Busta Rhymes – Extinction Level Event

Busta Rhymes
Artist: Busta Rhymes
Title: Extinction Level Event
Label: Elektra
Rating: 8.5/10

Busta spreads propaganda like butter and his rhymes are just as smooth.

Calling out to the cities across the nation to rise to his power, “Everybody Rise” is the quintessential gnarling Busta. He is one of the rare artists who can continually use hooks that are made up entirely of screaming out just one word without sounding repetitive. Busta’s blaring of “Rise” rings much like that of his first qualified hit, “Whoo-ha!”

The futuristic sound meets the challenge set forth by Busta’s apocalyptic concept. The title track, “Extinction Level Event”, inundates us with Busta’s ferocious rhymes. “Against All Odds” showcases the futuristic qualities, featuring the Space Invaders sound filler. Busta is a business maven and this track is another chance for the entrepreneur to put forth his product, the Flipmode Squad.

Busta’s knack has always been unlikely rhymes with grit and a comedic element. The intro of (actually appearing at the end of track nine) “Gimme Some More” is a funny little piece of chatter. It’s the lyrics that keep you coming back for more. “Ever since Jimmy crack corn/ rockin’ on ever since the day I was born,” found on the song “Party Is Goin’ On Over Here”, is Busta at his playful best.

“Tear Da Roof Off” is destined to be a nightclub smash. Awesome beats flow behind the recurring “where my crew yo?/ Flipmode hit you off/ ya’ll know what to do okay/ tear da roof off.” Next on the hit list is “Keepin’ It Tight”. Its smooth chorus, “alright ya’ll/ you know we keepin’ it tight ya’ll,” is a rhythmic rapture that lays claim to Busta’s name. “Do The Bus A Bus” is a thumping party, satisfaction guaranteed.

Then there are the duets. The first is with Mystikal. “Iz They Wildin Wit Us & Gettin’ Rowdy Wit Us” is a drag racing flurry. Mystikal’s rap firestorm of verbiage is almost impossible to decipher. It took a few days to even begin to comprehend and still I don’t understand all of it. Lest you think that Busta was left in the cold by Mystikal’s pomp, you will quickly hear that his tongue is as twisted and quick as that of his counterpart.

Then there is Janet. Busta brings Janet Jackson on board for an erotic duet entitled “What’s It Gonna Be?!” Janet has been working hard to exchange her girlish image for a more sensual, sexy one. Busta has broken her mold. You’ll be surprised to hear Janet sing “gonna make your body wet/ gonna make your body scream out ‘yeah’/gonna make your body cream/ make you have wet dreams.” Busta’s fans will love this. If you thought the team of Ol’ Dirty Bastard and Mariah Carey was hot, wait until you hear the heat in this lewd exchange.

What better way to celebrate the last year of the millenium than with Black Sabbath? “This Means War!!” features Sabbath’s “Iron Man” as it’s musical backdrop. Although Sir Mix A-lot has previously covered “Iron Man”, Busta took it to another level and decided to bring in the iron man himself, Ozzy Osbourne. This is one bizarre, yet intriguing partnership. Ozzy reformulates his lyrics for the chorus allowing Busta to show his dark side.

With an album released each of the last three years, Busta’s knack for writing hooks puts him at the pinnacle of hip-hop’s elite. This seventy-minute album is outstanding.

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