Audio Mixer: Dru Boogie.
Recording information: Comedy Connection, Boston.
If the modern comedy mob is akin to the membership of the Wu-Tang Clan, Jim Norton plays Ol' Dirty Bastard to Louis C.K.'s RZA and Chris Rock's GZA. Norton delivers his material with the same fire and guts as Ol' Dirty, and their content is equally perverse, something made obvious by this album's title or one scan of this unquotable track list. Despicable is just what it says on the cover, and if you can get past that, it should probably say "hilarious," too, along with "surprisingly smart" and "downright sharp at times." You can't hate masterfully on penguins for five whole minutes without having some skill as "Penguins Are Assholes" displays, and if you check out "Bonding with People Sucks," you'll find Norton can riff on something we're all familiar with, do it with just a couple cuss words, and still have the audience in an uproar. That takes smarts, but still, the meat of Despicable is full-on, raging disgust with an extra helping of gross (you don't want to know how that "Fat ass lady in Florida" gets unstuck from the couch) and a double shot of depravity (you just don't want to know). His books offer a bit more depth, but if you want the full-on Norton attack, Despicable is the Shaolin Fist punch you've been waiting for, delivered by one of the dirtiest bastards you can imagine. ~ David Jeffries