Volume 94, Issue 63

Tuesday, January 16, 2001


A witty, thoughtful theatrical romp

Disc of the Week

State and Main gets an amber light

'62 Cuban Crisis revisited - 13 Days a rivetting political drama

Disc of the Week

Snoop Dogg
The Last Meal
No Limit/Priority

If you're trying to figure out the album title, Snoop has said this is the last time any record label is going to live off his labour. But if you're trying to figure out whether this album is worth buying – well, the answer isn't so clear.

Things haven't been easy for Snoop since he dropped his classic 1994 debut record, Doggystyle. His close friend, Tupac Shakur, hit an early grave and recently, his former boss, record label Death Row CEO Suge Knight, pulled a backhanded move by putting out an album of unreleased Snoop tracks in hopes of stealing sales away from The Last Meal. Add to that whispers that Snoop is quickly becoming another washed up MC and things haven't been looking up for the Long Beach native.

What made Snoop successful in the beginning was his coolness that remains unmatched in hip hop. It's apparent with this album that Snoop goes back completely to his West Coast roots in hopes of reviving that pimp-daddy image. West Coast veteran Kokane rides shotgun on The Last Meal and provides the hooks for eight of the album's cuts.

Overall, it's a well-balanced album. The combination of caddy-riding, club shaker and old school gangsta tracks does a good job of taking advantage of Snoop's cool.

None is a better example than "Stacey Adams," a tribute to the pimps and gangstas who have influenced his music. Snoop calmly flows over a laid-back, retro beat, making this the best cut on the album. The track "I Can't Swim," which samples George Clinton's "Aqua Boogie," is another one that needs to be heard.

Of course, Snoop brings in the heavy hitters to help him out on this album. For example, Timbaland nicely produces "Set It Off," a posse cut featuring MC Ren, The Lady of Rage, Nate Dogg and Ice Cube.

Although Snoop's coolness makes a comeback on The Last Meal, he has never been the most talented MC. Unless you're in the right mood, you're likely to get bored the more you listen to the album.

But if you're still wondering if Snoop's got something left – stop. The West Coast veteran still has the ability to spit out nice tracks. Pleezbaleevit!

–Joel Brown

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