November 18, 2014

Reader Review: D.P.G. (Tha Dogg Pound) - Dillinger & Young Gotti (May 1, 2001)



(Today, Sir Bonkers, of the Digging In Tha Crates blog, closes out my brief, unofficial Death Row Records alum series with a write-up for Tha Dogg Pound's self-released sophomore album, Dillinger & Young Gotti. If you're wondering why the words “Tha Dogg Pound” fail to appear on the album cover, it's explained within. Leave some comments below, and be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom.)



What's always struck me about Death Row Records label head Marion “Suge” Knight is his hypocrisy. Allegedly a hyper-violent individual who didn't mind breaking the law himself to get his way, Suge likes to use legal means to irk his former employees and has a good enough understanding of it to obtain the desired results. I don't think anyone considers using Death Row's legal department (the only department that was still effectively functioning in 2001, really) to keep Tha Dogg Pound from using their own group name on their post-Death Row releases a very gangsta thing to do. Apparently, the man just doesn't follow any sort of code of honour, and he may be a sociopath: he did the same thing to Snoop Dogg, who was forced to drop the "Doggy" from his rap name after he signed to No Limit. He also took the title The Chronic 2000 from Dr. Dre in a similar fashion. It is for this reason the subject of today's post was released under the nom de plume D.P.G.

Of course, D.P.G. is the same Dogg Pound that released the classic debut album Dogg Food in 1995: Daz Dillinger and Kurupt merely weren't allowed to use their own rap name, so they went with an acronym that stands for Dogg Pound Gangstaz (as though nobody would be able to tell it was them?). It's not entirely clear why it took them six years to record and release their sophomore album, but it probably has got something to do with Death Row Records imploding around them while they were putting together what was going to be their second album for the label, West Coast Aftershock. When that album got canceled, Kurupt got the fuck out of dodge, leaving for A&M Records to start a solo career, leaving his boy Daz behind to start a solo career by default, dropping Retaliation, Revenge and Get Back for the label before ditching Death Row and Suge himself.

By the time Dillinger & Young Gotti dropped in 2001, both Kurupt and Daz had two solo albums under their belt. They were established solo acts who still enjoyed a working relationship with each other. Given that they hadn't released an album together in six years, it was seen as a reunion of sorts. Of course, it's a bit of a downer that neither Snoop nor The Lady Of Rage make cameo appearances: the guest performer with the highest profile is Beanie Sigel, who certainly isn't a bad rapper, but can hardly be called a good substitute for Kurupt and Daz's former labelmates. Dr. Dre also didn't show up for this party, which doesn't necessarily present a big problem for these guys, since Daz can be more than competent at putting together an instrumental, but it would have been nice for him to have given Dillinger & YoungGotti his blessing. He was probably too busy hanging out with his new friend Eminem instead.

I haven't got much else to say about Dillinger & Young Gotti because it has been largely forgotten by everyone, including yours truly, but there's no reason why this should suck. Sure, nobody has listened to this in a while, but that's possibly because Dogg Pound albums don't really get the same amount of attention as a release by, say, Snoop, let alone anything new from Dr. Dre.

Let's get into this and find out shall we?

1. INTRO (DILLINGER & YOUNG GOTTI)
Next!

2. DIPP WITH ME (FEAT. RBX)
It's nice to see that RBX, also a former Death Row inmate, was still in Kurupt's or Daz's Rolodex. And under his original rap nickname even! I guess even Suge never cared enough about the guy to sue him for using his moniker. The beat, produced by Mike Dean and Daz, is alright, I suppose. Kurupt, however, sounds like his notoriously shitty post-Death Row self, which is to say he's trying to fit as many multi-syllable words and as much profanity he possibly can into his mic time without actually getting a grip on the beat with his flow. Also, Daz's hook sounds like shit. “Dipp With Me” is an uneven mess.

3. WE LIVIN GANGSTA LIKE (FEAT. XZIBIT)
This is not bad. The Daz and Mike Dean instrumental sounds like something you could cruise along to in Grand Theft Auto, and the hook, performed by Kurupt and some uncredited singer, is un-sucky enough. X does murder both his hosts on their own shit, though, so that was incredibly rude of him.

