James Bernard
July 10, 1992 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Xodus: The New Testament

type
Music
Current Status
In Season
Producers
Polydor
genre
Hip-Hop/Rap

We gave it a B

Maybe George Bush should have sent this New York-based rap crew to the Earth Summit, because they certainly know how to recycle. Xodus‘ funky, extended introduction, in which disconnected voices dis the group over a throbbing bass line, sounds unmistakably like the opening of Public Enemy’s ”Fear of a Black Planet.” One of Xodus‘ more climactic moments, the antipolice ”F.T.P.,” owes its chorus to N.W.A’s 1988 hit, ”F— Tha Police.” Nonetheless, Xclan doesn’t bore because chief lyricist Brother J. pumps new energy into rusty ideas. Witness the way he wields his commanding baritone: stuttering, pausing, and rising — milking his rhymes for dramatic tension. Even over forgettable (though very funky) music, Brother J. makes Xodus a trip worth taking. B

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