The past couple of years the West Coast has been hit with hard times, as the once dominant coast has taken a back seat to the rest of the industry. While the Cali underground scene continues to produce some quality material, the only crew of late to make any noise in the mainstream is Snoop Dogg and the newly reworked Dogg Pound. DGP founder Daz Dillinger is one of the few artist that has really helped keep the West Coast afloat, as Daz has owned the Cali underground scene the past two years. While Daz was once on top of the world with Deathrow, the past couple of years have seen Daz return to his humble underground roots.
The rise and fall of Daz Dillinger is one that is well documented. From his glory days as producer extraordinaire for Death Row to his public fallout with DPG traitor Kurupt, Daz has experienced it all in the industry. But in the end, all the hard work paid off, as Daz has now began another rags to riches story, as he rose above all the adversity to becoming a big player for the West Coast once again. Proof of this rise comes from Daz's newest LP, "DPGC: U Know What I'm Throwin' Up".
While Daz has flooded the market with tons of albums, mixtapes and compilations the past two years, most of those attempts were considered weak by Daz Dillinger standards. However, with "DPGC" we finally get a Daz album that lives up to his standards, even if the album doesn't compare to his West Coast classic "Retaliation, Revenge & Get Back".
The biggest difference between "U Know What I'm Throwin' Up" and Daz's previous releases is the production aspect, which is almost completely handled by fellow DPG running mate Soopafly. For long time Daz fans, the thought of a Daz album without the man himself behind the boards must be a frightening one. Daz has rightfully earned the spot as one of the West's best producers, even if his material the past couple of years haven't been up to his usual standards. However, Soopafly actually does a solid job on the album, providing Daz with some solid material to work off of. And even though the album would have turned out much better if Daz would have produced it himself, the turn out is still better than anything Daz has put out the last couple of years.
With some solid production in hand, Daz does a nice job at keeping the album interesting, even though it's the same old story from Daz behind the mic. The finest attempts on the album come from the more hardcore one's. "I'll Beacho Azz" is a nice rugged and raw produced Soopafly track that definitely bangs hard. "U Ain't Shit" is a funky, g funk street anthem that finds Daz trading verses with the highly underrated Bad Azz, who straight rips the track. "When I die then my lyrical essence is gonna haunt ya, until I die I'm a lyrical legend that's what I brought ya".
"It's Dat Gangsta Shit" is a straight raw and intense West Coast gangsta track produced by Quaze. The beat is dark and fierce, which the type of vibe Daz has been missing on his previous albums. Also featured on the track is up and coming female emcee Crystal and the main dog himself Bigg Snoop, whose flow is off the scale on the track. The only problem is Snoop's lyrics make absolutely no sense. " It's the mythological, chronicle, diabolical, psychological, make a model hoe, fuck a g. Polish it, demolish it, turn you all into particles, shade tree niggas in the game I loose 'em like follicles".
Even more hard-core gangsta music can be seen on the vicious "Deez Niggaz Trippin", the self-titled track "U Know What I'm Throwin' Up" featuring Snoop Dogg & Goldie Loc & the Fredwreck produced "Skirt Out". And while the same old gangsta tales consume most of the album, Daz actually switches it up with a couple of tracks that work as nice changes of pace. "All Night Long" is a nice funked out Mike Smoove produced track that could very well be a nice West Coast hit for Daz. The track's hook, while used way too many times, gives the track a nice commercial feel. The weed smoking anthem of "I Got Dat Fire" features a nice vocal sample, which is a nice breath of fresh air in between all the gang bangin' tales. "Dogg Catcha" featuring Soopafly is the album's big hit, which is getting a lot of airplay on the West Coast right now. The songs bouncy beat and catchy hook have been enough for Daz to get some airplay, which is something that Daz has lacked on the past couple of albums.
While the majority of "U Know What I'm Throwin' Up" will do more than satisfy West Coast heads, the album does have some major flaws that really keep it from being a great album. The main aspect is the album's length, which is 31 tracks in all (including interludes). We all know Daz is a hard worker, but the 31 tracks is almost impossible to sit through, as it will take you awhile to truly get into the album. Also, the overbearing and annoying Snoop Dogg interludes after almost every song tend to get annoying real quick. If Daz had cut the album down to 15 or so tracks, maybe "DPGC" would have been one of the better West Coast albums in the past year or so.
The other obvious flaw in "DPGC" is the filler, throw away tracks such as "Don't Stop", "Round N Round We Go", "Let's Roll", "Ain't Nothin' But A Gangsta Party 2" & "Introduction 2 Mayhem". While Daz tries to produce a more radio friendly club track with songs like "Don't Stop"; they just don't mix with the Daz Dillinger vibe and sound completely forced. To make matters even worse Daz tries to remake the classic 2pac track "2 Of Amerikas Most Wanted" with the lurid "Ain't Nothing But A Gangsta Party 2" which features the horrific ramblings of Whiteboy Ryan (how original). I think we all agree that Daz should just stick to making new songs instead of ruining the classics.
In the end not everybody will appreciate what Daz has to offer on "DPGC: U Know What I'm Throwin' Up", as its an album that will attract West Coast heads but not much more than that. It's your typical West Coast gangsta album, no more or less. Also, the lack of any Daz Dillinger production will also have many questioning the album's direction. But if you get past these aspects, "DPGC" is actually a very solid West Coast album. While the album isn't without major flaws, it will definitely satisfy those just wanting to hear some good West Coast gangsta music. Hopefully next time Daz will cut down on the album's length and actually produced the whole thing himself. But for now fans will just be glad that Daz has finally put out a solid album that will make the West Coast proud.