Hip-Hop, Videos | Accent — Just For Tonight (feat. Jitta On The Track) [Lyric Video]

Posted by on December 15, 2013

We’re all a part of a moment in hip-hop history during which artists who self-identify as “rappers” range drastically in regards to how they define that role, the kind of music they create and label as “hip-hop”, the kind of technical skill they possess. The aesthetic sound of rapping has become a ubiquitous part of pop radio, and with this change most of the rappers who strive for mainstream attention work harder to try to fit the mold of simplicity that generally regulates what becomes a hit or doesn’t. Within such a concentrated industry, there are limited outlets for the fan both of technically skilled rappers and melodicism; rappers who can really spit, but also who’ll experiment with club-ready production (hence the rapid success of artists who occasionally fit this mold: Kendrick, Macklemore, etc.). Tonight we bring you a record striving to do just this—simultaneously satisfy the tastes of both those who love the kind of melodic, synth-heavy trap beats that Judge (who—if you’re a Mike Stud fan—you’ve likely heard the work of on multiple occasions) so expertly crafts, and also appease those who listen to hip-hop for the advanced lyricism; the kind of alliteration, wordplay, and rhyme schemes that have become synonymous with Accent’s work. This is the kind of song that you can enjoy for whatever it is that makes your head bang, though I certainly hope you’re the kind of people who listen to lyrics. Accent’s new mixtape, The Last Lyricist, drops this winter.



Hip-Hop | Accent — Careless (feat. Hunter Stout & Lyric Lincoln) [Prod. DJ Grumble]

Posted by on August 24, 2013

Accent is back and as lyrically sharp as he’s ever been, teaming up here with vocalists Hunter Stout and Lyric Lincoln (who we previously heard on Dylan Owen’s “The Window Seat”) for this upbeat breakup jam. Armed with an uptempo, sample-laden beat from DJ Grumble and a catchy hook, Accent takes the track the extra mile rhyming three 8-bar verses with more rhyme-schemes at work then most artists can muster in twice the space. His new mixtape, With A Little Help From My Friends II (see Kinetics’ part one here), is due out this fall, and is guaranteed to continue to merge his advanced lyricism with some more aesthetically-pleasing soundscapes.


Hip-Hop, Videos | Accent — Everybody’s Crazy (feat. Kinetics) [Music Video Premiere]

Posted by on February 28, 2013

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that I love introspective hip-hop—and man does this new Accent track take the cake. Amidst a genre primarily concerned with braggadocio and glorified false personas, Accent utilizes his singing skills to evoke this powerful jam about “accepting the imperfections that define us, and being proud of them.” The Kid Vision-produced single from his Sight & Sound EP features a verse from frequent collaborator Kinetics—whose internal rhyme-schemes become more impressive by the song—and impressive visuals courtesy of Hickory that highlight the song’s meaning and personal nature, which Accent eloquently described for us:

“The song recognizes that every human has their own unique qualities, yet it acknowledges that those differences between us are what make all of us the same; everyone struggles with their own experiences and identities. The sources of my own pain are very literally expressed here and every word is carefully recited making for a clear projection of the message. I reference my own issues regarding bi-raciality, growing up without a father and being almost obsessed with what I loved about my childhood but I also touch on my capacity for love and the purpose I have for existing. While “Everybody’s Crazy” comes from a sad place in my heart it encourages people to transform the negativity in their histories into a beautiful representation of the strength they have developed from it.”




Hip-Hop | Accent — Sight & Sound EP (Produced by Kid Vision)

Posted by on December 12, 2012

Step into the mind of Accent, where stories take the form of tantalizing rhythms, flows, and cadences. Where a simple emotion is invoked through intricately-crafted lyrics, exhibiting strong language skills through alliteration and the most advanced rhyme-schemes you’ve heard from anyone this year. Rarely does an artist with this level of talent arise, and when they do — it feels like it’s only days before they ascend into hip-hop royalty. Tonight we are proud to sponsor Accent’s latest EP, Sight & Sound, a collaboration with producer Kid Vision — an EP that sits under twenty minutes in length, but will take months to fully digest. Accent’s pure skill as an emcee is clearly evident here, but what is most amazing is how even when rhyming repetitiously, the message remains so flawless and detailed. Accent is a poet and storyteller, no question, yet he has the kind of flow that excites listeners who can’t even begin to comprehend the content. He’s a rapper’s rapper in the truest sense — one who embodies such a strong devotion to the music he creates, and has a real sense of integrity about his content. This phenomenal EP includes collaborations with Chyna Griffin (Faith Evans’ daughter), as well as two with Kinetics, whom he recorded alongside this summer—as well as Mike Stud, Missy Modell, and others. Enjoy this tape’s ingenuity and genuine songwriting, and download below.


Free Download: Accent — Sight & Sound EP 


Hip-Hop, Videos | Accent — X-Men & Street Fighter Verses [Video]

Posted by on November 4, 2012

Every once in awhile I come across an emcee who is truly deserving of that title — who is creating art, and knows the difference between hip-hop and the glorified pop rap of syndicated radio. Too many prospective artists lack the mastery of lyricism, cadence, and rhythm to sustain a listener’s ears for a full track, let alone an entire project. To this issue, however, there are a handful of antidotes, and Accent is one of them. Known as the “best poet rapping,” Accent has garnered FNT fame through collaborations with Kinetics, Mike Stud, and Radical Something, and seeks to set a new standard for hip-hop. In preparation for his upcoming Sight & Sound mixtape, here’s a video of him spitting a few dazzling verses about X-Men and Street Fighter that — even as acapellas — are more compelling than most rappers can manage to sound on top-shelf beats. Check it out below and stay connected with him as he prepares his new project for release.

