Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Buy this Shit…On the Double!


I’m not going to tell you this is some new shit you never heard before.  What I am going to tell you is that the wheel already works: I mean, we got spinners, 30"s, D’s… ain’t no need to reinvent the motherfucker!  Sometimes we need a reminder how dope that shit is in the first place, though, which is exactly what Marco Polo & Torae did with Double Barrel.

Straight from the drop, Duck Down’s newest rap team hits us with the message of the day: “Hip-hop is not deceased, in fact / the real shit started creepin’ back.”  But after a couple of listens to DB, these two ain’t just creepin’ in with their modern-day take on golden-era boom-bap, they’re kicking the fucking door down and blastin’ any suckers who stand in their way! 

MarcoPolo1 In the right chamber you got super-producer Marco Polo putting his prints on the whole LP - and really, that’s all the ammunition you need.  The intro features DJ Premier giving this project his blessing – and as soon as the first joint drops, you can hear why.  It’s like Polo is channeling Premo all the way throughout, filling up tracks with all the horns and samples you would expect from the legend himself.  You got trumpets blaring (“Double Barrel” and “Hold Up”), and a bad-ass sax blurtin’ low (“But Wait”), but my favorite sound might be the mean slap bass you hear on “Lifetime” and “Stomp”. 

Of course, it wouldn’t be Premo-esque without the vocal samples and there’s plenty of that here with all the usual suspects: Red and Meth, KRS, MOP, and more.  With samples like that, comes mixing too, and DB doesn’t disappoint in that arena either courtesy of guest DJ Revolution.  (Warning: a lot of wax was ruined during the making of this LP)

Speaking of guests, a nice mix of cats come through to lend their vocal chords.  You got: Lil’ Fame yellin’ at you, offset nicely by Rock’s low-talking flow (“Smoke”); another Boot Camp soldier in Sean P along with the legendary Masta Ace on “Hold Up” – one of my favorite tracks – as well as a Detroit presence (Guilty Simpson) and one of Polo’s fellow Canadians: Saukrates.  Bottom line, the cameos are nice and provide some nice backup ammo.

But the real firepower on DB comes from the left MP&Toraebarrel.  Torae  fires round after round of lyrical slugs from beginning to end.  Seriously, you won’t find a cut that doesn’t have at least one line that makes you say “DAYUM!!!” and promptly rewind that shit.  He might “slap the shit outta a n*gga and call him Yung Berg,” (“Party Crashers") or maybe he’ll warn you that beef in “Coney Island” ain’t just at Nathan’s, but for all the little gems sprinkled throughout, the real diamond mine is “Word Play”… ridiculous.  Torae’s performance will remind you of the good ol’ days…you know, when MC’s weren’t Mostly Clowns.

Again, I’ll tell you that this ain’t groundbreaking.  What it is is break-your-neck hip-hop like it was meant to be heard, and a truly successful debut for what is hopefully just the beginning for the dynamic duo of Marco Polo & Torae.  Double Barrel is words, beats and scratching at it’s gritty, grimey best.  Put this shit in, push repeat, and get ready for a shotgun blast to the senses.

MeFatHead_v3 Empty40

P.S. – Here’s the iTunes link, click it now: http://bit.ly/8Rkhf 

P.S.S. – As a bonus, here’s a little promo video they released today from the gun range.  It’s a good thing Marco can make beats!

1 comment:

BrainSlice said...

I got one of those .22 rifles for my birthday when I turned 12 YEARS OLD. Hahaha enjoyed the video boys! Next time try a 9 mm or a .45!