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Music Review: Black Eyed Peas – The E.N.D. (2009)

I don't think my ears are ever going to be the same again.

If you ask me, there really isn’t any better example of selling out than the Black Eyed Peas. In the late 90s and early 2000s, they seemed to be concerned with making smart hip-hop and sales really didn’t seem like the first thing on their mind. Then Fergie joined the group. Even then though, their album “Elephunk” was okay and I thought songs like Where is the Love were pretty good. Even Fergie was tolerable singing the hook of that. Let me emphasize that — she sang the HOOK, NOTHING ELSE. She should never sing anything more than that. This was in 2003, just 6 years before The E.N.D…by the time you’re done reading this, take some of the songs from this album and compare them to Where is the Love. I don’t even know how these are the same group of people. After “Elephunk” came “Monkey Business”, which was a huge change for BEP but overall it was still tolerable (other than My Humps). I didn’t really like the album, but it wasn’t the type of thing that made me want to cut my ears off.

After some solo Fergie stuff, BEP’s next album was The E.N.D. (the album I’m reviewing). Let me just put it this way. When they did the song Let’s Get Retarded on Monkey Business, I didn’t realize that they were taking that to heart. Oh my god. Words can’t describe how much I hate this album. Why this garbage is popular, I will NEVER know. Instead of doing smart semi-political lyrics like they used to, there’s a song here where just about the only words are “I gotta feeling…that tonight’s gonna be a good night” repeated over and over and over. And the production isn’t much better — you have the most boring, radio-friendly pop beats on this album.

Track-by-track:

  1. Boom Boom Pow – You know, I really don’t hate this song. I don’t like it either. It’s not as bad as some of the things you hear on the radio, but I really don’t need to listen to this again. 4/10
  2. Rock That BodyThis is one of the most generic-sounding dance/electro songs I’ve ever heard. Apparently Fergie is a chipmunk now. 1/10
  3. Meet Me Halfway I see what they’re trying to do here, but the repeating words over and over again really annoys me. It just seems like lazy songwriting. “Well the flow doesn’t really work, so let’s just repeat a word over and over until the flow DOES work”. Fergie only does the hook here which is a plus.  2/10
  4. Imma Be For your own safety, I should warn you before clicking the link. This is a rare type of song that actually made me angry at the song while listening to it. I think Ke$ha is the only artist who managed to do that to me before. Fergie sucks. Yes, that’s a negative sign before the score. -10/10
  5. I Gotta Feeling – On wikipedia, it says that 6 people co-wrote this song. That is mindboggling to me. It’s basically just the same line repeated over and over. Cracked.com made a video asking if this was the worst song ever made; unfortunately, it’s not even the worst on this album. 0/10 After those five tracks, I had to take a break and listen to something good before continuing or else I would’ve gone insane. Now I’m READY to take on the rest of this album. Bring it, Black Eyed Peas.
  6. Alive – A one song break wasn’t enough. Even T-Pain thinks they overused autotune here. 1/10
  7. Missing You – The first 40 seconds of this, I was thinking “What in the world? This might be okay” — then the rest of the song happened. In particular, Fergie’s voice in some spots is REALLY bad. 2/10
  8. Ring-a-Ling – The beat here isn’t bad. I would’ve liked to see some good rappers freestyle over this. But besides the beat, there really isn’t anything good here. Fergie sucks. 5/10
  9. Party All the Time – When I saw this song was coming, I thought “this is going to be really bad” just because of the name. I was right. I’m not sure how people can even be entertained by this. 0/10
  10. Out of My Head – It sounds like Fergie thinks she’s Eazy E in this song. She’s not. She sucks. She basically does the whole song here, too. If that sounds like something good to you, you’re crazy. 0/10
  11. Electric City – Here, Fergie sounds like Nicki Minaj when Nicki is rapping in her stupid fake voice (to understand what I’m talking about, she does a lot in this video). That is not a good thing. The beat annoyed me too. And as for the guys’ verses…meh. Nothing here that makes me ever want to listen to this again. 0/10
  12. Showdown – This is better than that run of terribleness I just went through, but I’m not a fan of this either. 3/10
  13. Now Generation – Oh god. Do they think they’re a country band now? This is painful. -5/10
  14. One Tribe – I kinda like this. Good job Black Eyed Peas, you’ve managed to make one listenable song on an album of 15. 7/10
  15. Rockin to the Beat – NO, GO BACK TO THE STYLE OF THE LAST SONG!! Lyrically, they pretty much ripped off of A Tribe Called Quest’s “What”. That song’s about 100 times better than this since the Tribe has better production and Q-Tip is a MUCH better rapper than Will.i.am (and anyone who argues that last part is insane). 1/10

Don’t get me wrong, I’m fine when an artist decides to experiment a little bit and change their style. But, the Black Eyed Peas have changed their style from “pretty good but not spectacular hip-hop” to “abomination”. It’s worked since they’re getting tons of plays on the radio, but I am not a fan.

Overall Score = 7/150. That averages out to 0.046. The Black Eyed Peas have made an album on the same level of Lil Wayne’s Rebirth. 0.5/10

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