4. COASTIN
Mike Dean leaves the studio to leave Daz to his own accord, at least according to the album credits, because Daz commands the man to "let the bass go", so either he was there but never got a paycheque for his work on “Coastin” or he had left but failed to inform Daz of his departure. Whoever made this beat, it's lightweight, spaced-out, and sparkly like an Edward Cullen. This won't cause one to take Dillinger & Young Gotti out of the CD player and break it in half, or, you know, skip to something else on Grooveshark or Spotify, but it's not very memorable, either.

5. WE ABOUT TO GET FUCC UP
This ode to getting drunk and high off of various substances could use a more celebratory beat than Daz provides. This beat could use a performance that delivers more violence, or at least the threat thereof. What I'm trying to say is that this song is a mismatch of vocals and instrumentation.

6. GITTA STRIPPIN
This ode to getting casual pussy from disposable women could use a more sultry instrumental for it to be enjoyable, because this one just screams “gonorrhea”. C'mon, Daz, we know you're better than this. You made the beats to “If We All Fucc”, “Some Bomb Azz Pussy”, and if a recent Suge Knight interview is to be believed, Snoop Doggy Dogg's “It Ain't No Fun (If the Homies Can't Have None)”.

7. WORK THAT PUSSY
Thank God this shit only lasted a minute-twenty.

8. PARTY AT MY HOUSE
It would seem that Daz got his mojo back, because this old school-tinged instrumental is bright, bouncy, and playful enough for Kurupt and himself to have some fun over. Kurupt still fails to sound like his old fire-spitting self, but he does a better job on here than he has on the rest of this album so far. This isn't the best shit these guys ever made, but it's definitely enjoyable.

9. YOU'RE JUS A B.I.T.C.H.
There's a reason why Kurupt and Daz's misogynistic sex raps were much more tolerable and sometimes enjoyable during their Death Row days: the beats were a lot better back then, and their rhymes were a lot more humourous, less bitter, and, therefore, more palatable. On here, nobody's "using ho's like tennis rackets" or anything silly like that: Daz just calls a bunch of folks bitches. That's no fun.

10. TREAT HER LIKE A LADY
You know what? Kurupt and Daz retroactively deserve a drink thrown in their faces combined with a rejection from every woman each of them has met since creating this horseshit until all they'll have to "treat like ladies" is each other.

11. AT NIGHT
These two could have used this time to catch up on some sleep or brainstorming new ideas.

12. BEST RUN (FEAT. BEANIE SIGEL & ROSCOE)
Over a quiet storm-ish instrumental, Kurupt, his little brother Roscoe, Beans, and Daz get to spit some boring ass verses. Sigel stands out as the best rapper, but that shouldn't be read as any sort of endorsement of this song or his particular performance. Everyone on here has done much better work elsewhere. Well, except Roscoe, who's only on here because Kurupt is his big brother.

13. SHIT HAPPENS
The beat to this song can't decide whether it wants to be mournful or creepy, and the bars are all about violently threatening a bunch of folks and being indifferent to their deaths. This song becomes its own punchline in the process of playing out.

14. MY HEART DON'T PUMP NO FEAR (FEAT. SLIP CAPONE)
People who don't feel fear don't last very long, kind of like my attention span while listening to this boring, nonsensically-titled song.

15. THERE'S SOMEWAY OUT
Apparently Daz and Kurupt would rather not be gangstaz. Making better music than you do here can do wonders for your income, which in turn can provide a way out of the cycle of violence, gentlemen.

16. HERE WE ARE/ GO KILLEM
Daz gets to rock solo for an entire track, and while his beat leaves a lot to be desired, his performance isn't bad. But at this point, it's too little, too late. Also, this may not suck as much as most of this album does, but it's still not deserving of two song titles.

17. I'MA GANGSTA
This Kurupt solo song also doesn't sound as shitty as most of this album does, either. Who knows? Maybe Dillinger & Young Gotti's problem is that, at this point in this career, these two bored the shit out of each other.

