This Orange County rap-metal collective has a penchant for self-aggrandizing quasi-royalty and, of course, a proclivity for the spliff, ganja, weed, the herb, the kind bud, Mary Jane, hashish. This point cannot be overstated. Indeed, the Kottonmouth Kings' sophomore offering, High Society
, functions as a sort of pro-marijuana concept album. Splendid. Yet its 20 tracks and almost 80 minutes of tokin' make for one fat blunt. Reggae/punk lyrical references aside, the Kottonmouth Kings rely exclusively on the phat beats/rockin' guitars combo that slapped Mr. Kid Rock on the cover of Rolling Stone
. As a joke, some computer-savvy lad should purchase High Society
(on second thought, he can have my copy) and digitally change the lyrics on every chorus to "Bawitdaba da bang a dang diggy diggy diggy said the boogie said up jumps the boogie." Chances are, no one will notice the difference. A raucous Kottonmouth Kings show functions as a Cypress Hill-like demolition derby -- lots of moshing and group scream-alongs, albeit with fewer sawed-off shotguns with hands on the pumps. Give the Kings credit for avoiding gangsta rap violence or seething misogyny on their mostly lame rhymes -- they focus instead on KFC advertisements, trips with their honeys down to the beach, and massively annoying Jello Biafra-like anti-government rants. The Kottonmouth Kings offer up sincere, unbiased love for the weed, the herb, the kind bud. As they adroitly put it in "The Joint": "Yo, you gots the joint? Nah, I
got the joint! Yo, who got the joint? (unison) We all got the joint!!!!"