When it comes to music, Cypress Hill has always been Pioneers in the
game.The funky, bud-smoking tribe always finds new ways to niche their names
into Music History. Whether it's playing in front of a hundred thousand people at Woodstock, or playing for a few hundred at the
House of Blues, Cypress'brings their A-game to each show.
But, how well will their energy carry over on to video.
Cypress Hill Still Smokin' (which, not coincidentally, carries the same
name as a Cheech and Chong movie) has 7 live performances as well as
their complete Video Library. The DVD is also packed with the "So You
Wanna Be A Superstar" TV special. The live performance was taped
at the Filmore in San Francisco.
So, how well does their energy carry over? The DVD starts off
with a roar, with the classic "How I Could Just Kill a Man". When
the camera pans to the crowd, it's obvious of Cypress' crossover
appeal. You see a flood of Brown, White, Yellow, and Black
faces. All Cypress' fans coming to witness history. With
each slam pit, with each body surfed, with each stage dive,the energy
provided by the people is apparent. Also, the energy carries well to
the performances of B-Real and Sen Dog, as seen on the video. Bobo,
on drums and bongos, adds to the music. The set piece includes a giant
skull with a weed leaf on the forehead. Also, the skulls "red"
eyes light up during the set. DJ Muggs scratches on top of the
skull. The song ends with a mix into "Insane in the Brain".
If getting stoned is your thing, then after watching the DVD, you might
not want to miss the next Cypress' Show that hits your area. A lucky
man from the audience got the opportunity to take "Hits From the Bong" with
B-Real. With a green spotlight shining on B-Real, King Arthur (a large Bong)
is packed, as the crowd chants "Suck it". The performance on this track
is unbelievable. The way B-Real flows his lyrics shows why he is one of the
top MC's in the game. This is one of those live tracks that actually
outshines the original studio version because of the energy from the
crowd. The crowd shouts on cue "I Love You Mary Jane".
Sporting his Latin Thug shirt, Sen Dog gets the crowd pumped on "I
ain't goin' out like that". With SX-10, providing a live band, the song
starts getting the pits going. But the track that really brings the
house down is "Riot Starter". B-Real even joins the crowd during
the song. Sen-Dog pulls people up onto stage, so that they can do a
stage dive. The biggest pit happens during this song.
"Can't Get the Best of Me" falls flat. The audience seems tired,
and the energy is lost from the performers. But during "(Rock)
Superstar", the crowd is once again back in the mix.
A huge disappointment of the DVD is that Dr. Greenthumb doesn't make
an appearance on the live part. Dr. Greenthumb is an Alter ego of
B-Real. Dr. Greenthumb dresses in a green doctor's uniform, with a huge
Afro. Whenever B-Real becomes that character, it is usually met with a
great response. His performance as Dr. Greenthumb is hilarious. For the people that haven't seen Cypress' live, they would have really
Dr. Greenthumb, however, makes an appearance in the Music Video
section. The "Dr. Greenthumb" video is filmed in the vein like the film
"Little Shop of Horrors". It's one of the better videos Cypress' has
The music video portion is a mixed bag. The earlier videos show
the New York influence. There is the Psychedelic video "Insane In the
Brain", Cypress Represents "Latin Lingo", the Ice Cube dis "Throw Your
Hands in the Air", the Spanish remix "No Entiendes La Onda", the "Apocalypse
Now" influence video "Illusions", the punk rock feel "Can't Get The Best Of
Me", and the visually abstract "Puppet Master". What is missing
is the brilliant Psycho Realm video "Stoned Gardens".
Cypress' has once again delivered a dope product that should please.
written by the Quiet Storm