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Hell Hath No Fury

Clipse

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Album Review

It took Clipse over four years to get their second proper album on the shelves. As they were eager to discuss, the lag wasn't their fault. Well documented in print and on the Web, the oil spills and trap doors placed in front of the Thornton brothers were numerous. However, they weren't completely handcuffed. They released a pair of popular mixtapes that only intensified the anticipation for the official follow-up to Lord Willin'. (A talk with Bill Withers might give them an idea of how the music industry can truly paralyze an artist.) If any of the trip-ups played a role in the end result, they could be considered blessings in disguise. Hell Hath No Fury is a lean, furious, cold-blooded album that is vividly to-the-point. As with Lord Willin', all the production work is credited to the Neptunes, though Chad Hugo's name appears nowhere in the credits. A couple exceptions aside, these are some of the sparsest, most off-kilter Neptunes beats. They prod, hiss, dart, and thump — ideal backdrops to Pusha T's and Malice's blunt-force, if occasionally knotty, rhymes. "Ride Around Shining" is baroque boom-bap, nothing more than a neck-snapping beat, Richard Pryor-sounding grunts, and cascading harp filigrees. "Trill" grinds and slides under a swarm of hungry cyborg mosquitoes. "Mr. Me Too" is nearly as minimal, a slinking bump. Lyrically, coke dealing dominates the subject matter more on this set than on the debut. Clipse survey their operation and reap its rewards, from easy-to-understand quips like "Pyrex stirrers turned into Cavalli furs" to the relatively mind-bending "If you're looking for a couple roosters in the duffle, keep the 'hood screaming 'Cock-a-doodle-doo,' motherf*ckers." Apart from specific elements of the "Mind Playing Tricks on Me"-quoting "Nightmares," as well as a couple other brief instances, the rhymes are guardedly self-congratulatory, like the MCs are wiping the gains in the haters' faces, albeit with the nagging sense that it could all blow up in an instant. The whole thing, including the club-oriented tracks, is magnetically grim.

Biography

Formed: 1992 in Virginia Beach, VA

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Hailing from Virginia, Clipse — brothers Pusha T and Malice — were one of the first artists to associate with the Neptunes. The Neptunes' Pharrell Williams first met the brothers in the early '90s, was very impressed by their talents, and decided to help them get a gig. After he hooked them up with the Elektra label, an early single flopped and the group seemed done, even though an album's worth of material had been recorded. Williams was not discouraged and continued to hype the group...
Full Bio
Hell Hath No Fury, Clipse
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