1. Ice Cube, "It Takes a Nation"
Ice Cube makes no apologies for being "the famous West Coast rapper who act like a anus." Instead, he puts the president, Clear Channel and Hollywood (as well as the usual collection of wack emcees) on notice. [Some Velvet Blog]
2. Bruce Springsteen, "I'm on Fire (Cousin Cole's Bad Desire Mix)"
You can't really improve on the Boss's version, but Cousin Cole keeps his beats out of the way on this remix and stokes the flames of the original nicely. [Discobelle]
3. Phil the Agony feat. Talib Kweli, "Think Green"
To celebrate Earth Day, Phil and Talib are printing their lyrics on recycled paper and trading their Escalades for luxury hybrids so they can "think green, whether it be money or the trees." Pretty good for holiday music. [Notes From a Different Kitchen]
4. Mates of State, "Get Better"
The husband-wife duo return with a track that talks about "voting in circles" and the difference between "a serious vote" and "a party of jokes," before offering the almost optimistic chorus "things are gonna get lighter, even if they never get better." From now on, we're relying exclusively on indie rock for our election coverage. [Yellow Stereo]
5. Little Jackie, "The Stoop"
Little Jackie pulls off the nifty trick of making the stoop of a brownstone in Bed-Stuy sound like just about the best place in the world. She's obviously cribbing Lauryn Hill and Amy Winehouse, but she holds her own. [Music Ramen]