Ah, the Beastie Boys... What can I say about this trio without sounding too sycophantic? I suppose I could say listening and getting into this band was my first foray into what was then the new world of rap and/or hip hop (the definition is still elusive to me - if anyone can give me a good one, I'd be mighty pleased).
I suppose I could also say they inspired me to look beyond my guitar rock leanings to a whole world of great music. I suppose I could also say they helped inhibit, and then rid me of the idea that good music should be made by real instruments and not with turntables and samples.
They did all those things. But primarily, for me, they opened doors for me to become involved. As a musician, my past is littered with memories of bad bands, average bands and one or two really good bands. But the best band I was ever in was a hip hop band, as a guitarist/writer/producer because it allowed me to explore all the styles of music I love without inhibition, something no other band enabled me to do. I love The Beastie Boys for this.
The Sounds of Science is the best starter kit for anyone who doesn't know this band. For the fan, it's brilliant to have so many of the Beasties best songs gathered in one place. It's a bit like seeing them live, where they mix it up between a straightup hip hop show (3 MCS and 1 DJ) to their live band mode. Personally, I never tire of hearing songs like Sabotage, Sure Shot, Root Down or Hey Ladies. Yeah, there's a good dose of misogynism and schoolboy humour, but they're also guaranteed to Shake Your Rump.
VERDICT: TURN IT UP, B-Boy
Mmmph. Ergh. *sigh*. My reaction on finding out I had to listen to not one, but TWO Beastie Boys CDs. Because while I quite like them, the thought of getting all the way through this promised me a headache. My brain's wired for music, and a lot of what rap artists do is just yell at you. For hours.
That said, there are a bunch of tunes I love on this best-of collection. And there's no doubt I enjoyed the band live when I saw them with YourZ in 2005 at a festival where we also caught the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion and the Chemical Brothers. The Fatboy Slim remix of Body Movin' is a favourite - and I'm sure we all have to Fight for Your Right.
There are others, but for me the joy of a Beasties song is when it's dropped into the mix by a consummate DJ. If you don't believe me, check out The Dirtchamber Sessions released by the Prodigy. Damn, must buy that one again.
VERDICT: TURN IT UP, no TURN IT DOWN, no OH I DON'T KNOW
For more information: http://www.beastieboys.com/
In our collection, we also have Licensed To Ill, Paul's Boutique, Check Your Head, Ill Communication, Hello Nasty and To The 5 Boroughs