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Track Review

If you look up the word juggernaut in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged dictionary, you'll find this definition: "A massive inexorable force or object that advances irresistibly and crushes whatever is in its path."

That fits The Black Eyed Peas' fifth album, The E.N.D., precisely. Its first two singles, " Boom Boom Pow" and " I Gotta Feeling" owned the No. 1 position on Billboard's Hot 100 chart for exactly half of 2009: 26 weeks. The third single, "Meet Me Halfway," quietly drafted on those two songs and managed to reach No. 7.

Now it's back to No. 1 for "Imma Be."

The track utilizes the same raw materials that energized the Peas' previous hits: mesmerizing electronic beats melded with shallow shout-outs to living the Black Eyed high life.

"Imma be on the next level," vocalist Fergie informs us after the first 25 of the song's 105 hypnotic, robotic repetitions of the phrase "Imma be."

What else does the group plan to be doing, you ask? Well, if you've read our other Pea-flavored reviews, you know that the answer is dancin', drinkin', sexin', spendin', and generally "coolin' and livin' that good life."

"Imma be chillin' with my muthafutha crew," Fergie tells us, more than just hinting at the obscenity. Similar echoes of the f-word show up a bit later: "Imma be, Imma be, Imma be freakin' her," one of the guys tells us. If that's not detailed enough, sexual imagery gets even more bizarrely explicit a couple lines later: "Imma be a brother, but my name ain't Lehman/Imma be ya bank, I be loaning out semen."


Hip-hop-style braggadocio repeatedly appropriates n-words and s-words: "Imma be rockin' like this, what?/Y'all n-ggas wanna talk s‑‑‑, but/Why don't you put this on the blog, n-gga?/ … Come join my festivities, celebrate like Imma be."

Actually, no thanks. Imma be, Imma be turning it off.

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The Peas' fourth single from The E.N.D. is the latest to top the charts.

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December 15, 2009

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Adam R. Holz

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