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Artist: Everlast
Album: Eat at Whitey's
Label: Tommy Boy
Production: Stimulated Dummies, Artist, others
Guests: B-Real, Carlos Santana, N'Dea Davenport, Cee-Lo, Rahzel, Kurupt, Warren Haynes
Stats: 2000, 13 tracks
Reviewed by: Mass Dosage

The ex-House of Pain MC is back with another blues-meets-Hip-Hop release. This time around he enlists a couple of well-known and respected Hip-Hop MC's in addition to the other featured musicians. Whether this is an attempt to win back the Hip-Hop following he largely lost with his last album is a matter for speculation. Blues-rock is definitely the strongest influence on this album, and this is both the album's strong and weak point. I am normally very open to experimentation and mixing of genres and while Everlast does a good job of putting Hip-Hop beats, rockriffs and a combination of singing and rhyming together, on the whole it comes off as just a bit too darn "honky" for me. If what he says in his lyrics is anything to go by, this move in his career is just him being true to himself and one has to respect that - it's a whole lot more admirable than coming on some wannabe-type-shit.

The album's "Breakfast" side starts off with some nice tracks ("Whitey"and "Black Jesus"), then slumps a little, endures a very rock-oriented moment as Santana adds his bit to "Babylon Feeling" and then ends in a dope collaboration with Cypress Hill's B-Real ("Deadly Assassins"). The "Dinner" side is initiated with an interesting cover of Slick Rick's "Children's Story" featuring Rahzel on the beat-box, and this turns into the best combination of blues and Hip-Hop on the album. Unfortunately even N'Dea Davenport can't save the next track ("Love for Real") from sounding like just another cheesy love song. The most surprising collaboration is with Kurupt on "One, Two" which suffers from a rather lame chorus and not much else to repair this fact.

Everlast himself comes off sounding good both when he rhymes and sings, his gruff voice fitting well into both styles (and he rocks the guitar too!) Musically, the rock guitars and overall vibe will probably get a bit much for your average Hip-Hop head but perhaps this isn't the target audience here anyway - his sales figures for "Whitey Ford Sings the Blues" prove that he has a whole new audience anyway. As "rock & rap" releases go this is way above the cheesy record label or movie soundtrack motivated compilations that have the tendency to appear every couple of years. The rock-blues slant of this album will no doubt please those who are open to this kind of thing but it will also be a reason for others to keep well clear. [6.5/10]

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