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Beastie Boys
Albums

  • Some Old Bullshit
  • Licensed To Ill
  • Pauls Boutique
  • Check Your Head
  • Ill Communication
  • Hello Nasty
  • To The 5 Boroughs
  • The Mix Up
  • Hot Sauce Committee Part 2








  • Adrian's Album Reviews |

    Beastie Boys

    Some Old Bullshit 7 ( 1994 )
    Egg Raid On Mojo / Beastie Boys / Transit Cop / Jimi / Holy Snappers / Riot Fight / Ode To / Michelle's Farm / Egg Raid On Mojo / Transit Cop / Cookie Puss / Bonus Batter / Beastie Revolution / Cookie Puss ( Censored Version )

    A compilation of the first two Beastie Boys EP releases. The Beastie Boys start out as a hardcore punk group, simple as that. Absolutely nothing at all serious about anything here, but it's just fun to listen to! Very silly at times, it's obvious these guys have a huge sense of humour, at times it may well come across akin to listening to Cartman from South Park fronting a hardcore punk band, but we won't let that spoil our fun, now will we? 'Egg Raid On Mojo' ( either version ) is just lots of fun, fast speedy riffs, noise, energy. Take it for what it is, entertainment! 'Beastie Boys' is fifty six seconds long, the following 'Transit Cop' barely longer, but both of these make me smile. 'Transit Cop' has a bass sound grooving away in there somewhere, "yo yo yo" vocal refrains. It's good! 'Jimi' may well be rather messy, but it's over soon enough. 'Holy Snappers' begins with much guitar, the fast frantic riffs and vocals come in. Sheer energy carries it through. You couldn't exactly call it accomplished as such, but as far as cheaply recorded punk music is concerned, it's perfectly good. 'Riot Fight' is great!! I for one love to sing along with this particular thirty second long masterpiece (!?). 'Ode To' carries on the sound already established, fast guitars, cheap sound, lots of energy, frantic vocals. That's it, really. What can you say? Whether you enjoy this may well be down to whether you enjoy punk in the first place. If you do, chances are you'll get something from this. 'Michelle's Farm' is hilarious! As it opens, you might be forgiven for thinking a country song is about to begin. It goes all hardcore punk on us, mentions of school. To be honest, the lyrics are so quickly 'sung', I can't make out even half of the lyrics, but it sounds like someone is angry, and having fun being angry. Phrases like 'do it again', 'brainwashed' and more repetitions of 'school' come flying past. Yeah, leave them kids alone!

    'Cooky Puss' is great. Well, not great in the grand history of rock n roll, musical scheme of things, but certainly great in a 'this is a fun thing to listen to, but entirely unserious' kind of scheme of things. I mean, it's called 'Cooky Puss', what were you expecting? 'Martha My Dear'? 'Bonus Batter' is a remixed 'Cooky Puss' with 'stupid' noises all over it, 'Beastie Revolution' is an astonishing five minutes long, takes the piss out of Reggae, well, Musical Youth's 'Pass The Dutchy' primarily. Why not a 'beastie revolution'? Worse things could happen! A 'censored' version of 'Cooky Puss' closes this quite clearly fan fodder of a compilation released entirely to bring the groups first two EP's back into view for everyone's enjoyment, but what's wrong with that?

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    Licensed To Ill 4 ( 1986, UK pos 7 )
    Rhymin And Stealin / The New Style / She's Crafty / Posse In Effect / Slow Ride / Girls / Fight For Your Right To Party / No Sleep Till Brooklyn / Paul Revere / Hold It Now, Hit It / Brass Monkey / Slow And Low / Time To Get Ill

