October 23, 2008

Nelly: Brass Knuckles

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Nelly’s Brass Knuckles hits hard with that swagger and energy fans expect from the leader of the St. Lunatic family. Backing up his own vocals — and backing up his backup with shouts and chants — Nelly never lets the listener’s ears fall asleep.
Enlisting heavy hitters like LL Cool J, Chuck D and Snoop Dogg, Brass Knuckles runs the gamut of hip-hop history and geography. Nelly gives us the Midwest swang, along with songs like “LA” that sweats West Coast g-funk from the heat of Snoop and Nate Dogg, and “Chill” which sounds like it fell out of a G-Unit album.
Brass Knuckles could have packed a little more punch and a lot more originality. Energetic as he is, Nelly has basically had the same flow since he taught us the correct form of country grammar.
Despite minor drawbacks, the album is a nice listen. Check out “U Ain’t Him,” “Hold Up” and “Let’s Go.”