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Fresh legends

Somebody pinch People Under the Stairs
Nine out of 10 rap legends prefer People Under the Stairs. (The holdout is a crackhead.) That's no joke — in my hundreds of interviews with dudes who brought the noise and funk before the big ship sunk ( circa 1997), California underground heroes Thes One and Double K have been as popular a subject as the exploitation of old-school luminaries.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 13, 2010


Interview: Don Lattin

Cracking Harvard's 'psychedelic club'
"This is like the founding myth of the '60s counterculture, even though there was a lot of truth to it."
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 13, 2010


A bad boy's guide to earning your B(ad) A(ss)

Boston's most rebellious continuing-ed courses
With some exceptions, college is a nightclub with a $30,000 annual cover charge. Tests and term papers occasionally crash the party, but for the most part undergraduate matriculation is an excuse to engage in outlandish hedonism.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 06, 2010


Green school. Red light?

At-large City Councilor John Connolly sets his sights on creating multi-million-dollar environmental academy.
Little girls and boys frolic on swing sets whittled from recycled beech wood.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 06, 2010


Lazlo Supreme | Evil Made Easy

Urban Home Companion (2010)
No regional hip-hop scene has a more distinct sound than the Twin Cities.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 05, 2010


Beyond Dilla and Dipset

Can hip-hop deliver in 2010?
With a semi-sober face I'll claim that hip-hop in 2010 might deliver more than just posthumous Dilla discs, Dipset mixtapes, and a new ignoramus coke rapper whom critics pretend rhymes in triple-entendres.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 29, 2009


Interview: Raj Patel

Borrow his book
"The opposite of consumption is not thrift but generosity; if you look at happiness studies, we are happiest when we give things away rather than when we accumulate or when we don't spend."
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 30, 2009


Tapped out

H-2 Woes Dept.
The freedom to vacation before wrapping up vital work is just one perk of holding statewide office.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 16, 2009


There will be blood

Beacon Hill is green-lighting elbow smashes to the face, as Mass. officially welcomes mixed martial arts
This past Saturday, Dover-raised gladiator Kenny Florian beat the pretty out of long-haired Chicago carpenter-turned-ass kicker Clay Guida.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 18, 2009


Interview: Richard Lewis

Richard Lewis can't stop himself
"My dream [today] was bad. It was like a Jewish, Fellini-esque dragons-with-skulls-and-ex-girlfriends."
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 17, 2009


Good Fela! beats Nigerian drum

Boston and Broadway
Riddle this: what's more unlikely than the fact that the current toast of Broadway is a musical about a Nigerian agitprop pop singer, or that it owes its existence to a Caucasian commodities trader from New England?
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 09, 2009


New edition

Masspike Miles, Lisa Bello, and the little R&B scene that can
There’s no underground scene for pop-minded R&B. Not in Boston, and not really anyplace else.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 09, 2009


Review: The Slammin' Salmon

The Lizard is broken indeed
Here's how the shit version of Waiting likely came to be: the Broken Lizard boys (David Heffernan directs) thought the concept of a boxing-champ-turned-Miami-restaurateur was funny, and they wrote and shot a major motion picture without bothering to design a plot.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 09, 2009


Hacking pact

With big record companies willingly bucking technology, musicians and software types gathered in Cambridge to revolutionize the industry.
On an unheralded fall weekend right before Thanksgiving, a roomful of amateur hackers and Web rock stars gathered in East Cambridge for a historic convention that could dramatically reshape the way we get our music.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 02, 2009


Main man of Mattapan

From the curb to the club with Singapore Kane
Ask any group of teens on Blue Hill Ave how many of them rap and you'll get more affirmatives than you would surveying kids at Mass and Boylston for slap-bass skills. Allston might be a crab bucket of indie-rockers, and one in three JP residents is an abstract painter, but MCs in Boston's black communities have more competition than nail salons in Dudley Square.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 01, 2009


Fashawn | Boy Meets World

One (2009)
Since Boy Meets World dropped into my radar a month ago, I’ve discovered how much magic stretches clean across the tracklist, and I was planning to include it on my year-end list. Yet more immediate praise is due.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 02, 2009


Review: For the Love of Movies

Why do some people get to watch movies for a living?
Like Trekkies and other documentaries that examine what makes particular nerd legions tick, For the Love of Movies beams viewers to a planet that outsiders only think they know about.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 09, 2009


IBEW pressures Stop & Shop

Power Play Dept.
Folks driving past suburban Stop & Shop locations this week might wonder why laborers are suddenly concerned about food safety.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  November 24, 2009


Tale of the tapes

Pacey Foster tells the story of Boston hip-hop
Soon after music-minded UMass-Boston management professor Pacey Foster signed on to write a Boston chapter for the most comprehensive hip-hop tome ever compiled, his mission brought him to rural Maine, where it has long been speculated that the Hub rhyme scene's Holy Grail is safely stored.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  November 25, 2009


Wale | Attention Deficit

Interscope (2009)
It turns out there is merit behind the billion-dollar hype machine that’s been propelling Wale since he surfaced on the face of URB two years ago.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  November 24, 2009


Review: The Blind Side

Despite what you may think, it's not a Sandra Bullock movie
It’s tough for any self-respecting critic to refrain from joyously tackling a Sandra Bullock movie — so it’s a good thing The Blind Side isn’t one.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  November 17, 2009

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