Snoop Dogg ~ Da Game Is To Be Sold & Not
The first voice you hear on the new Snoop record is that of Master P, introducing the latest recruit to the No Limit army. It’s a message, albeit a subtle one: in the team game of hip-hop, there’s been a trade, and our man P gained the advantage. Da Game… is Snoop’s first release on the label, and it is a No Limit release through and through–in spite of the fact that, in the context of No Limit’s marketing megalopoly, Snoop’s Merlot mixes poorly with the rest of the crew’s Asti Spumanti. Fortunately, his flow has always been blessed with a Southern swing, and the Beats by the Pound gumbo funk is a natural for the Doggfather, even if there’s little on the album that pushes the creative envelope. As for Snoop himself, he spends ample time attempting to evoke previous glories with the uninspired “Gin & Juice II” and “Still a G Thang,” though his strongest moments come with Mia X on “Slow Down” and with Mystikal and C-Murder on “See Ya When I Get There,” both classic No Limit material. –Jon Caramanica
It would be a pleasure to dismiss Snoop’s evocatively entitled No Limit debut, Da Game Is to Be Sold, Not to Be Told, as another piece of lowballing funk off the N.O. Bounce assembly line. Musically, however, this is one of No Limit’s strongest albums. — Spin
Snoop’s still got the flow, the languid, laid-back delivery that signaled the arrival of one of the all-time rap greats seven years ago, but he spends most of his time here trying to turn some lumpen, misshapen backing tracks from dogg-shit to diamonds. — New Musical Express
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