Monday, September 7, 2009

Track Review: "Putcha Handz Up"

CLP f/ Rayzaflo :: "Putcha Handz Up"
From BASSS Brains (Brd Basss Germany; 2009)

Germans make stunning graffiti, but their hip-hop doesn’t have the best reputation. Unimpressed with the country’s heavy-handed gangsta rap, the production duo CLP—Chris de Luca and Phon.o—has teamed up instead with American and South African MCs more familiar with funky grooves. In “Putcha Handz Up,” rhymes are contributed by a stylish teenage MC from Jackson, Mississippi. And it’s no surprise that somebody who describes herself on Myspace as “HUMAN CRACK N THA FLESH” can make this track ooze with crunked aggression.

The point of putting your hands up isn’t necessarily clear. Where Cypress Hill’s “Throw Your Hands In The Air” conveyed a certain conviviality with its laid-back groove, and Danzel’s “Put Your Hands Up in the Air” exudes hype with its pulsating synths and mindless repetition, “Putcha Handz Up” makes a severe demand: “Getcha mothafuckin’ hands up.” Confronted with a slamming beat, a leering sample of what sounds like a plucked string, and Rayzaflo’s rapid-fire rhymes, you might wonder what’s coming to you if you don’t put those hands up. A Courvoisier bottle to the face, maybe?