Cypress Hill – Terminal 5 – New York, NY – October 23, 2022
The lights are dim, and smoke fills the air as a slow bass heavy beat hits the stage. An inflatable fills up with air revealing Dr. Greenthumb, a giant skeleton with an afro wearing a doctor’s coat while holding an ounce of Mary Jane in one hand and a blunt in the other. The instantly recognizable B-Reel comes out on stage bearing a foot-long joint and one by one the crowd begins to light up their own.
Cypress Hill is cemented in the hip-hop world as forerunners of West Coast hip-hop. The genre bending group known for their use of psychedelic/alternative samples and signature nasally rhymes from B-Reel, it’s no wonder they were an instant standout.
The South Gate rap group composed of B-Reel, Sen Dog, Eric Bobo and DJ Muggs made history as the first Latin-American Hip-Hop group to earn a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Touring with DJ Lord, the legends embarked on their iconic Haunted Hill tour this October with Ill Bill, Sick Of It All and KRS-One.
The night begins with east coast rappers, Ill Bill and guest Slaine setting the tone with 90’s reminiscent monster beats and flow. The pair naturally played off of each other hyping up the crowd with their hit “Still Got My Gun” and brought out the king of Coney Island himself, Gorilla Nem to perform their hit “Smarten Up,” a true east coast link up, leaving the crowd wanting more.
Hard core punk band Sick Of It All kept the ball rolling with revolutionary anthems that hold up 30 years into their career. The legendary band composed of Lou Koller (vocals), Pete Koller (guitar), Armand Maid (drums) and Craig Setari (bass) brought the perfect mix of speed. heavy baselines and punk hooks that capture the essence of the band. The crowd instantly formed a mosh pit, infected with the band’s high energy. Performing their hits “Step Down,” “Us vs. Them” and “Built to Last” with the same fire as when they began, the hardcore legends addressed political corruption and social injustice creating a perfect segue for giant KRS-One.
Renowned and revered, KRS-One is the godfather of boom bap, a raw, in your face subgenre of hip-hop that stems from the boogie down Bronx. KRS-One comes in with his iconic booming voice and seamless flow on “Criminal Minded” and “The Bridge Is Over” and “Step Into A World,” whirling the crowd into a frenzy with his magnetic presence.
Cypress Hill’s choices in their supporting acts captures perfectly what their fanbase is made up of. A melting pot of hip-hop and rock heads all coming together to celebrate, toke up and enjoy legendary artists. DJ Lord gets the crowd ready for the trio with a mix of alternative and hip-hop classics like Black Sabbath’s “War Pigs/Luke’s Wall” and Public Enemy’s “Can’t Truss It.”
The time had finally come for the juggernauts as they set the night off with a stoner anthem medley made up of “Roll It Up, Light It Up, Smoke It Up,” “I Want To Get High,” “Dr. Greenthumb” and “Hits From The Bong,” the audience feels like a giant cypher, everyone is standing with a joint in their hand, chanting “I love you Mary Jane” and just enjoying each other’s presence.
MC’s B-Reel and Sen Dog bring that nostalgia that you crave with songs like “Hand On The Pump,” “Pigs,” filled with punchlines and insightful lyricism over swelling bass and percussion that capture what their message is about. B-Reel and Sen-Dogs lyricism center on street subjects, social issues and cannabis with specific flair that only they can pull off.
The night closes with their classic “Insane In The Brain” filling the venue with that contagious beat everybody loves. The energy was palpable throughout the venue and Cypress Hill definitely lived up to the hype. Haunted Hill is a seamless balance of everything Cypress Hill is made of and stands for. Just know, in the words of B-Reel, “You’re gonna get high with Cypress Hill tonight.”