    Kids let loose and having fun. White kids with a newly discovered love of Hip Hop and beats who also happen to love Rock music. There were a lot of kids like this around at the time, and someone was canny enough to encourage The Beastie Boys to pursue such a musical mix on this record. To huge, and quite frankly, unsurprising commercial success. The controversy the group attracted, especially when they came over to tour England and got bottled off stage attracting front page news coverage and violence wherever they went obscured the fact that England didn't give a flying damn about their actual music, beyond the novelty hit 'Fight For Your Right To Party'. So, yes, the Rock / Hip Hop mix was novel, but their early EP releases had already hinted at such a mix, in any case. It was carried through here with far more intent, somebody had dollar signs in their eyes. There is a cultural divide here for me. I'm an English guy who in 1986 was probably missing new romantic music and hearing a commercial music scene in a state of flux waiting for the next new sound. The indie/alternative scene started to shift around this time, but that scene was still a good few years from making widespread commercial inroads. The Beastie Boys arrived with 'Fight For Your Right To Party' and people thought it was fun! And cool, it was exotic and different to a general UK music fan almost certainly not at all familiar with the sounds of hip-hop in 1986. The Beastie Boys may well have been many music fans first exposure to that sound. In America, The Beastie Boys reflected and captured two different musical strands and weaved them together. Suddenly, it was OK to admit to liking Hip Hop if you were a white kid, The Beastie Boys had mixed in Rock beats, guitar lines here and there to bring Hip Hop to a new ( white ) audience who had previously been lukewarm about it, at best. The ripples of this effect are still being felt to this day.

    So, what about the actual record? I've heard fans respond to the groups detractors concerning this particular album by saying, "yeah, but it was a joke!". And there is credence in that. The entire album is as un-serious as any album could possibly be. The hip-hop beats and sounds are amateurish and basic, but then, they aren't even trying to be anything else, quite deliberately. This had to be an easy thing. The Beastie Boys themselves rap, provide a few funny lines here and there, but the actual vocal delivery is monotonous, far more so than genuine rap or hip-hop at the time. The 'comedy' value of this album seems to be it's main appeal to fans, the lyrical, comedy value. Very few songs have anything interesting going on musically, beyond the already discussed hip-hop rap rock mix, or rather the idea of it. The execution is nursery rhyme, childish... deliberately? Well, yes. That's the feeling I get. Easy pill to swallow, funny, controversial lyrics aiming to please an audience. 'Slow Ride' and 'She's Crafty' are musical highlights, the opening 'Rhymin And Stealin' a good opener for this set mixing in Led Zeppelin samples amongst the rapping and hip hop. 'No Sleep Til Brooklyn' has an enjoyable and very loud drum beat. Nothing else at all has anything other than novelty value, but then, does it even have that, 16 years later? Well, no, it doesn't. The Beastie Boys themselves through subsequent releases render this entire project completely redundant. It doesn't have any nostalgic qualities for me, I wasn't hearing this music at the time it was released. Cultural divide, Hip Hop wasn't born in England, obviously. I can only apologise, but good music should transcend it's origins. I can fully understand plenty of people liking this album, it's so light and dumb and party music. It's funny, but for me, only for any random three song sequence from the record.

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    Readers Comments

    David Dickson heasman_justin@hotmail.com
    I'm no big fan of this record either (I think it's one of those things where you "had to be THERE, man," kind of like Piper at the Gates of Dawn--no offense intended, Adrian). But I DO have to clarify why this record was such a revelation back in 1986. Sure, white people could revel in the "duh" party atmosphere and the nasal voices and "gnarly" guitar riffs and therefore, like rap for the first time--but you know what? Run DMC had done the exact same thing on their second album the previous year (sans the nasality). Oddly enough, that album had FAR more pop/rock inflections than this one. No, I think the reason critics continue to adore this album (and, in fact, hold it in far higher esteem than they did when it was topping the charts) is the rapping. It's funny, tongue-in-cheek, clever, witty, and I know I'm going to get in trouble for this, but the Beasties can easily run rings around both Run AND DMC when it comes to flow, speed and delivery. Now, if onl! y "Posse in Effect," "Slow Ride," "Paul Revere," "Hold It Now, Hit It" and "Time to Get Ill" didn't exist, we'd have a nice little half-hour guilty pleasure on our hands. As it is, it's a terribly padded, half-annoying relic of a bygone era when big poofy hairdos were "in" and movie teenagers didn't know what irony was. Not rad OR bodacious, man.

    Toad USA
    My, what a bad rap this album gets.

