Mixtape Review: Game & DJ Skee – The Red Room

Never one to shy away from controversy,  West Coast supremo Game has a had a career with many talking points. Whether the onslaughts with former employers G-Unit or his recent stabs at Jay-Z, amidst all of this was his knack to put out hardened gangsta rap which appealed to a wider spectrum than his Khaki wearing brethrens.

In anticipation of The Red Album (the next album of his) Game, alongside DJ Skee, drops The Red Room: a glorification of all things “red” with some top draw collaborations on hand to help.

Game’s praises have often been for his lyrical dexterity, and  his opening “400 Bars” track provides enough evidence for such claims. Chuck Taylor goes insane, narrating a drawn out story of working the corners, encountering rival gangs and women.

This runs its course over many different instrumentals, including classics from the Notorious B.I.G and Outkast to the latest from Lloyd Banks and Nicki Minaj. Within his 400 bars, its unsurprising that he manages to slide in a few stabs at 50 Cent and the Guerrilla Unit, but regardless, still provides an encouraging intro to the Red Room.

Whilst his lyricism remains a talking point, Game still is able to make the banging ‘hood anthems which solidify his status as one of the best of the West. Teaming up with Freshman Nipsey Hussle on “Ha Ha” results in another highlight & returning to New York for a collaboration with Jadakiss and Jim Jones produces a well worked cut.

It’s when Game starts messing with the autotune on his version of “Drop The World” that leads to the first of few raised eyebrows in regards to the mixtape. Following that, the concept of “The Professionals” is familiar to The Roc’s “1-900-Hustla” track from ten years ago, with Game’s efforts coming off weaker than the aforementioned track.

We see Game at his bes when he returns to the tried-and-tested formula of slick gangsta rhythmst. His ode to his “colour” of choice on the head nodding “Everything Red” provides another highlight and, although Pharrell’s chorus on “It Must Be Me” seems lethargic, the track itself remains on point with solid production and more rugged rhymes from Game.

The standout track however, remains “Slangin’ Rocks” as a wicked Eazy E sample adds the finishing touches to a killer bass, which serves as an appetiser to what The Red Album will hopefully sound like.

Game remains consistent on this latest offering. Whilst his versions of popular songs are forgettable, his original material shows signs of a O.G. with the ability to put out immense material. When avoiding autotune and constant namedropping, Game remains one of the best, blasting out line after line of dopeness for the streets. As The Red Album looms, early signs suggest that it will be the colour most dominant this summer.

–Henry Yanney

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