Album review: Black Eyed Peas’ ‘The E.N.D.’

By in June 10, 2009 • Filed in: News and rumors

The Los Angeles-based quartet Black Eyed Peas is possibly the greatest bubble gum group of the Extreme Ice Fruit Explosion era. Following in the path forged by the Monkees, the Archies and the Spice Girls, the Peas present themselves as a cast of zany characters whose music is, on one level, like a child’s game, and on another, as calculatedly smart and seductive as test-marketed pop gets. The titles of the Peas’ biggest hits tell the story: the giggle-inducing pun of “Don’t Phunk With My Heart,” the cheerily crude anatomical gesture of “My Humps” and now the Imax-ready sound effects burst of the chart-topping “Boom Boom Pow.” Crass, good-hearted, funny, unfailingly loud scavengers of every shiny thing lying on pop’s cross-cultural dance floor, the Peas present themselves as juvenile, but there’s a lot going on behind the mugging.”The E.N.D.,” the group’s fifth studio album and the third since the singer Stacy Ferguson (better known as Fergie) joined and took it from the earnest hip-hop underground to the glamorous, necessarily compromised pop mainstream, is more accomplished and more confounding than any of the foursome’s previous efforts. It’s likely to dominate radio and the Internet this summer, its sharp flavors simultaneously driving listeners nuts and drawing them back.



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