December 13, 2002 at 05:00 AM EST
We gave it a B

Common Electric Circus (MCA) On their sixth and fifth respective CDs, these MCs have chosen to add wisdom to their wordplay before obsolescence sets in. Nas, once a keen observer and lyricist, sheds some of the Gucci baggage he acquired during eight years of keeping up with the Biggies and Jay-Zs, and returns to his introspective roots. As with all thug poetry, the ego and malice are blinding, but moments of self-deprecation and social responsibility out-flash the gun bursts. Common, once a lighthearted trickster, is a strident Black Power crusader. Although he can be self-righteous, scattered, and grim, a team of truly youthful-minded producers is there to color the gray. Son: B Circus: A

You May Like