FALL CLASSIC: 1st Rd. Group A

OVERVIEW: So these are the first four mixes of the Fall Classic Mixtape showdown bullshit we announced the other week. There are 16 spots in the first round, with four-way match-ups, and the four winners will move into the final round showdown. First round mixes are roughly within 5 minutes either way of a 30 minute mix. We already have the next four entrants in the robot machines, so if you are amped to get in on this jam, it is first come first serve, no held spots since no one's word is worth a shit on the internet. Included below are the first four entrants, download links for you, the fabulous dumpin.net reader, so's you can listen and vote as well for your favorite of the four mixes. But me (Raven Mack or RM), Mike DIKK (MD), John Dawson (JD), and Keenon Mobb (KM) will give our rankings of the mixes. Here's what we're looking at this time round...

ENTRANT #1: Emil's Guide to Finnish Hip Hop - sent in by dumpin.net reader Emil Katanjahajarashna, and it's a sampler of the underground hip hop movement in Finland.
ENTRANT #2: The PSY-OPSogist's Any Day is a Good Day to Take Pills mix - done by the PSY-OPSogist who is the wacky beatmaker for my wacky rappitty group.
ENTRANT #3: Chivato's Mega-Mix - sent in by rap internerd homeboy Chivato of Chivato's Lounge.
ENTRANT #4: Mike DIKK's The Adventure's of Donnie, John John, and the Three Six Mafia - of course, it will be insinuated that Mike, being the main dude here at dumpin.net, has home field advantage, but trust me when I tell you, we probably hate our own shit more than anyone else could probably hate it. That's why we're all internet fags, it allows us the anonynimity to escape our own self-loathing, briefly.
And here's how us expert ass whiteboys ranked these four mixes (for winning purposes, what we rank as #1 gets 3 pts, #2 gets 2 pts, and #3 gets 1 pt; and the open public poll scores 6 pts for #1, 4 pts for #2, and 2 pts for #3, so your public consciousness is worth double and has the power to heavily sway but not completely overrule what we think)...

MD: The PSY-OPS mix - I was really looking forward to ranking my own mix at number one, but Emory is like a Level 60 Wizard at Ableton Live, and I'm only a Level 6 Housewife at using Audacity, which is an inferior and free software program. Don't get it twisted, I am internerd enough where I have a bootlegged copy of Ableton Live myself, but I just don't have the patience to learn how to use it right, so I'm stuck cutting and pasting with Audacity.
I'm personally looking more for technical skills and bells and whistles in this little contest because I could give a shit about what songs people want to put into mixes. Unless I'm fagging out to Diplo, all music is just there when it comes to mixes for me.
Emory has a real good mix of music and wacky tricks to keep you interested. I liked that one first song a lot, whatever it was, and that song after the one Willie Wonka sample, I don't know if Emory fucked with that in Ableton Live or if that's just the normal song, but that song was the shit. I have a feeling once I find out what the song is I'm going to hate myself for liking it though. Like it's going to turn out to be Godsmack or some shit.
Anyway, Emory has already set a high bar in this contest that not even I could topple, and I'm a fucking beast, let me tell you.
JD: Just knowing how much of a fuckhead music hermit I am, it is tough for me to really dig on something that isn't strictly hip hop and nothing but hip hop, but man Emory hit the spot. I don't know what the fuck Mike was talking about with his computer D&D wizard shit, but I listened to the music. That shit was fresh. It avoided the trendy hip hop nonsense or the trying to be too cute crap, and just was a half hour of song after song that didn't suck. And after listening to some of the other entrants, not sucking is the bar to set.
RM: Well, I gave the PSY-OPS a listen or two driving home from his house massively fucked up (that's right nerds, I drink and drive, call me Car-Hitler), and I dug the fuck out of his mix. But maybe I'm just trying to overly stay fair since I make music with Emory (aka the PSY-OPS) but I'm gonna pick Mike's Three Six Muhammad Ali say no to drugs LP mix as my number one. Mostly because I listened ot that tonight while driving to town drinking beer, and there's just something about really loud Three Six Mafia on the first cool October Friday night of the year, slamming some cold cheap cans of beer that you don't have to do anything more to than let sit on the floorboard of the truck since it's cold outside and you always ride around with the window down because of the rotten chickenbones lost somewhere behind the tools behind the bucket seats. So I went with Mike DIKK's mix.
KM: Mike's mix. I always wondered if Mike could mix, because he used to post up with some large mp3s that had awesome selection but would just shift from song to song. I don't wonder anymore - I just don't care. Dude made a blendernerd like me forget about it with all this. The switches are all smooth as shit, with or without overlapping between songs. The ongoing drug soundbites slide in and out perfectly. And I did roll 'round town this weekend bumping this in my factory speakers, but I didn't have any rolled blunt products. ICY WHITE HONEY BUN OOOH THERE I AM. This is better than a few Three Six mixtapes I've paid money for.