    Take it for what it is and factor in when it was made. Yeah, it's juvenile, but so were the Beastie Boys, even after they "grew up". This album dropped like a bomb. It made Paul's Boutique possible. It's smart and doesn't pretend to be anything but what it is. Sure, there's some weak tracks, but...for what it is, what it did, it warrants at least a 7/10 on any knowledgable hip hop fan's scale, sorry.


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    Pauls Boutique 8 ( 1989 )
    To All the Girls / Shake Your Rump / Johnny Ryall / Egg Man / High Plains Drifter / The Sounds of Science / 3-Minute Rule / Hey Ladies / 5-Piece Chicken Dinner / Looking Down the Barrel of a Gun / Car Thief / What Comes Around / Shadrach / Ask for Janice / B-Boy Bouillabaisse

    An album that is so much better than the album it followed, it's ridiculous! Enter The Dust Brothers on production duties, I guess they had something to do with the change in the musical landscape here, and that The Beasties themselves learnt from The Dust Brothers in the process. This album is so different to the album it follows, in fact, it's really no small surprise that it sold a tiny fraction of the copies. The Beastie Boys get serious here, to an extent. Just to an extent, 'Pauls Boutique' is still very playful, and the lyrics remain characteristic, shall we say! There is just so much going on musically across many of the tracks here, it does take some time for this to sink in. There's no obvious stand-out track, pretty much all of them bar the opening and closing tracks have something positive to say about themselves. The opening track is too short, the closing track far too long and eventually it descends into snatches of ideas, short fragments - absolutely none of which tie together. But, lets not talk about the bad things, the rest of this album is great! 'Shake Your Rump' opens with much improved rapping from the boys themselves, then goes all funk and groove, samples galore, electronic joy. 'Johnny Ryall' is similarly full of sound and ideas, 'Egg Man' becomes a favourite of mine, all sorts of things going on and it just pounds. I'm doing a lousy job of describing this album, aren't I? Oh well, no matter! 'Egg Man' makes me smile, the lyrics and the delivery of the lyrics are really funny. 'High Plains Drifter' is a more regular rap type of song, although still full of snatches of interesting sound effect atop a single repeating groove. 'The Sounds Of Science' sounds weird and Jazzy, the vocals don't take themselves seriously at all, but they aren't irritating for a single second, something is happening here, a big smile forming upon the lips of the listener. 'The Sounds Of Science' is clever production wise, stupid in concept, but just such a joyous thing! The interweaving samples are so well done, it's hard to imagine them being done better.

    'Three Minute Rule' doesn't thrill me as much as other tracks here, but it remains listenable, 'Hey Ladies' is a song where the rapping becomes just one sound amongst many sounds on display. The groove of the music is so tight however, this simply can't fail but be enjoyable. 'Five Piece Chicken' goes all daft with a little fast country picking and much whoops of delight, lasting a mere twenty three seconds. 'Looking Down The Barrel Of A Gun' is a rock / rap mix on an album not exactly full of rock rap mixes, but it reminds you of where The Beastie Boys have come from. 'Car Thief' features more well inserted samples, little funky musical parts and much scratching. 'What Comes Around' features a lot of well executed rap parts and enjoyably dumb lyrical parts. All of these songs i've just mentioned are hugely enjoyable to listen to. 'Shadrach' is very disco with handclaps and sampled female vocals over which a stormingly large hip hop groove and powerful rap parts are inserted. Takes my breath away, it does! A brief eleven second linking track flows into the closing, and very trying, twelve minute closer. It's a shame, really we have to endure this particular track, a really strong closing couple of tracks in its place might have secured this album a place closer to my heart than it already is. Well, putting it close to my heart perhaps isn't the correct place. Maybe close to my rump?

