Beastie Boys Book
Adam Horowitz & Mike Diamond FABER & FABER 550-page motherlode memoir.
At a time when hip-hop overlords Run-DMC could rescue ailing Aerosmith with Walk This Way, it made sense for a chaotic New York hardcore band to reinvent itself by embracing hip-hop as uptown’s parallel DIY punk movement, putting their superbly humorous hellraising punk spin on rapping to become crossover chart-scorchers.
Disbanded after losing idiosyncratic Zen-like motivator Adam Yauch to cancer in 2012, Beastie Boys were a frequently misread phenomenon whose roller-coaster tale could be told only by surviving members Adam ‘ADROCK’ Horowitz and Mike ‘Mike D’ Diamond, and in Beastie Boys Book they present every aspect of their evolution from beer-guzzling rap-urchins to sonic visionaries, publishing magnates and internet pioneers. Inevitably the lyrical/musical insights, Madonna support spots, egg recipes, freaky dressup sprees and riotous anecdotes, gloriously uproarious as they are, are overshadowed by Yauch’s premature absence; his actual passing too painful for them to recount.
ADROCK’s description of Diamond’s ludicrously spot-on encore apparel at 2007’s
Bestival appearance could be applied to this superlative memoir: “hilarious and necessary”. Like the Beasties, it’s haphazardly perfect, everything the true fan could have hoped for and more.