Sir Mix-A-Lot has grown from his days of “Baby Got Back” and has now turned to producing on his new label, Rhyme Cartel. His latest brainchild out of Seattle, Outtasite, consists of the duo, rapper Outtasite and guitarist Joel Davila, with their take on the hip hop/rock union or “rapcore” genre that has become so popular. While rapper Outtasite has been involved in other groups such as Subset, the hip hop/rock collaboration between Sir Mix-A-Lot and The Presidents of the United States, and The Feeling Hijackers, he has now teamed up again with Joel Davila’s metal guitar talents in their latest album “Careful What You Wish For.”
With the help of Sir Mix-A-Lot and his Rhyme Cartel label, Outtasite tries to put the rap/rock fusion back into the limelight with the latest installation of their collaboration. The title track wouldn’t be complete without a cameo from Sir Mix-A-Lot, himself and also features vocals from Tameka Williams. After a funk intro from guitarist Joel Davila, Outtasite and Sir Mix-A-Lot continue to expand on the idea to be “careful what you wish for, you just might get it.” As they touch upon the idea that so many people wish for material things while greed takes over many individuals, they prove a point in showing the life of riches and glamour isn’t all that it seems to be. In a similar track, “F**k That (Remix)” maintains the same idea of living a real life instead of a lavish one. As Outtasite points out the big cars, rims, and cribs that highlight a large bankroll, he follows with a screaming “f**k that” to show his dismay.
Outtasite is joined by other artists in “Careful What You Wish For” as they add their own twist to the rap/rock feel to the album. Vocalist Jane C teams up with Outtasite in the fast paced “Tequila Stepchild” as they show how they do not follow the masses and instead live their own lives full of partying and chaos. Interestingly enough, Jane C doesn’t want to be compared to any other female rock singer as she says, “Not Fergie, not Gwen, or Ashley…these sectors bear decay,” when in fact she happens to sound just like them. “Get it On” featuring The Rush Project shows the struggle of trying to make it in the hip hop scene as Outtasite shows:
“We ain’t taking losses in this raw shit
Trust me cousin, there must be dozens
Of labels on a fuck me budget
How do you plan to fit?
Stand and sit
If you land a hit, expand your grip
Ice your hand and wrist
Boy, you’re still a fan of this
Hip hop shit
Keeping it crackin’ until the break of dawn
Twistin’ and mackin’ ’cause y’all it’s been so long
Missing in action so won’t you play that song
So we could get it on and on”
Outtasite manages to include his own political views within his music in “Leaders/Lead Us” which criticizes the authority and capacity of our governmental leaders. As “Leaders/Lead Us” mocks the leaders of this country and others, Outtasite puts into perspective that the only thing that these leaders can do is command. In the end, he addresses the idea that these leaders are never fully involved while they leave the dirty work for those beneath them as he shows:
“Leaders decide when they lead us to fight
But these leaders don’t die
They just lead us
Leaders rely on these devious minds
Can they lead us to life?
Can they lead us?”
While Outtasite has attempted to be innovative with their blend of hip hop and rock, the reality sets in that it has all been done before. As Outtasite mentions to his audience that his music is different from other hip hop/rock groups such as Linkin Park and Limp Bizkit because of his caliber of lyricism and more hip hop influence, I would have to disagree. Although Outtasite is a solid rapper that maintains great cadence and voice, all in all, I was lost on many of his rhymes. There was a lack of cohesiveness from line to line as it was difficult to fully understand the concept of many tracks in “Careful What You Wish For.” Aside from the few political, emotional tracks, the rest of the album’s track carried similar beats and messages about partying and smoking weed. Enlightening, no, but a good effort nonetheless as the group has pushed the hip hop/rock effort another notch as they incorporate even harder metal sounds than previously heard from other groups. In the end, who does this album appeal to? It’s too soft for metal heads that favor Slayer and Metallica, yet too hard and too hip hop friendly for Linkin Park fans, so for those who are seeking that middle ground, this is right up your alley.