St. Louis’ culturally ubiquitous Nelly is the rare Hip-Hop artist who can instill his work with a sense of lascivious fun and joyous accessibility without being guilty of cynical pandering or artistic compromise. Nelly, whose mush-mouthed, sing song delivery and irresistible pop hooks won him instant stardom with the 2000 release of Country Grammar, is entirely unabashed about his music’s pop appeal. The infectious Neptunes fueled chaos of Nellyville’s “Hot in Herre” retools the menacing bump of Southern Rap for the TRL generation. Certainly the song, with its call and response chorus and “Bustin’ Loose” referencing refrain is a shameless pop confection, but Nelly has the charisma to pull it off with effortless panache. Though Nellyville runs a bit long, clocking in at a patience trying twenty tracks in length, the album is remarkably consistent and Nelly’s capacity for crafting eminently hummable choruses never flags. An innocent pleasure and a perfect snapshot of American pop culture circa 2002; Nellyville has a universally appealing quality that allows it to transcend its pop roots.
Hot in Herre
Dem Boyz (feat. St. Lunatics)
Oh Nelly (feat. Murphy Lee)
Air Force Ones (feat. Murphy Lee, Ali & Kyjuan)
On the Grind (feat. King Jacob)
Dilemma (feat. Kelly Rowland)
Work It (feat. Justin Timberlake)
Roc the Mic (Exclusive Nellyville Mix) [feat. Beanie Sigel, Murphy Lee & Nelly]
CG2 (feat. Ali, Murphy Lee & Kyjuan)
15 Songs, 1 Hour, 8 Minutes
June 25, 2002
℗ 2002 Universal Motown Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.