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Hip-Hop | In the Rubble of Hip-Hop…

Posted by on September 23, 2012

In 2006 when Nas claimed, quite controversially, that “hip-hop is dead,” he was on to something. One of hip-hop’s purest lyricists, Nas grew to fame in the early ‘90s through his poetic rapping and political subject matter—qualities that had become largely extinct from popularized hip-hop in the early 2000s. Hip-hop grew to prominence as the voice of disadvantaged America, but had become dominated by label executives; tastemakers prioritizing simplistic lyricism and rhyme schemes (along with incorporating the catchy choruses of pop music), and simultaneously degrading the quality of an art form.

Over the past decade, I have watched hip-hop become increasingly saturated, as pop culture continues to endorse formulaic hip-hop, typically including repetitious and easily accessible hooks, and raps using simple A-B rhyme schemes that delve lightly into a number of prescribed topics, such as the desire for fame, women, braggadocio, and partying. This sub-genre of “party rap” became widely popular in college environments, and seemed to promise any student with an aptitude for parties and a junior-high vocabulary the opportunity to earn a remunerative career as a rapper.

Through the surplus of undergraduates-turned-rappers, a new sub-genre, often coined “college rap,” began inundating blogs and steadily saturating the industry. These upstarts idolized the popular artists of the time, basing their craft off the lackluster wordplay and superficiality that dominated college radio playlists. When Asher Roth’s single “I Love College” rose to prominence in 2009, this movement hit the limelight, and suddenly students stopped studying law and medicine to follow their newfound dreams of being the next Mac Miller or Sammy Adams.

What is highly underestimated, however, is the amount of skill required to be an emcee of Nas’ caliber. If you take the time to listen to his first album Illmatic, Eminem’s Infinite, The Roots’ Phrenology, or any number of ‘90s or early 2000s records, the sophistication of the lyricism, content, and rhyme schemes is staggering. Becoming a prominent emcee used to require being sufficiently educated on the English language, as rappers constructed multisyllabic rhymes infused with alliteration, internal rhyme, and other complex literary elements. Just listen to Kinetics in his recently featured song, “Chris Nolan,” where he raps, “I spit sinister symbolism that’s killing all these silly simile single syllable singing simpletons.” Eminem has said in interviews that he used to study the dictionary as a child. If you listen to “Lose Yourself” closely, you can note that there is not a single word in the song that doesn’t rhyme with another. The reason it’s problematic to equate him to Asher Roth (besides the fact that it’s just rooted in race), is because Em rose to fame because of his pure lyrical power, and Asher made it off of artificiality.

The “change in leadership” that Nas referred to in interviews surrounding “Hip-Hop is Dead” highlighted that as the preferences of record companies have shifted, the music has changed with it. Political, socially conscious hip-hop is no longer seen as profitable, and thus labels won’t promote it. The biggest controversy surrounding this power battle occurred in 2008, when Atlantic Records shelved Lupe Fiasco’s third album for almost a year because of his defiance when asked to make a “radio-ready” single. Unfortunately, our Lupes are few and far between, and the majority of my favorite emcees are a far cry now from the substance-driven music they initially created. It doesn’t take long in the industry to understand what type of music is advantageous for one’s career, and it seems all but a few choose money over message. In this sense, rapping has become quite like corporate law; individuals work exceptionally hard to excel at a practice they believe in only to abandon their values in pursuit of a more lucrative opportunity.

I have always loved hip-hop, and that passion will always persist. But I want to live in a world where I don’t have to search for underground rappers to convince a friend that all hip-hop isn’t violent, misogynistic, and devoid of content. The reason that it became such a red flag for white, suburban kids to listen to hip-hop is that our mainstream culture assumed we were only listening to the 2 Chainz and Chief Keef’s of the world. No wonder they didn’t understand. Most critics of hip-hop have never heard It Was Written, Midnight Marauders, or Like Water for Chocolate. They haven’t paid attention to Macklemore on the new XXL Freshman List. Instead, they have seen Machine Gun Kelly and Roscoe Dash.

I’m not asking for you to agree, or to all of a sudden change your preference, but I’m asking us to be conscious of what we consume and what type of hip-hop we’re promoting when we share it. Our choices ultimately get reflected in who’s in the magazines, who’s on the radio, and even who’s getting a record deal. I’m always careful to promote new artists who have something special to share (see Kendrick Lamar, Macklemore, Blue Scholars, Logic, Kinetics, Dylan Owen, Accent—just to name a few), and I’ll continue to do so. But many of hip-hop’s forefathers are on their way out, and it’s up to us to make sure the right artists of this new generation end up on top.

Albums | FNT Concert Giveaway — Accent/Dylan Owen/One Love Live in NYC!

Posted by on August 29, 2012

NYC! Do you want to see Accent, Dylan Owen, and One Love tomorrow night? We have tickets to their show at DROM in the Lower East Side. To enter the contest, you must do the following:

1. “Like” all three artists at their Facebook pages: Accent, Dylan Owen, Kinetics & One Love, as well as Fresh New Tracks.

2. Share either Accent’s “The One I Need” or Kinetics & One Love’s “Still Dreamin'”  on Facebook, tagging Fresh New Tracks and including the line, “Share this video to win free tickets to see Accent, Dylan Owen & One Love Live!” with a link to this post.

3. Two winners will be picked by 4pm tomorrow. Doors open at 8. You can find more info here.

Happy posting!