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    Check Your Head 8 ( 1992 )
    Jimmy James / Funky Boss / Pass the Mic / Gratitude / Lighten Up / Finger Lickin' Good / So What'cha Want / Biz Vs. The Nuge / Time for Livin' / Something's Got to Give / Blue Nun / Stand Together / Pow / Maestro / Groove Holmes / Live at P.J.'s / Mark on the Bus / Professor Booty / In 3's / Namasté

    The Beastie Boys change again, ditching the sample reliant nature of 'Pauls Boutique' and playing the instruments themselves, helped out no end by the arrival of Money Mark on keyboards, and much else besides. The Dust Brothers no longer required, they produced themselves, and did so pretty darn well. 'Time For Livin' is a throwback to their early hardcore days, only married to much improved sound quality. The trumpets all through 'Stand Together' sound like avant-garde Jazz, before a thumpingly huge beat and groove comes in. Live instrumentation, a genuinely aggressive vocal, distortion, more groove and this is simply fabulous stuff! Another indication of the variety present through 'Check Your Head' arrives with the mellow 'Something's Got To Give' with a strong bass line and echoed mixing effects bearing a little dub reggae influence. The shuffling introduction to 'Lighten Up' gives way to funk lines, organ sounds. The vocal is cool, soft and relaxing in a lying in the sun blissing out kind of way. 'Check Your Head' isn't heavy on the Rap stuff at all, by the way. There still are examples of it and 'So Whatcha Want' is a particularly good example. The drum sound is so loud and heavy, guitar comes in here and there. This drum sound by the way is at once a nod to Led Zeppelin and a nod to Hip Hop, of course - always a very percussive kind of music. 'Pass The Mic' has scratching, a few rap parts, funky bass lines, strange keyboard sounds. It sounds like it's about to fall about at any given moment, but it never does, and it keeps you on the edge. There is a hell of a lot of music here, tons of ideas, The Beastie Boys become self-reliant and really start to grow as artists. And yeah, it makes sense to call them artists now. I wouldn't have dared throw that word around at the time of 'Licensed To Ill', 'Check Your Head' is a world and six years removed from their debut proper, after all.

    'The Maestro' is a real hip-hop gem from beginning to end and the vocals are rapped and powerful. 'Groove Holmes' is a weird instrumental, laid back gentle musical parts the key to this piece. 'Live At PJ's' is simply astonishing, full of tight funk lines, the guitar providing deep, ominous notes blasting through your floorboards. The closing few tracks don't move me as other songs here have done, and the closing 'Namaste' does little to advance things and does a lousy job of closing off or shining some sort of light back through the rest of the record. Closing tracks are important! The Beastie Boys were throwing ideas around, so very many ideas - that they'd yet to make a true, killer album project. 'Check Your Head' comes close, though. 'Pauls Boutique' had come close as well. Although the two albums aren't exactly similar in approach ( one sample based, one based on real instrumentation ) I still see the two albums as different sides of the same coin.

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    Ill Communication ( 1994, UK pos 10 )
    Sure Shot / Tough Guy / B-Boys Makin' With the Freak Freak / Bobo on the Corner / Root Down / Sabotage / Get It Together / Sabrosa / Update / Futterman's Rule / Alright Hear This / Eugene's Lament / Flute Loop / Do It / Ricky's Theme / Heart Attack Man / Scoop / Shambala / Bodhisattva Vow/ Transitions

    There is one hell of a lot of music here, at least it feels that way. A sprawling album, it's all over the place, but there are cool songs here. Well, cool atmospheres, cool moments. A lot of what's here doesn't really classify as 'songs' as such, but lots of instrumental mood pieces work all the same. Mixed in are many moments of funk, a return to Beasties hardcore and the stupendous 'Sure Shot' and 'Sabotage' sitting above it all, smiling to themselves. 'Ricky's Theme' is really nice to listen to, and then we get 'Heart Attack Man' a furiously fun piece of Beastie Boys punk hardcore. Which in turn, is followed by the funk-tastic mix of 'The Scoop', and so it goes. Be impressed? I was, although this took me a long time to get into, even having experienced the previous two Beastie Boys albums. 'Ill Communication' doesn't differ greatly in terms of format or structure to either 'Paul's Boutique' or 'Check Your Head', but it's more solid, even though 'Ill Communication' is incredibly fragmented, all over the shop..... but, it works. The sheer scope and variety of songs here impresses. 'The Scoop' is so funky, so full of great vocal rhythms, so DAMN atmospheric - really sounds great listened to late at night. 'Shambala' offers weird twisted chanting to open, before moving into more funky beats and groovy bass. But, back to the beginning. 'Sure Shot' moves, it grooves, and I feel so dumb describing it as such. Are The Beastie Boys intelligent? Their detractors put them down for being dumb rap/rock stuff, but this is so well put together, and the lyrics as eloquent as anything out there in modern rock music. Hardcore comes through and then 'B-Boys Makin With The Freak F' comes through, different again. A very heavy drum sound, very deep and low. Lots of samples, rapping not in your face - in fact, it's been mixed slightly back. So, you've got this heavy drum sound, and rapping. In fact, along with assorted sound effects, that's ALL you have. How come it works so well? I don't quite understand what's going on all through 'Ill Communication' in terms of working out how the hell they DID this stuff, but i'm inpresssed, anyhow.

