When George W. Bush's domestic-wiretapping program went into effect, you can bet that Boots Riley of the Coup was at the top of the surveillance list. But a lot has happened since Tuesday, September 11, 2001 the day the Coup's Party Music
was released, bearing a cover that portrayed the World Trade Center being blown up. Bush's policies have proven more draconian than anyone could have guessed. And the Coup has just gotten better. Party Music
's anticipated followup, Pick a Bigger Weapon
, is another salvo of leftist polemic and loose-limbed funk conducted by Riley's igneous flow not to mention contributions by Tom Morello and members of Parliament-Funkadelic, the Gap Band, and Maze. Accordingly, the vibe is decidedly old-school, culminating in the self-explanatory slow jam "Baby Let's Have a Baby Before Bush Do Somethin' Crazy." As both a political shitstorm and a deep-groove minefield, Weapon
is unimpeachably great. Which is more than you can say for the president.