Attack of the Groans
Updated Friday, May 10, 2002, at 4:30 PM
The Trials and Tribulations of Russell Jones, by Old Dirty Bastard (D3). Incarceratingly bad reviews for this third album from rap's favorite con. "With a real life more chaotic than any of the ones depicted on his crazed recordings, this Wu-Tang Clan member must have patched together his third album in between trips to rehab and prison." Worse, "he seems like a guest on his own project": "[A] bevy of cameos from less charismatic rappers and the collection's B-level production create their own set of tribulations—for listeners" (Soren Baker, the Los Angeles Times). Sure, "[t]he record does indeed feature some of ODB's "inimitable fever-pitch rhymes over some intermittently catchy tracks." But "the album as a whole is a scrapped-together mishmash of disconnected rap snippets, gratuitous guest appearances, and questionable production" (Troy Carpenter, Billboard). (Click here for a Web site devoted to freeing ODB from jail.)— A.B.
Adam Baer is a culture critic for the New York Sun and contributor to the New York Times Book Review, Travel + Leisure, and Slate, among other publications.
Bryan Curtis, Slate's "Middlebrow" columnist, writes for Grantland, Texas Monthly, and Newsweek. Follow him on Twitter.
Ben Mathis-Lilley is a senior editor at Buzzfeed.
Stills from: Unfaithful by Barry Wetcher © 2002 20th Century Fox and Regency Enterprises; The Piano Teacher courtesy of Kino International. All rights reserved.