|The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust!
Preconceptions: Saul Williams? Doesn’t this guy know he needs a ridiculous misspelled stage name to cut it in this game? I bet he won’t even rap about how much money he has. Trent Reznor playing Diddy? Mmmmmm, I never want to like his stuff…After Listening: …but it’s always so good, damn him and his guylinered acolytes. This is the first RC selection I am buying.
Favorite Tracks: It seems everyone has a Scared Money song, and this track shows how the Jeezys & Waynes that rule the hip-hop charts should be washing cars for a living. Tr(n)igger is effectively peppered with hits of Welcome to the Terrordrome, reminding me that rap used to be worth listening. Break is the most NINny of the tracks and it’s better than any track off The Fragile.
Least Favorite: Um, there are no real stand out stinkers here. The U2 cover is better than anything Bono & company have done since the Reagan administration but it’s the weakest track amongst the originals. I wanted it to take more chances with the original than it did.
Overall: You never use the word “original” when describing new hiphop. Is this rap, poetry, NIN with a black dude? Williams’ rap flow is unique on each track, his sung vocals are a blend of Hendrix & Grace Jones, and his lyrics are literate and thoughtful. Reznor’s industrial soup is less crunch-skronky than usual and it fits this artist well.