Review Summary: Everybody jump to the juggalo sound!
You should know of ICP. And whether you love them or hate them, you have to admit, they are good at what they do. Good enough to gain a fanbase without radio or television exposure. "The Amazing Jeckel Brothers" is one of their most well-known releases. It is the fifth in a series of six Joker's Cards, each card designed to help people change their life for the better so they can avoid the fires of Hell's Pit and spend the rest of their days in Shangri-La.
The Amazing Jeckel Brothers involves a candle that brings forth the spirits of two fire-juggling brothers - one good, Jake, and one wicked, Jack. Those who witness the Jeckels' act are to see the Brothers juggle their sins. Those who sin too heavily and witness a fumble during the act are sent to Hell's Pit and those who see the act completed are sent to Shangri-La.
Mike E. Clark's production on this is excellent - Clark is one of the best producers around and wrote the music for every Joker's Card album except for "Shangri-La" and "Hell's Pit". "Carnival of Carnage" was initially produced by someone else who turned out to be a con artist, so Mike was brought in to finish the album, thus starting a long business relationship between him and Psychopathic Records. Other albums Mike has produced include releases by Esham, Kid Rock, Eazy-E and George Clinton.
There are a number of great tracks here.
"I Want My ***" - Violent J goes through several lifetimes looking for four things: a rusty ax, to learn voodoo, a fat girl named Bridget, and a little sip of Faygo too...I said Faygo, fuck Mountain Dew!
"Bitches" features Ol' Dirty Bastard of the Wu-Tang Clan, and ICP later appear on ODB's "The Trials and Tribulations of Russell Jones" album.
"Another Love Song" is one of the album's best-known tracks, and it's kind of a twisted love song, involving killing one's girlfriend because they cheated on them.
"Everybody Rize" is a GREAT track. If you ain't bobbing your head when you hear this one, I don't know what's wrong with you.
"*** The World" is another well-known track. This was performed at Woodstock '99. This track includes Violent J and Shaggy lashing out at Michael Eisner - Disney had planned to distribute the duo's "The Great Milenko" album under the Hollywood Records label, but eventually dropped the group after protests from religious groups.
"The Shaggy Show" is a short skit featuring Shaggy 2 Dope as the host of a talk show in which he interviews Violent J and - in the album's best moment - SNOOP DOGGY DOGG.
"Assassins" is an even wickeder cover of the Geto Boys classic. The Geto Boys were one of the pioneering groups in the horrorcore rap genre that ICP are a part of.
"Echo Side" is the first released track by Dark Lotus.
"Nothing's Left" is an excellent conclusion, and has a less harsh sound than the other tracks. It's a nice way to end the album, and is a perfect lead-up to the first part final Joker's Card, THE WRAITH, which is separated into two albums, the lighter SHANGRI-LA, and the darker HELL'S PIT, which respectively focus on one's journey into either Hell or Heaven.