Smoke DZA

Rugby Thompson

> > Jul 17 2012

Smoke DZA - Rugby Thompson
By Peter MarrackWith Rugby Thompson, Smoke DZA aligns himself with a group of purists in NYC, including Action Bronson and Roc Marciano, who often prefer the work of one producer to many ― Rugby Thompson is produced entirely by Harry Fraud. According to Smoke, the project was inspired partly by the character of Nucky Thompson, from HBO series Boardwalk Empire. Smoke idolizes Nucky because "he's the boss; he plays both sides." The other half of the title comes from Smoke's obsession with Ralph Lauren's Rugby brand. Being from Harlem, Smoke must stay fly. At just 12 tracks, Rugby Thompson is a taut mix of stoner anthems, trap beats, chopped & screwed samples and, of course, Smoke's drawled-out, "Riggggggght" ad-lib. On "Ashtray," the only emailed-in track of the project, Smoke enlists the help of Domo Genesis and ScHoolboy Q to emphasize the weight of his dichotomy: that although he doesn't deal anymore, he still supports himself off weed. "New Jack," featuring a bass-heavy beat with skittering hi-hats, is another revealing number. Smoke samples, and compares himself to, legendary ECW wrestler New Jack, whom he considers an underappreciated artist in his respective field. Fun fact: New Jack actually appears in the song's video. And so, if you want to learn more about a Harlem kid who grew up selling weed and who now dons $1,500 boots he purchased from the Ralph Lauren Mansion in Atlanta, then Rugby Thompson comes highly recommended. It is a skilfully wrought glimpse into that dream.
(High Times)
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