Busta Rhymes – The Big Bang Review

Link: Busta Rhymes

The Inside Pulse:

With The Big Bang, Busta Rhymes presents the rap world with his seventh solo LP. Probably having wished that he hadn’t already used the title Genesis for his fifth LP, this record marks a deliberate attempt to change the trajectory of Busta’s legacy. By leaving behind the wild wardrobe, dreadlocks, and colorful videos, the former Leader of the New School uses this offering to present himself to the now school. In aligning with Dr. Dre for his eagerly awaited Aftermath Records debut, Busta has shed the animated and cartoonish image that separated him from most mainstream rappers. He now wishes to speak to the streets directly so that he may be listed alongside Jay-Z, Tupac, and B.I.G. as one of the greatest rappers ever.

This is Busta Rhymes’ attempt to make a “classic”.

Positives:

Collaborating with Dr. Dre was well worth the abundant amount of time spent. The good doctor has helped Busta focus the musical energy of The Big Bang, and the result is very close to sonic masterpiece. DJ Scratch, Timbaland, Erick Sermon and J-Dilla also submit tracks that deviate enough from their usual formulas that they don’t sound out of place next to Dr. Dre’s Hitmen production team.

Also, Busta hasn’t lost a step flow-wise. On many tracks, he exhibits a syllabic mastery that will remind many of the complex rhythms used on his early LP’s. He also delves deeply into some interesting concepts here, particularly on “Legend of the Fall Offs”, where he rhymes about older emcees whose careers are nearing death. It seems that it could have been a motivational letter to himself.

Negatives: Hmmm…there are some missteps.

Something on Busta’s brain seems to equate being real with being unnecessarily ignorant. For every deep, personal moment like the Mr.Porter assisted “They Out to Get Me”, there’s some money, bitch or diamond reference that seems forced and abrasive. A good example is “I Love My Bitch” featuring Kelis and Will.I.Am.

And speaking of guest stars, some of the collaborations are bizarre. Noticably absent are the Flipmode Squad, in their place guests like Stevie Wonder, Q-Tip, Raekwon, and Marsha from Floetry add lyrics to Busta’s street experiment. Of those four artists, only one has a history of writing about getting money and keeping it real. Unfortunately they all attempt to on The Big Bang, even Stevie.

Cross-breed: early Busta Rhymes, The Game, and Eminem

Reason to buy: If you’re all about early Busta, this may not be for you. As he doesn’t have nearly as much fun on this long player. If you’ve enjoyed his last few albums and wanted to see him further cement his legacy with a streetwise sound, then you will enjoy this record.