Part satirist, part political analyst and part lunatic, Lewis Black has developed an inimitable brand of stand-up comedy. His comedy has the left leaning stance of Michael Moore, Al Franken and George Carlin but it is delivered in a way similar to that of Sam Kinison--frequently at an elevated volume. Think of a courageous Woody Allen, if your mind will permit it. Lewis Black's popularity grows steadily. Thanks to a weekly appearance on top US politilcal satire show The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, much of late night America is familiar with Black's blend of observational humor mixed with political commentary. This album works off the same formula. Black comments on everything from how the state of Minnesota was founded (Scandinavians sick of the cold) to the US introducing democracy in Iraq (How will they do that? Drop off text books and give the poulation a quiz the next week?) Charged with energy, the album will not disappoint Lewis' current fans. People new to his style might be taken aback at his propensity to yell, but after you listen for a few minutes, and you realize that the screams are screams of frustration at what he sees, you can relate to him very easily. Go to Comedy Central's website to get a peek at his "Back in Black" segment. If you find yourself laughing at it, then pick this album up right away. I've been a fan for several years and enjoyed this album immensely.
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Lewis Black is a man who isn't afraid to speak what's on his mind with rage and energy. Sarcastic and straight to the point, he's quickly become a new favourite of mine. "Rules of Enragement" is wildly humorous album that tackles the issues that other people may be afraid to talk about. With this most recent album from Black, he talks about some of the most recent issues (since his material is always topical). He rants on winters and health, as well as greedy "big business" criminals and the war in Iraq. He condemns health clubs and everything they stand for. He comments on the state of "Homeland Security," and recalls the time when we were told that duct tape would keep us safe from chemical attacks. The man knows no limits and isn't afraid to give you his opinion. It's really great to finally hear an "uncensored" performance from him, as the only performances I had seen were the ones on Comedy Central. He's given enough time to build up his act in a nice pace and then is able to come out swinging in full force when the time is right. It's a shame that you can't actually see him do the performance, but listening to the album gives you a pretty good idea of what kind of facial expressions he's making when he talks about things the baffle or disgust him. One of his best qualities is that he goes after EVERYONE when it comes to politics. He doesn't just go after one side or the other. He will put down ANYONE who deserves it, despite political parties. Not since Bill Hicks or George Carlin have I heard somebody who can do some of the funniest topical material. It's great to hear the tough issues that are going on in the world today being discussed in a funny and enlightening way. Relationship and date jokes are nice every now and then, but they can get old very quickly. That's why I'm glad that there's a comic like Lewis Black. Be warned; the man likes to swear. If you like Black but do not care for strong language, then I'd recommend checking out his Comedy Central DVD, "Lewis Black Unleashed" instead. Lewis Black is really somebody to check out if you're tired of the usual comedy routines. If you love comics who use topical material and can rage out of nowhere, then this is the man for you. "Rules of Enragement" is an outstanding and hilarious comedy album with an extremely high replay value. It has quickly become a new favourite of mine. -Michael Crane
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