When: Thu., July 12, 6 p.m. 2012
Cypress Hill were as legitimate a pop-cultural phenomenon as any of their peers during west-coast rap's 1990s heyday (they even made it onto The Simpsons), but they always stood a little outside the crowd. Most G-funk stars came off as ultimately likeable and charismatic guys despite all the gun talk and possible substance-abuse issues, but Cypress Hill presented themselves as a gang of cackling, drug-crazed sociopaths who alternated between ripping psychotic amounts of bong hits and committing enthusiastic acts of violence with automatic weapons. They were sui generis sonically as well—DJ Muggs's grungy, shadowy funk and B-Real's aggressively nasal rapping were unlike anything that had happened in hip-hop before. (It's worth noting that they were one of the few rap bands who sounded comfortable collaborating with alt-rockers for the 1993 Judgment Night soundtrack.) Their influence is written all over the current batch of hip-hop boundary pushers—Flying Lotus, Odd Future, Death Grips—though their new collaboration with dubstep artist Rusko, the aptly titled EP Cypress X Rusko (V2), is somewhat less inspiring. —Miles Raymer Sublime with Rome headlines; Cypress Hill and Pepper open.