Sony Pictures Entertainment is preparing the release of a brand new RoboCop, complete with a star-studded cast that includes Michael Keaton, Samuel L. Jackson, Gary Oldman, Abbie Cornish, and Michael K. Williams. This year’s RoboCop, as we can see from the trailer, is to be a grand sci-fi action epic.
The future described here is littered with OmniCorp-created robotic drones policing the planet—everywhere except the United States. “It is great to see American machines promote peace abroad,” says controversial cable news commentator, Pat Novak (Jackson) in the trailer, riling public opinion in effort to bring drones to the homeland. “Why is America so Robo-phobic!”
RoboCop is littered with all kinds of fresh social commentary delivered through RoboCop’s brand of social justice. In many respects, the themes tackled are playing out every evening on the national news. Add that to the stellar visual graphics and heart-racing action sequences, and suddenly RoboCop’s second coming becomes super intriguing. How will the new Alex Murphy adjust to a life as half-robo? Who’s the true villain in this city run by OmniCorp? What will the music sound like?
What will the music sound like???
In celebration of the return of one of the millennials’ favorite crime fighters, HipHopDX listed six songs we wish were included in the upcoming RoboCop. We took a broad approach to this one, selecting songs that resonate with RoboCop fans of every generation. After all, RoboCop fights for all of us.
“I’m Still #1” by KRS-One
No soundtrack to a movie about a super cop with a super gun cleaning up crime is complete without a track from Blastmaster KRS-One. “I’m Still #1” from his 1988 classic, By All Means Necessary bum rushes unapologetically while extolling his unflinching principles. It’s easy to imagine Officer Alex Murphy agreeing with the Bronx-native’s point-of-view when kicking lines like “I hang with the rich and I work for the poor,” and, “Now it’s my turn / And I’m concerned about idiots posing as kings.” It’s easy to imagine KRS-One being cool with the correlation. After all, he does open the anthem with “RoboCop, boy / He’s down with us.”
“Clan In Da Front” by Wu-Tang Clan
On “Clan In Da Front,” The Rza’s marching keys and plodding snare loom like an approaching riot. You can almost picture a criminal mob rumbling towards RoboCop ready for action. This is urban warfare at it’s most entertaining. Wu-Tang Clan’s energy is staked in a “dead or alive, this is going down” aesthetic. Stylistically and contextually, the Wu moved with no rules before #NewRules. “Clan In Da Front” fits the brooding underbelly of the OmniCorp controlled city.
“Wanted (On The Run)” by Beanie Sigel f. Cam’ron
Spoiler Alert That’s Not Really A Spoiler Alert For Anyone Who’s Seen The Original 1987 RoboCop: There’s a scene in RoboCop where Murphy begins to remember his life before becoming a machine and subsequently rebels against OmniCorp—the company that created him. On “Wanted (On The Run),” Beanie Sigel and Cam’ron are at their most rebellious. The song was included on Sigel’s 2005 gem, The B. Coming, which was released on Dame Dash Music Group in the wake of the Roc-a-Fella breakup. The Philadelphia emcee created the album just before serving a year in prison on federal weapons charges. The weight of the situation is draped lovely all over this song. “Wanted (On The Run)” also samples Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead Or Live” which ties in perfectly to RoboCop’s catch phrase, “Dead or alive, you’re coming with me.” Win-win.
“The Way I Am” by Eminem
Detroit’s violent streets provide the homicidal backdrop for the original RoboCop’s next generation crime fighting. It’s a city struggling to restore its once prosperous identity similarly to Officer Alex Murphy’s search for humanity within his newfound machination. Eminem’s “The Way I Am” brims with internal blitzkrieg. Its dark honesty flawlessly captures both the macro and micro conflicts depicted in the film while organically representing the Motor City.
“Ya Bad Chubbs” by Chubb Rock
RoboCop is a reboot from the 1987 original, so there’s an immediate old school association to the movie. Not only was Chubb Rock a fixture of that era of Hip Hop, but he also had a penchant for dropping RoboCop references in his rhymes. On his 1990 hit single “Treat Em’ Right” the New York native spits the awesome non sequitur, “The green doesn’t symbolize I made it to the top / But RoboCop last year was a shock.” There are some similarities between the super cop and Chubb Rock, though. Both are prototypes: RoboCop was the first half-man half-machine crime fighter and Chubbs was the first Biggie Smalls. Both rock larger than life personas. Both… maybe that’s it. Nevertheless, “Ya Bad Chubbs” is a better fit for the soundtrack. Not only does Rock close out the first verse with “I am not RoboCop / I am Chubb Rock,” but it’s boisterous and loaded with braggadocio. Well placed throwback fun is always appreciated.
“Control” by Big Sean f. Kendrick Lamar & Jay Electronica
Big Sean’s “Control” exploded in 2013. From the moment Kendrick Lamar kicked “Tell Flex to drop a bomb on this shit!” he had Hip Hop moving with the etch of his pen. K. Dot called everyone out for breaking cultural covenants, igniting a firestorm of lyrical responses in the process. The system wasn’t ready for this type of high profile insubordination. You can almost hear the PR and marketing reps for the rappers named in Kendrick’s finger-pointing paragraphs scurrying to manage their client’s post-“Control” reputations. There’s a feeling of insurrection here—eyes widened much like the moment OmniCorp realizes RoboCop has gone rogue. Plus, the No I.D.-laced production sounds equally classic, transformative, and triumphant—all things that made RoboCop cool.