To the 5 Boroughs

To the 5 Boroughs

by Beastie BoysBeastie Boys

CD(Enhanced / Digi-Pak)

$13.99

Overview

The Beastie Boys have never shied away from acting as goodwill ambassadors for their home city, but they've really outdone themselves on To the 5 Boroughs, an unreconstructed love letter to the Big Apple. That devotion is most clear on the post-9/11 ode "An Open Letter to NYC," which sets a laundry list of the city's attributes -- with a typical onslaught of inside references to delight fellow Gotham dwellers -- against a backdrop that's at once airy and fierce, thanks to clever deployment of a sample from the Dead Boys' "Sonic Reducer." The entire disc, however, is chock-a-block with asides and digressions that make up a travelogue as dizzyingly detailed as, say, the cover of Paul's Boutique. Even so, the self-produced To the 5 Boroughs is something of a back-to-basics offering, in many ways. The Boys kick it extremely old school on "Triple Trouble," which borrows a snatch of the "Rapper's Delight" beat for a street-corner rhyme session that could've appeared on Check Your Head, but they get decidedly futuristic on tracks like "3 the Hard Way," which suspends some clever pre-gangsta braggadocio in bass-heavy surroundings that envelop the listener with a decidedly underwater feel. "Oh Word?" has a similarly spacey ambience, with bleeping synths and ping-ponging drumbeats (not to mention distorted vocals and some of the goofier expletive replacements in recent memory -- "what the falafel," anyone?). Many of the disc's cuts nicely reconcile the smash-mouth beats of the Beasties' formative years with the consciousness-raising rhymes of recent years. "Right Right Now Now," for instance, laces a wickedly infectious turntable/clavinet backing with lines such as "I'm getting kinda tired of the situation / The U.S. attacking other nations," while "It Takes Time to Build," a dub-wise beckoner, makes quick work of ugly environmental policies. All three Beasties are in fine form throughout, making 5 Boroughs the group's most consistent -- and consistently enjoyable -- disc in ages.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/15/2004
Label: Capitol
UPC: 0724358457100
catalogNumber: 84571

Tracks

  1. Ch-Check It Out
  2. Right Right Now Now
  3. 3 the Hard Way
  4. Time to Build
  5. Rhyme the Rhyme Well
  6. Triple Trouble
  7. Hey F**k You
  8. Oh Word?
  9. That's It That's All
  10. All Life Styles
  11. Shazam!
  12. An Open Letter to NYC
  13. Crawlspace
  14. The Brouhaha
  15. We Got The

Album Credits

Customer Reviews