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Monday, May 28, 2012

Hip Hop (Group/Collective): Meet the 2012 RFT Music Award Nominees

Posted By on Mon, May 28, 2012 at 8:31 AM

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iLLPHONICS In its sixth year together, the hip-hop collective iLLPHONiCS is proving that it's more than just St. Louis' answer to the Roots. On its latest EP, Reality Check, the band sets free heavy guitars and a live rhythm section that rocks the alternative as persuasively as it breaks down the funk, sometimes calling to mind Fishbone even as it finds its own hilariously paranoid sweet spot on a cut like "Attack of the Groupies." But as hard and sometimes lush as the crew's sound can be, it wouldn't catch fire without the flow of emcee and founder Larry "Fallout" Morris, a heavyweight rhymer who balances morality tales with spitfire commentary on everything from suckah critics to millennial fashionistas, who can go more than toe-to-toe with fellow travelers Scripts 'N Screwz. --Roy Kasten

  • Courtesy of Scripts & Screwz

Scripts & Screwz The music of Ill-side duo Scripts 'N Screwz has always fallen on the experimental side of hip-hop. Loose Screwz, who handles most of the group's eccentric production, tends to pull from a diverse array of musical influences on each project, so you're likely to find songs that sound more like electronica or rock sitting side by side with the more contemporary hip-hop tracks. As emcees, he and Screwz are both capable rhyme-sayers, with thoughtful lyricism accented by a fluent and mellow delivery. The group's current singles "So Cool" and "Escalators" offer a glimpse of what can be expected from its soon-to-be-released EP, The Hangover 2.

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