18. HOW MANY?
Much too many at this point.

19. C-WALK CHA CHA CHA
Stupid title and hook aside, this wasn't bad. It's mostly tolerable because it's fairly silly and it lasts for less than two minutes, though.

20. D.P.G.
This beat sounds like the one from Dogg Food's “New York, New York”, except played in reverse: Kurupt even gives a nod to that track on the chorus. “New York, New York” kicks the everliving shit out of this song for looking at it funny, though, so addressing it on here probably wasn't the best idea.

21. DILLINGER & YOUNG GOTTI (OUTRO)
And we're out. Thank God, we're out.

FINAL THOUGHTS: Dilliger & YoungGotti sounds, to put it bluntly, awful. Daz and (especially) Kurupt sound like they're bored out of their minds with this rap shit, and Daz's work behind the boards sounds rusty. This was obviously recorded on a shoestring budget (it was released on their own indie label, D.P.G. Records, after all), but I'm not convinced that throwing money at this project would have made much of a difference, it's that uninspired. Maybe all Tha Dogg Pound needed was a bit of support from Snoop, or maybe they needed a longer fucking vacation. Who knows? What I do know is that this was a chore to listen to, and as a fan of Kurupt and Daz, saying that kind of breaks my heart.

BUY OR BURN? You could seek out the two tracks below, but don't be in a hurry to do so. Even if Suge made a dick move in taking Tha Dogg Pound's name away from the group, this album isn't deserving of being filed under the same category as Dogg Food anyway.

BEST TRACKS: “We're Living Gangsta Like”; “Party At My House”





























Speaking of Suge...




Reader Review: Tha Dogg Pound - 2002 (July 31, 2002)


...it appears that he actually used the Dogg Pound name for a release of his own, rather than just having taken it way from Kurupt and Daz to spite them. 2002 was released not long after Dillinger & Young Gotti on Death Row Records, with zero creative input from either Kurupt or Daz. This, of course, would mean that people coming to the record store for "the new Dogg Pound album" could leave the store with this album and without ever having even seen Dillinger & Young Gotti sitting on the shelves. Which may very well be Suge's sneakiest ploy ever.

The amount of times the Death Row Records story has been told and retold on this blog almost equals the amount of times a Death Row album has been reviewed on this blog, so it shouldn't be necessary for me to retell it (although bits and pieces of it might come to the surface during reviews of individual tracks). All you, the informed reader, need to know is that 2002 was not released during the label's heyday (from 1992 to 1997), but rather, during it's lukewarm, on life-support compilation-regurgitating period where its CEO was locked up and any artist unfortunate enough to be signed to the label couldn't get an album released to save his or her life, but people who had long since left the label (or, in 2Pac's case, the world of the living altogether) still had albums coming out regularly.

The fact that 2002 was released under these circumstances could be interpreted to mean that this album is made up of some reheated leftover shit that wasn't good enough for a proper release, since the artists involved weren't allowed to have a say in it. It can be and often is understood that 2002 is not worthy of any listener's time. That isn't necessarily the case though.

It has been noted above that Kurupt and Daz, who had left Death Row in 1997 and 1998, respectively, were actively recording a follow up to their underrated debut Dogg Food That album, which was allegedly supposed to be called West Coast Aftershock, never saw the light of day in its intended vision because the vehicle that would've brought it to the masses had run out of gas, but perhaps 2002 can be seen as an approximation of it. It is known that two of the best tracks from those recording sessions were given a 2Pac verse and thrown onto his Death Row debut, All Eyez On Me: those songs being “Got My Mind Made Up) (which retained the Daz and Kurupt performances) and “Can't C Me” (which didn't). So if 2002 is a version of what that second album was supposed to become, it is most likely one that lacks what would have been some absolute highlights.

Also, in 1998, Daz released his only Death Row Records solo album, Retaliation, Revenge and Get Back, which had so much Kurupt on it that it may as well have been the sophomore Death Row Dogg Pound album and Suge's double disc compilation The Chronic 2000 also had some canned Dogg Pound on it. Kurupt had already left Death Row to start his own label and solo career and was probably not available to assist Daz on those latter two releases, so it is quite likely that Daz cherry-picked the songs he actually liked from those recording sessions and used them for his own project.

