It’s a tough one. As with any rap superstar these days (see also,[a]Method Man[/a], [a]Pharoahe Monch[/a], [a]Eminem[/a] [I]et al[/I]), Busta Rhymes is caught between his dual self-appointed roles of nihilistic doom-sayer and self-aggrandising playa. So it is with ‘Anarchy’, where the first track is given over to a litany of grim news reports on the hellish state of the world, and the second track contains a chorus which goes, “Busta Rhymes/He’s the one we’ve all been waiting for forever”, as a Philly soul sample whips us into a frenzy.
That’s the way it goes with rap, though, and Busta isn’t about to buck the system. But despite fast becoming a joke figure due to his relentless, below-par guest appearances on every single hip-hop album around, Busta mostly redeems himself on ‘Anarchy’ by concentrating less on the Judgement Day rantings and more on proving what an astonishingly funky chap he is.
There’s ‘Show Me What You Got’ for a start, which dispenses with the album’s usual mix of tinny, minimal breaks and arcade FX and rides on gloriously old-skool rolling drum loops reminiscent of Public Enemy at their hardest. ‘Here We Go Again’ and ‘Salute Da Gods’ again prove that Busta‘s been checking the competition as well as doing ‘exclusive’ spots on all their records, as they both rock riotously like the best of the underrated Beanie Sigel.
He’s hardly breaking new ground here, though, and there’s one huge sour note in the form of current single ‘Get Out’, which samples the ‘Ugly Duckling’ song like Jay-Z never happened. It’s too much to take, but then that’s Busta all over. He’s convinced we can’t get enough of him. Who are we to argue?