Max Bell is everywhere, July 2012.
I have my pineapple haze stashed in the Batcave. My oil paintings are perfectly placed over my fireplace. And my Gucci’s with the red and green laces are on point. I am Roc Marciano.
That was actually a dream I had — a movie I wish I starred in. My pineapple haze is in a medical container by my desk. I have no oil paintings or a fireplace, just a painting of Charlie Brown I did for art class in high school. And my Vans, which only look like sneakers, have holes in them.
Anyway, UK producer The Purist has dropped an EP with King Kong Holding Company. It’s good.
The Double Feature EP is pure cinema. The two stars of the ‘action packed double feature’ are Roc Marciano and Action Bronson. Those names alone are enough to inspire visions of guns, gangsters, and a portly Albanian fellow doing backflips out of a sick whip before heading into Tai Pan for some chili-fried lamb.
“Change,” starring Roc Marc is set to The Purist’s brand of laid-back Blaxploitation. The drums are just soft enough to complement Marc’s patent G whisper that always leaves you slightly straining to hear the jewels he’s dropping. His rhymes have never been better, as he balances the fruits of labor with the cold and grim reality of said labor. In other words, you can lay back and eat crab, but only after you ‘slide the gat inside [a] pie hatch’ or two.
The second feature on this double-bill, “Northern & Roozy,” is just as good as the first. It is not the B-picture. The track is Bronson’s ode to Queens, a love letter to his borough, with vivid and detailed lyrics that trace the streets of Queens in the same way Woody Allen did his beloved Manhattan. Over The Purist’s orchestral boom-bap nostalgia Bronson gives you his childhood: summers hanging out in the park and hooping, getting his dick sucked in ‘the crisp air,’ open fire hydrants, Yankee games, and cruising down Queens Boulevard. Bronson is generally always one for chuckles, and he still is, but here he seems marginally serious. It’s tracks like these that show you how much he loves and respects hip-hop and the craft of songwriting. He also really loves Queens.
The rest of the EP features more solid production from The Purist, as well as a feature from Ty Nitty that is perfectly blended with hard and funky guitar stabs. There are six instrumentals in all, two of which are those from the Bronson and Roc tracks. Those that never receive vocals are analogous to Adrian Younge’s Black Dynamite soundtrack: Blaxploitation for the hip-hop inclined. They are at times dark and meditative (“The Ballad of Paul Kersey”) and at other times exuberant and full of jazzy horns (“B.N.B.G.”). Either way, The Double Feature EP should be played while you ride around in your Porsche or chill with your summer love underneath the boardwalk. Or maybe just while you sit in front of your computer. Your call.