This Is the Shack
The Dove Shack display much more than the requisite vocal skills on their debut, This Is the Shack. They fly nimbly along a freestyle course that cuts through lyrical rap and R&B crooning on the title cut (which appeared originally on Warren G's Regulate ... G-Funk Era album) and the single "Summertime in the LBC," both instant West coast classics. Unfortunately, the trio never lives up to its promise, opting instead to fill most of the debut with unimaginative raps, misogyny, and racism. --Roni Sarig
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The album has a laid back G-funk vibe, like most albums that come out of Warren G.'s crew such as Regulate...G Funk Era and Conversation. The group's rhymes are solid, but throughout the album are a few catchy hooks. "Smoke Out" really starts the CD on a high note, (and for some odd reason, it reminds me of an Outkast song). Next is "This Is The Shack" followed by the R&B version of "Summertime In the LBC" with Bo-Roc and female singer Arnita Porter in a summertime style duet. The songs "Bomb Drop", "F Ya Mouth" and "Freestyle" explores more styles that the trio can handle.
Afterward, the album really begins to loose it's momentum. "Crooked Cop" and "East Side Party" fails to standout. Only two tracks at the end of the album that are worth listening to are "We Funk" and the rap version of "Summertime In The LBC" which is almost as the same as the original, but there are a few rap verses at the end.
Still despite some missteps towards the end of the album, This Is The Shack still delivers what the west coast have been known for back in the mid 90's. Whats unfortunate about this is that they were signed to such a terrible label, Def Jam, who basically ignored the west coast (see SCC, BG Knocc out & Dresta as well). So basically all albums from Warren G.'s crew, Dove Shack, Twinz, and Da Five Footaz received very little promotion (the latter group's album was shelved by the label). If you can I highly recommend you grab a copy of This Is The Shack, as well as the other albums mentioned in this review, which are essential for a west coast fan. Peace.
Guest Appearances: A
Musical Vibes: B+
Top 5 Tracks:
1. F Ya Mouth
2. Smoke Out (featuring Montell Jordan)
4. Bomb Drop
5. We Funk (The G Funk)
1. Summertime In The LBC (rap version) (featuring Arnita Porter)
Highlights on this album start out with "Smoke Out", a laid-back G-Funk looped song featuring R&B singer Montell Jordan singing on the chorus. The track has stunning raps by all three members and also has a soulful beat. "This Is The Shack" shows up on here, but this version is slightly different from the one on Warren G's album, and has Bo-Roc singing a new outro at the end. It's easily (still) a classic song. "Summertime In The LBC" is the first single, and has the nice, laid-back summer feel, a completely unforgettable song with great guitars and singing from Bo-Roc and guest Arnita Porter. A true G-Funk gem. "Bomb Drop" is a hardcore type track, with all three emcees making their presence felt, using a darker effect. "Your Mouth" is more of a playa's type of song. It has a soulful beat and Bo-Roc, C-Knight and Two Scoops let all disloyal women have it. There is a "Freestyle" track with The Dove Shack rapping straight off the tops of their heads. They do an excellent job, over a hard gangsta-style beat proving how they got their record deals! Bo-Roc even coughs in the middle and raps, "Excuse me, I had to cough" and then goes straight on, amazing. "Ghetto Life" is more of a slower style track, talking about the lifestyle of the ghetto. The three emcees take on subjects of having to survive from day-to-day, the pressure of being black in today's society, and other problems. A classic song again. "Eastside Party" is a fast-paced party song, where they go nuts and tear the track to shreds over a nice beat. "Rollin' With A Gang" is a nice semi-dark, late-night sounding track, C-Knight says my favorite line of the song, "The Kniggy Knight ain't no biter/Funky styles that I write-ah", it's comical and tight. "We Funk (The G-Funk)" is also a single, and is an obvious classic with each rapper giving his definition of G-Funk, the greatest kind of rap ever made. "There'll Come A Day" is a gangsta blues type track about people who be-friended them after they became famous with a nice guitar riff. There also is a remix of "Summertime In The LBC", with Two Scoops and C-Knight rapping on it along with Bo-Roc singing. My favorite quotes: "Why do we do what we do when we do what we do/Hangin' out late with no curfew" said by Two Scoops and C-Knight says, "We got the Coke and Hen/We got the Five Footaz and The Twinz/We got Warren G and the D-o-g" using Five Footaz, The Twinz, Warren and Snoop's names for Long Beach shoutouts.
Overall, this is a great album. It's a shame these guys never got the credit they deserved. If I could've made the choice, they would've gone platinum easily. Great work, if you like Warren G, or Dogg Pound, or The Twinz, you'll love this.