Mat Ward

Blue Volume
Joelistics
Released June 20, 2014
Elefant Traks
www.joelistics.com

The flawless music on Joelistics' second solo album is more than matched by the depth of his lyrics - an unflinching look at Australian reality. Green Left Weekly's Mat Ward went through the words with the rapper, who brings some much-needed grit to Australian hip-hop.

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On "Say I'm Good" you rap:

I'm an oddball, on the wrong team
All my friends are out of step with the mainstream
And the nightmare is in full swing

Big Kitty Life
MC Dukebox
Released December 2013
Impossible Odds Records
www.dukebox.net.au

MC Dukebox says he named his debut album "Big Kitty Life" because he was sick of seeing government funds misspent.

"It's referring to a big kitty of funding that everyone's lining up for with a different excuse for why they deserve the money and how they're going to benefit their surrounding communities," says the Indigenous rapper, who hails from Inverell in north-west NSW.

The Merry Grinchmas Mixtape
MC Bunz
Released December 25, 2013
Free download

When Glen Anderson was playing sport with his schoolfriends, he was suddenly surrounded by police who ordered him to lay flat on the ground.

One
L-FRESH The LION
Vienna People Recordings
Released May 9, 2014
www.l-fresh.com

Rapper L-FRESH The LION is as well known for his activism as he is for his music. Green Left Weekly's Mat Ward spoke to the Sydney-raised Sikh about his newly released debut album, One.

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The Snowden Files
Luke Harding
Random House
February 2014
352 pages, $30

Luke Harding's The Snowden Files is a well-constructed overview of the biggest intelligence leak in history - but it is not without its flaws.

The Guardian journalist tells a detailed story of Edward Snowden - from his childhood in a military, Republican family, his short education and brief, failed army career, to his meteoric rise through the intelligence services that eventually enabled him to turn whistleblower.

Spoiled Indentity EP
Iron Reagan
Relapse Records
April 1, 2014
Free download

Radical punk-metal supergroup Iron Reagan have just released a free 13-track EP and are now playing it live across the US. Vocalist Tony Foresta and drummer Ryan Parrish answered some questions for Green Left Weekly's Mat Ward while they were driving to Dallas.

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RAPtivism
Aisha Fukushima
March 2012
www.raptivism.bandcamp.com

Travelling the world is a big enough challenge for most people, but Aisha Fukushima also managed to make a politically-charged hip-hop album while she did it. Green Left Weekly's Mat Ward spoke to the California-based "rap activist".

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You collaborated with rappers in the various countries you visited on your travels and emerged with a powerful album. Has your wanderlust been satisfied or do you have another similar album in the works?

The Show Will Go On
Mau Power
Coming soon
www.maupower.com

Mau Power's new album takes listeners through the big changes in his life - and the first of those came when he was jailed. "In 2001, I got incarcerated," the Torres Strait Islands rapper tells Green Left Weekly. "And that time I was in lock-up for nine months."

Mau Power, also known as Patrick Mau, was put away for grievous bodily harm after a street fight in the southern Queensland country town of Toowoomba.

Necrocracy
Exhumed
Relapse Records
Released August 6, 2013
www.relapse.com/exhumed

Californian death metal band Exhumed couch their cutting politics in horror-themed lyrics. Green Left Weekly's Mat Ward spoke to frontman Matt Harvey.

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