If the Beatnuts'
1999 effort Musical Massacre! was a
mild effort to open up a more commercial path for the self-anointed intoxicated
duo, their sixth release, entitled Take
It Or Squeeze, intends on streamlining the Beatnuts' hoarse sound while satisfying hardcore fans. With the aid
of understated appearances by (onetime group member) Al Tariq, Greg Nice,
DJ Tony Touch and Method Man, you get a mix of both serious
musical ambitions and the equivalent dark comedic material. My whole clique starvin' like a jail
cafeteria/While you around the block suckin' cock, I'm in Siberia, cracks Psycho Les on the violent wit of Hammer Time. To the credit of The Beatnuts, the latter track's dated
piano sample stylistically seems worlds apart from the plush synthesized Latin
funk of Prendelo.
The Beatnuts' first single, No Escapin' This superbly showcases the
duo's artistic spirit with its high pitched flutes, grandiose violins, and
trippy vocals, coming off like a deformed musical number. A blatantly serious Ju Ju even speaks out of his locoman
persona as he warns wanna-be thugs, It's
turned into a police-state, the average cat don't even know his fate. Yet,
the Beatnuts' on Take It Or Squeeze It covers up the
duo's less than stellar lyrics with such unsophisticated lines as Make you a believer/Chop you in a neck with
a motherfuckin' meat cleaver. Of course no one ever mistook The Beatnuts for Jurassic 5. Like an outta control rock band, The Beatnuts may not take themselves too seriously, but they prove
to be passionate about their warped musical craft. And that's all you can
expect from these nuts.