Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

House of Pain: Same as It Ever Was [Tommy Boy, 1994]
Where the first time they rode an easy hit and easier Vanilla Ice comparisons, now they're compelled to prove that they have a right to exist, and the struggle is tonic. Plug-ugly vocals and mean lean beats make this the hardest hip hop of the year. Name checks include Hendrix, Page, Steven Tyler, Divine Styler, Salt-n-Pepa, GG Allin, and Pearl Jam. A-