Cypress Hill - Rise Up
After a six-year break US rock/rap band Cypress Hill return with album number eight. They've clearly made a lot of friends in the music industry throughout their career as plenty of them have turned up to help them out. Or maybe it's that no one throws a party quite like Cypress Hill.
Over the years the band have chilled out significantly, that many years smoking that much herb has to have some effect. They are not horizontal on the sofa with a multipack of twix quite yet, but they are less likely to pop a cap in your arse than ever before. Their renowned sense of humour is still intact - although they were often in danger of becoming the hip-hop Cheech and Chong they've gone one better and actually recruited Cheech and Chong to bring some of their skits into the fold.
They demonstrate an ability to play well with others. Each collaborator strength is used to its fullest. Whether it's keeping it radio friendly with Linkin Park's Mike Shinoda on their autobiographical 'Carry Me Away' or shredding with System Of A Down's Daron Malakian on 'Trouble Seeker'. Like chameleons they wrap their style around each change in direction with ease.
But it's when Rage Against The Machine's Tom Morello's unmistakable riffery arrives that things really get interesting. The two tracks he contributes on 'Rise Up' and 'Shut 'Em Down' blow away any post spliff malaise, kicking the doors in and reaffirming that the dogs from Cypress Hill have plenty of bark left in them.
Whilst this doesn't seem dangerous any more, Rise Up is a solid and enjoyable album that doesn't drop the ball or try anything stupid. Look's like it’s time to rescue the bong from the garage.