Hype: Majors — Suckers Never Play Me!


Danish rap supergroup Majors have just dropped a new single, reprising “Suckers Never Play Me,” arguably the best track on their fine, eponymously titled album, released earlier this year. It’s available for free download from their website, and is well worth it if you’re into traditional hardcore hip hop.

On this track Majors reference Public Enemy’s paradigm-setting classics “Don’t Believe the Hype” and “Rebel Without a Pause” (from which they got their hook) to create an anti-commercial, and by extension anti-authoritarian hip hop song in the classic mould. There’s nothing new under the sun here, but the track is so slamming and the performances sufficiently intense that it does what it’s supposed to do.

How commercial radio appropriates and ultimately undermines the authentic edge that made hip hop music so compelling, so necessary, is a time-honoured theme in rap, and one fraught with cliché. Radio is, after all, a double-edged sword and has also helped spread hip hop all over the world, and some artists have even learned how to play its duplicitous game to their advantage, amplifying their message to a sufficiently large audience that they become authentic pop culture phenomena, all the while retaining their musical integrity.

The truth for most, however, is that the music biz is unforgiving and soul-destroying — just as other authorities in society can be. Insistence on authenticity, originality and individualism is essential to hip hop, and it is therefore always heartening when somebody does a song that extolls these values with conviction. It may be conservative — and is, in this case — but it’s founded in the real desire to express yourself unfettered by authority that has always been a driving force in the culture. Energising and motivating.

The single, by the way, contains two new, pretty great tracks, as well as a Danish-language posse cut-remix of the title track, on which MCs Negash, Nat ILL and J-Spliff are joined by a number their Danish colleagues, several of whom lay down great verses. But what are you doing reading this — go get the single already!

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