Hot Sauce Committee Part Two (Capitol Records 2011)
The Beastie Boys have been around for nearly 30 years. When they started out in 1982, most of the country had never heard of three Jewish teenagers playing hardcore punk. That changed in 1986 with their first album, License to Ill.
Since then, Ad Rock, Mike D., and MCA have given us hardcore punk, jazz, funk, and, of course, hip-hop.
The Beastie Boys like living cartoons screaming and posing their way through the world. That’s why their latest album, Hot Sauce Committee Part Two, is in a lot of ways a departure from their past.
Unlike the sample-heavy hyperactivity of past albums, there are almost no recognizable samples in this album. Instead, the music comes straight from the band members themselves. And the result is an impressive and edgy set of tunes.
A lot of the jams, like “Funky Donkey” or “Here’s a Little Something For Ya,” are heavily distorted with high-pitch screeching and ominous bass lines. The bass and distortion are so dark in “Say It” that the Beasties might have started a new genre: hip-goth.
“Lee Majors Comes Again,” on the other hand, channels the group’s hardcore punk roots. But not every track is for black t-shirts and angry people. The big single “Make Some Noise” displays mad Moog synthesizer skills, while
“Multilateral Nuclear Disarmament” is a lyricless funk jam patently designed for zoning out.
The Beastie Boys have not deviated from their round-robin rap style, which may sound dated to some younger ears.
All albums reviewed in this space are available at Maui’s only record store, Requests (10 N. Market St., Wailuku, 244-9315)