Out Of Business

"Legendary... hardcore B-boy is the pedigree", claim hip-hop veterans [a]EPMD[/a] about themselves on the modestly entitled album opener [B]'Pioneers'[/B]....

“Legendary… hardcore B-boy is the pedigree”, claim hip-hop veterans [a]EPMD[/a] about themselves on the modestly entitled album opener ‘Pioneers’. But any lingering ‘legend’ that might still surround them is surely being done a disservice by the lazy, autopilot hip-hop herein.

Each track is performed strictly by the rap rule book – beat, loop, rap – but since they helped write it with their seminal late-’80s stuff, that would be excusable if they had anything remotely new or unpredictable to say. Alas, their lyrical concerns are limited to the following: ‘We are very hard and rich, so don’t ‘fuck’ with us’ (see ‘Hold Me Down’); ‘We have guns, and sometimes kill people, honest’ (see ‘Draw’, ‘U Got Shot’) ; and ‘We are EPMD, and we used to be good’ (see ‘Pioneers’).

At least a limited-edition double-pack features a greatest hits compilation, so you can contrast this bollocks with the ‘Strictly Business’ era when they had a sense of humour, a fresh attitude and some block rockin’ beats. Because even guest raps from Busta Rhymes, Redman and Method Man (on ‘Rap Is Still Outta Control’ and ‘Symphony 2000’) can’t raise their latest stuff out of the mire of mediocrity.

‘Out Of Business’? More like ‘creatively bankrupt’.