These days, the word “classic” is thrown around as loosely as a Nerf ball at a picnic. However, we at TRU consider classics to be something which stand the test of time and have a resounding influence on their respective fields. But how do albums considered classics sound to the ears of TRU’s young blood? Aaron J. McKrell was born in 1990 and we’ve convinced him to turn his scope on a classic from the rich history of hip-hop to view it through a contemporary lens in a weekly series we call…
It’s fitting that I reviewed Doggystyle right after The Chronic, because Snoop Dogg’s debut seems almost like a sequel to Dr. Dre’s masterpiece. If that’s the case, then it’s also fitting to call Doggystyle one of the rare sequels that doesn’t disappoint. While it isn’t as captivating as The Chronic, Doggystyle is still a great album overflowing with G Funk.
The ringing doorbell on “Bathtub” signifies the beginning of a giant house-party feel this album has. The great thing about it is it would sound just as good at a frat house as I imagine it would at a trap house. For instance, on the classic “Gin and Juice,” Snoop describes party guests not chipping in for alcohol expenses. This lament proves that no matter where you live, you can’t go cheap on the booze.
Dr. Dre keeps the album equal parts funky and fresh, and though the production is reminiscent to that on The Chronic, the good doctor manages to keep the music from sounding recycled. Snoop is also the most flavorful emcee I’ve ever heard, and it seems like there isn’t a word in the English language that doesn’t roll smoothly off his tongue. Peep his smooth braggadocio on “Tha Shiznit.”
If it’s gangsta and it’s a party, it’s, well, a gangsta party. After the extremely creative tribute to Slick Rick on “Lodi Dodi,” Snoop gets grimy on “Murder Was the Case.” Both are excellent showcases of his storytelling ability, and leave me scratching my head as to why he’s not more revered for his narrative chops. From there, the album is an excellent, I-wave-my-hands-in-the-air-’cause-I-just-don’t-care type of hardcore party. As the album goes on, its themes do wear a little, but it still manages to stay just fresh enough to avoid being boring. Even the plentiful skits do little to detract from the overall excellence of Doggystyle. If you don’t believe me,
Ya betta aks somebody!
Classics Revisited: Dr. Dre – The Chronic
Classics Revisited: Gang Starr – Daily Operation
Classics Revisited: Main Source – Breaking Atoms
Classics Revisited: A Tribe Called Quest – The Low End Theory
Classics Revisited: Geto Boys – We Can’t Be Stopped
Classics Revisited: Lord Finesse & DJ Mike Smooth – Funky Technician
Classics Revisited: Ice Cube – Amerikkka’s Most Wanted
Classics Revisited: De La Soul – 3 Feet High and Rising
Classics Revisited: Beastie Boys – Paul’s Boutique
Classics Revisited: Slick Rick – The Great Adventures Of Slick Rick
Classics Revisited: Big Daddy Kane – Long Live The Kane
Classics Revisited: Public Enemy – It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
Classics Revisited: NWA – Straight Outta Compton
Classics Revisited: Eric B & Rakim – Paid In Full