Black Lantern Music is a British netlabel that folks in the States probably haven’t heard, but should. Based in Edinburgh, and launched in late 2009, the label deals in hip-hop, electronica, dubstep, breakbeat and jazz. The bastard children of Grant Morrison’s late 90s sigil experiments and early Rawkus, with a healthy love of poetry and politics, It is closely associated with the Weaponizer website (well worth a read when you have a few spare hours). The label mostly centers around the work of artists Texture, Morphamish, Asthmatic Astronaut and Harelquinade, who have a supergroup of sorts called the Chemical Poets, also featuring the producer Gung Who and the MC Tickle. Although they’re not even two years old yet, the catalog has swelled to a very impressive 32 releases. Here’s a selection of what’s on offer:
Texture is Bram Gleiben, the main man behind both Black Lantern and Weaponizer. A talented MC and veteran of the Scottish poetry slam scene (yes, such a thing exists), he addresses the “non-sequitur” of the idea of “Scottish hip-hop” on the track of the same name, which opens the Synaesthesia EP. The production comes from Salem Anders and fellow BL artist Morphamish, and guest vocals come from Little Rock‘s Kid Ritalin.
That man Morphamish again, this time hitting hard with the 3 track Urge Mode EP. This is heavy dancefloor dubstep, with Morphamish showing off his very impressive production chops that equal of anyone else on the current UK mainstream dubstep scene:
Church of When The Shit Hits The Fan is a collaboration between the Edinburgh MC Harlequinade, and the producer Asthamatic Astronaut. Taking its cues from industrial and electro, this is still very much hip-hop, with a political and esoteric bent:
That should be enough to pique your interest - there is lots more where that came from, with releases from Scottish hip-hop veterans Eaters, laidback jazz from Daddy Scrabble, the incredibly named Shit Hop Ninja Terminatorz, and some guy called Metatron.