Black Eyed Peas - The E.N.D - Interscope Records - 0602527081427
Recording information: Ethernet Studios, Los Angeles; Jeepney Music Studio.
Black Eyed Peas, the hip-hop crossover juggernaut that propelled singer Fergie and producer Will.I.Am to superstardom, have, since 2003's ELEPHUNK, been audaciously plugging away at their bombastic but lighthearted style of rap-cum-dance pop--an effort that has translated to a run of successful chart-topping singles including "My Humps," "Pump It," and "Don't Phunk with My Heart." Eager to follow up on the platinum-selling success of 2005's MONKEY BUSINESS, Black Eyed Peas have returned with THE E.N.D. (an acronym for "Energy Never Dies"), their third studio effort. Combining Will.I.Am's thumping 808 kick drum-infused beats with production assistance from a host of collaborators (including vocoder-loving Torontoians MSTRKRFT and French house veteran David Guetta), BEP's infectious party-time rhymes are an easy match for the album's Ed Banger-style of electro rapping and Auto Tune jamming, especially on lead-off single and sure-fire 2009 summer anthem "Boom Boom Pow."
Rolling Stone (p.72) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "'Rock That Body' tosses up everything from huge kick drums to synth figures that sound like crow caws to a famous Rob Base sample..."
Entertainment Weekly (p.60) - "[W]hen the group's glitchy future-funk beats sync up with Fergie's unabashedly feminine melodies, as on the sweetly insidious 'Meet Me Halfway,' they find pure Top 40 nirvana..." -- Grade: B
Billboard (p.36) - "15 high-powered rave-rap jams that rarely lack for melodic hooks or rhythmic thrust."