It has been said that hip-hop, like other music genres, is a young man’s game, but Snoop Dogg is 22 years in and is still making albums worth listening to.
Over the course of the over two decades of releasing music, Snoop has changed up his sound, originating as one of the frontrunners of West Coast gangster rap to a now much more pop-oriented sound.
With the release of his 13th studio album, Bush, Snoop has placed himself into a category occupied by very few rappers. His music is still charting even though he’s well past the ten-album mark. Artists like Jay-Z, Nas and the Roots are among the others to accomplish the same feat.
So we know he’s still making albums, but is Bush any good?
It is much different than his Doggystyle roots, but the album manages to stay entertaining lyrically for someone whose style doesn’t fit with modern rap conventions and the production — which was handled mostly by the Neptunes production team of Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo — stays consistent throughout.
Snoop Dogg has been making hits with Pharrell Williams since the early 2000s and has had hit songs with him such as “Drop It Like It’s Hot,” “Beautiful,” and “Let’s Get Blown.”
From the first song to the last, Bush has a similar sound to Snoop’s previous album 7 Days of Funk and to Pharrell’s Grammy nominated album Girl.
The album succeeds at mixing the vocal and schematic range that Snoop has been displaying for the majority of his career along with the funk and pop production styles making it an album that is easy to dance to and just sit and listen to.
The album features rappers who have dominated mainstream rap such as Kendrick Lamar, T.I., and Rick Ross while also featuring pop icon Gwen Stefani, along with Motown legend Stevie Wonder and the R&B great Charlie Wilson.
The only problem one may find with the album is that it does little to differentiate itself lyrically and sonically from other Snoop and Pharrell collaborations.
Although the album isn’t very long in length — just over the 40-minute mark — it is an easy listen that is very fitting for the summer time. It’s definitely worth a listen for anyone who appreciates the funk-sound that has been making its way back into hip-hop.
Snoop Dogg plays a headlining set as "DJ Snoopadelic" at 11 p.m. on Monday at Movement Electronic Music Festival; see movement.us for more information.
“I’ve been doing this thing for a long time, and I don’t think there is anything I’d want to do other than music,” he said. “Nothing better than doing [concerts] for folks who’ve been listening to me from the start.”