The Good:

“Microphone” by Slaughterhouse

Sometimes the viral nature of Hip Hop makes me want to straight throw up. Between cats beefing on Twitter and documenting everything on UStream, this Rap shit starts to feel like the old school WWF. Lucky for us, Slaughterhouse took a page out of Dice Raw‘s book and opted to “shove a mic in your face like Ted Debiase.” I’m not sure how Joe Budden ended up as the spokesman for Hip Hop gone viral, but it’s great to see him doing what he does best again. Quite simply, “Joey Jumpoff” is rapping his ass off on this track. And if you consider that he’s sharing the track with Crooked I, Joell Ortiz and Royce Da 5’9″, that’s saying something. This isn’t high-concept stuff but it’s still smart. Twitter, Facebook and a vlog may help your visibility, but all you really need is an open booth and a microphone.

The Bad:

“You Don’t Wanna Go Outside” by Wyclef Jean featuring Maino

For an unofficial album, the folks at Sony Red must have shown ‘Clef Consequence‘s leftover business plan. “Shoot a video to everything.” In the course of three weeks, there have been at least five Wyclef videos. While the Toussaint St. Jean: From The Hut, To The Projects, To The Mansion is a solid album, most of these videos look like they were directed by first time camera users. This particular joint with Maino, looks like the kind of “dance for the camera” shit that Spike Jonze and Fatboy Slim were clowning a decade ago in one of my personal favorites: “You’ve Come A Long Way Baby.” Also, Maino (who must have left his white-on-white Mercedes named ‘John McCain‘ at home, seems to have borrowed ‘Clef‘s other Bentley. I love it when rappers borrow each others’ cars. If it were forbidden, Death Row Records may have never produced a video.

The Live:

“History (Live)” by Black Star backed by The Roots

I never liked Jimmy Fallon, and still have my doubts. He always seemed too glib, and not really funny enough to follow-up Norm MacDonald or Dennis Miller on Saturday Night Live. Then he made that trifling ass movie with Queen Latifah that USA seems to think its worth broadcasting (can we get Silk Stockings back, please?) Still, Jimmy (with some help from ?uestlove) definitely restores the musical guest excitement of Arsenio Hall and The Chappelle Show when shit like this pops off. Black Star reunites to perform the collabo cut from The Ecstatic (one of 2009’s most overlooked albums), and shit isn’t even a single? I watched Leno with my family last night, and Hip Hop needs late again. Jimmy Fallon, my doubts are fading. Music like this will fill the seats, and I’ll learn to tolerate the glibbery.

The Honorary:

“Roc Raida Tribute” by Trinity

Nobody’s talking about the super-group of Trinity, and I don’t quite know why. Sadat X is making some of the best solo music of his career, and if you listen to this week’s release Oasis, you can tell that A.G. hasn’t lost a step. Joined by DJ Jab, the trio pays their respects to onetime X-Ecutionerz member and friend to many Hip Hoppers, Roc Raida. Andre The Giant worked with Raida through a lot of D.I.T.C. stuff, so this is especially personal. The video itself really only complements the song, but Jab switching out the beats makes this the kind of tribute that made ’90s Tony Touch tapes so damn spe’chu. I love this video, and the cheap editing techniques that educate new heads and old heads about one of my own favorite mixmasters. With this, Trinity deserves equal billing to Random Axe and O.J. Simpson as a group to wait for in the 2-0-1-0.