Imagine for a moment if the Bloodhound Gang were to attend charm school, then get their masters degree. The result is a fun, less vulgar spin on the rock hip-hop genre.
MC Lars takes on the world once again with his third solo album. Lars Attaks! is a hip-hop journey into history, love stories, and spirituality. Although most of the album leans toward Christ based lyrics and meaning, MC Lars does a great job of holding back a preachy sermon rapped into your ears. Utilizing a passion for music, beliefs, and intellect, Lars Attacks! breaks open the clouds that have hovered over the genre for far too long. Lars, whose real name is Andrew Nielsen, teams up with Weerd Science, John Reuben, Mac Lethal, and KRS-One, just to name a few, throughout the fifteen thought-provoking tracks. With his unique ability to spin witty context into each track, this is one MC that will have you hooked to every line. Track one, “Going Back toBrooklyn,” calls out (by name) famous people who call the borough home with drollness and a shout-out to Jimmy Fallon.
Giving this album a spin is like hitting play on a smile. You can’t help but be entertained, even when it gets knee-deep in spirituality. He does not hide his religious inspirations, but before you classify this, know that this isn’t your parent’s gospel record. His approach to religion within the belly of the album comes at an angle which may quite possibly challenge your approach to organized faith. Where it refrains from preaching, it challenges historical facts. “Judas Priest” toils with the theory of what is thought to have happened the last days of Jesus’ life. Down another avenue, “Mike Russo Cut Your Hair” flips out to the humorous side. The logical approach to humor enables this album to keep you hooked to each word. For history nerds, such as me, “History’s Greatest Assholes” traces a chronological map of the fantastic voyage that is the worst despots and villains but not before noting that an Archduke of Austria and a Scottish band have something in common. Rounding out the wholesome, we’re treated to a great love story via “Summer Camp Love (Is So in Tents).”
Taking into account the debauchery that has become synonymous with the genre, we’re lucky to have an album of honest, smart tracks. It is albums like this that could make people change their minds about hip-hop. It is far from repetitive and naïve. It packs in all the upbeat fun you want with a heavy dose of intelligence.