- Hardcover: 590 pages
- Publisher: Spiegel & Grau (October 30, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0812995546
- ISBN-13: 978-0812995541
- Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 2 x 9.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 3.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 62 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Beastie Boys Book Hardcover – October 30, 2018
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An Amazon Best Book of November 2018: Guys, the Beastie Boys wrote a book (or maybe conjured is a better word), and it's a piece of work. Michael Diamond and Adam Horovitz, otherwise known as Mike D and Ad-Rock, present Beastie Boys Book, a rambling and unruly stream-of-consciousness trip through more than three decades of uncensored memories—records, rashes, tours, graphic novels, and playlists. Madonna’s here, as is Guns N’ Roses, Dolly Parton, Johnny Ryall and the Egg Man. Illustrated with dozens or possibly hundreds of pictures, we get relive their earliest shows, go behind the scenes of their short-lived magazine, Grand Royal (which mainstreamed the Mullet, the business-in-front/party-in-the-back "hairstyle"), and relive pickup basketball games between sets at Lollapalooza, in which Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan dunks savagely against type. Lest you think this is frivolous, disreputable stuff, Amy Poehler, Wes Anderson, Jonathan Lethem, and National Book Award- and Pulitzer Prize-winner Colson Whitehead stop by with their own contributions. Beastie Boys Book is uncountable things, but overall it's a box full of love letters to fans, founding member Adam Yauch (who passed away in 2012), the early days of hip-hop, and dirty old New York. It's a book that can't, won’t stop giving. —Jon Foro, Amazon Book Review
“This entertaining look at Beastie Boys history is as innovative and raucous as the band’s music.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Beastie Boys fans will devour this book, as will anyone interested in the early days of hip-hop, the art/music/street life of New York City in the 1980s, and the alternative-nation zeitgeist of the ’90s.”—Kirkus Reviews
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Hefty is a perfect word for this book. More Chicago style pizza than NY.
I’ve not read the book except a few pages I’ve skimmed since I got it a couple of hours ago. So my review is on the Book structure and printing…and unfortunately Amazon’s declining care of products it sells.
The Book. As said above it’s huge. Not tall or wide but thick. “Ah, like a thick-ass book that's filled with wack rhymes”. Unlike most biographies where there are about 20 pages in the middle devoted to photos, this book has the photos and illustrations are throughout it’s entirety. It resembles a Fanzine more than a book. Plus there are tons of little extras throughout that only Beastie Fans will appreciate.
The binding is quality and seems like it will stand the test of time. From what I can tell it has smyth sewn binding which make it lay fairly flat when opened on a table. This is nice because you can actually see the middle parts of this gigantic book.
The paper and printing are quality as well. The paper is a non-coated stock (matte) which allows the ink to absorb into the page creating rich deep colors in the photographs. Plus the paper has a nice nostalgic smell. There are a few glossy sections but only used when appropriate, or to break up the pace of the book.
Now onto the Amazon not so Prime deal I got on this book. Note: This is just me being picky. But needs to be noted in case others got the same damage on their book and paid more for it. I pre-ordered my book months ago for $35 through Amazon Prime. I now see it’s $30. “Knucklehead deli tried to gyp me on the price” I get it, prices change blah blah blah. I wouldn’t be so upset except that although my book was on my doorstep at 8am this morning which was sofa king Rad to wake up to, it is damage. The top right corner all the way through the pages to the back cover (see photos). I’ve tried to mend it myself the best I can. I’ll probably keep because it’s a waste of natural resources to ship this back because of a bent corner. I know I sound like I’m being silly about this but when it’s delivered damaged (no way this happened in shipping, the box was in perfect shape) and then you see that you could have waited and saved $5…it just gets under the skin.
Anyways, if you love the Beasties and have been with them since the 80s like me, or even if you are a newer fan of this millennium…get this book. R.I.P. MCA.
As I matured, so did their music. Later we got So Wha'cha Want, Sabotage, and Intergalactic as their highlights. They only produced eight albums, but each one was surprisingly unique from the one prior. But, for me, I rarely follow musicians personal lives and dont pay attention to much else besides when I either buy an album or its on the radio.
As with the Beastie Boys, while I did not buy every one of their albums or follow their personal lives beyond their music, I was surprised when I heard of Adam Yauch's death. Seemed so soon. And the opening story by Mike D reminded me of this fact and how impactful he was on their lives, personally and musically. Most of the book are reminiscing by the remaining two Beastie Boys, Mike D and Ad-Rock, telling their stories through each album and other incidents that may or may not have been controversial at the time. Some of the photos in the book I can even recall from back in my youth, seeing them in music mags or newspapers, wondering what exactly what happened.
The book is filled evenly with pictures and stories. At 550 pages, you are getting the full gamut here, and from the horses mouth. The book is well designed that is funny, heartfelt and inspiring. It is less of a biography of a band and more of a culture. Some are anecdotal. Some are things strictly from their memory. Other things culled from events known to everyone. All within the changing climate of the early 80's with rap on the rise and punk rock on the decline. And these guys are the spawn of that zeitgeist. Overall, this is a perfect book and to revisit Beastie Boys in this way gives them substance as both musicians and creative and intelligent people.
From what I've read so far, AdRock's chapter on cassette tapes really hit home. It's....perfect. Nostalgia personified, and he absolutely nails it - how ridiculous a method it was to record/playback music, etc., yet how critical cassette tapes were to us as kids, and how their existence and meaning shaped who we became today.
To AdRock and Mike D.: A million thank-yous! I know you understand the impact you've had on multiple generations, around the world, and that's something that will live forever. Even now, 30+ years later, me and my kids belt out Beastie Boys tunes while driving around, and it's so much fun! It's truly something special, the impact and importance the Beasties had, and still have, and all I can say is: THANK YOU! For those reading, go get this book. Sure, it weighs over 3 lbs. and as thick as a college textbook (or Bible, even), but man, is it essential reading.