Dr. Dre – “2001” review

7 years after his highly influential solo debut The Chronic, renown West Coast producer Dr. Dre is back with his 2nd full-length album that I actually find to be better than it’s predecessor. The production on here is some of the best production I’ve ever listened to. We’re still getting a dosage of the G-funk sound that was predominantly featured on The Chronic, but we’re also getting orchestral instrumentation from bassist Mike Elizondo as well as former Roots keyboardist Scott Storch. The heavy guest appearances on here are fantastic too like with Eminem’s hungrily angry verse on What’s the Difference? (which features a menacing Charles Aznavour sample) or 6-2’s laid-back verse on the smoothly produced Xxplosive. The album notably features a then up & coming L.A. MC by the name of Hittman (an acronym for Highly Intensive Tongue Talents Making All Nervous) on almost half of the tracks on here, very similar to how Snoop Dogg (who was only featured on 4 tracks on here) was featured on almost every single track on Dre’s previous album. Unfortunately, we wouldn’t hear very much from Hittman after this album’s release but he truly did have potential. He was even given a chance to shine on his own on the track Ackrite, similar to how RBX got a chance to shine on his own on The Chronic’s 12th track High Powered. As for Dre’s rhymes, he’s not the greatest spitter admittedly but his rhymes do hold up like on the album’s first actual song The Watcher or Still D.R.E. (the latter of which features undeniably head-bobbing keys from Scott Storch throughout). However, I’m not gonna forget about the tearjerking Royce da 5’9″ written/Lord Finesse produced closer The Message. What makes this track emotional is that not only is it a heartfelt dedication to Dre’s brother Tyree, but Dre really sounds like he’s gonna burst into tears throughout the whole song. I really do consider this to be Dre’s masterpiece. Mainly because I like how he took the formula from his previous album & revamped it rather than making the same exact thing & showing no progression

Score: 5/5

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