June 13th, 2020

Cups-N-Cakes reviews The Dirty Sample’s NO!

“His beats are f.u.n.k.y. If you’re a fan of the Ninja Tune sound, Amon Tobin, Cut Chemist or Handsome Boy Modeling School, the Dirty Sample has the beats for your meats.”Cups-N-Cakes

Much love to Cups-N-Cakes Network for the excellent review of NO!, the new instrumental album from The Dirty Sample.

June 9th, 2020

Pre-order Primal Winds – The Renegades

Dropping on Friday, June 12, The Renegades from Primal Winds is now available to pre-order on digital and limited edition cassette.

District Prime (rapper) and Iron Wind (rapper/producer) of Toronto hip hop duo Primal Winds are on a revolutionary rap journey with their new album, The Renegades. Conceived during the recording of their pirate-themed second album Give No Quarter, it was clear to the two that they would require more time to tackle the themes and music than is required for their more light-hearted projects. While putting in work on this passion project, Primal Winds have released Give No Quarter, their cowboy-themed Cut You Down, and their post-apocalyptic rap-rock album, Road Warriors, their first on Hand’Solo Records, along with various conceptual singles/videos. 

Finally satisfied with their magnum opus, Primal Winds release The Renegades cognizant of the correlations between the Tron-inspired fantasy world of the album and the turmoil of the current world. Fusing established hip hop styles and boom bap drum loops with retrowave, EDM and dubstep influences, Prime and Wind dive into gaming, hacking, cyber terrorism, and freedom of expression, while also layering in politics, religion, and observations on the glitches in our everyday system. Titles like “Uprising” and “Freedom Fight” provide a good indication of what to expect, while songs like “Griefers” takes the term from online gaming into the music world, trolling the competition. Joined by the usual collaborators—rappers Fortunato (“Identify”), Robbie G (“Resistance”), royceBIRTH (“Disc Wars”), and Warrzone (“Occupation”), with singers Lucy Lovesick (also “Occupation”) and Alexa Ourania (“Flynn’s Arcade” and “Neon Lights”)—The Renegades have no room for those who believe in a perfect system. 

June 8th, 2020

The Dirty Sample – Killin’ [official video]

The second single from The Dirty Sample’s new instrumental album is “Killin’”, his ode to slasher films. While binging a bunch of terrible slasher films, The Dirty Sample stumbled onto all these killer samples, a common job hazard for most hip hop producers. A similar approach was used for the video, returning to those films for footage and then applying digital effects, including adding simple line animation on top, giving the video that dirty feel fans expect of the Canadian producer.

May 31st, 2020

RapReviews reviews The Dirty Sample’s NO!

“The highlight of the album is The Dirty Sample’s eclecticism and skill in his craft.”

Another fine review from RapReviews, this one for The Dirty Sample’s new instrumental album, NO!. The review describes nearly every song quickly and succinctly, so it can be very helpful in determining if it’s something you might want to check out. <Spoiler: You probably will.>

May 31st, 2020

Kicksnare reviews The Dirty Sample’s NO!

NO! is very Donuts-esque, showcasing 17 instrumentals in about 30 minutes, so each song clocks in at under about 3 minutes or less. The beats are each long enough to sound interesting, and your favorites will have you hitting the back button to get another listen in.”

The first review for The Dirty Sample’s new instrumental album NO! comes courtesy of Kicksnare. They seemed to like it. Perhaps you might, too.

May 30th, 2020

RapReviews reviews Mickey O’Brien’s Twin Flame EP

“’The Honey Bear Saga’ lives up to its name by being a romance novel and a rap album all rolled up into a big fat blunt… 8/10.” 

This review of Mickey O’Brien’s Twin Flame: The Honey Bear Saga has been up for a few weeks now, but I was expecting it to go live later than it did. Much love to Rap Reviews for another great review for O’Brien, who also received an 8 for his previous album, My Drift.

May 19th, 2020

New song! New video! New normal! Normal 2.0 out now!

The official release date is Friday, May 22, when you should find the single available on your favourite streaming service, but we couldn’t wait so we dropped the video and DJ Pack early…


Picture it: December, 2019 – hearing about a mysterious virus in parts elsewhere, not thinking much of it, but hoping that people catching it will be ok, and it doesn’t spread to familiar places. And now here we are about half a year later, washing our hands a lot, not touching our faces until we’ve washed our hands *again*, arguing over our right to be in public spaces, standing in long lines at supermarkets, some of us, hoarding things, some of us, being racist to Asian people (STOP. THAT!), some of us, unemployed, trying to generate some kind of income to pay rents and mortgages, sad, frustrated, overwhelmed, and just plain over it. WELL, it ain’t over, it’s just the new normal – NORMAL 2.0. Here’s my attempt to talk about it, but more importantly, let’s talk *to* each other, not *at* each other. Let’s help each other out!

