Artist: The Beatnuts
Album: The Originators
Rating: 8 / 10
Reviewer: P The Uptownkid
Over ten years in the game, countless production rights, seven albums (including a greatest hits album), two men, and one goal define what the Corona, Queens duo is all about… making hip-hop music for hip-hop headz. Psycho Les and Ju-Ju bring it back to the real with their latest release, titled, “The Originators”. With the obscurity of style that was presented in the past couple of Beatnuts releases, “Musical Massacre” and “Take It Or Squeeze It” still in effect, the duo re-emerge with an album that sounds fresh whilst still incorporating the gritty lyrical and production techniques found on their previous releases. Although they may not be able to re-create the masterpiece of production that they blessed Chi-Ali with in ’92 on “The Fabulous Chi-Ali”, the Beatnuts have definitely re-evaluated their experimentation of the past couple of years and have seemingly brought a lost aspect of the musical art back. In essence, the Beatnuts bring back the real, in the form of 14 tracks, comparable to the style from their first couple of albums.
‘Bring The Funk Back’
Funky beat… HOT track. “My music hardcore / I continue to stay raw / Give the party people what they came for” – Ju Ju
‘Yae Yo’ feat. Ill Bill (Non Phixion) & Problemz
The track starts out with a scratched in portion of ‘Rush Rush’ by Georgio Moroder & Debbie Harry (Blondie) (some of y’all might remember this from in the movie Scarface), then goes into a funky-ass ‘Reign Of the Tech’-type drum beat with a soul-inspired flute in the background. Obviously, Ill Bill rips the track with the feriousity of a tiger, with the aid of fellow guest and underground repper Problemz. Hot to death.
What good is a Beatnuts albums without any dedication for the inebriated? A 9 second skit that I was too drunk to remember…
‘Buying Out The Bar’ feat. Chris Chandler
A typical, funky Beatnut tracks with an accordion pushing in tandem, while Les & Ju Ju rap about those Fridays when you’ve been working all week and you want to go to the club, get ya drink and freak on.
‘Work That Pole’ feat. Tony Touch
A hot effort on a non-commercial collaboration of Tony Toca and the Beatnut crew. The Beatnuts produce a club-banger, salsa/meringue-inspired hip-hop vibe over a Miami booty-bar beat, which will probably be a hit for the clubs and the strip joints as it’s dedicated to the ladies who ‘Work That Pole.’
‘Originate’ feat. Large Professor
The only non-Beatnut produced track on the album in which featured artist (and icon), Large Professor, comes thorough not only on the beat, but the verbals as well. Unfortunately, the beat is mediocre at best, as the (criminally forgotten and slept on) underground rapper/producer, Extra P, doesn’t seem to give this the extraordinary “illness” that he normally does.
‘My Music’ feat. Ameretta and Problemz
This is pretty much a 2002 Beatnuts version of a psuedo-‘The Symphony’ a-la Marley Marl… with horns in the background instead of a piano. Psycho Les & Ju Ju rip the track with assistance from female rapper, Ameretta and fellow affiliate, Problemz.
‘U Crazy’ feat. Cormega
Now, this track is for the fans of “Take It Or Squeeze It” or “Musical Massacre” as Les & Ju Ju slap some organs on a medieval-era trip aided by the lyrical flow of the monotone Queens, NY representer, Cormega.
‘You Better Believe It’
Pretty much an old-skool, head-nodding track with the Beatnut crew letting the ladies know the rules and how things is on their end.. they’re about the ladies and enjoy the pleasures that can be given (Amen, brothas). Hot track.
Routine’ takes it back to the Wild Style/Cold-Crush era, with surprise guest Willie Stubz, as they aggressively attack the microphone and hold your ear hostage with a possible underground hit.
As interesting as the experimentation gets on the latest Beatnut production, this is a track that might have to grow on you after the first, and maybe into the second listening, as it details their production maturity. Psycho Les & Ju Ju coin a semi-Georgio Mordoder, synthesized, futuristic-type beat with underground vet, Al Tariq and El Gant spittin’ over the track. Again, it might not make sense at first, but the tracks infectious melody will grab you.
‘Becks & Bransons’ feat. Triple Seis and Marley Metal
A lyrical beat down by features artist and Terror Squad member, Triple Seis and new-jack Marley Metal over a gothic chorus-filled track.
‘Back 2 Back’
Psycho Les and Ju Ju always seem to have a “back to the essence” track where they’re rhyming over a beat that throws up images of a small basement club with crowd noise in the back and a live band.. this is another one of them. A perfect round-off track to compliment the complete and focused efforts that proceeded it.
All in all, the Intoxicated Demons represent and re-ignite the fire that seemed to be missing for the past couple of years. The definite weakness of the album is the fact that it’s only 46 minutes, which doesn’t really fit into the modern-day, album length model of the 65-70 minute range. Even still, the Beatnuts compose an outstanding arrangement of tracks that prove that their longevity and allegiance to Hip-Hop, Rap music, pussy, drinks and lyricism keep them elevated from any and all wack producers and rappers. Again they stay true in representing their sound, the borough of Queens, their love and passion for Hip-Hop and their relevance in the game. The Beatnuts bring it back to the essence of their first 3-4 releases to provide a definite album to pick up. You won’t be disappointed.