Released: February 14, 2012
Label: Fake Four
Driver released his 9th solo album “Beaus$Eros” earlier this week on Valentine’s Day. The Fake Four branded product comes just 6 months after Busdriver collaborated with fellow Project Blowdian NoCanDo to release “10 Haters“, and covers a different side of the LA-native we’ve yet to really see.
As he’s stated in several interviews, this latest project laments a time of personal struggle and sacrifice, ranging from financial struggles to a breakup with his ex-fiance. Although you can’t hear it in the very beginning of the album, it swings that way pretty quickly, once “Kiss Me Back To Life” comes on.
The album is definitely not what you expect from Driver, usually you can expect a fast-paced, metaphor-driven, over-the-top lyrics that may take a while to decipher, only for you to figure out it’s really a simple concept. Usually. This time Driver tries to croon a little bit, which I typically frown upon (my apologies to Drake), but when you understand where the album is coming from, you almost let it go. Especially since he can’t really hold a note for the most part, which can make some songs awkward, but the man sets up his own verses with his own hooks.
The project is exclusively produced by up and coming Belgian Producer Loden who managed to make every song FIT, it doesn’t feel as if Loden just sent beats via e-mail and told Driver go at it, you can tell they made it a point to communicate and create each song individually, one at a time. It’s something that both have noted, especially Driver when stating that he didn’t want to always challenge his listeners to points they didn’t want to go, sometimes he just wanted to deliver his story.
This doesn’t mean that the album is a classic start to finish, there are points where it falls apart, but it does a good job of putting itself back together at times. Overall it’s a decent piece that will grow on you if you’re willing to dive into the experimental end a little bit, however, it drags on a little too long at the end, as only 2 of the last 5 tracks are really attention worthy (Here’s To Us, Scattered Ashes). If you’ve never listened to any of Busdriver’s music before, I wouldn’t recommend this as your introduction to him, I would ask you to go back and check some of the work from his middle years (Fear of a Black Tangent, Roadkill Overcoat, Jhelli Beam). If you must listen to something from this album, “Kiss Me Back To Life”, “Bon Bon Fire”, and “Here’s To Us” are head and shoulders above everything else.
I’d give this album a 7 of 10, it could be better, it could be worse. Certainly not on my Top of ANY number list as of yet.