RM: Without a doubt, PSY-OPS goes here. We make shitty rap music together now, but eventually I'm gonna realize I'm too white and too old to be fucking around with this shit and I'm gonna settle down and write the thirty-seven novels I've outlined on stacks and stacks of notecards out in the camper, leaving PSY-OPS to make weird ambient soundtracks using samples and live instrumentation. If ever there was a motherfucker who I wanted to get a theremin, it'd be PSY-OPS, since he already has a Hammond organ. I think.
MD: The Donnie John John Three Six Mafia mix. Even if I didn't make this myself, it would be pretty hard to get me to hate on a mix of Three Six Mafia songs. All the extra vocal samples are from this record "The Dope King's Last Stand", and that shit is way out there. I haven't heard any other people sampling this record, but it wouldn't surprise me if there was some little Asian turntablist out there making an entire concept album based off of this record.
Also, Raven's right about Three Six Mafia in October. I think a lot of people may put their big singles in the Summer Music category, but Three Six is strictly fall music for me, which is why I put this together. I listened to Chapter 2: World Domination (that album has no songs featured on this mix though) and it got me so pumped for October and November.
I think if I really put in the effort to make this flawless I could have, with a good conscious, voted for myself over the PSY/OPS mix, but there's little shit here and there that I know could have been better, and of course it's only shit I would notice because I made the god damn thing, and I'm not going to point them out to you because then you'd start hating on it too and I wouldn't get the people's vote, so fuck you.
JD: Again, this really opened me up to shit I really fuckin' hate. I have always been one to jump in on hip hop trends to see if I dig on it, but southern hip hop has always eluded me. But Mike did a good job of mixing Three Six tracks and those awesome Dope King samples. The cocaine bit going into the Three Six cocaine track was brilliant. It really sucks that Emory and Mike are in the same bracket, because their two mixes have been the ones that I have been listening to over and over. But I put Emory's ahead of Mike's because the southern shit started to wear on me near the end of the mix.
I also have to give Mike credit because I expected a mix of all Madlib/DJ Shadow/Diplo vomit, but he flipped it, and I appreciate that. No homo.
KM: The PSY-OPS mix. Emory's got the kind of mash-shit-together mentality that I can get behind. The only thing on this that I could recognize offhand was Scarface, but the rest of it was chill as fuck and made for a good drive a couple nights ago. I would brave the wilds of the wilderness to go to an S.E.P. party just to hear what kind of odd ideas Emory and Raven would bust out with after getting tanked and smoking whatever flavor of crack Raven's debuting that weekend.
After re-listening to both, I would actually like to declare a tie between Mike and Emory, but that would do a disservice to our hallowed internet traditions of ranking. They might throw me out of the club if I fuck up the ballot. The end was especially trippy, and the first time I listened to all these, the Finnish mix hit immediately afterward on my computer. I thought that the three minutes of haunting tambourine/guitar/sax solo was the intro to that mix until burning them. That would've fucked me up if I wasn't sober.

MD: Chivato's Megamix. Chivato included a little read me file with his mix where he was man enough to admit he didn't do the blends featured on here. That was nice because a couple of us thought he did them himself. Either way, I put this in the third spot because there's a lot of music on here I'm really not into and DJ blends seem to accentuate any type of music you don't like by making it more annoying. I do appreciate that he went through the trouble of mixing it all together instead of just presenting a bunch of mp3 files.
RM: Yeah, I got Chivato at the #3 spot as well, and he gets credit for jumping in blindly, because after listening to this first round of four, most people will learn what we think are good mixes in our expert whiteboy minds. There's nothing noticeably wrong with Chivato's mix, but there's nothing noticeably awesome about it either. I think it's more the result of mixtape culture being so warped. So many shitty throw-together mixtapes come out every week nowadays that no one understands mixing and blending and having something echo throughout the mixtape other than your own name shouted into a headphone used as a microphone. I could give a fuck about some new great mix or a current song on a mixtape because for me, and perhaps only me, a mixtape is in contention to be in my lifetime cycle of shit I play. I still fucking play my Tony Touch reggae mixes, plus Tony Touch #55. Also my DJ Bee best of Wu mixtape. Having flavor of the month flavors in abundance does not make for timeless classics, just passing flashes of "Oh shit, I never heard that." Fuck DJs who brag upon so-called exclusives.
I should also mention all of that is in no way related to Chivato's mix either, just more a general rant against today's mixtape culture. But if you like that shit and dl 17 mixtapes a day, you should definitely check out Chivato's shit too. Although when the fuck are you gonna listen to all this shit, man?
JD: Chivato. To just prevent saying how mediocre Chivato's mix was, I decided to google his name and see what it meant in English. Chivato can be translated into stool-pigeon, sneak, or tattletale. Interesting, because as Mike stated, the kid admitted he bit the blend off someone else, which is a shame. If he really made the mix, I would have definitely gave him props, but is that what this is really about? In my opinion, fuck no. Mike and Emory put some effort into it not just taking songs and putting them back to back. This was a blend, but not his. Truthfully, if I could understand a word of what the Finnish dude sent in, he would be above the rat fink.
KM: The Finnish mix. I have re-evaluated my initial response to this. Some of the beats are a little too Def Juxy for my taste, but there are some definite oddball gems. About three minutes in, I liked that one a lot. At first, I had trouble getting into the lyrics, but after a few spins my ears just decided to treat them like an instrument and then my brain stopped seizing up with the "I DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY'RE SAYING" response. I do the same shit in my own mixes (only it's usually Spanish music) and so it was different (and later pleasant) to have no clue what people are saying but still be able to enjoy the music itself. The only thing I absolutely recognized was that "Still Not A Player" guitar/piano, that was a hoot. I like to imagine the dude's rapping about being a 300 lb. Finnish mack daddy, regardless of what he's actually saying. In closing, I am glad I got to listen to this and I wonder what the hip-hop scene is like in Finland now. I mean is it like some NYC backpacker shit? Europe shows love to Houston dudes too, though - I'm curious now. I need to see charts.

