Chronic 2001 (1999)
2001 is thick-bass-heavy like 22" inch rims buoyed
by hydraulic bounce. It's the sound of twilight street folklore,
old yarns spun by vain, swaggering young and old Gs. And
Dre frames the album with his only two solo cuts, "The Watcher,"
and the melodic, Mary J. Blige-enhanced "The Message," affirming
that he is indeed the Alpha and the Omega. "The Watcher"
ignites without warning: "Things just ain't the same for
gangsters," Dr. Dre booms over high octane bass tickled
with high octave keys. A panoramic survey of rap through
one its sub-genre's architects, Dr. Dre reminds us that
he has been there, done that, seen that, from Eazy-E's death
to Tupac's murder, and that the new Dr. Dre, a thirtysomething
self-proclaimed family man, has "moved out of the hood for
good." However, unlike artists who create id-satiating alter-egos
(see RZA/Bobby Digital), Dr. Dre passes the thug baton to
fully independent other egos like Hittman and Eminem with
which to race up the charts.
with a plucky ukulele, "Still D.R.E." is the last anthem
of the millennium with equally incisive lyrics, courtesy
of ghostwriter Sean Carter. Dr. Dre and his multi-platinum
boy Eminem converse "Guilty Conscience"-style on "What's
the Difference." A "biotch"-whispering Snoop and a virulent
Hittman drape "Bitch N****s," a low slung, Blaxploitationist-funk-groove.
"Bang Bang" sizzles. "Forgot about Dre" cranks.
the jams just go on and on, way into the Dre night, to the
dawn of the Dre Day.