Review Summary: "Typical"? ...Anything but!
It would be an understatement to call Hip-Hop music polarizing. The number of fans and detractors seem to be even. With most arguments, there seems to be a go-to defense that each side beats into the ground. For people who dislike, or even hate rap, the argument is usually something along the lines of "It's misogynistic talking by people who aren't talented enough to play actual instruments"
. Hip-Hop fans usually go to the route of "The rap I listen to is deep! It's about more than bragging about sex and how awesome they are. It's poetry with extremely creative production/beats"
. Notice how 98% of rap fans acknowledge the fact that there is that type of music, but downplay the fact that they would ever listen to it. This is usually a lie. There are at least a handful of rappers us hip-hop fans love, and don't really know why. The truth is that both of these arguments are right, and wrong. For the rap fans: yes, There is a lot of rap that is poetic and makes you think, not to mention production that can blow your mind. But even the most eclectic rap features a large amount of bragging. For the Detractors: yes, It's mostly talking, and at times it can be very misogynistic. But even the most annoying of rap has great production. Nothing proves all of these points to be true like Alex Epton, Naeem Juwan, Chris Rockwell, and Ronald Rubarth. better known as Spank Rock.
You may have heard of Spank Rock before. It made it's way onto countless "Best Of"
lists. But why? It's immature, nasty, and arrogant. They're like 2 Live Crew, but with way better production, mixed with Lupe Fiasco, except not seismically overrated. I know it may be hard to wrap your mind around, but they're new and they're raunchy. It would be an understatement to call "YoYoYoYoYo"
an explicit album. In fact, if it came out around the time "As Nasty As They Wanna Be"
came out, there is no doubt the government would've bypassed 2 Live Crew
and gone directly to trying to get this album banned. Most of the songs are completely about sex... and lots of it. I can only imagine what goes through the mind of a die hard alternative rap fan when they hear this. I'd bet that secretly they'd love it, but they'd be afraid that it got into the hands of a rap detractor. Because it would seem to prove what they say right. "Nigga"
, and "Fuck"
are said way more than any other words. Basically, it's sleazy, arrogant, and not that intellectual.... And I wouldn't want it any other way!
The beginning of the Record, "Backyard Betty"
is a nice warning of what the album is all about. With Bass and Drums that pummel you, and lyrics that pummel you way more, the song is a textbook example of a guilty pleasure. Half of your brain will go "Did he just say that?"
, and the other half of your brain will get the urge to make your a
ss shake, your head bob, and your feet tap. With lyrics like "Ass shakin' competition champ. Ohh, that pussy gets damp", and "[color=blackAs[/color]s and Boobs"
, you find yourself wondering why you want to listen to it again and again. "Sweet Talk"
is another example of this: beginning with "Tap that ass"
said literally 27 times in a row. And that's tame compared to the rest of the song. But once again, the beat is so infectious that you forget to be shocked by the dirty simplicity of the lyrics. All you can do is marvel at the funky guitar licks, and unavoidable bass. The song gradually turns into a melodic, slightly innocent breakdown that includes singing, and a slow beat. Even a weaker song such as "Competition"
has great production, and relentless samples, and naughty little phrases like "Come back to my lair, strip down to your underwe-ar"
Despite all of these things, "YoYoYoYoYo"
has more to it that just shockingly catchy lyrics. Songs like "Rick Rubin"
, show why so many indie cats swear by a rap group that they should have no business liking. Easily the best rapping on the album that addresses their polarizing style of music: "Is it that creation you’ve been patiently waiting for? Bloody as Fraw? Soulfully hardcore? Does it get you moving? Is it too confusing? Am I losing you with theses theories I’m proving?"
Not to mention the 8-bit samples that accompany the song and so much of the album. Everything from a dial tone, to a Cougar roaring, to sounds from space invaders accompanies the dirty lyrics and pounding drums throughout the album. "Top Billin' From Far Left"
utilizes this more than any other song on the album. With multiple video game sounds, telephone sampling, voice effects, and countless other things that show you how truly creative the production is. Like many rap producers, Armani XXXchange turns his sampler into a credible instrument. "Touch Me"
has so much going on musically, you don't even pay attention to the lyrics until Spank Rock starts bragging so blatantly, you just have to love it: "One on the futon, one in the shower, one in the backseat, three this past hour, one on the balcony, two on the dance floor... I need a seat, I can't stand no more"
. But as sexual as the album gets, it still has it's truly lyrical moments, like "What It Look Like"
, which is most likely the most traditional rap song on the album.
Just because these songs are nasty and deeply layered, doesn't mean they aren't accessible. Almost anyone can appreciate "Bump"
. For God sakes it was used in a Salad Dressing commercial. I wonder if the women in the commercial realize that they're moving around, eating salad to a song about "Pussy Pounding"
. Hopefully so... because that would be hawt! "Chilly Will"
is like "Touch Me"
, because it seems like two different songs. At first it's dirty and quiet, almost Neptunes-like. Until the 1:15 mark, where the song just breaks down into a great use of mixing, maybe the most simplistic songs on the record, yet one of the funnest. Personally, I find "Coke & Wet"
to be the best song on the album. It combines all of the best aspects of the record. The electronic sound, the funkiness, the great rapping, and the self indulgent hooks, all in under three minutes. With a hook that is literally "Coke & Wet bitch, guns, nigga holla"
, the song is way more awesome than the lyrics would lead you to believe. "IMC"
is another brief song that goes beyond sex and sleaziness. The sampler is once again prevalent in this song, and MC Spank Rock seems to fit the production better than most other emcees would. He has a lot to work with, but he always seems to make the song his own, no matter how amazing the production is, he almost always shines. The record ends on a very slow note on the "Outro (Screwville USA)
" (Ironically one of the few songs that has nothing to do with actual screwing, but rather Screwing and Chopping). Even the outro packs more punch than many rap songs out right now. It's a nice, slow, calm way to end such a loud, abrasive, in your face record.
may not be revolutionary, it may not be genius, and it may not be important to the movement of Hip-Hop. But it has most certainly never been done before. There have been Hip-Hop albums that heavily depended on the electronica influenced beats, and there have been countless Hip-Hop albums that are X Rated, but I've never seen an album combine the two so well. The best thing about "YoYoYoYoYo"
is that no matter what, you will have an opinion of it. It's not an album you just play once or twice only to toss it aside and let it collect dust. If you like it, you will end up loving it. If you dislike it, you may even want to play it again to confirm what you have just heard, or it may end up getting stuck in your head so badly,you'll end up liking it a little. No matter what, this album will keep the argument vs. Rap Fans and Rap haters going for a long time to come. And as long as this is true, Hip-Hop will never be dead.
Some of the best and most catchy production you will hear
MC spank Rock makes his presence felt on every song
Despite how you feel about the subject matter, this album is 42 minutes of flat out fun, no matter how you look at it
This record is not for the young, elderly, conservative, nursing or pregnant, or anyone else that's no fun
Some may not like MC Spank Rock's lyrics at all
"Coke & Wet"