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Can I Keep This Pen?

Can I Keep This Pen? by Northern State
Released: Aug 2007
Label: Ipecac Recordings
After two albums of borrowing from the Beastie Boys, Northern State finally go right to the source on album No. 3: production by Adrock. Ironically, it is their least Licensed to Ill-like work ever. Instead, Hesta Prynn, Spero and Sprout scrounge from the styles of other geeky white hip-hoppers, such as Luscious Jackson ("Cowboy Man"), Mickey Avalon ("Sucka Mofo") and Peaches ("Cold War"). It's nice to see them branch out, but somehow their lit references and shout-outs to Al Gore and Barack Obama aren't quite as charming without their whole geeky, brainy Beastie Girls shtick.
Rachel Devitt

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