Album Review

"You gotta fight … for your right … to paaaarrrrtyyyy!" So the Beastie Boys exclaimed in 1987 in their infamous anthem to unbridled hedonism and arrested adolescence. Fast-forward 24 years, and Adam "MCA" Yauch, Adam "Ad-Rock" Horowitz and Mike "Mike D" Diamond are still pumping out their signature brand of bratty, funk-filled, punk-rap jams. And most of the time on the band's eighth release, it doesn't seem as if the passage of two and a half decades (or Yauch's well-publicized battle with cancer) has had much—if any—effect on their perpetually juvenile outlook.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements

Conclusion

Pro-social Content

"Say It" criticizes those who are driven by greed ("You climb the corporate ladder to make your pockets fatter." A line on "OK" could be heard as a positive reference to breast cancer awareness ("Got the pink ribbon, so pretty").

Objectionable Content

Listening to "Make Some Noise," you'd be forgiven for thinking it's still the '80s: "We got a party on the left, a party on the right/We gonna party for the motherf‑‑‑in' right to fight." Indeed, this band continues to sport a fondness for both partying and profanity. F- and/or s-words turn up on six of 16 tracks. And the guys don't much care about anyone's criticism of their antics: "Pass me the scalpel, I'll make an incision/I'll cut off the part of your brain that does the b‑‑ching," MCA suggests on "Make Some Noise." And on "OK," Ad-Rock adds, "Now I don't give a f‑‑‑ who the h‑‑‑ you are/Please stop shoutin' in your seminar."

We hear a handful of passing—but nevertheless crude—references to sex and the human anatomy. On "Too Many Rappers," Ad-Rock asks, "Why all these biters up in my crotch space?" Guest rapper Nas mentions "foreplay" and sexual body fluids. "Nonstop Disco Powerpack" includes the line, "Me and Dawn in the shack, and we got it goin' on." Elsewhere, we hear a reference each to tampons, erections, catching "crabs," the phrase "tough t-tty" and MCA talking about grabbing his crotch.

"Here's a Little Something for Ya" boasts, "Step on stage, so we smoke the dry moist." That song also refers to crack. Alcohol, attitude and hints of violence mingle on "Too Many Rappers" ("The real hip-hop with which I persist/Like rum in Mojitos, bullets and banditos"). A marijuana reference turns up there as well. "Long Burn the Fire" references several pharmaceutical drugs ("Got rhymes about antihistamines and analgesics/Roll without expectorants, y'all don't see it").

A much-buzzed-about 30-minute video titled "Fight for Your Right (Revisited)," included in the deluxe version of the album, amps up the problematic content in all of these areas. The skit/sketch revisits 1987, imagining the Beasties leaving the raucous party filmed in the original "Fight for Your Right" music video. The young Beasties, played by actors Elijah Wood, Seth Rogan and Danny McBride, break into a convenience store, steal several cases of beer. Then they walk down the street drinking and lobbing frothing cans o' brew at anyone unfortunate enough to get in their way.

And the inanity is really just getting started. The Boys try hooking up with some punk-rock girls in a limo who spike their drinks with LSD. One of the guys gets stabbed when he tries to kiss one of women in a scene of mock violence that's played for humor.

They're ultimately confronted by older versions of themselves who travel back in time in—of course—a DeLorean. Their older selves, played by Will Ferrell, Jack Black and John C. Reilly, challenge them to a dance-off. So the ad-libbed, f-word-drenched dialogue gives way to an absurd competition that concludes with all six Beasties urinating all over one another.

Summary Advisory

The Beastie Boys obsess over inane wordplay. On "Funky Donkey," for example, we hear: "Put this on a zip disk, send it to your lawyer/File me under funky/Like sipping lemonade and Arnold Palmers/Big holiday parties like Dolly Partner/Sometimes I get Pad Thai as a starter/ … I don't wear Crocs and I don't wear sandals/The pump don't work 'cause the vandals took the handle."

From an intentionally mispronounced country celebrity's name to rubber shoes to obscure ethnic food, the Beastie Boys take rockin' delight in combining and rhyming unlikely things. "I'll make you sick like a Kenny Rogers roaster," Ad-Rock spits on "Long Burn the Fire. "See this rap thing is all about the braggadocio/I check my rear-view, MCs ain't gettin' closer." Indeed, many of the Beastie's rhymes are just laugh-out-loud silly. BBC reviewer Stevie Chick labeled them "joyful nonsense."

Where does one categorize, then, the band's fixation on vulgarity, sexual body parts and bodily functions, not to mention obscenities? Well, in the same place as I began this review: unbridled hedonism and arrested adolescence. Hot Sauce Committee Part Two is a twisted, eternally immature version of Peter Pan's famous line, "I don't want to grow up!" Because after a quarter-century, it seems as if the Beastie Boys are determined never to do that.

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles

Profanity/Violence

Kissing/Sex/Homosexuality

Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Credits

Rating

Readability Age Range

Author

Cast

Director

Distributor

Network

Performance

Debuted at No. 2.

Record Label

Capitol

Platform

Publisher

Released

May 3, 2011

On Video

Year Published

Awards

Reviewer

Adam R. Holz