And Peace, Love and Respect to all the Frontline Workers risking themselves and their families being at their job.

Raps, Cuts, Beats, Mixes, sorrows by More Or Les.
Leslie Seaforth (SOCAN)
(c) 2020 Leslie Seaforth.

Artwork by Terence Cheng.
Help with mixing from Fresh Kils.
Advice from Measuring Man appreciated.

May 15th, 2020

Alien Trap Lords – “We Run the World” video

Out of the farthest reaches of space come a group of inter-dimensional life forms. The Alien Trap Lords serve universal knowledge over wavy synth 808 bass. Take a galactic trip in their space whip. Learn the secrets of your world and the truth behind the conspiracies.

May 7th, 2020

The Dirty Sample – NO!



With over 15 years and 30+ albums under his belt, including collaborations and solo instrumental and vocal albums, The Dirty Sample—the producer and rapper from Calgary, AB, also known as Apeface, previously Planit, and sometimes 2 Blue Apes—has finally come to the realization that he just must make music. No matter what, it’s the driving force in his life. Literally, he cannot function without creating something. He’s tried. But the crazy starts to crawl around the brain if he’s not focused on music. His newest project is NO!, his first instrumental album since Pay Up in 2016. And with the start of a new year, The Dirty Sample has created new boundaries for himself in his life, expressed through the album’s title. NO! is 17 tracks of the gritty, soulful hip hop with which his fans are familiar. Available from Hand’Solo Records on digital and limited edition cassette.

Produced by The Dirty Sample, except track 9 by Illions (Metawon and The Dirty Sample)

May 1st, 2020

Mickey O’Brien – “Gabriel’s Horn” video and DJ Pack

Today is International Worker’s Day aka May Day, so it’s appropriate that underground miner and workers’ rights activist Mickey O’Brien drops his new video for second single “Gabriel’s Horn” off new EP Twin Flame: The Honey Bear Saga, available on digital and cassette.

The second single from Twin Flame: The Honey Bear Saga (Hand’Solo Records) is “Gabriel’s Horn”, with Anthony Rinaldi on saxophone and DJ Uncle Fester on cuts. Each song on the Honey Bear EP has a relation to a tarot card, as presented on the artwork of the cassette and Bandcamp versions of the release. For “Gabriel’s Horn” it’s the Judgement Card depicting the archangel Gabriel blowing his trumpet to announce an awakening of the heart and the mind, as well as a larger awakening of the societal consciousness, replaced on the single by producer Fresh Kils iconically punching the buttons of his MPC.



1. Gabriel’s Horn (feat Anthony Rinaldi)
2. Gabriel’s Horn (feat Anthony Rinaldi) [radio edit]
3. Gabriel’s Horn (feat Anthony Rinaldi) [instrumental]
4. Gabriel’s Horn (The Dirty Sample Remix) (feat Anthony Rinaldi)
5. Gabriel’s Horn (The Dirty Sample Remix) (feat Anthony Rinaldi) [radio edit]
6. Gabriel’s Horn (The Dirty Sample Remix) (feat Anthony Rinaldi) [instrumental]
7. Gabriel’s Horn [acapella]

Lyrics written and performed by Mickey O’Brien
Produced by Fresh Kils
Cuts by Uncle Fester
Saxophone by Anthony Rinaldi
Remix by The Dirty Sample

Mastered by Dorc
Artwork by Selene Toffoli

The accompanying music video is an animated short film. Created by Baked Clown Animation & Red Dented Can Productions in collaboration with O’Brien, the video is the artistic rendition by animator Nathan Hynes of Mickey O’Brien’s world: mining culture, love and loss, personal struggle and triumph. The video follows O’Brien as he works at the mine and travels to see his girlfriend in Toronto. “I really wanted to show the mining aspect of my day job and how proud I am to represent the culture of our great city,” O’Brien says of the concept, concluding, “I’m usually working two CN Towers underground, literally.” Truly, hip hop gets deep with Mickey O’Brien on “Gabriel’s Horn”.