    'Root Down' is irresistable funk groove amid clever rap parts, but forget the rap, what a groove! And don't forget the rap, it's so well down. And don't forget the lyrics...... ah, what the hell! These aren't the types of songs that rip your head off first listen. 'Ill Communication' is insidious, and certainly a surprise to me just how good it really is. 'Sabotage' is absolutely glorious, a thrilling Rock/Rap mix of the highest order, and quite rightly it returned The Beastie Boys to being a charting act in the UK, as far as singles were concerned. God, even something like the sample reliant 'Flute Loop' charms. Most of the album charms, I can't help myself.

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    Readers Comments

    Justin heasman_justin@hotmail.com
    Say hello to "Ill Communication", the Beasties most overrated LP. They were the critics darlings around this point, but this doesn't cut the mustard. The first three LPs kept pushing the envelope, but this is just treading water...sounding like every other rap effort. Thankfully Hello Nasty was good fun, and 5Burroughs isn't bad. PS. "Some Old Bullshit" is complete arse.


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    Hello Nasty ( 1998, UK pos 1 )
    Super Disco Breakin' / The Move / Remote Control / Song for the Man / Just a Test / Body Movin' / Intergalactic / Sneakin' Out the Hospital / Putting Shame in Your Game / Flowin' Prose / And Me / Three MC's and One DJ / The Grasshopper Unit (Keep Movin') / Song for Junior / I Don't Know / Negotiation Limerick File / Electrify / Picture This / Unite / Dedication / Dr. Lee Ph.D / Instant Death

    A four year wait was interrupted only by a mini hardcore EP and the instrumental 'The In Sound From Way Out'. Our wait for new Beasties material proper was rewarded when 'Intergalatic' brightened our airwaves and TV screens. Classic Beastie Boys from the word go, 'Intergalatic' was a big hit single and paved the way  for 'Hello Nasty' to follow in its wake. 'Hello Nasty' is absolutely nothing new, and adds nothing to The Beastie Boys career other than by extending it for a while. But yeah, we needed an album by them, and here it is. It's not their finest work, in fact - it pales badly when listened to immediately after 'Ill Communication', but 'Hello Nasty' still has enough charm and enjoyment factor to be worthwhile. 'Super Disco Breakin' is a glorious use of samples, 'The Move' a great groove with good rap parts all over the place. 'Remote Control' is fuzzy, distorted - has a catchy melody line running all the way through it. Good stuff, so far - no complaints. 'Body Movin' and 'Three MC's And One DJ' are highlights of the set, both playful in the extreme - the former musically notable with much funk and groove, the latter notable for the rhymes and rapping. 'Intergalatic' stands out a country mile, though. 

    Any song titled something like 'Sneakin Out The Hospital' has me yearning to hear it. It's a shame then that this particular song is deathly dull, pointless instrumental noodling and very familiar territory for The Beastie Boys, who just aren't stretching themselves here. 'Song For The Man' is a similarly uninspiring instrumental, neither 'Putting Shame In Your Game' nor 'Flowin Prose' make me smile, angry, wonder..... they don't do a blind thing for me. These tracks are still well put together, but there seems to be a lack of imagination or 'thrill' factor when compared to the likes of 'Pauls Boutique'. On the other-hand, 'And Me' is something a little different, opens all soft and mellow. It then appears to boast a few techno beats, which is an interesting development. After a minute or so really freaky electro noises appear, and you start to smile! At last! The only other obviously grin-inducing moment on this set has been 'Intergalatic', really. 'The Grasshopper Unit' is equally as odd as 'And Me' - a  load of hard to place sounds providing the backdrop for our boys to rap entertainingly over the top of. 'Unite' is a bouncy and happy thing and the closing 'Instant Death' a quiet, tranquil mood piece with enough interesting sequences of sound mark it out as interesting at least. 'Hello Nasty' is fairly interesting, but it's not a Beastie Boys record I turn to very often, even with a few genuinely enjoyable songs being here. Trouble is, there simply aren't enough songs like that here. <

