Here comes the rugged one, plus the way I flip it...

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Pete Rock, raw as he ever been, live in the flesh at the War Room on Wednesday, May 31. What more is there to say? [See preview on page 25 for more on Mr. Rock.]

Sunday, May 28, Seatown's Unexpected Arrival is rocking Chop Suey with Young Soprano, Grynch, Street Academy, BeatHogs, Rubio, and Cash Carter. Never heard of most of these guys? Well then, g-get familiar. The show is being put on by Diamond City Jewelry, who are—gotta love it—raffling off a $500 custom grill, baby. All you whippersnappers trying to stunt can hit up www.JTtheJeweler.com for the details.

Bles One and Ronnie Voice are those crazy mufuckas known as Mash Hall. Their boastful, hilarious don't-give-a-fuck stylings are in full effect on their first proper debut LP, Mash Hall Love Family Thicker Than Blood. Down with the Massive Monkees crew, these two cats keep it funky as fuck for all the b-boys, b-girls, and lowlifes with quick delivery and mad quotables over Bles's quirkily head-nodding production and frenetic scratching; bragging about spank new Nikes (as on the flyer-than-thou "Bitch I Look Good") and stomping out competition in "Jodeci Boots" (haw!), the fellas have cooked up a dope recipe that's sure to appeal to both the fun-loving b-boy constituency and the funny-haircut set. This probably ain't the kind of rap you can listen to with your grandma and feel all intelligent about, though—but why would you wanna listen to that shit anyway?

New York's Power 105 joined its rival Hot 97 in making head-slapping headlines last week, as their now former host and self-proclaimed hater Star (of Star & Buc Wild infamy) made a splash by promising on-air that he'd, among other things vile, "R. Kelly" the face of rival DJ Envy's daughter, and offer $500 to listeners who'd call in with the location of her school. The since fired-and-charged-with-child-endangerment radio host also went after Envy's wife (who is half Asian), calling her a "slant-eyed whore" and more. Since the mid-'90s, Star's been lamely trying to groom himself as hiphop's answer to Howard Stern (most notably, mocking Aaliyah's death, and getting fired from Hot 97 for threatening to "cut" the PD), playing the role of First Amendment champion, and showcasing a remarkable knack for (intentionally?) showing hiphop's constituency how stupid it can sound. But come on!

I fully believe in freedom of speech, just as I also believe in respect. Cross the line if you like, but only with a firm grasp of the consequences—the rules of respect aren't written into law; they're just observed by those deserving of it. Idiots like Star give credence to the hiphop haters (and apparently there's a whole lotta y'all, just within the city limits) who use morons like this to invalidate the whole genre. But that's a whole 'nother ball o' wax, and like Dead Prez said, it's bigger than hiphop. But you don't hear me, though.

hiphop@thestranger.com