HERITAGE: A Young Goldie & Massive Attack's 3D Feature In This Channel 4 Doc 'Bombin' On Hip-Hop & Graffiti Culture (1987)

HERITAGE: A Young Goldie & Massive Attack's 3D Feature In This Channel 4 Doc 'Bombin' On Hip-Hop & Graffiti Culture (1987)

March 02, 2023

For many, '80s hip-hop culture—including actual rap, fashion, dancing, DJing and graffiti—was centred around New York with only a few other outposts around the U.S. However, here in the UK, there was a thriving scene that exemplified all of that.

We've covered plenty of the rhymers and MCs of the '80s who helped shape our homegrown iteration, but there were also plenty of creatives working in the other four areas. Two of them, as it happens, turned out to be pre-fame 3D of Massive Attack and a pre-jungle Goldie, the latter of whom has described himself as an avowed b-boy at the time.

This Channel 4 documentary, Bombin', digs deep into the graffiti side of things and features both Goldie and Robert '3D' Del Naja, and their art. The former shows the film crew Wolverhampton and some of his favourite murals brightening up the concrete before taking them to a local club to acquaint them with a crew of breakdancers.

Because it's the 1980s and this was all a bit new to the wider public, there's a slight air of bemusement, but generally, the doc is pretty respectful as a whole. To their credit, the filmmakers also make a point of sitting down with Goldie and his pal to hear their thoughts on why this artform was such an essential lifeline in a post-industrial city neglected by the government.

Sadly, there are of course the usual microaggressions, particularly when it comes to the endlessly patient Brim Fuentes who sits through several patronising interviews and an offer to create graffiti for Michael Winner's Death Wish 3, ostensibly to make the set look "ghetto".

Meanwhile in Bristol, they meet 3D who explains that, in its original form, the city's graffiti culture actually developed in parallel to hip-hop rather than because of it. The whole doc is full of details like that and both 3D and Goldie are surprisingly candid and open about the whole thing, shining a light on an aspect of British hip-hop culture which isn't always as celebrated as it should be.

Image via Twitter