Although Dre's been making more trouble than music lately (the pummeling of a female video host, an assault in L.A., a brawl in New Orleans, other mayhem; the menacing single "Deep Cover" was his only output last year), the sonic architect – now charging that Eazy-E and N.W.A manager Jerry Heller robbed him – hasn't lost his stride in the studio. On The Chronic, he's conducting a hip-hop orchestra and stepping with a band of youngstas. Snoop Doggy Dogg is the star, but newcomers Kurupt, Rage, RBX and That Nigga Daz also explode in fury alongside Dre and a lineup of soul stirrers and reggae chatterers. The raspy-voiced D.O.C., who topped the charts in 1989 before damaging his pipes in an auto wreck, makes an appearance in the comical skit "The $20 Sack Pyramid." And Bushwick Bill, from the Geto Boys, anchors the take-no-prisoners ensemble jam "Stranded on Death Row."
Most of The Chronic follows the outlaw stance of N.W.A. "The Day the Niggaz Took Over" provides the soundtrack to a riot ("It's time to rob and mob and break the white man off lovely," advises Daz), while "Bitches Ain't Shit" and "--------Wit Dre Day (and Everybody's Celebratin')" throw heat Eazy-E's way. Cops and other folks get wasted ("Dem punk mutha-fuckas in black and white ain't the only muthafuckas I gots ta fight") in a sometimes frightening amalgam of inner-city street games that includes misogynist sexual politics and violent revenge scenarios. Throughout, The Chronic drops raw realism and pays tribute to hip-hop virtuosity. Get down – and never mind when Dr. Dre did.
(Posted: Mar 18, 1993)
News and Reviews
Click "Copy Me" to add the RS.com Widget to your Facebook page, blog, MySpace page and more.
More CD Reviews
Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends
Tha Carter III
At Mount Zoomer
Saints Of Los Angeles
City That Care Forgot
One Of The Boys
I Know You're Married But I've Got Feelings Too