If you were unaware that this was the Smoker’s Club tour, you’d know once you got close enough to show I.D.: There was a certain haze hovering above the banging beats and bouncing bodies. Not unexpected from Method Man and Redman, the gentlemen who gave us tunes such as “Blow Treez” and the film How High.
B-Real of Cypress Hill threw down a solo set that had the crowd chanting along to “Hits from the Bong” and “Throw Your Guns in the Air” as they waved their hands from side to side. After an old-school set from DJ Dice, Method Man and Redman took the stage, trading lyrics between each other as a duo more smoothly than other rappers can solo. Meth’s rough tones and rugged style rip straight into a rhyme, while Redman’s vaguely singsong flow races ahead, swerves back, from “Bring the Pain” to “I’ll Be Dat” to “Shimmy Shimmy Ya.”
After 20 years, they’re still among the finest in the game: As Meth said, “We’re M.C’s. An M.C. controls the crowd. Your grandmother could be a rapper.” The duo’s sharp, synchronized gestures to “How High,” a bout of synchronized dance moves and lights spelling out “HIGH” and “WEED” and “FUCK” made me imagine a Meth and Red Las Vegas residency. They could come out in suits, have some badass Pam Grier showgirls, Eminem can be their Sammy Davis Jr. … maybe that’s just the haze talking. ★★★✩✩
Photos by Erik Kabik/ ErikKabik.com