Sigh. I've just rationalized the enthusiasm out of myself for reviewing 2002.

Maybe these songs are merely leftovers, not assigned to any specific album but unreleased otherwise. At least Suge used his one call to get Big Hutch, a/k/a/ Cold 187um of Above the Law fame, to give some of these tracks a polish. And that is, in fact, something to get excited about, because the man is a great producer with mad credentials (who may or may not have invented G-Funk in the first place). And, dare I say it, given that I just panned the album Tha Dogg Pound did have creative control over, perhaps it isn't such a bad thing that they weren't around.

One last thing I need to mention: The title of this album attempts to make this appear to be some sort of sequel to Dr. Dre's 2001, which only got that title in the first place because of shady Suge business tactics: Suge claimed the title The Chronic 2000 for himself, so Dre was forced to call his album something else. Then Dre's album outsold Suge's in multitudes, because duh. (None of this explains why anyone in their right mind would ever think an album from Tha Dogg Pound would serve as a sequel to a Dr. Dre album, but whatever.)

Alright, let's do this!

1. INTRO
Next!

2. ROLL WITH US
I do believe that this uses the same vocal track as the song of the same name that appeared on Suge Knight Represents The Chronic 2000, except that this was given a new, more complete-yet-more saccharine--sounding production by Cold 187um and Darren Vegas. However, I can't be bothered to give it a proper check. Someone should find out and leave their conclusions in the comment section. Whether this is a proper previously unreleased song or not, when taken at face value, it does not make for a very good listening experience. Speaking of Darren Vegas and his history of fucking with Death Row vocal tracks he has no business with: I do believe he was responsible for the first installment of the 2Pac Nu-Mixx Klazzics series. Now I'm not the biggest fan of 2Pac and especially his Death Row work, but that album is proof positive that you can take mediocre rap songs and, with enough time, effort, and persistence, you, too, can remix them into horse feces.

3. JUST DOGGIN (FEAT. NATE DOGG)
This song was with absolute certainty previously released: it appeared on the Sunset Park soundtrack in 1996, with a much more energetic Daz Dillinger instrumental that's been replaced with something more mellow by Big Hutch. For my money, the original knocks the teeth out of this version, but taken on its own, this isn't bad. And the original probably wouldn't fit very well in these surroundings anyway, because it was much more vintage 1996-sounding than anything found on 2002. Nate Dogg's hook, however, while sounding good, is unnecessarily confusing: he mentions Dr. Dre, which convinced the people at AllMusic.com that he produced the version that appears on 2002. (He didn't produce either version of this song.)

4. SMOKE (FEAT. SNOOP DOGG & THA RELATIVEZ)
This collaboration between Kurupt and Snoop, with some fresh Death Row signees who probably have never met either Kurupt or Snoop in person tacked on the end, has a surprisingly nice, chilled-out instrumental by Big Hutch and Darren Vegas that fits the marijuana theme perfectly. Unfortunately, Kurupt, who opens this one, completely ignores it the vibe, spitting violent nonsense, as do Tha Relatives, whoever the fuck they are. Even Snoop himself, who completely dominates “Smoke” by having both a verse and a hook, forgets about it for the better part of his bars, too (although he does come back around to it at the end). This song is sonically alright, but its lack of lyrical focus makes it all kinds of useless to any stoner with a basic understanding of the English language.

