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4X4 Crew holds it down

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4X4 CREW: 'Radio Ain't Ready 2' mixtape is out now.
  • 4X4 CREW: 'Radio Ain't Ready 2' mixtape is out now.

The 4X4 Crew may be young (members are all in their teens or early 20s), but they've got a firm handle on one of key ideas of modern hip-hop — diversify. The crew encompasses six rappers, a DJ named Fatality and an acrobatic dance troupe. Their hip-hop TV show, “Rock Town Lockdown,” is on hiatus, but members say it'll soon return, perhaps on the web. Their latest project is “Radio Ain't Ready, Volume 2,” a sweeping collection of local rap that, as the title suggests, is mostly being ignored by the radio. Over the course of nearly 30 tracks, 4X4 include songs from a veritable who's who in local rap. Not every track works, but there's enough diversity to please anybody. Like any good local comp, “Radio Ain't Ready” includes several local anthems — Grim Muzik's buoyant summer anthem “Ridin' N Da A-state,” Bware's hyped-up “I Run Da Rock” and 4X4's infectious “Tell Yo Mama,” a song that borrows Ray Charles' Arkansas lyric from “What'd I Say.” Artists familiar — Epiphany, Rockstar, 607, Playa Mone — are featured alongside the more obscure — KT & Jay, Calico Jones and Southern Folkz. 4X4 even manages to get a song from S.L. Jones, a Little Rock native who's affiliated with Killer Mike's Atlanta crew Grindtime. To get a copy of the mixtape, call 398-1323 or visit www.myspace.com/the4X4crew.

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