audio review : I Got Next ( album ) … KRS-One

audio review : I Got Next ( album ) ... KRS-One

The title suggests a game of basketball, but it’s the rap game KRS-One plays best. He’s The MC of MCs; a hip-hopper in perhaps its purest form. He’s also The Teacha, so, if we’re using the sport of basketball for comparison’s sake, he’s a former star player turned coach. The big difference is that, while arguably past his prime, he just can’t stay off the court.

There’s even a song entitled Can’t Stop Won’t Stop, but it’s not about his love for rap music. It’s a tale, told from the first-person perspective, about a drug dealer who, in order to avoid going to prison, makes a deal with the police. The story, enhanced with dramatic sound effects where applicable, fits snug into the BDP canon, alongside Love’s Gonna Get You.

It’s the ridiculous abundance of skits and bits, tracked in place of full-length songs, that serves as KRS-One’s foulest offense. There are two back-to-back intros at the start, for example, and three Halftime interludes in a row, which collectively come across as album filler, especially when you find yourself skipping them for the umpteenth time.

Only about half of the tracks are actual songs. Even if you ignore the rest of the album, only about half of those songs are of any notable quality. Step Into A World works in an off-beat kind of way and Real Hip-Hop is just that, but Blowe sounds silly and the Heartbeat beat; the song features Redman and Angie Martinez; is wack. So much for the Playoffs.

my rating : 3 of 5

1997

audio review : Curtain Call 2 ( album ) … Eminem

audio review : Curtain Call 2 ( album ) ... Eminem

Eminem should’ve come up with a different title. Curtain Call made conceptual sense coming after the Encore album. This new one, based on the cover artwork, attempts to merge the concert/stage theme with, of all random things, a pinball game.

Musically it covers every Eminem album since that first Hits compilation, which, since he’s made one good album in all that time; one man’s “trash” is another man’s treasure; results in a lackluster affair. Even his raps have gotten corny and verbose.

“Oh,” he mocks on Rap God, “he’s too mainstream.” It’s kind of true though. His first two LPs were fun, edgy and provocative. Relapse was a gratifying throwback. Imagine a cringey Ed Sheeran, Rihanna or Beyoncé chorus on one of those albums.

my rating : 3 of 5

2022

video review : Mean Girls 2

video review : Mean Girls 2

Perhaps the “2” should’ve been swapped with Too. This is a movie about a trio of Mean Girls; North Shore high schoolers known as The Plastics; but it’s a whole new class. The original members graduated years ago along with all their schoolmates, including Cady. Here her role of a fresh face in a strange new world is played by a loner named Jo.

It’s an unnecessary sequel that plays more like a conceptual remake, but it’s an aesthetic match not only when it comes to the attractiveness of the girls but the decency of the plot. The movie never really gets good; the constant comedy attempts only sometimes hit the mark; but it’s about as entertaining as the first movie if not a bit better.

my rating : 3 of 5

2011