Review: ‘Busta Rhymes’

Perhaps the most energetic showman in hip-hop, Busta Rhymes hit the stage like a tornado and exited just as quickly, leaving a sold-out house of sweaty bodies in his wake. Fans seem satisfied by the concentrated, 35-minute whirlwind of snippets from his hits.

Perhaps the most energetic showman in hip-hop, Busta Rhymes hit the stage like a tornado and exited just as quickly, leaving a sold-out house of sweaty bodies in his wake. Fans seem satisfied by the concentrated, 35-minute whirlwind of snippets from his hits.

Dressed in a mylar-coated sweatsuit, his thick dreds clumped to each side like flopping Snoopy ears, the 6-foot-plus rapper attacked the microphone with a rare combination of ferocity, humor and precision. Alternately jerking like a man possessed and flying about Tasmanian Devil-style, Busta pounded through abridged versions of songs largely culled from his new, platinum-certified “When Disaster Strikes …” album on Elektra. Even at his most manic, he rode the beat perfectly, his lyrics always clear and sharp.

Not one song was performed in its entirety, giving way to a series of baby climaxes. One-minute snippets from “Case of the PTA” from Busta’s former group, Leaders of the New School, and “Scenario,” the Tribe Called Quest/Leaders collaboration that introduced the mainstream to Busta’s gruff, dungeon dragon rhyme-style, led up to clipped versions of last year’s Grammy-nominated hit, “Woo-Hah” and his current radio smash, “Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Could See.”

Busta Rhymes

(House of Blues; 900 capacity; $25)

Production

Presented inhouse.

Crew

Reviewed Nov. 2, 1997.

Cast

Band: Busta Rhymes, DJ Scratch, MC Spliff Star.
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