Roc Marciano season is in full effect! Thanks to the magnificence of his newly released album Reloaded, the long-toiling and resolutely underground rapper is finally enjoying his deserved moment in the spotlight. But the recent cult of Roc Marcy started with 2010's Marcberg; after its release news quickly broke that he was penning a sequel in Reloaded, and since then a dozen or so tracks have emerged that eventually failed to make the final tracklisting, possibly due to sample clearing issues, possibly due to not wanting to release a 24-song album. Still, there are some real gems here -- check out Hive's pick of the best Reloaded outtakes.
1. "I Shot the King"
As faithful to the Reloaded template as anything that didn't make the cut, the burly "I Shot the King" has Roc rhyming over a loop from '60s psych-rock act the C.A. Quintet's song of the same name. Nattily, Marcy also tapped into the psyche-rock group's grooves for his "Thug's Prayer" series of songs. (Pedant's note: "I Shot the King" was tacked on to the deluxe iTunes version of Reloaded, but you're losing out if you don't end the experience with the natural closer "The Man.")
2. "Stop Me"
Just Blaze is behind the boards for this one and the track opens with one of his trademark brass attacks. But that perky start soon fades to reveal a slinky groove that marries to Roc's hushed-but-guttural vocals flawlessly. The plot to this one might also involve a James Bond-sounding radioactive computer and million dollar gun.
3. "Sweet Nothings"
Alchemist and Q-Tip might have appeared the most prominent guest producers on Reloaded, but the Arch Druids provided one of the album's closing highlights with the engagingly dank "Emeralds." It's a combination that's been brewing on the low for a moment now; rumors persist that the two parties are due to collaborate on a full-length project soon, but for now sink into the flute-helmed melancholia of "Sweet Nothings."
4. "My Persona"
One of the earlier tracks slated to be included on Reloaded, here the MasterKraftsmen lace Marcy with production that's rugged yet swaggering. For his part Roc explains how the "shells in the Tec is hollow like olives" while sporting Burberry pajamas.
5. "Rocky II"
A self-produced doozy that pairs perfectly with "I Shot the King," "Rocky II" also includes a very accurate rendition of a tea-kettle coming to a boil and a kitchen accident involving chicken broth and a pair of shorts.