5. GANGSTA RAP (FEAT. CROOKED I)
This one has been previously released too, but you'd need dental records to identify it as being the same song that appeared on the compilation Too Gangsta For Radio. On that version, Daz was replaced by Naughty By Nature's Treach, and Kurupt's verse was replaced by a Scarface contribution (although his hook was left in place). Crooked I was still present in middle-verse capacity, as he is on here, but with an entirely different verse. The Too Gangsta For Radio version was produced by Big Hutch, who produced or co-produced pretty much everything on 2002 except for this track, which was handled by Fredwreck, who I always imagined only started working with Kurupt and Daz only after both of them had already left the label, collaborating with them on Kurupt's sophomore album The Streetz Iz A Mutha. You would assume, then, that Crooked I was a late addition to “Gangsta Rap” because he was signed to Death Row after Kurupt and Daz already left. This can neither be confirmed nor disproven, because Crooked had a working relationship with them at that time of this song's recording, and appeared on Tha Streetz Iz A Mutha at least twice. However, Crooked references Death Row Records in his verse, while on the outro, Daz shouts out Crooked. Here are the conclusions I've drawn from all this: this version of “Gangsta Rap” is, for the most part, the original version of the song, which must have been intended for Tha Streetz Iz A Mutha, or was at least recorded during those sessions. The Daz and Kurupt verses and the Fredwreck beat were already in place. Crooked I was also on the original version, but redid his verse out of deference for his employer. That only leaves one question: how in the hell did the people at Death Row get the masters to a song that wasn't recorded for their label? Did Crooked I have it in his possession? Does Suge have l33t h4x0r skillz and steal it from Daz's hard drive? Anyway I've just performed some gangsta rap archeology right here and writing these paragraphs exhausted me, but the song isn't bad. (Jesus.  I need to take a quick nap right now.)

6. 10 TIL MIDNIGHT (FEAT. SKG)
Thankfully, there's not nearly as much to write about this song. The quiet storm-ish instrumental is meh, as are the verses from Kurupt and the guest star, unknown female rapper SKG, who was a new addition to the Death Row camp in 2001 and therefore couldn't have made these indecent proposals to Kurupt in person in the studio (or to 2Pac, for that matter, with whom she performed a duet on “Let 'Em Have It” off of his posthumous Until the End of Time album released by Death Row in the same year).

7. LIVING THA GANGSTA LIFE (FEAT. XZIBIT)
This is an incomplete, premature version of “We Livin Gangsta Like”off of Tha Dogg Pound's actual sophomore album, Dillinger & YoungGotti. It keeps the same verses by Kurupt, Daz and Xzibit, and even a skeletal version of the instrumental that made the final cut. The version that appears on Dillinger & Young Gotti is a lot better than this one, by the way, so this song is all sorts of redundant. What is interesting here, however, is that the intro features an unidentified person who calls out Snoop Dogg for telling the police that Suge Knight killed 2Pac. That would be the same Snoop Dogg who appeared three tracks ago on “Smoke”, and appears again later on on 2002. And at this point in their respective careers, neither Daz nor Kurupt were beefing with Snoop. Oh, Suge...

8. DON'T STOP (FEAT. 2PAC)
This wasn't previously released, but it would be re-released later, in its original incarnation, by Daz on his The Last of Tha Pound compilation in 2004, and here's the thing: the original version featured Nas rather than 2Pac. Credit where credit is due, though: you wouldn't be able to figure out this song was tweaked just by listening to it, so some actual work was put in on here. Pac's vocals fit Daz's beat perfectly, and Kurupt name-checks himself, Daz and Pac during the intro (as well as Slip Capone, a rapper who was at some point signed to Death Row but hasn't got jack shit to do with this song). At one point, Pac even calls out the same thing Kurupt and Daz keep repeating during the hook, and Kurupt's name-dropping of Esco has been expertly removed. In fact, one could say, without overstatement, that this version of “Don't Stop” sounds more natural than the original take. Whoever prepared this song for its inclusion on 2002 sure had some serious stones. If you listen closely, towards the end you can hear some of the original Nas vocals mixed deeply into the background (as an inside joke on the listener, maybe?). You should still look up the The Last of Tha Pound take, though, to hear Nasir rock over a Daz instrumental. Also, it contains a tacked-on big fat fuck-you verse by Daz towards Death Row and Suge Knight, which is quite entertaining for obvious reasons.

