My brother in law gave me a late birthday present: The latest Beasty Boys album: The Mix-UP.
I have had a weak spot for the Beasty Boys for many years. I am not particularly fond of their rap style, its non melodic and almost old-school-cliche they do have ‘balls’. Their “Get it together” from the 1994 album “Ill Communication” is one of my all time favorite Rap tunes. The Boys seemed to have managed to merge Rock and Roll and Rap in a credible and sustained way.
Il communication lead to “The Sound from Way Out“, an instrumental album that I enjoyed listening to with great pleasure.
I was a bit surprised to find the text “Their First-Ever Full Album of All-New Instrumental material”, obviously this fine marketing text needs to be close read to understand that its the first album with exclusive new material, in contrast to the Sound from the way out, that contained material from Ill Communication. Anyway, the marketeers have not spoiled the pleasure.
The sound of The Mix-Up is remarkably similar to the sound of the Sound from the way out. It seems (probably not by accident) that not much care have been taken to production value; 8-track, bedroom recordings is my first impression. The seemingly low production is the charm of the album; clean drum sounds, Hammond organ, wah-wah guitar, and bongo. Melodic music, with strong Bass and Guitar riffs and almost trivial melodies. Like the music that folk from the neighborhood are playing in the local community center.
To me the charm of the album is that it sounds like the music that I would like and could technically play. A couple of guys making fun without pretense, it is inspiring, and it comes close to what I think what Rock and Roll is all about.