During Classless Act’s stadium tour supporting Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe last year, the upstart hard rockers were joined onstage by hip-hop legend Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, of Run-DMC fame. Now Classless Act have tapped DMC for a new version of the track “Storm Before the Calm,” which is premiering via Heavy Consequence (watch the video below).
Akin to Run-DMC’s legendary “Walk This Way” collab with Aerosmith, DMC lends his voice and rhymes to “Storm Before the Calm,” dropping a few bars after the guitar solo. He sounds right at home over the rock instrumentation, giving the melodic tune a big payoff moment.
Surprisingly, DMC said he was “intimidated” by the prospect of collaborating with the young rockers. In a behind-the-scenes interview about the song — which can also be seen below — the rapper opened up about his verse, which was inspired by the whole scenario and the initial shock of working on the project.
“I was a little intimidated, because ‘Walk This Way’ was cool, I was familiar with ‘Walk This Way’ because I rapped over the beat for ages, even before I learned about the whole, full song,” DMC said. “But when I heard [“Storm Before the Calm”] when my man Rick [Canny, Classless Act’s manager] sent it to me, I was like, ‘Wow, can I fit into this type of energy?’”
It didn’t take long, as DMC was sent the song on a Thursday, hashed out his verse on Friday, and recorded vocals that Saturday.
“The reason why I was able to respond so quickly was the whole presentation, the essence, the spirit of the song inspired me to say, ‘OK, before a bomb drops, or before a hurricane or a storm comes, people are very calm and confident, and life is good.’ When I heard what they did vocally, lyrically and musically, a peace came over me, which was saying, ‘No, bring the energy that you have D…'”
The intimidation factor ran both ways, especially when Classless Act and DMC met in person to film the song’s music video — a performance clip shot inside a UFC octagon.
“I was with a legend!” remarked Classless Act’s Derek Day, who said he was “shitting bricks” during the shoot. “And I never got to say… that verse, it completed the song in so many ways. It made us feel like… we wanted to deliver that energy of thunder, and you just came in and… I can’t even put it into words. We had to come in and emulate that on film!”
The original version of “Storm Before the Calm” appears on Classless Act’s 2022 album Welcome to the Show (order here), while the new DMC-enhanced rendition is available to stream or download at this location.
Classless Act are currently in the studio working on the follow up to Welcome to the Show. Below you can watch the video for “Storm Before the Calm” and the interview with Day and DMC.