9. CHANGE THE GAME (REMIX) (JAY-Z FEAT. MEMPHIS BLEEK, BEANIE SIGEL, THA DOGG POUND, & DJ CLUE)
I hated the original (off the Roc-a-Fella posse album marketed as a Jay-Z solo album The Dynasty: Roc La Familia), but this one works slightly better because Kurupt and Daz sound more natural over Rick Rock's boring-but-typical West Coast beat than either Bleek or Sigel do. It still isn't a very good song, though, and the profit made by adding Tha Pound is almost lost because of mixtape deejay DJ Clue's incessant shouting. I guess he's entitled to doing that though, since this originally appeared on his own album, The Professional 2. But for those of you who've always wanted to hear Jay-Z on a Death Row album, even if it is because of a technicality, dig in. (I just think it's weird that Beanie Sigel figures prominently on both of the Dogg Pound albums featured today. Huh.)

10. CRIP WITH US
Meh. This is an early version of “Dip With Me”, which wasn't a very good song to begin with... or to end up with...eh, whatever.

11. WHAT CHA ABOUT
Kurupt is alone in the booth, and Big Hutch is alone behind the boards. This isn't the best song ever or anything, but the uninterrupted focus of both parties on their respective tasks has its positive effects, even if it is all but proven they never actually got together to record this. After this song, though, Suge probably couldn't afford Hutch's hourly rate anymore, so he left the Death Row studios for home. Perhaps never to return.

12. YOUR GYRLFRIEND (FEAT. MAC SHAWN & SOOPAFLY)
Explicitly misogynistic sex raps can be entertaining, but in order for them to be that, a good sense of humour on the part of the recording artist is usually required (see: Biggie's sex raps), and perhaps a sufficiently lush instrumental for contrast with the smutty lyrics, neither of which are present here. What is present here is Mac Shawn, who can't rap for shit. (Weirdly, this song shares a title with a track from Tha Streetz Iz A Mutha, both of which were produced by Daz. I'd do some digging on my own, but I just don't give that much of a shit, so I'm sure someone will fill me in later in the comments.)

13. FEELS GOOD (FEAT. LATOIYA WILLIAMS)
The placement of this track after “Your Gyrlfriend” may be questionable, though not as questionable as the actual inclusion of “Your Gyrlfriend” itself, but this song about positivity and love (and fucking, because this is a gangsta rap album, after all), with its soulful assist by R&B singer Latoiya Williams, is nice and uplifting. Both Daz and Kurupt's performances are decent, and Daz's instrumental is of the “keeping it simple” variety, but it actually does them favours here. Nice.

14. WAY TOO OFTEN (SOOPAFLY FEAT. KURUPT)
This was previously released on the Soopafly album Dat Whoopty Whoop, itself allegedly compiled from tracks stolen by Daz from the Death Row studios (possibly in retaliation for Suge stealing “Gangsta Rap” one way or the other – now that's gangsta!). As this sounds exactly like a Soopafly song featuring Kurupt, that backstory makes complete sense. It's pretty good, though, so complaints are suspended until something sucky pops up again.

15. IT'Z STILL ABOUT THAT MONEY
This is a Daz solo song, and a fairly decent one, if you enjoy catchy simplicity.

16. EVERY SINGLE DAY (FEAT. SNOOP DOGG)
This would be a perfectly fine way to end 2002 if it weren't for that snitch Snoop Dogg giving a perfectly good vintage Death Row-esque performance. The nerve of that motherfucker, snitching on Suge about killing 2Pac, who obviously isn't even dead because he attended the party that is 2002 as well. Daz's warm but spaced-out instrumental is, well, instrumental in making this one enjoyable as hell, and the cheesy but soulful female vocals are also nothing but helpful. And we're out, apparently.

Side note: after I submitted this review, I discovered that three songs off of 2002 were also featured on Daz's independently-released sophomore album R.A.W. in an altered form. Those songs would be "Your Gyrlfriend 2", "Feels Good", and "It'z All About That Money", all of which correspond with songs you just read about. I have no good explanation for this, because I'm sure that Daz could've hit Suge with a lawsuit if Death Row did this without his permission, and permission doesn't seem like something Daz would grant, but I felt this should be mentioned in the review anyway.

