A Dozen Pivotal Moments in the 30 Year Career of Public Enemy

Categories: Public Enemy

10. In 2004, with PE's future very much in doubt, Flavor Flav took to the airwaves to star in Season 3 of VH1's reality show The Surreal Life, during which he fell in love with actress Brigitte Nielsen. Their completely baffling yet oddly touching relationship led to a spin-off reality series, Strange Love, in 2005, after which Flav spent a few seasons looking for love on Flavor of Love, which aired from 2006-2008. None of that sat particularly well with Chuck D., who called Strange Love "Flavploitation," saying that Flav's "character and private issues are being trashed in front of millions for mere sake of profit and ratings," though he added that Flav's participation in the shows was ultimately his own decision.

11. Left virtually for dead critically and commercially, PE returned with a great album--easily their best album since Apocalypse 91--in 2007 when they issued their tenth LP, How You Sell Soul to a Soulless People Who Sold Their Soul? Noted Allmusic.com critic Stephen Thomas Erlewine in his review: "What's remarkable about How You Sell is how PE grows and matures without abandoning their core identity, proving that it's possible to age as a rap group without turning into an embarrassment. And even if PE doesn't pack the same kind of commercial punch as it used to, it's hard to call an album this spirited and alive irrelevant."

12. Last month, Public Enemy was nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2013. They seem like a lock, but if they're not selected for induction when the announcement is made next month, throwing garbage cans through windows might be the only appropriate response.

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