FOR MEN MAGAZINE / CRAIG’S LIST 002 X CRAIG MONTS (FARMINGTON2017)

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FOR MEN Magazine // AUGUST 2017 //
Published 07.08.2017
Pg. 14

Although it’s only been one calendar month since we last spoke there have been plenty of waves in the so-called Culture. Whether your attention (twitter feed) has been taken up with Rob K’s real-world demise or the plausibly predictable 21 Savage/Amber Rose courtship, Migos stood up while Shia LaBeouf was forced down by the strong arm of the law. Aside from TMZ-type chitter-chatter there has been a lot of positive and progressive creativity over the last 30 days although you’d be forgiven for missing out on the real news. Hove dropped a masterfully-crafted album with laser-like accuracy and timing (speaking both on his lyrical performance and media roll-out). The cryptically titled 4:44 is deserving of your attention, regardless of your musical taste/genre preference.

Upper echelon-MC, Kendrick Lamar has joined the ranks of a number of other top level musicians (Action Bronson, SZA, 21 Savage, to name a few) and released a capsule collection to run along side his excellent “DAMN” album. The TDE recording artist has released a couple of hooded tops (a marl DAMN spellout, a burgundy DAMN spellout and a truly dope “Kung Fu Kenny in black), a long sleeve (Kung Fu Kenny back & front print) plus some pretty nice caps (DAMN spellout maroon & same in white). All items are limited and reasonably priced, though be warned, the EU shipping fee is pretty high!

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From LA to NY- The mighty Anwar Carrots has teamed up with New York-based “The Good Company” for a characteristically clean collection consisting of tartan dad-hats, print-tees and hoods with a CARROTS & The Good Company “wave logo”. Both Anwar Carrots & those behind The Good Company are great examples of the realities of the street wear scene in the wake of “The Hundreds epidemic”. It’s literally survival of the fittest out here.

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CARROTS use quality garments (often Champion) with well thought-out designs. Granted, the prices are slightly higher than your average brand, but these just aren’t your average brands. The collaborative effort looks great, head to The Good Company’s website to check for yourself.

The Decades are also ones known for habitually coming with the quality. They’ve recently managed to connect with toy manufacturers, Hasbro to create the nostalgic GI Joe collection! I was never a huge GI Joe fan. Being of British origin the whole US armed forces action figure was lost on me. Having said that, The Decades have done a good job of bringing back that good ol’ GI guy circa 85’ still shining look. Picture brash & bold high contrast iconic images of the kids’ warmonger, which adorn the more obvious pieces in the capsule.

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But it’s in the windbreaker section that the real fire comes through. Low-key colour ways (gun-mental grey & charcoal) or brighter hues (royal blue & red) are provided with subtle branding and long bodies for optimum coverage. The same can be said of the caps on offer in this wistful collaborative-collection. Be sure to snoop around the ample website, as their in-house designs are very strong. But don’t sleep, things have a tendency to sell out quickly!

Trapstar are a UK brand that I’ve been watching and willing-on since the Myspace days. They’ve developed and evolved the location-specific clothing brand from nothing into something quite impressive. Crafting garms for those living and working in the trife-life that is the London streets they call home. By the time you read this Trapstar will have dropped their rowdy floral gothic spellout T and hood in fetching colours for your visual pleasure. If you’re unfamiliar with Trapstar then I highly recommend acquainting yourself.

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Japanese giants, BAPE continue to move and develop in different directions and areas. Their Mr. BAPE offshoot focuses on muted colours with the classic BAPE camo-print on their polo-shirts, coach jackets and matching loungewear tops & bottoms. Mr BAPE is a smart move from the street-wear originators. Providing a sports wear/formal balance. There are plenty of brands providing wild and wonderful prints but Mr BAPE comes with the slickness with pieces for the office or lunch with parents. Or just because! The BAPE AW/17 collection is also worth a peek. Guess-style stripes, classic BAPE camo and plain patch-ready bomber jackets await! However you want it they got it, muted colours or low-key-loud. BAPE have all bases covered!