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    Aaron glen@mitchell1818.fsnet.co.uk
    Well this album i brought when it basiccaly first come out after buying the best rap song ever 'Intergalactic' well one of. But as time went on i sold it to a mate the album i mean and i brought again yesturday when i first brought i was ovally pleased but i listen again and there are only a few that are really great such as the one above and of couse 'three mcs' 'body movin' and ' the move' but it didin't really have the same effect oh well still a classic of mine when i first got spose it still is just not consitant enouth. id give 8

    matt byrd matthewbyrd@hotmail.com
    t's a pretty interesting album with lot's of neat hooks and samples.... but um not as much as Paul's Boutique, but that's understandable. The first half offers the "A" material while the second half breaks off into a bunch of weird little instrumentals and various other pop songs including a few more oddly structured hip-hop songs. It's an excellent effort, easily one of their best and most endearing, but it contains too much kinda-sorta half-baked material to be considered as great as say... Paul's Boutique, the entire record though is kept interesting if not only for it's sheer eclecticism. It's damn good, a 9 from me.


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    To The 5 Boroughs 5 ( 2004, UK pos 2 )
    Ch-Check It Out / Right Right Now Now / 3 the Hard Way / Time to Build / Rhyme the Rhyme Well / Triple Trouble / Hey Fuck You / Oh Word? / That's It That's All / All Lifestyles / Shazam! / An Open Letter to NYC / Crawlspace / The Brouhaha / We Got The /

    We're back to a sampled music approach for this first album in six years from The Beastie Boys. It's an album that will be no doubt fairly well received by critics and welcomed as an improvement over 'Hello Nasty' by long-term fans. Yet, I'm going to make a comparison now, and it's a valid one. In the seventies, critics savaged each and every single Beach Boys album. The name of Brian Wilson was buried amongst the writing credits, or it was cleverly disguised that he hadn't in fact written the bulk of the material, even though the credits indicated his name was involved. There were jibes. 'Beach Men', 'Beach Boys struggle to shrug off surfing image', etc, etc. There is a point to my rant, actually. Seemingly, The Beastie Boys doing the same old thing they did fifteen years ago, more or less, more or less..... is now acceptable. That's how much we, music lovers, have lowered our standards. This is a poor album to say the least. It's been six years since 'Hello Nasty'. Things have changed. Things have changed especially seeing as The Beastie Boys have reverted to a sound, more or less, that they last tried in 1986, or something. The key to this new album is the fact that The Beastie Boys don't need this anymore. Christ, I almost prefer 'Licensed To Ill', and that album sounds so poor in 2004, so very weak. I'm not American, so i'll explain that right now. I'm from the UK. There are a lot of references, and always have been, in The Beastie Boys music, that only Americans will ever truly understand. It's a different culture. It's kind of like The Smiths or Morrissey being very English. That doesn't stop Americans enjoying Morrissey music if they aren't typical. Typical English music fans won't enjoy The Beastie Boys. They have no cultural point of reference. All of this can be overcome if the music is good. Unfortunately, on this new Beastie Boys album, the music is tired and cliched.

    'All Lifestyles' has slick production. It's funky, but doesn't indicate that any music has existed in Beastie Boys world since 1989. People used to savage bands for these kinds of things. Hence my example using a band commonly sat next to The Beastie Boys in the record shop racks! You know, The Beastie Boys may as well be Chuck Berry plugging away his 50s Rock And Roll in the mid-sixties, in the wake of The Beatles, and dozens of other new bands. Perhaps their time has been and gone? It's a bit silly of me saying that, because this isn't a bad album as such. Just in the same way 'MIU Album' by The Beach Boys wasn't a bad album as such. Yet, the very name 'Beach Boys' was so ridiculed when all the band were in their early 30s - that nobody cared what the hell The Beach Boys did. I don't want bands like The Beastie Boys rapping and doing the same old thing until they are grey. This record is new, but doesn't sound either new, or particularly strong compared to their past work. They are no longer original or clever. The bulk of this album is the sound of The Beastie Boys in cruise mode.

