How about some NardCore? Madlib's very talented lil' bruh, Oh No, is bringing his neck-snapping hiphop to Chop Suey along with Chi-Town's Diverse come July 6. Please tell me you didn't sleep on Oh No's turbulently fat Stones Throw debut, The Disrupt. With production work from the man himself, Madlib, and Dilla, it's a monster. Plus Oh No's a master of that slightly spacey, clipped cadence rap style that's in full effect with his fellow Oxnard, CA brethren.

Big shout to my man H-Bomb, who reportedly put fire to cats' asses at the Scribble Jam MC battle held in Portland a few weekends ago, going on to take top honors. Hussein will be repping hard for the 206 in the finals in Cincinnati on August 13.

Rhymesayers' Slug and Living Legends' Murs are teaming up to drop another album as Felt. If you remember, their first recording was a tribute to Christina Ricci—this time it's dedicated to none other than Denise Huxtable, AKA Lisa Bonet. I can dig it. Oh and speaking of RSE, seeing I Self Divine very authoritatively tear it the fuck down at the Boom Bap Project record release makes me want more than this album sampler I got. Hearing him and his Field Generals patna Buddha Tye rocking some rowdy-rowdy lyrics over Biggie's classic "Gimme the Loot" made me make that face. His Self Destruction LP is dropping in August on Rhymesayers.

Speaking of the Black Frank White, yet another witness in Biggie's murder trial has gone all funny style—one Kevin Hackie, a key eyewitness for the Wallace fam, has suddenly decided to tell the world he suffers from serious memory lapses due to stress and medication. Guess he won't be able to recall his previous testimony about how crooked cops set up Big's murder, then. At this point, folks, I wouldn't be surprised to hear conclusive proof from the LAPD that Biggie shot his got-damn self... if you get my drift. Maybe they're still mad about the O. J. thing?

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As if to shit on the legacy of recently deceased Mixtape Awards founder Justo Faison, a few weeks ago the NYPD (in cahoots with the Recording Industry Association of America) protected corporate interests by raiding the popular mixtape spot Mondo Kim's in the East Village, snatching hundreds of mix CDs and arresting five employees. Pray tell, who told the RIAA that cracking down on mixtapes is at all a good idea? Mixtapes—long utilized by rap labels and individual artists alike—provide priceless exposure and for new joints and up-and-coming artists. Jesus, is it even possible to get a buzz on a national level without blazing the Clue's, Whoo Kid's, and so forth? Would Get Rich or Die Trying have sold 10 mil if 50 hadn't first slayed every mix CD from here to Czechoslovakia? No fucking way, friend. Labels need to step up, speak out, and protect a medium that has been an invaluable asset to them for years... 'cause rap without mixtapes is like indie rock without stupid haircuts. Rock rock on. ■

hiphop@thestranger.com