Why did Terror Squad's "Lean Back" dominate the charts all summer, racking up a three-month run that's still going strong? Look no further than its subject matter and accompanying video, which introduced an anti-dance dance craze calculated to appeal to every guy whose repertoire of moves starts and ends with a self-conscious shuffle. Instructed by Fat Joe to simply pull up their pants and "do the Rockaway," the fellas leaned back and loved it, wondering why it had never been this easy to cut the rug before.
The Squad's local appearance at the 2004 Gravity Games, alongside Brooklyn blinger Fabolous, will undoubtedly lean heavily on "Lean Back" and its laid-back, gravity-defying dance. Yet the group should also get credit for a smart reinvention, after a late-'90s debut that seemed like standard-issue gangsta coattailing on Joe's solo success. The Mark II version of Terror Squad has turned out to be notable not just for its breakthrough single, but for launching the career of female MC Remy Ma(rtin), who provides Joe a feisty female foil on the sophomore album True Story.