It was just a couple of months ago when The Game took to Instagram to announce that he was working on The Documentary 2, the sequel to his first album. I remember thinking this was a fitting way to celebrate the 10th year anniversary of the album that officially put him in the game (no pun intended)! In that celebration, however, was the pressure to create a body of work that is just as legendary, if not better. Since then, I became distracted by his rise as a sex symbol, his sexually stimulating hashtags, his love life and career as a TV personality. Before I knew it, he had released a single and was on a promo tour for the album he announced would be a double disc! That sense of anticipation that I initially felt had returned, I pre-ordered the album and patiently waited.
I’m an insomniac so at midnight on October 9, I was on it! Now let’s backtrack a bit. I think it’s important to note that it’s been a while since I’ve tuned in to any of today’s rap music. Aside from J.Cole and Kendrick Lamar, I am a victim of only listening to the songs that come out on the radio. I get this sense of nostalgia knowing that every song I hear is in the genre of trap music. Not that there is anything wrong with that as I believe a little twerking is essential to the soul, but I miss that old school rap; that drive around in your, roll up the weed and bop your head kinda music. Fast forward to this album, from the moment the intro began, I was automatically drawn in. You see, a skit can be a hit or a miss. You either play it straight through or skip the track. I think the key to any work of art is to make it relatable and that’s what I liked best about this. Although I was unable to directly relate, my personal choice of movies helped me paint an image, something similar to a scene in Menace 2 Society. In addition, it was brief and concise; enough to grab your attention and short enough to get to the point. By the time you made the decision of whether or not you liked it, it was already on the next track, the first song of the album On Me featuring Kendrick Lamar. This track, which samples Erykah Badu’s “On and On” brings together two Compton natives. The head bopping instantly goes into effect as they speak of their upbringing, their grind and the outcome of all their hard work.
Sequence is unquestionable as each song strategically bleeds into the next, picking up where the previous one left off. It’s almost as if you get caught up watching a juicy movie, but can’t seem to find the right time to press pause and take care of the priorities you know you must tend to.
With the likes of Q-Tip, and NWA legends Dre and Ice Cube as well as newcomer Dej Loaf, some might think such star studded album would be risky. Contrary to this belief, this was not only great publicity, but he proved that he was capable of lyrically aligning himself with each artist. A combination of a gritty tone and his use of metaphors, he prevents from allowing anyone to outshine him. He displays a variety of flow, which proves that he can indeed spit a 16 in 16 ways.
The 19 track album is in fact a documentary as it touches on various aspects of his life. The juxtaposition of his humble beginnings and his life since The Documentary is seen on songs like The Documentary 2, Dollar and a Dream featuring Ab-Soul and his track with Diddy Standing on Ferraris. Songs like LA and Just the Other Day mention his entry and contribution to the rap game, and of course he taps into his love life as he and Future deal with breakups in Dedicated, he calls out the “bitches who aint shit” and I can’t forget my ultimate favorite Circles: a song in which we hear the dialogue between his girl who calls him out for cheating. Through it all, you are able to hear the story of quite a successful man who worked hard to achieve his goals but will not hesitate to tap into his roots as a Cedar Block Piru to put you in your place.