Release Date: Feb 22, 2005
Record label: Mush
Genre(s): Indie, Rap
On his first solo full-length for Mush, Busdriver goes the way of De La Soul Is Dead, jettisoning the joy and uproarious humor of Temporary Forever and replacing it with a litany of cynicism and sarcasm and even self-doubt. Often casting himself as a character he hates, Bus targets a parade of cultural foibles -- rappers both commercial and underground, indie hipsters, conservatives, his own "weird" career. He rarely hits those targets, however, and the negativity removes the focus from Busdriver's sizable musical talents and rests it squarely on his lyricism and themes (not a good idea).
Busdriver makes my job too easy. Among the lyrics on his newest record (and there are a lot of lyrics), he takes it upon himself to spell out most of what would make up the content of your standard record review. He recounts his undie hip-hop pedigree – “I got my start doing songs with CVE but now you’re like ‘Chillin’ Villain who?’ ‘Project what?’” (the answers there would be “Empire” and “Blowed,” respectively), outlines his basic rhetorical approach – “My speech is littered with double-entendres and sharp sarcasm,” “I spend less time alienating my audience than trying to solicit sales”, offers some context in a gloss of his popular reception to date – “I’m trying to make hits, but I keep hitting pop flies / I don’t eat out anymore I thaw out chicken pot pies / But I used to be on the list of the top five fresh hip-hop guys”, and even explains the title reference in case you missed it – “it’s a fear of a black tangent, idiot: a Public Enemy spoof.