The Underground 411: Third Week of January in Review
It has been a slightly slower week for the hip hop industry, and an even slower one for the underground. We dug into this week’s headlines for you, finding the hottest videos, interviews, and releases for you to indulge in. This week, we got quality music videos, intimate Hopsin vlogs, and the latest on the donut shop opened in honor of the late J Dilla. Let’s see what’s up.
RA the Rugged Man drops “Who Do We Trust?” video ft. Immortal Technique
The Rugged Man himself shows up back on the scene, this time with a new music video for “Who Do We Trust?” with fellow artist Immortal Technique. Video production comes from the hands of STREETHEAT. This is a single from RA’s newest album All My Heroes Are Dead. The angry but conscious rapper drops gems throughout his bars covering corrupt government, misled populations, and whistleblowers. The video is a fever dream of FBI-esque black and white photos, a gun toting RA and Immortal Technique, and yellow caution tape. This installment is a great addition to one of the better albums to have been recently released into the underground. Over the years, RA the Rugged Man has managed to up the quality of his videos at every turn.
Hopsin Opens Up About Mental Health, Therapy, and New Music
According to this recently released video from Hopsin to his fans, the rapper has struggled for the past 3 or 4 years from the burden of depression and trauma. Referencing hypnotherapy as one of the most effective treatments he’s been able to learn from, he delves into the benefits of his therapy sessions and introspection. He even went to Thailand to get away and understand himself more. The vlog serves as an announcement that he is stepping back into the limelight, with a more complete Hopsin. “Now the time is right,” he says, ready to release the music that was created during the turbulent but healing past year or so. It’s nice to hear from one of our favorite underground acts again and to see he’s doing great.
Dilla’s Delights Donut Shop Closing
In a short IGTV video posted barely over a week ago, the uncle of J Dilla announced that the iconic Dilla’s Delights Donuts would be closing its sole Detroit store. Him and his wife emphasized multiple times throughout the video that the brand wasn’t disappearing forever- in fact they plan to reopen at another location. The plans are still very much up in the air still. Opened in 2016, the aptly-named donut shop saw plenty of success until the recent COVID pandemic, which forced them to close their doors. The couple met their Instagram followers with warm hellos and interacted with the chat for roughly another hour, answering questions and chatting.
Heem, Benny The Butcher, Rick Hyde, and DJ Green Lantern drop “It Could Happen” Video
Benny the Butcher’s Black Soprano Family collective is another bastion of grimey 90’s rap. With Benny’s Griselda credentials, he is kickstarting the careers of numerous other talented artists. One such is B$F Heem, who released the newest video from his Black Soprano Family album Long Story Short. Featuring Benny himself alongside Rick Hyde, the lineup raps about alternate timelines and big what-ifs. “What if Biggie knew what happened at Quad when they hit Pac? What if Pun was still here? What if George Floyd killed the cop?” We’re left to unpack the hardest bars over haunting keys that convey the speculative yet somber tone of the album’s forerunning single.