SBX! Holding Down Tradition – DVD Review
Monday September 19th 2005,
Filed under: DVD's,Reviews
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Ever wondered what AG kept in his fridge? “If you didn’t know before then ya know now….”

Any DVD which includes grainy camcorder footage of the legendary Lord Finesse vs Percee-P face-off achieves instant “must own” status in my book. The main feature, however, plays second fiddle to this timeless slice of Pelon rap history, and is not quite as satisfying. SBX! (BBP, 2005) is a strange brew that is equal parts documentary and musical (?!), as Andre The Giant and the Ghetto Dwellers perform tracks from the soundtrack while going about their daily operations. In other words, it’s a long-form music video. The acting recalls the amusingly amateurish performances in Wild Style, and basically follows the crew heading to a radio interview with rap brainiac/noted journalist Dave Thompkins.

The Batman t-shirts let us know that it’s line for line in ’89.

Fast-forward to 2003 and the fellas decided to coordinate the wears on some Killa Bee shit.

Along the way, we witness a rematch between the Funkyman and the Rhyme Inspector, which is impressive thanks to an invigorated Finesse taking his delivery back to his pre-Awakening standard (before he adopted his more relaxed “macked-out” flow) and the ever-reliable Perc, and we also get to catch one of the classic Diamond D/Fat Joe promos from the Kool DJ Red Alert show while in Show‘s ride.

“This is Show, yo! From the BX, yo!”

Disappointingly, Show maintains his disdain for the spotlight and only features in a small role in front of the camera, although he does supply some beats. Truth be told, Party Arty and D-Flow are an acquired taste, and have dominated recent projects such as Show’s Street Talk album a lot more than many of us would have liked. But then again, most of the original team are off doing their own thing, so that’s how it is these days. At least Party has stopped doing that “grimy” vocal style.

GD is for the childrens.

Another highlight is the interview with DJ Mike Smooth at the film’s premier. Now a successful player in the real estate game, Mike drops jewels on the current state of hip-hop and his early days working with “the brother with a fade and a half-moon”. The photography of the South Bronx that features throughout the film is superb, and the whole thing is put together nicely, but I was expecting a little more from this project. Nevertheless, this is well worth picking up, if just to witness two lyrical legends putting it down like only they can.

Review copy supplied courtesy of Shogun Distribution.

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18 Comments so far
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You get this shit sent you for free? Man, i gotta start a blog to get freebies too.

I remember reading about this in Grand Slam. Sounds very interesting.

Ghetto Dwellas hate, though..? That’s not cool.

Comment by Brian Beck From Wisconsin 09.19.05 @

Especially since Party Arty has “been with” Tia + Tamera and Christina Aguilera.

Comment by Brian Beck From Wisconsin 09.19.05 @

Twisting out Xtina has become a rite-of-passage for young men in New York, much like smoking your first blunt or starting a record label.

I can only handle GD in small doses, although “Make It Official” is awesome like Shockin’ Shawn.

Comment by Robbie 09.19.05 @

Dude Robbie, how does one hook some shit up with them Shogun dudes? And good review.

Comment by Big Walt 09.19.05 @

Walt, all I can suggest is follow the link and send ’em an email. I’ll put in a good word for you.

Comment by Robbie 09.19.05 @

Party Arty’s grimy flow really started to make my brain hurt after 4 bars, so I’m glad he’s dropped that. I interviewed Finesse recently and he was saying how Mike Smooth left the rap game because he didn’t see a future in it, and worked high up in some parks department instead. Looking forward to seeing this, although could do without the contribution of the unreadable Tompkins.

Comment by Drew Huge 09.21.05 @

I’ve heard it’s only about 30 minutes long! They could have added loads of other DITC bits / footage, it’s a dvd, and it’s expensive

Comment by Cro 09.23.05 @

Honest review.. May be you’ve expected too much from this project.

Comment by MIC 09.23.05 @

I did have unrealistic expectations to be honest. It’s still worth getting though.

Did anyone see that M.O.P. DVD where they just walk around Brownsville? That was great.

Comment by Robbie 09.26.05 @

I just saw the whole thing. It was hot!!!! I enjoyed both the main movie and the extra features! damn it was good.

Comment by MIC 09.27.05 @

Well reviewed. Been a big GD fan since there appearance on ‘Goodfellas’ so its a great insight into those guys as well as AG. Amazing footage of the park battle. BX holdin’ it down…

Comment by Hams 10.02.05 @

Cro, I agree they could have added loads of other DITC archieve footage…from clips of battles, cyphers, or live shows just as long as it’s VINTAGE….But I was just so happy to finally see the Lord Finesse vs. Percee P battle…that I’ve been waiting YEARS to see.

by the way, what were your verdicts on who won??

Comment by Kevin 10.04.05 @

As far as who won… it’s hard to call. Finesse had a more straight-forward, crowd-pleasing style, but at the same time Perc is really bringing some seriously complex shit to the table.

If I’d actually seen it happen live, I would have given it the Funkyman, but since a lot of those verses ended up on his albums, Percee’s performance stands out more since he drops a lot of rhymes I’ve never heard him do anywhere else.

But at the end of the day, ill punchlines will always win against flow and structure in a face-off like this, so I’ve gotta give the belt to Lord Finesse.

Comment by Robbie 10.04.05 @

Robbie, just to let you know, most of those rhymes Percee P spat I recognised (and even mimiced myself) that would later be on tracks such as Lung Collapsing Lyrics, Let the Homocides Begin etc…one thing I will say, in that last round, you can tell by the look on Lord Finesse’s face after spittin that last line…he himself know that was a tough battle…but regarding who won, at this point NO COMMENT

But Percee P definately smacked that re-match

Comment by Kevin 10.04.05 @

I caught the parts he used on those songs, but I’m pretty sure that some sections of those verses haven’t been on anything else.

As far as the rematch, the Rhyme Inspector killed it but Finesse sounded better than he has in a while.

Comment by Robbie 10.04.05 @

yep Finesse was still nice in that re-match but on the real, he needs to loose so weight…cos I can imagine some crazy punchlines that can be used to spit against him regarding his weight, if he was to battle in this day and age

Comment by Kevin 10.05.05 @

One that 89 battle proved once and for all to all un-researched excuse for HipHop heads, is that it was never criminal to use pre-writtens in battles and it was all about going off the head…cos the only thing that mattered was BRINGING YOUR BEST SHIT, written or off the head as long as it was your best shit

Comment by Kevin 10.15.05 @

Props for this. I can’t gove enough props.. Keep up the good work..

Comment by Mreman 07.18.06 @

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