Review Summary: Tom Morello and Boots Riley make a mediocre record.
Rage and The Coup: admittedly, I was ecstatic for such a collaboration. As a hip-hop addict and a product of the 90s with respect to musical evolution, this is one reviewer that wore out his copy of 1992’s self-titled Rage Against the Machine
. This is why it’s truly a travesty that the very same mastermind behind the groundbreaking guitar works presented therein is behind such derivative mush, almost paled (in terms of not only experimentation but also pure funk level) by his solo-work presented in the first boss battle of Guitar Hero 3
. This is really boring stuff – surmounted not only by the fluffy, near pedestrian drumming of Galactic’s Stanton Moore, but also Boots Riley’s ridiculously mismatched flow. Sometimes ahead or behind Morello at any given moment as he puts on his best learning to rap impression, Street Sweeper Social Club
really lacks artistic harmony amongst clashing individual styles. The renown bay-area master of ceremonies has fallen down a slippery slope as fast as he can yell "Fight! Smash! Win!"; a far cry from 90s-era The Coup, this recent collaboration acts as a veritable soap-box for the typically political hardcore rapper. The problem is, the height of said box is infinitely overshadowed by “band-mate”/ producer Tom Morello’s previous works.
This record is a thematic cesspool of angst, not-so-radical revolution, and anti-commercial-pop irony – in fact, much of this rings vaguely familiar in the sense that it’s all been done before, but better. Every track is completely middling, and it’s apparent that any semblance of comfort or chemistry is just not there. When an emcee sounds interrupted or unbalanced by the guitar and most of the music appears to be ripped from a bedroom jam session, it’s painfully obvious; Street Sweeper Social Club
would better benefit society by performing said namesake operation.