On his first solo full-length for Mush, Busdriver goes the way of De La Soul Is Dead, jettisoning the joy and uproarious humor of Temporary Forever and replacing it with a litany of cynicism and sarcasm and even self-doubt. Often casting himself as a character he hates, Bus targets a parade of cultural foibles -- rappers both commercial and underground, indie hipsters, conservatives, his own "weird" career. He rarely hits those targets, however, and the negativity removes the focus from Busdriver's sizable musical talents and rests it squarely on his lyricism and themes (not a good idea). Sounding like a golden age rapper who never got his props, Bus complains "I did that record before you, and sure of course it was a tour de force," or "I wasn't invited to your shindig, I've got no plus-one and a low slush fund/I never expected to win big, I never expected for you to open my press kit." Several of the productions on Fear of a Black Tangent are excellent, including Omid's "Reheated Pop!," Paris Zax's "Unemployed Black Astrognaut," and the four productions by Daedelus. Also worth hearing are the three unlisted remixes, by D-Styles, Prefuse 73, and Nobody.
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AllMusic Review by John Bush