497 # – Yo! Bum Rush the Show – Public Enemy

 

The offering today, on this lovely St. Patrick’s day, is those lads from the Emerald Isle….of Long Island New York…who can forget those crazy mop-tops, Chuck D, Flavor Flav, Hank Shocklee, Terminator X, Eric Stadler and the rest of the posse…

Suckers to the side I know you hate my 98….

 

So Yo! Bum Rush the Show was released in 1987 and clocks in at 50:48.

Okay, I admit it. As a almost-50-but-not-quite-there-thank-you-very-much white male, I had to hit urban dictionary more than once to get the meaning of some of the terms/slang Public Enemy uses on the first listen through.

Also, for me at least, the lyrics were so rapid fire that I had to google them to be able to follow along. And I’m glad I did because it really helped round out the album for me. It’s also interesting to read back about the public reaction to Chuck D and Public Enemy and see how the world has changed (not changed) since then.

Anyway, I have a passing knowledge of rap and hip-hop and not a huge fan, but as I write this, I am on my fourth listen through on this album.. The rapid fire beat a lyrics are, in a word, addictive. And, strangely, I’m finding it fun (and funny.) Which is kind of a suprise for me because, well, they are Public Enemy. I’m not really supposed to like them after all.

On to the album: I would descibe the album as angry, smart, funny and determined to be heard. But it was not as political or have as much social commentary as I expected based on my research while listening to the band. For every song like Megablast and Too Much Posse which have social commentary, there is a song like M.P.E. or Public Enemy No. 1.

But then there is Rightstarter (Message to the Black Man). If the subtly message of the other songs didn’t get you, this one will:

I’m on a mission to set you straight
Children, it’s not too late
Explain to the world when it’s plain to see
To be what the world doesn’t want us to be

 

I started marking the tracks in iTunes and I started to laugh as I was thinking to my self that I wasn’t sure if I would listen to the album again and then realized the majority of songs on the album was at least four stars, which puts in in my “Top Rated” smartlist that sychs with all devices.

Step back, get away – give the brother some room
You got to all turn me up when the beat goes boom
Lyric to lyric – line to line
Then you y’all understand my reputation for rhyme….

 

For a debut album to be included on this list is impressive indeed. Understandable why it made the list in 2003. Sadly, for some reason, it dropped off the list in the 2012 list.