Album Reviews

Bizarre – Hanni Cap Circus

(Sanctuary Urban) UK release date: 27 June 2005

We all know Bizarre, the fat shower cap wearing comic flaw from Eminem’s crew D12 who first had us cracking up in the surreal video for Purple Hills many moons ago. The higher order has now decided to unleash this man on the world on his own, possibly because he was just getting too crazy for them to contain anymore.

Calling your debut album Hanni Cap Circus is as bold a statement as you could make, it’s an instant two fingers to anyone and everyone – never judge a book by its cover, but you can tell this was never going to pretty. Although the intro is quite pretty, it is definitely aurally satisfying but Gospel Weed Song is a warm welcome into the world of Bizarre. An old school beat in the vein of Coolio‘s I’m in Love With Mary Jane basically thanking God for the, ahem, greener things in life.

F*ck Your Life is more jumpy, and more what we’d expect from this recently released beast, Sindee Syringe‘s vocals softening the nuclear holocaust that Bizzy’s rapping creates. Uneasily, there’s a sly dig at Ja Rule leaving the Shady/Murder Inc beef wide open. More unnerving is the fact lyrics like “all day I dream about sex/ f*ck a handicapped bitch” don’t even strike me as being absurd coming from this larger than life rapper.

The album stutters along until I’m In Luv Witchu drops and then you’re truly shocked – vulgar doesn’t begin to explain it, but listen to it and try not to smile. The psychology of having such a vibrant and funky beat over disgusting lyrics and coming out with a track that is so easy to listen to is a mark of genius.

Rockstar, Bizarre’s debut solo single, is an infectious piece of work which has Eminem’s stamp all over it but not in the sense of his production work on Tupac‘s latest post-mortem release Loyal To The Game which was nothing short of brilliant. No, Rockstar reeks of the commercial, air-play orientated ‘first-single’ releases that launched Eminem, D12 and even Obie Trice who features on the comical Doctor Doctor. This track will get annoying.

Ghetto Music’s beat wouldn’t be out of place on a 213 track, but it’s completely clich�d, based around smoking weed and popping pills. There is a theme developing throughout Hanni Cap Circus and it is incredibly tedious. I’m So Cool is tongue in cheek, relatively easy to listen but it seems to be a filler rather than a killer.

Bizarre attempts to sing on Crush On You, but doesn’t attempt it very well descending into talking slowly before deciding to leave it to someone else to beef out the track. Bad Day would have fitted in well on the soundtrack for Don’t Be A Menace To South Central While Drinking Juice In The Hood – but in 2005 it is completely out of place.

Not even a guest appearance from Eminem on Hip-Hop, one of Hanni Cap Circus’ rare plus points can rescue any credibility for Bizarre’s debut album. If it wasn’t for his role in D12 it is hard to see what anyone would be thinking of if they offered a record deal to this crazy bloke. It’s telling that this isn’t an Interscope/Aftermath release – they know what sells and the Hanni Cap Circus will very soon be finding its way into record stores’ bargain baskets.

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Bizarre – Hanni Cap Circus