JD: Finnish mix. Hey man, whoever you are, I am sorry. Bro, I didn't listen to more than about a minute and a half of that mix you sent in. I appreciate you trying to scrape together a whole mess of songs in some Nordic language, but I couldn't deal with it. I would rather have sat through every Lil Wayne mixtape ever than sit through a half hour of substandard beats with some odd language over it. Sorry dude, but you lose.
MD: Emil's Guide To Finland Mix (I made that name up). I feel bad putting this last, because I was probably the only person out of all of us that was looking forward to hearing this. I do enjoy hearing hip hop from other countries, but I hardly ever seek it out myself, because if you do, you're going in blindly and might end up with something like DJ Sven & MC Miker G. At the same time, if you seek out something as obscure (to Americans at least) as foreign language hip hop and someone catches you, it makes you look like some cocky prick who is just trying to be different.
With that said, I couldn't get down with the Finnish hip hop. I'm guessing all the songs on here were done by different guys, and they all kind of blend together and sound the same. That may be because of my ignorance, but I don't know. I do appreciate the cajones it takes to send a mix of weird foreign rap to a bunch of Americans for a contest that will probably feature all English speaking music outside of that. If this grouping of mixes wasn't so strong, I would have probably bumped this up one or two spots just for that, but that's why you get fucked when you go first sometimes. Either way, this was still way better than French speaking hip hop.
KM: Chivato's mix. The intro on this left me a little cold, but I don't like the Beatles. I'm not normal. The blends reminded me of how the cottage industry of Nas remix projects existed because someone put out like every single one of his acapellas. The blends were done a whole lot better than I'm used to hearing - the Jay/Talib combination was a good idea. The Lil Wayne and Kanye kinda stuck out like a sore thumb in the middle. The back and forth between different Jay and B.I.G. acapellas was a bit distracting, but it was interesting and really well done. This reminded me of when I used to enjoy Common a lot more than I do now, too.
RM: Yeah, I threw the Finnish mix in last too, which bummed me out. I'm a linguistics dork and can get into foreign hip hop fairly easily. But for me, there has to be some local flavor, like weird linguistics foreign language over a completely different sampled music homebase and musical influences and shit like that. Like if you listen to Korean hip hop or Senegalese hip hop, there's some odd ass (to my American ears) localized bullshit going on. I dig that. This Finland hip hop mix was like shitty mixtapes over top of American beats. That made it suck for me. The foreign language just added to the problem when it was recognizable samples and all, but with some crazy white hocking sound language over top that shit. I am thankful Emil sent this shit in though, and it'd be interesting to see what kind of mix he'd send in if he had a second chance, knowing we weren't Americanized super-faggots who just wanted to hear our own shit but with some crazy lingo over top.

So from our expert whiteboy rankings, going into public poll for a week (or so), it stands like this... The PSY/OPS mix - 10 pts, Mike DIKK's mix - 10 pts, Chivato's mix - 3 pts, and Emil's Finnish hip hop mix - 1 pt. So basically, you vote for your favorite, but only the PSY/OPS or Mike DIKK shit can win mathematically. But fuck it, whatever you like the most vote for. This ain't no anybody but Bush bullshit, you vote for who you like, even if it's third party. The winner next week, when we throw up the second group of four mixes, will move on to the final round in a month or so. So yeah, vote in the poll in the sidebar and shit. Or die.