FINAL THOUGHTS: I can't believe I'm writing this, but 2002 is a much better album than Dillinger & Young Gotti. Sure, it has its flaws, and ethically, it is a bit iffy to create an album out of songs by artists who weren't given any say in the final product, but the fact of the matter is that Daz and (especially) Kurupt sounded much better during these sessions than on their actual sophomore album. Big Hutch, Darren Vegas, and Daz himself provide better beats on here than Daz did on Dillinger & Young Gotti. What's more, when 2002 was compiled Snoop Dogg was still contractually obligated to make an appearance, as was Nate Dogg. And 2Pac, well, I've already spent an earlier paragraph explaining how his disembodied verse ended up here, but still he's present and accounted for and sounds pretty good, something which can also be said for Crooked I. In short, 2002 is no Dogg Food, but it has better Kurupt, better Daz, better guests, and better beats than what Tha Dogg Pound were able to manage even with full creative control. It is what it is.

BUY OR BURN? That depends on your perspective. whether you think that releasing good music in and by itself is deserving of money. With the amount of fuckery that has taken place over these sixteen tracks, it is almost impossible to ethically recommend a purchase. And yet, Suge Knight's interference does seem to have resulted in an album that is at least half-filled with shit that sounds pretty good, which can't be said for Dillinger & Young Gotti. You may resent Suge getting paid, but if you feel that good music in and of itself is deserving of your money, then youshould pick up 2002.

BEST TRACKS: “Just Doggin'”; “Gangsta Rap”; “Don't Stop”; “What Cha Bout”; “Feels Good”; “It'z Still About That Money”; “Every Single Day”

-Sir Bonkers

(Questions? Comments? Exhausted? Leave your thoughts below.)



4 comments:

  1. Well, I liked these reviews. The Suge story is utterly fascinating though

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  2. don't agree with the reviews. I thought Dillinger & Young Gotti was very good, as Mike Dean reworked a lot of Daz's Death Row material (most of the album was recorded while Daz was still signed to Death Row). Kurupt wasn't in his prime anymore but the production overall is great and Daz & Kurupt still have chemistry together. I thought you tried too hard to imitate Max's style of writing and didn't care to elaborate why you thought songs sucked (i'm thinking about My heart don't pump no fear, for example). imo Dilli & Gotti is their second best album (their whole discography isn't that great, but isn't that bad either). 2002 was just a collection of various songs (some remixed) from various death row studio sessions from 1994 to 2000. some of the songs are excellent but the whole project in my opinion, lacks cohesiveness. nice write up.

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  3. Thanks for commenting. I can see why you would think I was trying to imitate Max but I wasn't doing that, or at the very least not intentionally so. But there's only so many ways to do one of these reviews and especially when you use the same template for your piece as someone else similarities between your writing styles are bound to show up. I didn't have a lot to say about a lot of these songs but the track-by-track format forces one's hand. I use another format on my own blog which allows me to comfortably skip past unremarkable songs or give my opinion on all of them in one sentence rather than having to come up with a new comment on each and every one of them. I have the distinct impression that Max encounters this problem on a regular basis too and that used to solve this problem with the three letter word but then moved on to more creative ways to dismiss the uninteresting.

    It's interesting idea that most of "Dillinger & Young Gotti" was recorded on Death Row and it sounds quite plausible too because would help explain why rough drafts of its songs appear on "2002". This could mean that Daz recorded his sophomore album "R.A.W." on Death Row too because some of its tracks appear on "2002" as well. I'll concede that I may have been a bit harsh on "Dillinger & Young Gotti" and I've since reconciled with exactly one of its songs, which would be "Gitta Strippin'". I still think it sounds like gonnorhoea, but in a good way (if that makes any sense) and some of Kurupt's demented lines are kind of hilarious. But I still think that it is for the most part doesn't sound very good and that "2002" is vastly superior. But if you like "Dillinger & Young Gotti" then more power to you.

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  4. Disagree with this review. Dillinger & Young Gotti was in my opinion, their second best album & the beats are banging.

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