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Ol' Dirty Bastard Nigga Please

Review by Kemi George

This paranoid, sprawling, misogynistic, alternately racist and integrationist album proves one thing: The ODB is one of the greatest and most creative rappers of the 90's and beyond. In an era dominated by such mind-numbing, unoriginal hip hop (i.e. Puff Daddy and Will Smith), it's nice to see some MCs using their OWN music on an album. Who can forget Puffy's cringe inducing takeoff on Zep's Kashmir? Or anything by Will Smith, Mary J. Blige etc.? But the ODB revolutionizes the sound of rap, paying homage to the funk on the radio-friendly "Got Your Money" and the superb "Recognise", the soul on the heart-rending cover of "Good Morning Sunshine" (feat. Lil' Mo') and gets almost decidedly punk-rock in "I Can't Wait". I swear, these are the phattest, illest beats I have heard in a long time.

Nevertheless, ODB's chief drawback is a decided lack of coherence. In fact, ODB changes themes as readily as names (re: ODB, Dirt McGirt, Dirt Dog, Aison Unique and Big Baby Jesus. I kid you not.) While this may not deter the more die-hard fans (i.e. me), it would surely put off those not used to the Wu-Tang's eccentricities. Example? On "Rollin Wit You", Ol Dirt seems poised to wipe out the "white mothaf***ers" who are "tryin' to take over," apparently not realizing that white people already own all the shit. Later, on "All in Together Now", he claims to be "a Dalmatian/I'm white, and I'm black", and calls for everybody to get in together, white, black, yellow, aliens etc. What the f**k, right?

Almost all the songs are good, with the exception of "I Want Pussy" which sounds decidedly as filler and uncreative as its name suggests. The bonus track is listenable, but barely, and one song "Gettin High" doesn't even HAVE the ODB in it.

Still, his lyrical genius is as usual, above par, endowing himself with almost mythical powers as in the title track, saying "Nigga/I'm immune to all viruses/I get the cocaine/that cleans out my sinuses/Just for standing up, I get a quarta o' mill/I have it raining ice drops the size of automobiles/I kill all the government microchips in my body/I'm the paranoid nigga at your party." The production is the perfect audio background for the ODB's insanity. The tracks are tighter than a vise, and masters like the RZA, Tru Masta, the Deltones et. al. shine almost as much as the ODB himself.

It may not be (thankfully) as commercial and mainstream as the aforementioned Mr. Smith, but then as ODB says "This ain't no commercial song/Straight up/Y'all niggas can't F**K wit me/All y'all niggas lovin me/Mr. courageous ODB." Goddam.

In conclusion, buy this album. It's the shiz-nit.


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