Snoop Dogg



by Hep Kat USER (121 Reviews)
June 13th, 2006 | 152 replies

Release Date: 1993 | Tracklist

I have one quick question for all you hardcore hip-hop aficionados out there: How the hell do you take a rapper whose stage name is a derivative of a children’s comic character seriously" The rapper would be Snoop Doggy Dogg (known simply as Snoop Dogg since his conversion from Death Row Records to No Limit Records). The character would be Snoopy: the loveable beagle from Charles’ Schulz’s classic comic strip “Peanuts.” Cordozar Calvin Broadus Jr. was given the name “Snoopy” by his mother during childhood, due to the look of his eyes. Now, rappers generally like to cast an illusion of power, dominance, and control. Somehow, a rapper loosely named after a dog who spent his days talking to a yellow bird named Woodstock, doesn’t seem to fit in with that premise. Ah, I suppose I can drop that issue for the time being.

Snoop Dogg started his career with an already well-established fan base. This was due to his extensive (and impressive) work on Dr. Dre’s milestone album The Chronic. Due to his contributions to that record, Snoop was viewed as being the most notable protégé to have come under Dre’s tutelage. Snoop Dogg released his debut album Doggystyle on the twenty-third of November, 1993. The album was (unsurprisingly) produced by Dr. Dre, and thus, was released on Death Row Records. Sine its original release Doggystyle has sold 5.9 million copies in the United States, certifying near six-times platinum status. Doggystyle held the top spot on the Billboard 200 for three weeks after release, spawned several hit-singles (including “Gin & Juice” which was nominated for a Grammy award in 1995), and is considered by many critics and insiders of the hip-hop industry to be an iconic masterpiece in the annals of rap’s history.

Doggystyle features Snoop Dogg’s trademark “lazy drawl” diction of rapping. This essentially means that Snoop’s lyrical delivery is extremely calm, laidback, and rhythmically complex, yet can be distinctively slurred at times. To be quite honest, I’ve never totally been a fan of Snoop’s style of rapping. I realize that one of hip-hop’s most vexing strong points is lyric composition. Therefore, it’s rather enjoyable when you can actually understand a talented lyricist’s brilliant wordplay. While Snoop’s “lazy drawl” allows his vocals to be perfectly audible, it just seems to have a sloppy effect on the album. In addition to this, Snoop really isn’t a talented songwriter. His songs are rather inane, and lack the natural “flow” that hip-hop should have. However, one area Doggystyle doesn’t come up scarce in is pure, unadulterated attitude. Snoop’s debut oozes a glamorous sense of entitlement and degradation, making it one of the original “glam-rap” albums. Things hip-hop related started to get more ambitious after Doggystyle.

Aside from the occasionally substandard rapping, Doggystyle is sorely lacking in the musical department. The beats throughout the album are overly repetitive, boring, and ultimately irritating. Instruments and sound samples seem to clash with each other at times, which severely detracts from the immersion experience. Once again, everything just seems to be rather sloppy. However, there’s a very serious upside as well: not all of the songs are sonically terrible. In fact, some, such as “Serial Killer” and “Gz and Hustlas” for example, are really quite catchy. They melodies seem to mesh with the vocals with near-perfect synergy. On the whole, Doggystyle seems to constantly contradict itself in terms of lyrical, musical, and overall song-construction. The result is a moderately enjoyable listen, which seems to exude an air of frustrating potential.

I’ll be the first to point out that praise of Doggystyle is usually not misplaced. The album definitely contains all of the ingredients for hip-hop superstardom. This is particularly evident on tracks such as the aforementioned “Gz and Hustlas” and “Serial Killer,” but is also fairly prominent on songs such as “Doggy Dogg World” and “What’s My Name (Who Am I).” These four songs are by far and away the best tracks that Doggystyle has to offer. From the above-average (for Snoop at least) wordplay, to the more engrossing music, to their feeling of sheer power, they are essential hip-hop masterpieces, that are marvelous in almost every respect possible. Conversely, some of the more irksome offerings, such as “Murder Was The Case,” “Gin & Juice,” and “Pump, Pump” are just rather exasperating. Songs like these suffer most from the substandard music and samplings; however, the oftentimes mediocre lyrics don’t help much either. I’ll be honest, with you, dear reader: many songs on Doggystyle aren’t inherently bad, they’re just too damn annoying to be an enjoyable listening experience.

