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Life of a D-Boy

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Album Review

Sahaj Ticotin, frontman for the alternative rock/alternative metal band Ra, has an interesting theory about hip-hop. As Ticotin sees it, the grunge/alternative rock/Nirvana/Pearl Jam explosion of the early 1990s pointed rock lyrics in a considerably more introspective, anxiety-ridden direction and took away much of rock's party-'til-you-puke outlook — and hip-hop was more than happy to fill the void and flaunt its flamboyant, over the top decadence the way that Guns N' Roses, Poison, Mötley Crüe, and Quiet Riot flaunted their decadence back in the '80s. Hip-hop, Ticotin argued, became "the new metal." And when it comes to decadence and hedonism, hip-hop's Dirty South school has embodied the type of excesses that, as Ticotin pointed to, were once a badge of honor for metal. Decadence and hedonism are certainly prominent features of the D-Boyz' Life of a D-Boyz, which embodies the Dirty South aesthetic. Parts of this 2008 release venture into thugged-out gangsta rap territory, but ultimately, Life of a D-Boyz is about hedonism more than violence. This New Orleans duo's obsessions include sex, expensive cars, money, gold chains, and extreme materialism, and most of the disc is one big celebration of a very self-indulgent lifestyle. This 77-minute CD has its serious moments — "I Wonder," for example, discusses the pain that parents in inner-city neighborhoods feel when their kids become fatalities of violent crime — but more often than not, this is an over the top party album. Life of a D-Boyz doesn't point the Dirty South in any new directions; Dirty South fans have heard it all before. But most of the D-Boyz' grooves are catchy enough on this decent, if less than remarkable, dose of in your face hedonism.

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Life of a D-Boy, D-Boyz
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