Just about every block in East L.A brims with deep-rooted Latinx – but particularly Chicano and Central American – magic. And despite the rapidly changing landscape — brunch spots supplanting esteticas, art galleries where carnicerías once stood — East Los still clings to its timeless charm, tethered by immigrant roots and traditions. The sounds of Malo, Tommy James and the Shondells, and War still float through the atmosphere at any given moment, providing a rich soundtrack to that enchanting little pocket of Los Angeles. And Chicano industry veteran MC Magic’s latest single “SEARCH,” featuring Lil Rob and Cuco, exquisitely captures a glimpse of that singular Southern California vibe.
“SEARCH” continues the Chicano rap tradition that Lil Rob and MC Magic perfected over the last couple of decades, with delicately plucked acoustic guitars echoing playlist staples like “Crystal Blue Persuasion,” and satiating vocoders evoking Roger Troutman – potentially making this the carne asada jam of the summer.
With 20-year-old Cuco perpetually paying tribute to his musical ancestors, while unraveling the sonic landscapes he grew up on – including Lil Rob and MC Magic – it was only a matter of time before the two veterans tapped him for the chillest of posse cuts.
The visuals accompanying the song help paint an even more comprehensive picture of East Los Angeles life. In the clip, a mother tasks her son with an errand that finds him at the local store fetching eggs and a bag of bolillos. At the store, amid a colorful sea of Paletas Payaso and Pulparindos, he meets and instantly falls for the clerk. It’s a classic tale of youthful infatuation, made mystical by this dream team, who take the syrupy love song and give it a walking tour through East L.A.’s storied streets. Even El Pino – the famed pine tree on the border of East Los and Boyle Heights, canonized by Miklo in Blood In, Blood Out – makes a subtle cameo in the background, giving the song a complete sense of place.
And this wavy anthem couldn’t come at a better time — bringing warm respite during winter’s last stretch.
Watch the video below: