i have been obsessed with “rap das armas” since i saw tropa de elite. it turns out that the song has a long history. this is installment 3 in the ongoing “chris stays up all night surfing for weird hiphop videos from foreign countries and includes them in a long ass blog post that’s 90% embedded videos” series.
it seems share some characteristics with “paper planes” in that it’s based on a popular 80’s song and details life on the streets for a group of people forgotten or ignored by society. according to the wiki article, the hook for rap das armas comes from “your love” though i don’t see it. however, i understand the words to your love, so that might actually inhibit my interpretation:
the original “rap das armas” was released in 1994 by MC’s junior e leonardo (tropa de elite takes place in the late 90’s) notice how samples of gunshots are prominently featured, just like “paper planes”:
here’s “paper planes” for reference:
apparently a modified version of that appears in the film, and cidinho e doca remade it *after* the film:
my portuguese is really weak, but i think the words are significantly different.
the version of the song that appears in the film has more african sounding beats, which are reminiscent of angolan kuduro (angola is a former portuguese province, much like brazil). here are a couple of kuduro videos, notice the prominence of dancing, just like the new orleans bounce videos i posted before:
after tropa de elite and cidinho e doca brought the song back to popularity, there have been a lot of remixes. this samba version is my favorite:
this one is neat too, it’s set over a sample from “planet rock”:
if you aren’t familiar with 80’s b-boy tunes, here’s “planet rock”: