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Matt Shea wants a caravan fer his ma, in perrywinkle blue

We’ve ridden for Philadelphia’s Wrecking Crew for a long time now (and, full disclosure, both Zilla Rocca and Has-Lo occasionally write for this site), which is odd because for a long time they seemed to almost be reluctant to describe themselves as a crew. Never mind the fact that their social media updates gave the impression that Curly Castro, Zilla Rocca, Has-Lo and Small Professor shared a couple of bunk beds in South Philly, living off cheesesteaks and prosciutto while they turned out an endless supply of beats and rhymes.

Now it’s more official, which you feel is a great move. The last couple of years has seen a cavalcade of projects came out of the collective pipeline, often with the group’s sticker slapped on the back bumper. Think of independent Philly rap in 2014 and there’s a good chance you’ll be thinking of a Wrecking Crew project.

One of the more recent is Curly Castro’s Brody EP, a tribute to British director Guy Ritchie’s second best film (I know. Come at me, bro). It’s classic little listen, a giddy piece of pop cultural fire. And now comes the first remix.

Notable with the Wrecking Crew — and also some of their west coast affiliates such as Open Mike Eagle — is an easy willingness to work with overseas producers. It can lead to some quirky but engaging rap music. Bristol twiddler Silent Dust’s work on “Livery” is no different. Where the original rolled along on hand-driven drums and Breeders samples, this remix is something altogether weirder. The synth squirts and sex-funk guitar tickle your ear while Curly and CASTLE go at their bars with gusto, the verses bookended with throbs of bass. The song slowly ascends over its three minute running time, building an intoxicating momentum.

It’s a terrific production, and yet it’s still the rapping that ultimately sells the song. Putting Castro and CASTLE on the same cut is inspired. Both have a knack for being delightfully strange without it affecting the power of their delivery. They’ll spit film nerd Guy Ritchie quotes at you, for example, but it’ll still come out as pure fire.

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