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Album Review

Snoop Dogg, 'Doggumentary'

March 28, 2011

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The ubiquitous D-O-double-G returns after the half-baked “Malice n Wonderland’’ with a strong mix of grooves nodding to G-funk sound while acknowledging the need for re-invention. The 21-song set, with some misfires, overflows with top-shelf talent; and Snoop’s rhymes are crisp and often slightly nostalgic (“The Way Life Used to Be,’’ “Cold Game’’). The young Snoop’s brilliant narrative skills will probably never reappear but, unlike recent efforts, the MC is doing more than riffing and relying on his iconic flow to get the job done. Snoop hooks up with T-Pain and Scott Storch on the club-oriented “Boom,’’ and flips quick couplets as R. Kelly adds a crafty cameo on “Platinum.’’ Of course, he doesn’t stray from his usual subjects: weed, women, and gangsta mythology. On “This Weed Iz Mine’’ he passes the, er, microphone to Wiz Khalifa for one of the set’s high points. This is a very West Coast-centric disc with many shout-outs to the LBC — and “El Lay,’’ “We Rest N Cali’’ (with Goldie Loc and Bootsy Collins) are emphatic in their pride. Snoop, though, continues to explore new rhythmic avenues with another inventive collaboration with Gorillaz, “Sumthing Like This Night.’’ (Out tomorrow)

KEN CAPOBIANCO

ESSENTIAL “The Way Life Used to Be’’