Pur­pose, pulse

Kapi-Mana News - - REVIEW -

Back in the 80s house par­ties didn’t re­ally get go­ing un­til some­one’s older brother had rolled up un­in­vited, taken over the stereo with a 7-inch vinyl copy of Fight For Your Right (To Party), snogged your best mate and set fire to your sofa.

It was pretty much all down to that one, ridicu­lous, quasi-joke sin­gle from New Jersey’s finest rhythm and rhyme masters, The Beastie Boys.

Since then the Beast­ies have had a wild ride through nine al­bums, 35 sin­gles, mouth can­cer – MCA was di­ag­nosed with it in 2009 – sav­ing Ti­bet and grow­ing up.

Ad Rock, Mike D and MCA re­cently bounced back on to the scene with Hot Sauce Com­mit­tee Part Two (Part One is yet to be re­leased), ac­com­pa­nied by the fun­ni­est videos the in­ter­net has seen in a while. It starred a who’s who of Hol­ly­wood com­edy stars re­vis­it­ing Fight For Your Right to find things in B town are as rau­cous as ever.

Like a two-fisted punch to the head, Hot Sauce Com­mit­tee sounds as fresh and wild as any­thing the Beast­ies did back in 1986. But this al­bum is no seedy nos­tal­gia trip. The Beast­ies still have some­thing to say about the state of the world, about the state of par­ty­ing, and the state of the art of rhyme. Though they’re more crafts­men than party an­i­mals these days.

The trade­mark fat beats, sam­ple-tas­tic back track­ing and meta­phoric rhymes that made them stal­warts of the 80s and 90s still abound. Only now they’re fil­tered through an in­ter­galac­tic prism made from ma­tu­rity, wis­dom and time. And they’re fault­less, well-con­structed songs with a pur­pose and a pulse.

From the bass throb­bing jig of Lee Ma­jors Come Again, to the sum­mer lov­ing reg­gae vibe of Don’t Play No Game That I Can’t Win, HSC Pt2 proves the Beastie’s can still drop bombs like a bom­bardier and blow us all away.

Ex­plo­sions In The Sky – Take Care, Take Care, Take Care (Tem­po­rary Res­i­dence) Any­one who has watched an episode of the crack­ing high school foot­ball drama Fri­day Night Lights will be fa­mil­iar with Ex­plo­sions In the Sky’s moody sound­scapes, their wist­ful and of­ten hyp­notic gui­tar noodling a per­fect com­pan­ion to the show’s wide open spa­ces and brood­ing emo­tions.

Put their 2006 dazzler The Earth is Not a Cold Dark Place into the car stereo and you start to think you’re driv­ing a pick-up truck to the lo­cal Ap­ple­bees, not a Corolla on the way to work.

I’ve never been a great ad­mirer of in­stru­men­tal mu­sic – I love singing along too much – but these cats from Texas have got un­der my skin.

Take Care . . . feels like a more pa­tient and un­pre­dictable beast than the ear­lier stuff I’ve heard, though their ba­sic MO re­mains true: lots of gui­tars build­ing slowly – most of the six songs are over eight min­utes – into blasts of sonic fer­vour.

They call this sort of thing ‘‘post rock’’, I just call it the sound­track to a tri­umphant day.

HIP HOP The Beastie Boys – Hot Sauce Com­mit­tee, Part Two (Capi­tol records)

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