Okay, youngster. You "Kick Push"-ed last week, now you're dead set on going into skate-rap OT with the Pack (who will be going dummy at Chop Suey on Friday, January 18). Yeah, the Pack—remember them? Those plucky young dread-shakers from the Bay who turf-danced all over '05 in their Vans? Oh yeah hey, "they look like sneakers," but they feel like a pump! Or something. Opening up for this show is... Pittsburgh Slim. YO, WHO THE FUCK IS PITTSBURGH SLIM? My strictly scientific preliminary research (MySpace) indicates he's... I dunno, like some kind of club-ready frat-boy version of Slug from Atmosphere. Like a less hardcore, glam-free TRL-ed up Mickey Avalon. Like if your little sister thought Travis from Gym Class Heroes was too gangsta. He's on Def Jam, and if Jay-Z had anything to do with signing him then good fucking riddance to President Carter; not that I love the idea of Jermaine Dupri heading up the house that Russ and Rick built... expect a new superstar child rapper any day now. Shit, maybe he's here already! Slimmie's new album is called Tastemaker—appropriate, seeing as how I can't get the taste of vomit out of my mouth after checking his music. Why in the hell am I catching heat over liking M.I.A. but nobody even raises a fucking eyebrow about this dude? Screw you guys! Okay, it's not all bad tho. Also opening for this show is Tyga, who's apparently from Compton, and Kuddie Mak, who won the first Big Tunes comp back at the War Room. Kuddie is one of the town's illest and most underappreciated talents in the booth and behind the boards. Don't sleep.

Also, down the road that same night at Neumo's is the Artifakt Graffiti Art Show featuring Scarub of the Living Legends. Opening up are locals Life Cycle and the New Law and DJ Sean Cee. To recap: Pittsburgh Slim will not be at Neumo's.

If the skate-rap is not your thing, you still gotta hyphenate it with something... How bout bike-rap? The Cool Kids—perhaps the only decent act to emerge from the nascent blog/hipster/stupid clothes-rap universe—are coming to town, specifically the HUB at the University of Washington, also on January 18. Non-Dawgs head there early, 'cause if you're like my old ass, you're gonna get lost as a bitch trying to find the HUB every time. You don't wanna miss One Be Lo—his best LP yet, R.E.B.I.R.T.H. is in stores now—or the homegrown stylings of Dyme Def. Peep Brainstorm, S.E.V. and Fearce Villain side-by-side with Kids Chuck and Mikey and tell me who brings it harder. (Safe money's on Renton's favorite sons, son.) See? The kids are alright.

Don't be daunted by the state of hip-pop; on Saturday, January 19, get a full dose of the good stuff. Hit the Vera Project for the Massive Monkees League Tournament B-Boy Jam. Observe experts of the culture doing what they do best in a controlled setting. Relax and take notes. recommended