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    Readers Comments

    Ralph Creamer ralphcreamer@yahoo.com
    I agree that the Beasties have put it into 'cruise mode'. They seemed to have had some Hello Nasty beats left over and they decided to use them to back up their new rhymes written as a nod to the 1986-1988 era of hip hop (note the EPMD, RUN-DMC, and Public Enemy samples on the album). Even if they aren't re-inventing or stretching out creatively at this point, there is still something addictive about their style. The three guys rhyme together so well. I love those beats! In my opinion, the New York references were stronger on Beastie Boy songs before 9/11, and that means that they aren't jumping on a post-9/11 bandwagon to sell records. Probably another reason they waited till now. If the rumors are true and this is their last 100% hip-hop album, then I feel these songs will be cherished in years to come. Like the Beach Boys, I think their later albums will more appreciated in the aftermath than during the time for reasons you already pointed out so well. ! Great Review... Thanks.

    The Fly thehouse1813@yahoo.com
    Adrian, you disappoint me on this review. Most of yours are spot on, but this... Come on man, you don't need to get all the references in the lyrics to love the flow of the rhymes or groove of the music. Shit, I'm an American and I don't get all the references. "Open Letter to New York" sounds like nothing they've ever done, so why do you say they've reverted? Just because a few songs sounds like ones doesn't mean all of them do. That said, this album is one of the poorer Beaties releases but better than a five. Shit man, you gave Korn albums higher than this!! 6.5/10

    Devin Holmes fatboydevo@yahoo.com
    I've been genuinely enjoying myself the past couple of weeks, reading your reviews, agreeing with many, disagreeing with many. Until now, I haven't felt the need to post a comment. But this time it's different. Ok, so maybe the Beasties aren't your cup of tea, sorry they're not Radiohead or The Beach Boys, but this album, while not perfect, is so much fun to listen to, and every song is more listenable than most Radiohead songs out there (for the record I love Radiohead). Don't overanalyze this record, it is what it is, which is a good fun listen, not to mention a record that is unlike anything that came before it, and for you to give it a 4/10 is just insulting. This record is at least as good as the Spice Girls' "Forever" (5/10), which certainly doesn't "transcend it's origins." Even if it isn't for you, it certainly meets "for fans only" criteria, which is what you define as 6/10. Thanks for the great site though, please do more reviews like the Tatu one, reading t! hose reader comments gave me quite a laugh. (By the way, the Tatu record deserves at least a 5/10, but I approve of the 1/10 for the sake of the reader comments, ha.)

    matt byrd matthewbyrd@hotmail.com
    agreed, it's not a classic, but it's a fun, playful record. the record is composed of either nonsense humorous songs or lame attempts at being politically meaningful, there's some not-so-good rhymes and some hilarious rhymes... there's no actual bad material on here, it's just more lightweight and breezy than earlier records. I find it fully enjoyable, albeit not a classic, a 7 1/2 from here!

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    The Mix Up 6 ( 2007, UK pos 2 )
    B For My Name / 14th St Break / Suco De Tangerina / The Gala Event / Electric Worm / Freaky Hijiki / Off The Grid / The Rat Cage / The Melee / Dramastically Different / The Cousin Of Death / The Kangaroo Rat /

    First things first. 'The Mix Up' sounds nothing like any other Beastie Boys album. This is an all instrumental affair that mixes up rock and soul music with very few hints of hip-hop at all. Why they've made this record we'll have to wait and see, I suspect. I must be honest, my view of The Beastie Boys these days is Futurama, where they appear hundreds of years in the future as heads in jars, still doing the same old thing. Perhaps 'The Mix Up' is an attempt to shake that image? It's creative, of that there is no doubt. These musical backdrops are fit for movies, yet frustratingly remain background music rather than anything to particularly hold your attention. There's a few welcome dubby tracks here, as if the guys have been listening to King Tubby. Let's hope so, some of that creativity might rub off on them. Some people will instantly dismiss all instrumental LPs such as this one, but i've been listening to a lot of sixties instrumental Lps of late. The Beastie Boys have put some effort into this one and created a lot of interest backgrounds. That's it though, backgrounds. There is little innovation, no new sounds, although nearly everything here would be hailed as new if only they were rapping over the top of it. If that were the case, we'd be hailing this as invention, such is the straight, closed minds of many.

