Short Take: Goodie Mob, ‘Age Against The Machine’


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Goodie Mob stretch the definition of the standard rap album

Goodie Mob⎪Right Records⎪Age Against The Machine⎪⎪ US Release Date: August 27, 2013

560516_547104185362221_1950020459_nGoodie Mob’s first new album since 1999 is nothing short of a fascinating listen.  Face it, the minute it begins, it’s obvious who took the reins… one idiosyncratic, unique genre-bending artist named Cee Lo Green.  Because it is such a unique affair, it is both forward-thinking yet at times unaccessible.  Unlike any other rap album from 2013, Age Against The Machine ‘paves its on way’ as they say, with top-notch results overall…and some confusion.

Where do you start on such an ambitious, unorthodox affair? “State of the Art (Radio Killa)” sorta sets the tone with a maniacal nature accentuated by its expressive rhymes and ripping strings.  Think of it as fitting for a soundtrack.  Then there’s the captivating “I’m Set” with its jungle drums, jazzed-up horn riffs, and enthusiastic raps. Cee-Lo that steals the show, most notably on the dramatic hook.  I think you’d find Cee-Lo’s picture under the word dramatic in the dictionary.  Who’d have it any other way?

Then later there’s “Pinstripes”, which sounds like more standard southern rap fare compared to the aforementioned.  Sure Goodie Mob may not be in their prime, but a more contemporarily produced number such as “Pinstripes” certain amps up their swag…if that was necessary.  If you want something incredible odd yet strangely compelling, look no further than “Kolors”.   Then there’s also the Janelle Monáe collab “Special Education” which is a clever play on what is normally associated with special CeeLo Green-JPA-003009education.  “Amy” stands out too, perhaps most pronounced by chorus lyric “My very first white girl…” It’s certainly interesting!

All in all, Age Against The Machine is an album that most seemed to sleep on for various reasons.  Should they have passed it up? Nah bro! This is not your standard rap album and because it ain’t, it actually a welcome ‘departure’ of sorts.  If you’re looking for deep rhymes, Age Against The Machine won’t be your first choice, but if need something from left-field out of the box, this album has all that and more.

Favorites: “State of the Art (Radio Killa)”; “I’m Set”; “Pinstripes”; “Kolors”; “Special Education”; “Amy” 

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Verdict: ✰✰✰½

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