NYC-based rap band Cook Thugless releases their latest music video, “The Devil”. The song’s completion synced up perfectly with rapper JeanLouis’s trip to Mexico. Equipped with a single camera and no budget, JL and Alex Gurevich of Pyrhhic Productions spent a week in Tulum connecting with locals, handling live critters and getting covered in mud to put together a unique, short-film-style music video about a phone-obsessed white tourist summoned out of the Earth by a local tribe. Plus, it’s got scary monsters.
Blending hip-hop, jazz, electronic, rock, and even orchestral with animated verses influenced by Shakespeare and odd meters, Cook Thugless is raising the stakes when it comes to DIY-bedroom-rap. Meeting on the Cook/Douglass campus of Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ, the motley crew of young men began recording demos in bedrooms between classes, eventually to become their debut album “Space,” released April of 2013. Cook Thugless congealed over the course of a year into a 7-piece live band and began playing shows throughout the notorious New Brunswick basement show scene. Fronted by two classically-trained-actors-turned-rappers and backed by a seasoned mix of punk rockers and band nerds, Cook Thugless would eventually expand their base and now play throughout NJ and NYC.
Notable about Cook Thugless is their long list of visually appealing music videos. After bearing witness to a live show, Anthony King of Moonculture Films reached out to Thugless in what would be a years-long collaboration. Over the course of three years, Thugless would release over a dozen music videos such as “Sweet Coffee,” “House Cat,” and “New Release,” expanding their list of collaborators as word spread of their distinct no-budget style. Their breakthrough video was “Lockjaw,” a catchy song on the razor’s edge of Top 40 pop, which featured Shyrley Rodriguez (The Get Down, Pacific Rim: Uprising) and starring Brandon Flynn (13 Reasons Why, Binge.)