    I'm not going to try and describe the songs here. They all fall into movies, into dubby, slightly jazzy modern territory. They aren't rock, rap or soul. Certainly not pop and the question is raised, who apart from rabid Beastie Boys fans is this album for? Nothing here is bad, you understand, yet equally, nothing stands out. I feel like i'm suddenly being neutral and writing for a magazine. Heaven help me.

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    Hot Sauce Committee Part 2 8 ( 2011 )
    Make Some Noise / Nonstop Disco Powerpack / OK / Too Many Rappers / Say It / The Bill Harper Collection / Don't Play No Game That I Can't Win / Long Burn the Fire / Funky Donkey / The Larry Routine / Tadlock's Glasses / Lee Majors Come Again / Multilateral Nuclear Disarmament / Here's a Little Something for Ya / Crazy Ass Shit / The Lisa Lisa-Full Force Routine

    This is the first of two planned albums even though it's released as 'Part Two'. 'Part Two' reportedly had a troubled upbringing and ended up being scrapped and replaced with the tracks from 'Part One' which will now contain different tracks and be released later than 'Part Two'. Confused? Yes, we probably all are. Ad-Rock, MCA, and Mike D return then with MCA returning after battling cancer. The overall sound mixes samples with live instrumentation and sounds like a throwback to their material pre the populist 'Hello Nasty' era and beyond. Lead single 'Break The Noise' is very much old-school yet utterly delightful and contains a strange buzzing sound as its main melodic hook. With the live instrumentation 'Lee Majors Comes Again' is Beastie Boys in pure guitar-rock mode instrumentally, a thrash number almost before a few sampled electronic squeals enter two-thirds of the way through. Nice bass-guitar propels this tracks forwards. MCA is a highlight of the set, his voice now incredibly growly and lived in highlighted well throughout, 'Long Burn The Fire' for one example. So whispery and growly his voice is now in fact he should probably now get a guest starring role in CSI Miami. The instrumental 'Multilateral Nuclear Disarmanent' has a very heavy bass reverberating throughout and shows that Beastie Boys still have some production nous about them.

    Getting The Beastie Boys to say anything serious in interviews about their music is a struggle, they still genuinely do this because yes, they take it seriously but they also have fun with it, because if you're not having fun as the creators then you may as well pack up and go home. So, plenty of the lyrics are playful, the sound of the album is fairly straightforward, not searching for a revoluation but merely the sound of Beastie Boys being The Beastie Boys without outside production help. Nas raps on 'Too Many Rappers' and fits in seamlessly, but he just 'beamed across' his vocals, they didn't record together as such. Still, 'Too Many Rappers' is very old-skool boasting yet naturally, tongue in cheek. The biggest left-turn the album presents though isn't any of the shorter or ever so slightly but not quite experimental tracks, rather how well the guys produce reggae music. Santigold sings the lead on 'Don't Play No Game With Me', the bass is heavy and it feels genuine. 'Danger!' goes the guys in the background and the sound and mixing is spot on, 70s meets noughties production type of stuff. Just a word for 'Long Burn The Fire'. It's so very Beastie Boys it becomes a quintessential Beastie Boys track, one that would fit onto any single one of their previous records. Yet, there are some clever and subtle tricks, the bass is modern, the vocals semi-buried and you do wonder if this is the more easily assimilated part of the 'Hot Sauce' duet of albums with the companion piece being the risky, more experimental album that either really flies or falls flat on its face. For now, we can be merely content with 'Part Two' becoming one of the finest Beasties efforts for a while, even if, yes, that zeitgeist has likely left the Beasties building for good.

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    this page last updated 23/05/13


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