Sunday, August 7, 2011

DJ Quik: The Book of David (2011)



This West Coast peer of Dr. Dre is still a fantastic producer, arguably far stronger and more original than his most famous fellow Comptonite. The tracks on his latest, The Book of David, are admirably varied, often surreal -- a perfect touch of the druggy and dreamy in with the disorientingly minimal, funky old-school. But Quik's in his forties now, and he's still going on and on about bitches and hussies and critics and the same wack gangsta shit hip hop should've gotten over in the early '90s. Only real evolutionary progress is that unlike giant self-important douchebag Dre, Quik thinks he's hilarious -- in the way that your middle-aged uncle thinks he is. "You just exacerbate / what makes my sex life great / when you gotta masturbate." Uh-huh.

Much like when your uncle makes some embarrassing joke, it's at first hard to really get offended by Quik's prattling. But after a while, you just want to shush the guy. Check out "Ghetto Rendezvous": "You prolly mad 'cause you can't eat off me no more / Don't wanna hear you cryin' or offer you no dough / You tried to make my life shabby / With the Zodiac sign of the Cancer [!] you crabby." It gets better. "Your son looks like a fuckin' Al Qaeda / I'mma call him wop-daddy cause his chin to the side." What!? What!?

It's a pity because musically, the chilly nightclub textures of that song ("Ghetto Rendezvous") along with other lyrical duds "Do Today," the sleazy "So Compton," and the phenomenally tight '70s revival "Killer Dope" would soar if not for the weak, irritating MCing. None of the guests (including Bun B, Ice Cube, Dwele, and the remarkably annoying Kurupt) help matters. But the only absolutely stupid, worthless cut here is the shitty nursery rhyme "Poppin'"; if not for the bullshit flow, this would be a good record. And the archetypal but charming slow-jam "Real Women" doesn't suffer from any of Book of David's irksome tendencies, and Jon B.'s hook is solid. So I don't know, put the album on in the background or something. All in all, Quik -- you're a talented guy but you're too fuckin' old to be writing these lyrics. No offense; these lyrics are too fuckin' old for anyone to be writing them.

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