Christopher Mike-Bidtah and Andy Martinez—Def-I and Wake Self on the mic—have been active in the Burque hip-hop community for a decade. They’d never collaborated in the studio until this year, though. On Wednesday, Dec. 23, the emcees, both battle-rapping champs, released their album titled The Desert Heat LP at Burt's Tiki Lounge’s Vinyl & Verses.
As the title might suggest, Def-I and Wake Self are proud of their Southwest roots and focused on making locally relevant underground hip-hop—as opposed to the pervasive, superficial pop rap that pollutes the airwaves without relent. The album, released under Definition Rare (which also includes Cloud Face and DJ Ohm), features collaborations with several of the duo’s Skull Control label mates and also a recording with the late Oki Zen of Mantis Fist. Find out more about The Desert Heat LP at on.fb.me/definitionrare. Both artists are prolific in a solo context as well: Def-I’s album from last year, The Sound of Color, can be acquired at bit.ly/thesoundofcolor, and Wake Self’s Like Clockwork, released earlier this year, can be heard at bit.ly/wakeselflikeclockwork.