Max Bell once played basketball with Nate Dogg.  Last week, a friend and recent L.A. transplant told me 2Pac and Dr. Dre songs left still bodies staring at the deserted dance floor of a Westside lounge. Outsiders equate lack of motion to tracks from the accepted West Coast rap suzerain with treason. And yet, this reaction […]
Jordan Pedersen killed Laura Palmer. Mystique sells. Just about the entire indie R&B outfit – the Weeknd, BenZel, Rhye, How to Dress Well – parachuted into the game under cover of darkness. Where are these guys from? Is it a band or a producer project? Is there someone *famous* involved?! But mystery only gets you […]
Max Bell is just chillin eating lamb brain I gave up on my unspoken dream of becoming a rapper a long time ago. There are enough decent white rappers and Aesop Rock is already Aesop Rock. But there was a time when I wrote rhymes in the margins of college ruled notebooks, more focused on […]
I’ve spent a significant part of the last few years taking the death of gangster rap for granted. The narrative that I’ve run with tracks the rise in popularity of artists like (duh) Kanye West, the explicitly fake Rick Ross, and Drake, and the concurrent fall of Young Jeezy, the disappearance of 50 Cent, the […]
Max Bell never listened to Wilco   Occasionally I fear the canonical line has been replaced by the quotable. The former resurfaces as reverent homage in future rappers’s rhymes. The latter usually fits neatly into your tweet and quickly moves to the bottom of the timeline. That said, it’s always comforting to know some still believe […]
Late last year I sat down with Tyler, the Creator for a feature that ran in the Feb/March issue of Malibu Mag. Just a few weeks after the Odd Future Carnival, we met on his lunch break during shooting for the third season of “Loiter Squad.” I’d been told I would have an hour, but […]
Max Bell is naming his first born, Mulatu. Thanks large in part to members of the Passion of the Weiss staff, the hashtag dictum #ListenToMoreJazz has been all over my Twitter timeline. Apart from the hashtag, the link between these tweets is that they’re generally accompanied by audio of jazz decades old. This is necessary. […]
Max Bell believes the rules came from Slick Rick.  Hellfyre Club stalwart and rap game P.T. Anderson Open Mike Eagle has inked a three album deal with indie rap label Mello Music Group for 2014 and 2015. The first of the triad will be Mike’s next album, Dark Comedy, which is slated for release this summer. […]
Max Bell wants a money bin. On Twitter, rapper Barney Bones lists his location as ‘Boneyard Canyon.’ This might be the new slang for South Central (where he resides) or it might be a reference to Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters who drive cars rolling on stones with their feet. This is all I know about Barney Bones, […]
The New York Times shouted out tomorrow (Tuesday) night’s book reading/panel discussion featuring myself, my co-author, Evan McGarvey, Peter Rosenberg of Hot 97 and Dru-Ha of Duck Down. By “shout out,” I mean, soberly invoked in black and white print. You can find all the information here. Housing Works. 126 Crosby Street. 7 p.m. Cheese, […]