Sunday, July 19, 2009

In Search of N.E.R.D

So if you've listened to hip-hop in the last 10 years at all, you know who Pharrell Williams is. He's one half of The Neptunes and one third of N.E.R.D. He, by himself and along with The Neptunes and N.E.R.D has created some of the best rock/electro/indie rock music you've never heard. Fact: Pharrell Williams is one of the most successful hip-hop/pop producers of our time. Fact: Pharrell Williams has yet to have a successful solo release, however The Neptunes did make buzz with 2003's The Neptunes Presents...The Clones, and all three N.E.R.D records have been certified gold. Still N.E.R.D manages to remain under the radar.
The Neptunes is a production/writing team. N.E.R.D is a band. N.E.R.D is Pharrell Williams, Chad Hugo (also the other half of The Neptunes), and Shay Hayley.
The record I'm recommending to you today is the first release from N.E.R.D, In Search Of.... It's a favorite of mine. I put this record on repeat every few months, as I have since 2001 when it came out. The instrumentation is brilliant. The lyrics range from funny, sad, painful, inappropriate to just down right ridiculous. It's one of those special, rare records you can listen to all the way through. It's mood altering due to the lyrical range but in a good way.
Some stand-outs are "Tape You" (which is every girls nightmare), Am I High (which is about Pharrell having an affair with a woman who was with another woman), and my absolute favorites "Truth or Dare" and "Bobby James".

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