Remember Caine’s graduation party during the beginning of Menace II Society? Instead of the frantic, sweaty dancing of the House Party movies, this scene showed a relaxed get-together where everyone was smoking, drinking, talking, and playing dominoes. And what music was blasting throughout the house? Parliament, that legendary funk group whose music was the foundation for so much West coast hip-hop! Where House Party’s party had an inescapable East coast attitude, the party scene in Menace II Society was all about the laidback LA vibe.
Warm Brew is an LA crew whose music is soaked in that vibe. At its best, their latest EP, Sippin All Day Last Night, is an alternative soundtrack for Caine’s party. It captures that feeling perfectly. The four emcees that make up the group seem to understand the value of this mood and they don’t try to upstage it. That’s a nice way of saying that they aren’t super-lyricists. They can spit well, but putting a magnifying glass to their lyrics will definitely turn up some weak spots. Aside from their mid-B-grade lyrical skill, their topics won’t impress either. Sex, smoking, drinking, and partying are all that’s here. But breaking new lyrical or topical ground isn’t the point here, so pour a drink or fire up, and get your chill on…
Hear Ya Say is a perfect way to start this EP off. It samples Lauryn Hill’s X-Factor, keeping the original tempo but adding strong drums to make it rappable. The hook sums up the EP nicely:
In the west, we sip late, smoke og, and party all night/
so leave your problems at the motherfucking door/
That second line is one of the only times where life’s problems will be acknowledged. Don’t expect many more deviations from the lyrical program. This is party music, after all.
Booze Cruise is a decent, if unremarkable, song. It does at least cement the strong West coast influence with a g-funk inspired beat.
World Wide International is a weak song about sex with women from other countries. It’s not terrible but ultimately, it’s skippable.
Genie has the rappers trying out their game on different women, so far so good. But the romantic first verse and airy beat end up being smokescreens for how vulgar and vapid the song ends up being by the third verse. Some may like the display of such different approaches, some will be annoyed by how disjointed the lyrics are.
Proper Amount rights the Sippin ship with a thumping beat and more lyrics that sound good but don’t say much at all. Check the video here.
Supa Clean sounds like the Ghostbusters theme music. Or maybe that’s too mean, but it definitely has a synth stolen from the 80s that should’ve been left there to die. No amount of lyricism could save such a wack beat but Warm Brew is especially boring on this song. Hit that “next track” button ASAP…
So you can get to Sippin All Day Last Night! The mood of Proper Amount comes back after smoking a joint and ends this EP so appropriately. Sonically, a lot is going on in this song. The ad-libs often overlap the vocals, there are a few different higher-pitched synth samples that sometimes play at the same time, and there’s a funky bassline that fades in and out throughout the song. But it all comes together beautifully and at almost 5 minutes, the song still ends too quickly.
3.5 out of 5. Sippin All Day Last Night accomplishes its (assumed) goal of embodying the feeling of an LA party. There are some songs that don’t belong but they don’t ruin everything. Caine has to sidestep a fight to get into the party, follow his lead and be ready to skip the BS on your way to the fun stuff.