World Party

A deeper, more revolutionary group than [a]Goodie Mob[/a] would be hard to find, even if [a]World Party[/a] is the rap quartet's concerted attempt to go global.

A deeper, more revolutionary group than Goodie Mob would be hard to find, even if World Party is the rap quartet's concerted attempt to go global. Hailing from Atlanta, and with a name that's an acronym - of sorts - for The Good Die Mostly Over Bullshit, Cee-Lo, T-Mo, Big Gipp and Khujo have taken steps to sweeten their music for mass consumption. However, a distinctive Southern atmosphere still swamps their third album, with layered voices thick as molasses and equal dedication to partying, cutting loose, and ghetto protest politics.

The grooves are pretty funky, thanks to Organized Noise and a host of other producer/ programmers, who retain a sense of dance music history and refuse to relax into formulaic hit-making. Nonetheless, the playground call-and-response put-downs of 'What It Ain't (Ghetto Enuff)', with a feisty TLC helping out, will see Goodie Mob insinuate their way into public consciousness in a way '97's 'Still Standing', unreleased in this country, couldn't.

They're creative with their slang, too. Like, what exactly does "Cutty Buddy" mean? 'Chain Swang' exhorts listeners to enjoy themselves, but who gets the subtext? At least the low-key 'ICU' has the relatively simple double meaning of 'I see you' and Intensive Care Unit. Not that opaque language will deny Goodie Mob their time to shine. Which is right now.
8 / 10

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