Game – The R.E.D. Album Review

Notable West Coast-revival rapper Game (formerly The Game) is the proud father of a fourth CD, his first since 2008’s LAX. With his tattoo-body advertising (Converse, Hurricane Shoes, Dodgers) multiple arrests and Grammy nominations, Game is looking to regain the spotlight, though perhaps it is a spotlight he never really had.

While he may have been certified platinum for his well-respected debut The Documentary, his level of recognition has not spiked since. He looks to do just that with The R.E.D Album, his first album to be released when he himself is not surrounded by controversy – whether it be assault charges, lawsuits or beefs with other artists. The question is, does he have “the game,” to be successful without all the non-musical hype?

I’m in the opinion that he does not, not quite yet. The R.E.D Album is a long 17-song epidemic (not counting outro/intros) of mediocrity that desperately wants to be offensive. In “Ricky” he mentions that he “Shot himself like Plaxico,” an irrelevant reference to NFL star Plaxico Burress, who accidentally shot himself in the leg at a New York Club in 2008. In “The Good, The Bad, The Ugly” he shamelessly talks about taking his “Dickout this bitches mouth,” so he can look out a window?

He disses Rihanna, in “Martians Vs Goblins,” mentioning throwing her in front of a train, calls Bruno Mars gay and casually throws in a dig about Lebron’s receding hairline. On “Paramedics” (with Young Jeezy) he says “Ain’t a rapper alive me and Jeezy ain’t shitting on.” All of these statements are either full of pompous bravado or are simply untrue or insincere. Half the time this CD contradicts itself, mentioning respect for women one second, then the Rihanna comment the next.

To be fair “Speakers On Blast” is perhaps catchier than anything on Watch The Throne, and the decently big-name guests aren’t sparing. There’s Lil’ Wayne, Nelly Furtado, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre., Chris Brown, E-40 and Big Boi, to name a few. Some are as useless as the trash talking, while others seem to fit. I do however, have to give him props for his bold use of electric guitar in “All I Know,” it’s not half bad.

Overall The Red Album is okay, but not worth buying in its entirety due to incessant Blood patriotism (gang innuendo, though he reassures us that “R.E.D.” refers to “rededication,” to hip hop) and obnoxious certainty. Certainty that he could drop this album at around the same time as Jay-Z and Kanye’s Watch The Throne AND his cohort Lil’ Wayne’s Tha Carter IV, and still get the respect and bank? I don’t think so.

Here’s a list of the songs in order of quality:

  1. Speakers On Blast
  2. Paramedics
  3. Red Nation
  4. Ricky
  5. The Good, The Bad, The Ugly
  6. Hello
  7. Pot Of Gold
  8. Drug Test
  9. Martians Vs Goblins
  10. Heavy Artillery
  11. All I Know
  12. The City
  13. California Dream
  14. All The Way Gone
  15. Mama Knows
  16. Good Girls Go Bad
  17. Born In The Trap
[Buy/obtain the first four tracks]

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