: Open Heart Surgery (feat. Bizarre of D12)
Clay James: Kool Water Intro (Music Video)
Git x 1Mt: Lifestyle of an Artist
British Producer Actress Embarks on Short Tour – Win Tickets!
Paid Dues
Win Passes to see Lil Wayne, Ab-Soul and more at Paid Dues Fest in Los Angeles!
Microphone Check 1-2, 1-2
Donwill: Bad With Names Episode 8: 2014 Wrap Up (feat Von Pea)