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4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 2 January 2004
"Crocodile on my feet; Fox fur on my back; Bowtie around my neck, that's why they call me the gangsta mack in the cadillac"
Big Boi's chorus on Bowtie exemplifies Speakerboxxx. It's that real cool, laid back, southern funk that Outkast do like no one else. The Love Below is another thing entirely. Taking notes from jazz, electro, rock... you name it. Andre 3000 has fused it all together to come up with something really off the wall. While Speakerboxxx is definitely the more accessible to the average hip hop fan, The Love Below is the one half which has been gaining most of the plaudits. It's definitely the more difficult listen, but is all the more rewarding for it. You'll have heard the lead single, Hey Ya, all over the airwaves by now, and this is as mainstream as Andre allows things get.
Speakerboxxx and The Love Below could stand on their own as superb solo albums, but as a whole, they are spectacular. Hip Hop has always been about innovation, but there are few big name rappers about right now that are willing to do that for fear of losing their listeners.
Outkast, however, have come up with the most innovative mainstream album in years. The success Outkast are having just shows how much listeners are appreciating a group willing to spend the time to make something truly exceptional.
For my money, this is the album of the year in any genre. If you don't have it, get it.
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on 22 November 2004
Speakerboxxx and The Love Below are, for all intents and purposes, two separate albums brought to you lovingly by Big Boi and Andre 3000 respectively.
Outkast fans will be pleased with this bumper package which contains some of the most sparkling and well produced music you will ever hear. Noticeably, Speakerboxxx is the inferior of the two, 'Love Below being a shiny concept album with favourites 'Hey Ya' and 'Roses' thrown in to the mix. Give this album a few listens and you will see that the whole package is an innovative and rewarding experience. Certainly up there with Outkast's best work. Just don't be so sad as to tailor what you listen to depending on whatever 'R+B essential' compilations are out there. Speakerboxxx/The Love Below is fantastic.
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on 6 October 2016
A fantastic album, something I used to listen to when I was younger, brings back many memories.
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on 22 March 2005
This album was a great suprise to me- because it was cheap I was expecting it to be not so good, but when I put it in my cd player I was amazed. It is by far one of my all-time favourite albums.
Although everyone is ranting and raving about Andre 3000's album, and saying it is the best, I personally much prefer Big Boi's SPEAKERBOXXX. my ratings are:
upbeat, fab chorus and great bassline
a slower song with great lyrics and deep meaning
a fun and jazzy song
The way you move-10/10
a classic- good beat, great tune
The rooster-9/10
great trumpet and good lyrics
fab song
good issue, meaningful lyrics
a fab and funky song with a catchy chorus
Tomb of the boom-7/10
this is good stuff
Flip flop rock-10/10
well good song, good beat
a bit slower but it is still pure good
Last call-10/10
catchy chorus, good beat, good vibe
As you can tell, it is hard for me to pick a fave song as they are all so good. This album has loads of great beats and bass lines, it also has catchy tunes and hard-hitting lyrics, not just about the usual- guns, girls and cars. I adore 'the way you move' and 'ghettomusick'. This album is by far the better of the two, Andre's one is just plain weird, and i find it too hard to listen to. However, if you get the chance to buy this album then do, you won't regret it. There are fab songs on both albums and it is definitely worth the money! One of the best I own!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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on 30 September 2003
As the album is split into two discs, one for Big Boi & one for Andre 3000, I'll review them "separately".
Firstly, Big Boi's Speakerboxxx disc, which, weighing in with 19 tracks at a total length of just under an hour, is the shorter of the two. It is in a fairly conventional OutKast hip hop style (insofar as OutKast can be said to be conventional!).
Although the number of guests seems to threaten the consistency and continuity of Big Boi's own raps, this fails to occur, as the short track lengths, dope beats, high quality guest spots, and Big Boi's own skilled performance keep the album moving.
None of the tracks are permitted to outstay their welcome, with the result that you are left wanting more of everything (I often end up playing the album through twice in a row). This is a rarity in hip hop today, which often seems to believe that filling the CD to the brim is more important than what you fill it with.
Standout tracks include the thought-provoking "War" or "Knowing", the melancholy "Unhappy", and the bangers "GhettoMusick" and "The Rooster", although all are excellent.
Andre 3000's The Love Below disc is almost bizarre. The man who made Eminem's Top 5 MC list seems to have given up rapping! Yes, Andre has completely flipped and made an album about love and all its facets, in which he spends most of the time singing.
Fear not however, for somehow this doomed enterprise isn't doomed: inexplicably, it works! Once I got over the initial shock of Andre's change of tack, it seemed to grow on me until I now like it perhaps more than Speakerboxxx. It may take three listens to come round to this viewpoint, though, so give it a chance and don't dismiss it if you don't like it at first.
There's only one standout track on this one, the sting in the tail that is "A Life In The Day Of Benjamin Andre (Incomplete)".
The only track on which Andre truly raps, it should be listened to: I won't give away its secrets as I only half understand it myself.
The rest of the album is good even to the cod-olde-English skit "Good Day, Good Sir", which would probably be intensely irritating if anyone but Andre had done it. There's no filler in its nearly 80 minute length, which is some achievement, and so this disc can be listened to from beginning to end, just like Speakerboxxx.
