(As published in the Illinois Entertainer ... )
Terminator X & the Godfathers of Threatt
Chuck D got people to like Public Enemy by convincing them they were racist or chicken (or both) if they didn't. But no one would've listened in the first place if it hadn't been for Terminator X and his sonic arsenal, the latest model of which is on full display here with over a dozen rap acts of varying renown along for the ride.
Of course, since Terminator X talks with his hands, it's the rappers who set the agenda, and in so doing they prove once and for all that punk's nihilism has come home to roost in hip-hop. With the exception of Whodini's catchy "It All Comes Down to the Money" and the Punk Barbarians' raving "Put Cha Thang Down," the majority of these cuts deliver one crude blow after another to those facets of human intelligence--taste, language, logic--that most distinguish us from the beasts.
Where to start? On "Sticka" Chuck D, MC Lyte, and the Ices Cube and T decry "censorshit" on the grounds that there's "as much ass" in a Jane Fonda workout video as in a 2 Live Crew clip. On "1994 Street Muthafukkas Gong Show" Postman bids us to remember that "mutha had ya, mutha fed ya, and mutha fukked ya." Then he laughs, but as jokes go it's not that funny. (Ask your mother.) And there's a lot more along similar lines. On top of it all, the Terminator thanks Allah, who along with his only prophet Mohammed appreciates the publicity, I'm sure.