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Bridging the Gap

The Black Eyed Peas

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Album Review

Is this the real thing or a substitute? In 1998, Black Eyed Peas released their debut, Behind the Front, and by most accounts, it snugly filled a hole left behind by the absent, optimistic talents of A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul. So in the same year that Jurassic 5 complete their first proper release and De La Soul finally return, is there any room for a group like BEP anymore? Well, maybe. While the album fails in its titular intention of bringing together the two exclusionary worlds of rap and rock, it still diligently follows in the footsteps of its predecessor's highs. Maybe one might have to look toward Kim Hill — the group's backing vocalist — who seems to have a larger impact this time. Hill hovers over terrific sun-streaked ditties like "Tell Your Mama Come" and the irrepressible "Hot" without a hitch. The other collaborations follow her lead too. From Macy Gray to Les Nubians to Mos Def to, yes, even Jurassic 5 and De La Soul, none of these guest artists feel out of place or contrived. Undoubtedly, this second release finally proves that BEP get to mark their own territory in the history of old-school, soulful — and playful — hip-hop. Because Bridging the Gaps is a terrific follow-up full of warmth. Unlike what the advertisements might say, this is a multi-ethnic, multi-faceted substitute that should be accepted immediately.

Customer Reviews

There was a time...

This album serves as a reminder of how good the BEP used to be. This album is their only saving grace to me right now. If it weren't for the memory of this recording and two live shows I caught them at in a month's time in Miami circa the 90s I would have given up on these guys like 2 albums ago. Here is hoping that there solo projects return to this form.

Ah, the good old days

Before the Peas went pop, they were making great music. This album has a lot of excellent tracks. "Weekends", "Cali to New York", and "Request Line" have to be some of BEP's best songs ever. This album isn't as "polished" as their newer stuff, but it feels a lot more real. I got to see them live a couple of times back in the day when they were really making hip hop and were doing their own break dancing at concerts. At least I can still listen to this album...

Thank god we ahve old BEP without Fergie

Fergie= Satin

Biography

Formed: 1995 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

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

The Black Eyed Peas transcended hip-hop to become one of the most commercially successful pop groups of the 2000s. Their career began modestly, with a pair of albums inspired by the positive-minded likes of A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul. After adding Fergie, the group's pop instincts reached full flight. Ignited by the Top Ten hit "Where Is the Love?" and the Grammy-winning party anthem "Let's Get It Started," the group scored three multi-platinum albums in 2003's Elephunk, 2005's Monkey Business,...
Full Bio