The only problems with this album are that there are only two tracks on which both Andre & Big Boi feature, and that I can't figure out which disc is the "first" half (but I suspect that that is intentional).
All in all, another classic, to join Aquemini & Stankonia in demonstrating why OutKast are probably the best hip hop group in existence today.
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on 6 April 2005
Yes its a better then good double album blending idfferent genres with the OutKast boi's, but they have done it all before. ATLiens and Aquemini are amazing records, and sound so mcuh better then Stankonia, and this. Due to one main factor the amount of interludes on the last to albums are two many and engulf the album. Although the standout tracks are 5***** masterpeices. As for everyone saying Andre's album is better then Big boi's; im not to sure, Andre has 4 songs that will make you move n funk about, however the rest of the songs, are good but nothing to special then followed up by the fillers. even though Big Boi's does not contain as finer tracks as Hey Ya! , Roses, Dracula's Wedding or Happy Valentine's Day he moves more into mainstream rapping. Which for him is not a bad move, Ghettomusick blasts out onto the album as the opening track, however from that 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 are all good songs then his fillers come in to play with outbreaks from Jay-Z and Little Jon.
For OutKast fans this still is a good enoguh album for the collections, and probably more people now will enjoy Outkast due to this album.
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on 5 October 2003
One of the few times you can enjoy to get whats expected. We associate Outkast with creativity, music and deviation from the norm. An with their new double CD entitled Speakerboxx/The Love Below we get all that and more.
The album is split in two with each emcee Andre 3000 and Big Boi each having their own CD. There are not many tracks that feature both emcees, if at this point emcees are what you can call these musical dynamos. Andre 3000 does alot of singing and harmonizing on the album.
Its extremely apparent at this point that Outkast is bigger than hip-hop. Tracks such as "Hey YA!" and "Roses" feature full bands where the singing is as much of the music as is the rapping. They take up back to the old school with tracks like "Ghetto Music" and other that contain hints of old school Marvin Gaye type flavor.
Life and spirituality is a major reccuring theme throughout both discs. Andre speaks on his relationship with Erykah Badu on " A day in the life of Andre Benjamin." Tracks like "Reset" featuring Khujo and Big Boi speak on starting over and getting through lifes challenges. "Unhappy" speaks on maintaing through lifes hurdles. Other tracks like "Church" solidify the theme of the importance of spirituality. Other tracks like "War" kick some knowledge about whats going on with America and the world.
But there are club bangers. This is not elevator music, tracks like "Tomb of the Boom" and "Last Call" featuring Lil Jon is defiantely crunk music for the trunk speakerbox.
Get this album!
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on 3 November 2003
Firstly, the great value for money of the album has to be mentioned; 38 tracks for 15 quid is a good deal by any standards.Speakerboxxx is by far the more hip hop styled of the two albums. Many collaborations make the flow of rapping enjoyable and certain tracks like ghettomusick and boom of the tomb are really excellent songs. But it's a long way off the perfection of the love below because of the several boring interludes(although the one of big boi's kid rapping is very funny) and the order of the songs seems to be very random.
The love below really makes this newest outkast outing shine through the other hip hop album recently released(even joe budden's). the album starts with a beautiful soft song and a small speech to god which is strangely amusing. The love below explodes into life with valentine's day, a strong beat and catchy vocals.Spread is again fantastic and amusing. A very funny interlude is within "where are my panties?" continuing the story of finding love that is the theme for the album when another person in another building shouts "ICE COLD", very clever addition to an otherwise run-of-the-mill interlude. Many other songs are truly amazing on this album, Hey ya is very accesible and is part of four songs in a row which make the album the best of the year so far which includes:"hey ya", "roses", "love not war" and "pink and blue".
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on 6 February 2004
This is a good album but not a great one
I actually preferred disc 1, i thought disc 2 could have been pruned and cut down from its 80 minutes or so.
There is a fair amount of filler in disc 2 that ultimately is not that satisfying
Disc 1 however, has tracks such as Ghetto Muzick which is like the son of George Clinton and the Marvin Gaye esqye "way you move"
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on 9 May 2004
I have just listened to both albums and i'm surprised at how different they are.
'SPEAKERBOXXX' is 'Big Boi's' album and it mixes Hip Hop, Rock and Jazz. The best songs on 'SPEAKERBOXXX' are 'Ghettomusick', 'The Way You Move', 'Church', 'Flip Flop Rock' and 'Last Call'.
Songs like 'Ghettomusick' and 'The Way You Move' mix hip-hop and jazz beats together superbly.
Most songs on 'SPEKAERBOXXX' have similar style but you'll enjoy every single one.
No one expected 'THE LOVE BELOW' to turn out the way it did and even though 'ANDRE 3000' is a genius when it comes to rapping, he's opted to use a slower type of music.
Not that ANDRE'S new style disappoints, it actually makes it better, BIG BOI has a different style and so by the two artists not copying eachother it gives a refreshing new style of music.
Songs like 'Love Hater', 'Spread', 'Hey Ya!', 'Roses' and 'Behold A Lady' show the real vocal talent of ANDRE and hopefully will be a starting point for a brand new OUTKAST.
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