February 3, 2005

The Game: The Documentary

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A self-proclaimed student of hip-hop, it’s apparent that Game paid close attention to the 50 Cent Get Rich or Die Tryin’ blueprint — create a buzz in the mixtape scene, catch a few bullets with your chest and team up with the best producer in hip-hop, Dr Dre.

In his mainstream debut album, Game follows the Fitty Formula down to a T. He drops raspy lyrics about getting shot, toking up and fucking women over bouncy club beats and infectious hooks. He even takes a few not-so-subtle jabs at a Mr. Ja Rule. However, while 50 Cent chose to saturate his debut with bad-guy braggadocio, Game offsets some of his harder cuts with intimate songs about fallen companions and his newborn son.

In the realm of gangster rap, you don’t have to be witty and you don’t have to be original. On Game’s impressive debut album, tales of gangbanging coexist with emotional tracks about fatherhood, all the while never leaving room for doubt that he lives the grimy life he spits.

4 Stars

Archived article by Frank Liu