There is perhaps no better example of Snoop Dogg’s go for the gusto mindset than the skits contained on Doggstyle. Of course, these are generally just filler, but they can be some of the most entertaining bits on the album. The highlight of the skits and interludes would have to be the very first one on the album, “Bathtub.” As an extremely lewd, sexually explicit, and (eventually) debauchery-laden little tale, “Bathtub” is the spoken-word equivalent of Snoop’s ego and fantastically belittling (towards women at least) mannerisms. If you want to see the pinnacle of rap’s braggadocio ambitions, then you will be well-served by giving “Bathtub” a quick listen.

Now, I know that many of you hip-hop aficionados tend to hold albums that are either breakthroughs/genre-defining moments in higher regard than others. I don’t blame you: every surface of music’s vast spectrum has its own heroes. I’ll readily admit that Doggystyle was definitely a shining moment for Snoop, and hip-hop itself. Still, it’s a good album, whose positives and negatives come to near-balance with each other. It’s far from perfect, but isn’t anywhere close to terrible either. It is what it is. And it is Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle. Now then, have you come up with an answer for my introductory question" Well, if you haven’t, then I suppose I have a little bit of ammunition to use against “S-N-Double-O-G” in case I want to bring him down a few notches.

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Bassist540 (4.5)
The perfect West Coast Hip Hop record....

Comments:Add a Comment 
June 13th 2006


Album Rating: 3.0

The only Snoop Dogg album I own is The Doggfather, pretty cool. Good job on the review, but I actully enjoy Snoop Dogg's rapping style and delivery.

June 13th 2006


Album Rating: 2.5

nice review. i agree most mainstream rap (nowadays) is terrible.This Message Edited On 06.13.06

The Jungler
June 13th 2006


I'm with Zebra, I like Snoop's style. I'm glad you reviewed this, you did a great job. I may do R&G or the new Paul Wall CD next.

The Jungler
June 13th 2006


Drive Slow is on that CD, and that song owns so hard.

EDIT: Joe's got Paul Wall and I'm doing The Root's Things Fall Apart.

Bring Hip-Hop to Sputnik ftw.This Message Edited On 06.13.06

June 13th 2006


Album Rating: 3.5

I understand what you mean about the album sounding sloppy, I usually don't listen to the whole thing because it does seem uneven and rushed in places, but still I'd rate it a little higher, I'm glad someone is doing more hip-hop

June 26th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I can't believe the low ratings this has got.

June 26th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

This is one of the only rap albums that i honestly cant get enough of.

The Jungler
September 2nd 2006


[quote=Iai]I can't believe the low ratings this has got.[/quote]I think that's because the east coast got no love for Dr. Dre and Snoop Dog.

September 2nd 2006


Because the east coast is a million times better.

December 14th 2006


Album Rating: 4.0

Rap classic and the 2nd-best G-Funk album ever released (Dre's Chronic edges it slightly). The rest of you cats don't know sh*t about gangsta rap. So like Snoop said, put these brizzos up on your chizzos. 4/5This Message Edited On 07.28.07

Digging: Glassjaw - Material Control

Apocalyptic Raids
August 6th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

so fun

Apocalyptic Raids
September 6th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

i prefer this album to the chronic now. snoop and dre still haven't topped their work on this album.

i think chris rock puts it well:

Doggystyle, to me, is better than Dr. Dre's Chronic. It has held up way better because it's a party album, and its lyrics are better. The Chronic is sonically incredible, but it's hard to drive around singing songs about "Eazy-E can eat a big fat dick." But I got a feeling I'll be singing "Gin and Juice" when I'm ninety.

January 18th 2008


Album Rating: 5.0

Classic Rap Album. The sound was unique at the time. Snoop came out hungry and really delivered a masterpiece. Fuck all the haters out there.

January 18th 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

I thought that this was one of the best hip-hop albums ever made.

January 26th 2009


Album Rating: 4.0

^^ its fun I'll give it that.

Gin and Juice is the shit.

January 26th 2009



March 29th 2009


Album Rating: 5.0

bitch my name is Sam Sneed you better rekidnize

April 17th 2009


Album Rating: 3.0

It has way too many skits, otherwise good but sounds kinda too similar.

April 22nd 2009


What is the story with the track listing? Loads of versions have 13 tracks and some have 18. It's really hard to find the 19 track original on the internet.

May 31st 2009


Snoop has a supreme ear for beats, at least he does here and the Doggfather.

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