Review #176: Fear of a Black Planet, Public Enemy

Karla Clifton
3 min readSep 22, 2021


#176: Fear of a Black Planet, Public Enemy

It’s Flavor Flav! And Chuck D! But mostly Flav!

We haven’t seen these boys since Review #15, and how I’ve missed them. The RS blurb mentions that this album title comes directly from psychologist and racial theorist Dr. Frances Cress Welsing, who was super radical and ahead of her time in many ways. (She did have some pretty wack views about gay people.)

I always feel like such a poseur when I review these albums that are about the black experience in America, because I am the littlest white girl. But I’ve always loved rap music. I can’t comment on the realities that this album is speaking to, but I can comment on how bangin’ awesome it sounds.

Fun fact: This album has 150 to 200 samples on it, according to Chuck D, which is insane. Imagine the logistics of that today.


“Contract On The World Love Jam — Instrumental” — I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Bring back the record scratch!

“Brothers Gonna Work It Out” — This guitar solo is so killer.

“911 Is A Joke” Get up/Get get get down/911 is a joke in your town. I’ve only dialed 911 once. I saw someone get their foot run over from my apartment window. They did not seem overly helpful, but I feel like Public Enemy’s gripes are a bit more serious.

“Incident At 66.6 FM — Instrumental” — Hahahahahaha!

“Welcome To The Terrordome” — Public Enemy just has this VICIOUS sound, I’m obsessed.

“Meet The G That Killed Me” — Flav is the worlds best hype man.

“Anti-N***** Machine” — Ack. Confrontation! It works!

“Burn Hollywood Burn” Ice Cube!!! Oh I love all the horns and samples in this song. Also LOL at the Driving Miss Daisy reference.

“Power To The People” — This one references James Brown’s “Get Up, Get Into It, Get Involved”! Remember him?

“Fear Of A Black Planet” — Even when I heard this album the first time, this song knocked me down. Who is pure?/What is pure?

“Can’t Do Nuttin’ For Ya, Man!” — I first heard this song in February, and it’s been stuck in my head ever since. I can’t do nuttin’ for ya, man! Flavor Flav got problems of his own!

“Leave This Off Your Fu*Kin Charts — Instrumental” — I didn’t add the asterisk here, Flav conveniently added it for me.

“B Side Wins Again” — Electric guitars and telephone vocals? Count me in.

“Final Count Of The Collision Between Us And The Damned — Instrumental” — This song is less than a minute long but its title is so great that I can’t leave it out.

“Fight The Power” — Have you heard? Rolling Stone just released their list of the 500 best songs of all time! (I know because at least five different people sent it to me.) This song made #2! Pretty fantastic, for what was originally written to be the theme song for Do The Right Thing.


“Pollywanacracka” — I’ll admit it, the backing vocals here drive me nuts. Some fun gender commentary, though.


Full disclosure, the first time I heard this one I thought it was way too chaotic. But you know what? I actually think this should be above It Takes A Nation…. It’s much smarter, and Flav says “Yeah boiiii!” approximately 99% less.

Review #175: DAMN., Kendrick Lamar

Review #177: Every Picture Tells A Story, Rod Stewart