Cookbook

Cookbook

by Missy Elliott
     
 

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Missy Elliott has always been keen on experimentation, crafting genre-bending music as effortlessly as Allen Iverson sinks free throws. And on her sixth album, the expectedly eclectic The Cookbook, Missy keeps us guessing once again, relegating longtime production ace Timbaland to only two tracks and recruiting an array of top…  See more details below

Overview

Missy Elliott has always been keen on experimentation, crafting genre-bending music as effortlessly as Allen Iverson sinks free throws. And on her sixth album, the expectedly eclectic The Cookbook, Missy keeps us guessing once again, relegating longtime production ace Timbaland to only two tracks and recruiting an array of top trackmasters for added sonic assistance. The Neptunes supply her with avant-garde, robotic sound effects for the off-kilter "On & On," while hit-maker extraordinaire Rich Harrison (Beyoncé, Amerie) orchestrates a signature big-band backdrop for the raucous "Can't Stop." Elliott's passion for the old school spawns a pair of gems: the Slick Rick–assisted "Irresistible Delicious" and "My Struggles," featuring Brand Nubian's Grand Puba and Mary J. Blige. Elsewhere, Missy caters to party fiends ("Lose Control," featuring Ciara and Fatman Scoop) and freak-flag wavers ("Meltdown") as convincingly as on any of her past hits. Although it's not her most fulfilling offering, Missy's Cookbook has enough choice selections to satisfy her listeners' creative appetite.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
Critics and fans were praising Missy Elliott and Timbaland so much during 2002-2003 that the hottest production combo in hip-hop may have started believing that a great production is synonomous with a great song. This Is Not a Test!, her first major mistake, featured cutting-edge tracks in abundance, but virtually nothing in the way of heavyweight material. Its follow-up, The Cookbook, brings the focus back to Missy the rapper and songwriter, wisely (in most cases) leaving the productions to a more varied cast than any of her previous records. Ironically though, Elliott herself produced the lead single, "Lose Control," giving it a tight electro feel (courtesy of some vintage '80s samples from Cybotron and Hot Streak). It's only the first nod to the type of old-school party jam that Elliott does better than ever here; "We Run This" resurrects the "Apache" break and a classic Sugarhill Gang track for one of the best club tunes of the year, Rich Harrison gives a bright, brassy production to another party song, "Can't Stop," and "Irresistible Delicious" featuring Slick Rick sounds at least 15 years removed from contemporary rap (yes, that's a good thing). In a few spots The Cookbook isn't too far removed from This Is Not a Test! -- Elliott forces a few rhymes, plays to type with her themes, and uses those outside producers to follow trends in hip-hop (she could have easily accompanied a 12-track record of her usual solid material with a watered-down "New Sounds in Hip-Hop & R&B EP" that would kick off with the syrupy Houston retread "Click Clack," the Neptunes' tired "On & On," and the bland pop-idol duet "My Man" featuring Fantasia). What's different here is how relaxed Elliott is, how willing she seems to simply go with what comes naturally and sounds best. "My Struggles" isn't the myopic confessional suggested by the title, but an East Coast all-stars jam that features one of her best raps ever and deftly switches in midstream to allow Mary J. Blige to reprise her "What's the 411?" classic (to say nothing of Grand Puba's verse). And the final track, "Bad Man," sees one of the most welcome collaborations seen in rap for some time, as Elliott joins dancehall heroes M.I.A. and Vybz Kartel (plus a drumline from Atlanta A&T). [The Cookbook was also made available in a clean version.]

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Product Details

Release Date:
07/05/2005
Label:
Atlantic
UPC:
0075678378027
catalogNumber:
83780

Related Subjects

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Missy Elliott   Primary Artist
Charlene "Tweet" Keys   Background Vocals
Southwest DeKalb   Drums

Technical Credits

William Jeffrey   Composer
Keith Lewis   Producer
Scott Spencer Storch   Producer
E. Sadler   Composer
Missy Elliott   Composer,Producer,Executive Producer
Timbaland   Producer
Paul J. Falcone   Engineer
Iz   Instrumentation
Tim Mosley   Composer
Neptunes   Producer
Warryn Campbell   Producer
L. Jackson   Composer
C. Harris   Composer
Andrew Coleman   Engineer
Rich Harrison   Producer
Rhemario Webber   Producer
Maya Arulpragasm   Composer
Mike Jones   Composer
Greg Gigendad Burke   Art Direction
C. Hudson   Composer
Michael Eleopoulos   Engineer
Saint Nick   Producer
Wyatt Coleman   Engineer
Shondrae "Mr. Bangladesh" Crawford   Producer

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