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From clobber (clothing) to music. Rap fans mourned the passing of Prodigy (one half of NYC’s Mobb Deep) as the Internet’s pages flooded with tributes, condolences & long lost interviews posthumously surfacing, it’s important to remember “P” for his contribution. He was an individual whose creativity and drive shaped much of the modern landscape of rap and its affiliated sub-cultures. Take some time out to play some of Prodigy’s music. It’s legendary material that is standing the test of time and aging very gracefully. While you’re at it, peep Jazzy Jeff & MICK’s “Summertime 8” mixtape. The proclaimed “perfect compliment to any BBQ” plays like a run-through of the classics. Some well-known hip hop, soul and r&b nestle comfortably alongside some lesser known gems. 68 minutes of musical lessons from the founding father of the whole DJ culture. Many would only recognise DJ Jazzy Jeff as the Fresh Prince’s dim-witted yet well-dressed Philly-born sidekick. The truth is he’s a musical legend with too many notable releases and highlights in his productive career to list here. If you’ve never heard Jazzy Jeff’s “The Magnificent” album (2002) then, I recommend seeking out and enjoying. In the meantime, check Jeff & MICK’s “Summertime 8” and stoke the BBQ.

Czech Youtube-guy Sinai has been uploading new and insightful content from his Prague hideaway. His most recent vlog sees him with Prague 10’s, a51 front-man, grime leader, Smack. Perfectly timed for Smack’s “Terapie” greatest hits type release. The guy needs no intro and should be celebrated for taking CZ music from Czechia to the rest of Europe & the world, already boasting London & Manchester performances behind him. Vlog-lord Sinai dropped a jovial 10-minute video with Smack to get his reactions & opinions on Youtube’s CZ & SK rap offerings. The results are to bee seen, head to Sinai’s YT channel..hold tight the long outro gang!

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Physical album wise, the talk has been all about Hove. “4:44”, Jay-Z’s 13th studio album dropped at the end of June. After a muted & cryptic media campaign with posters and billboards of Brian Roettinger’s “4:44” artwork for the release appearing in locations in and around New York city. I’m pleasantly surprised by Jay’s ability to capture the globe with relatively low amounts of PR and what seems to be a pretty good album. A personal account of Mr Carter’s current marital, financial, civil and mental states that’s well-worth checking out.

If you’re looking for something a little smoother, then perhaps Count Bass D’s recently released “Too Much Pressure’” single with Snoop Dogg would be a great place to start. The D & The Dogg pairing works incredibly well. The Count has off key, syncopated production that will have you reloading the track. He’s a true musical risk-taker with an instantly recognisable sound. The release features two vocal tracks with instrumental versions for those wanting to really appreciate the gentle keys and crunchy baselines.

Count Bass D ft Snoop Dogg – Too Much Pressure (VIDEO)

Washington DC’s Carpark Records released new music from the overly talented Toro y Moi. The album entitled “Boo Boo” is ridiculously good. Think slow, pulsing synths with calming, spacious arrangements of woozy contemplations. Toro y Moi (real name Chuck Bundick) creates bitter sweet 80s inspired love songs, drawing inspiration from the likes of Travis Scott, Daft Punk & Frank Ocean. “Boo Boo” is an amazing project that sees Toro playing many of the instruments himself. It’s a definite must for Summer 17’

Toro y Moi – “Boo Boo” (album stream)

Keeping things on a similarly creative level. I sit completing this, my second column for FOR MEN listening to a sneaky leak of the forthcoming full-length project from Tyler, The Creator. The randomly titled “Scum Fuck Flower Boy” does nothing to describe this project’s dopeness. It should be out by the time you read this, so skip along to Tidal, iTunes or whatever online vendor you frequent and purchase. Tyler is slowly emerging from the WOLF GANG umbrella as a creative beast. You can always expect honesty and personal enlightenment with a Tyler, The Creator project and “Scum Fuck Flower Boy” doesn’t break the trend. I don’t want say too much about the project as I’m currently on the first listen and thus, unprepared to make a concrete assessment. BUT on first check, shit is awesome!

Last shouts go to local upstarts “DONUTS & MILK” They’ve been picked up by the good folks at zoot and the hip folks at vnitroblock (Prague 7). The guys at D&M are dropping simple designs for their first collection. Strong starts from the Eurogang, Head to vnitroblock & be on the look out for more from the new kids on the block.

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Keep checking the formenprg.tumblr & soundcloud for that rare goodness, or better yet check out my radio show with Meanbucket’s DJ Tuco. (WORKOUT Radio1.cz, Saturday’s 22.00 -00.00CET). Hit me up through twitter @cmonts. Holler like you know me. Until next time…

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This article was written for a foreign reader in mind.

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