Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Busdriver & Radioinactive With Daedelus [extended]

  • The Weather [Mush, 2002] Dud
  • Fear of a Black Tangent [Mush, 2005] A-
  • RoadkillOvercoat [Anti-, 2007] ***
  • Jhelli Beam [Anti-, 2009] *

See Also:

Consumer Guide Reviews:

The Weather [Mush, 2002] Dud

Busdriver: Fear of a Black Tangent [Mush, 2005]
Endlessly satirizing the world's failure to reward his genius, Regan Farquhar makes the leap from too-smart-for-his-own-good to so-smart-he's-good-anyway. Whether he's impersonating Sambo on Clear Channel or a rapper-of-the-month who fell off the wrong end of a bungee cord ("I'm a dead man with golden blood in my bedpan"), his antipop plaints counter the unlikelihood of their analyses with the intricacy of their loquacity--23 "or" rhymes in 13 seconds, say. He changes up his pained, neurotic, whiny flow with catchy-annoying singsong, and his low-budget beats get lots of hook out of no discernible sampling. If you doubt his skills, check out Abstract Rude, Ellay Khule, Mikah 9, and 2Mex trying to keep up. Downloaders note: The CD includes a lyric booklet, which is very useful. A-

Busdriver: RoadkillOvercoat [Anti-, 2007]
"The musings of a winded fact-checker"--attempting, with some success, to escape the prison house of self ("Less Yes's, More No's," "Casting Agents and Cowgirls"). ***

Busdriver: Jhelli Beam [Anti-, 2009]
Not only does his speed-rapping evoke both Sparks and Conlon Nancarrow, he may even know who they are ("Me-Time (With the Pulmonary Palimpsest)," "I've Always Known"). *