Review #125: Paul’s Boutique, Beastie Boys

Karla Clifton
2 min readJul 2, 2021


#125: Paul’s Boutique, Beastie Boys

This is the Beastie Boys’ second album after Licensed To Ill, and is made almost 100% from samples. That’s very cool, but here’s the thing: this is NOT the Beastie Boys’ best album. No way! I know it’s important and adventurous and broke a lot of new ground, but this album doesn’t have any of their hits on it.

Licensed to Ill (#192) has “Girls,” “Fight For Your Right,” and “No Sleep Til Brooklyn.” Check Your Head (#261) has “Pass The Mic” and “So What’cha Want.” Ill Communication, which isn’t even on the list, has “Sure Shot!” Paul’s Boutique has “Hey Ladies,” which isn’t even that good.

I love listening to the Beastie Boys, so maybe I’ll have an epiphany in a few months after this album makes it into my regular rotation, but for now I’m just counting down until 192.


“Shake Your Rump” Bad breath/ Onion rings! The Beastie Boys tackle the real issues.

“Johnny Ryall” — My favorite Bob Dylan reference! He ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s Farm no more.

“Egg Man”The egg! A symbol of life!

“High Plains Drifter” — Oh I do love when they do a rap round. (As in, High!/(High!)/Plains!/(Plains!)/Driftah!/(Driftah driftah driftah!))

“Hey Ladies” HEY! HEY! HEY! HEY! HEY LADIES! This song is fun but it’s nowhere near as fun as “Girls.”

“5-Piece Chicken Dinner” — Lol I love hillbilly nonsense.

“Looking Down The Barrel Of A Gun” — Haha, this guitar sample is from Mountain’s “Mississippi Queen!”

“Shadrach” — Doesn’t it suck that De La Soul ruined samples for everyone?

“Ask For Janice” — According to some dude on Reddit, this phone number used to be linked to an answering machine in Adam Yauch’s parents basement.

“B-Boy Bouillabaisse: 59 Chrystie Street/Get on the Mic/Stop That Train/A Year and a Day/Hello Brooklyn/Dropping Names/Lay It on Me/Mike on the Mic/A.W.O.L.” — Bouillabaisse is a stew. This 12-minute stew samples Led Zeppelin’s “When The Levee Breaks.”


“To All The Girls” — Hmmm.

“What Comes Around” — I want to hear a HIT, dammit!


I nominate Ill Communication. It has “Sure Shot,” “Sabotage” and “Root Down,” and it was also the album that they wrote after Adam Yauch got really into Buddhism. Cuz you can’t/ and you won’t/ and you don’t/ STOP.

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