Public Enemy - You're Gonna Get Yours (1987)

Record Shopping with Lava La Rue at Rough Trade West"I KNOW YOU HATE MY NINETY-8." Not only is this such a rare record with barely any proper uploads/availability of the original song online, but of course I had to choose this one because big influences PUBLIC ENEMY talk all about their "98 POSSE" in this song [and of course I've got my NiNE8 posse.]

Some people thought Public Enemy's '98 Posse' was because it has 98 members (which is actually ridiculous but believe it or not I have been asked on more than one occasion if my collective NiNE8 is called that because we have 98 members! That's a bloody army mate) but actually Public Enemy called their crew "The 98 posse" because they all drove The Oldsmobile Ninety-Eight whips, which is a gangster as fuck car they brag about in the single and as you can see the 98 crew and Ninety-Eight cars are featured as the front cover of the vinyl. For those asking, I was born in 98, hence my collective being called NiNE8 - but this song was released in 87 so I have no idea why the car model is a 98. Someone find out for me....

Portishead - Dummy (1994)

Record Shopping with Lava La Rue at Rough Trade WestI hate the debate of which is better: Portishead's self-titled or Dummy because they're both amazing albums - but I definitely listen to Dummy more. It has been my go-to night train home album for the past three weeks. If you listen to my first project I made when I was 16 titled LAVALAND you'll hear elements of the influence.

Cleopatra Jones OST (1973)

Record Shopping with Lava La Rue at Rough Trade WestI could get really nerdy about this one. I found some of my favourite actors and '70s-era style icons through my discovery of blaxploitation cinema. After discovering the genre as a reference for a media essay - I ended up spending my essay writing time glued to my laptop screen watching film after film digging deep into the archives.

Pam Grier aka the OG lead of Foxy Brown (1974) who'd later play the lead to Tarantino's homage to the genre Jackie Brown (1997) - one of my most watched films of all time - led me to discover Cleopatra Jones which came a year before Foxy did and of course in the nature of the genre's narrative conventions, it has an extremely similar - identical at points - plot.

But although, these characters reinforce the African-American ghetto stereotype... the stylistic nature of the period, paired with a badass black female lead gunning down and kung-fu chopping some white middle-class arch nemesis to oblivion is an extremely enjoyable watch for me. The representation it served back then was problematically empowering, as it was the first time we saw black women as action heroes. They just had to be sexy exotic stereotypes.

But most importantly - and to my point - the fucking soundtracks are incredible. The specific soundtrack to Cleopatra Jones is really really good. Enough funk for the soul. And it features Millie Jackson, whose music has got me through very hard times. Would 100% recommend watching.

Mary J Blige - 8 Unreleased Bullets (2001)

Record Shopping with Lava La Rue at Rough Trade WestI don't know what to say about this one. I mean who doesn't love unreleased/throwaway tracks from the R&B/Soul 9 times Grammy-winning borderline Christian icon Mary J Blige. I grew up on her voice. Need I hype this vinyl any further than state it's got features from Ghostface Killah and Notorious B.I.G on the A side and Angie Stone and D'Angelo on the B-side. And just look at how 2000s that cover art is. LAVALAND_TV fans will know how much I love a good 2000s graphic.

Aphex Twin - I Care Because You Do (1995)

Record Shopping with Lava La Rue at Rough Trade WestRichard D James' huge influence on so many of the producers / MC's I work with aside - this specific album features the unparalleled banger 'Alberto Balsalm', which has a special place in my heart.

During Summer Solstice - a really good friend of mine suggested that we host a "fire ritual" under the moon in order to let go of some things we were holding onto from the past (you can throw old objects into the fire or write something down you needed to let go and put that into the fire) once my circle of friends had all put something into the fire, 'Alberto Balsalm' came on shuffle on our portable speaker and nobody spoke for the whole duration of the song.

It was such an emotional yet comforting/bonding silence - nothing was needed to be said, we all watched objects of the past burn away and that track elevated everything we were feeling. Really really beautiful composition.

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Check out more photos from the shoot below, along with the video for 'WIDDIT'. A massive thank you to Rough Trade West for their hospitality.

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