“Hot Sauce Committee Part Two” – Beastie Boys
When Eminem first rapped about Christina Aguilera and tried to convince the world that he was pioneering a new generation of white rappers he must have forgotten that a flag had already been planted in the soil he so badly wanted to claim. These intrepid explorers were out to take what was theirs and have as much fun as possible whilst doing it. They were, of course, Beastie Boys.
It’s been twenty five years since their first studio album was released and, although the same basic elements remain, the band has evolved their sound so well that these elements have become staple. The lyrics are heard as though they were being played through tinny speakers underwater and, while this could be seen as a bad thing, it seems to make all the sense in the world when it’s coupled with their signature funk instrumentation.
The album itself sounds like a walk down the street, and although ‘swagger’ is generally not associated with middle class white boys The Beastie’s seem to have it in plentiful supply. The first single off Hot Sauce Committee Part Two ‘Make Some Noise’ kicks off with a woozy organ breakdown that evolves into a full blown funk jam and, as soon as the boys start rhyming, it’s easy to see why they are still an essential addition to the modern hip-hop scene.
If you’re looking to place a genre blanket over this LP you will be hard pressed in doing so. Every track takes a different turn and employs a new set of instruments at each stop. Their instrumental masterpiece ‘Multilateral Nuclear Disarmament’ is a real stand-out, as is ‘Don’t Play No Game’ which features Santigold… who I guess features in any album released in the last five years, that girl seems to be everywhere at once.
For lovers of this album, and of music and film in general, the album comes with a 30 minute extended film-clip which acts as a sampler for the tracks that make up Hot Sauce Committee. Not only that it also stars anyone that Perez Hilton has ever blogged about and a soundtrack that is mixed so beautifully that if you are unsure about loving this album at the start, you certainly won’t be by the end.
Overall Hot Sauce Committee is a great starting base for anyone who hasn’t got into The Beastie Boys yet. The tracks are amazingly accessible and offer a vast array of what the previous releases have to offer as well as a lot of new ground for fans of old. It’s a playful release that provides a brilliant backdrop for those of you who want to feel gangsta whilst walking to the shops but if you’re more the headphones/bed combination kind of a player there’s room here for you too. Come on. Get in here.
– Jonty Thompson