When you start a project with a musical tribute to designer Zelda Wynn Valdes, you know listeners are in for a well-crafted, well-thought out project. That is exactly what we get from the East Hampton Polo Boys’ Summer Catalogue. Available now via Bandcamp and other DSPs, Summer Catalogue has been months in the making. Calling the project a throwback to NYC boombap of days past sells the project short of what it really is. It’s more of a combination of NYC boombap and Pusha-T and Curren$y opulence raps, minus the chill smoker vibes (and some of the coke raps).
Scorcese gives listeners a decadent selection of flows and beats while his producer partner-in-crime PANELS lays down lush instrumentals. The ten (eleven if you’re counting bonus song “Doc Colossus”) track album is about the rise and fall of the go-getter. It also details what happens in the middle of the game, when said go-getter is at their peak. Equal parts cautionary tale and hip-hop that revels in success, Summer Catalogue is the perfect late-summer energy in these COVID times. It’s heavy in its subject matter, but light in its approach to it, opting to not wallow in losing oneself to the game.
My favorite track of the album is probably still “Return of Kinshin Liger,” as that one smacked me in the face and made me want to hear the rest of the project upon its release. If you liked that release, you’ll love the album it came from. Catalogue is gritty, but it’s beautiful in its grit and its glamour. Check it out via Apple Music or via Bandcamp (below) and remember to support dope music in all its forms.