Game releases star-studded 'Purp & Patron' mixtape
Released in union with longtime collaborator DJ Skee, "Purp & Patron" is the erstwhile Jayceon Taylor's third mixtape in the last nine months. Combined and scattered amid all the compulsive name-drops, '93 West Coast posturing and abhorrent Kardashian family drops, is something very good. Maybe not as excellent as his steroid-era classic, "The Documentary," or the jilted lunacy of "Doctor's Advocate," but rock solid nonetheless. Far from revolutionary, but a nice addition to a deceptively estimable catalog.
First, there was April's "The R.E.D. Room," which came equipped with the now-comical headline "R.E.D." gets a firm release date." Like its follow-up, August's "Brake Lights" mixtape, Game enlisted a Hall of Fame's worth of producers and guests: Busta Rhymes, Nas, Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne, Pharrell, Jadakiss, Bizzy Bone. The effect is something like watching an NBA All-Star game -- relentless empty entertainment, studded with the occasional horrible misfire.
His latest, "Purp & Patron," is as bloated as Ignatius O' Reilly and equally absurd (forced name-drops are compulsory when mentioning a Game mixtape). It is 29 songs and runs nearly two hours. It is the only mixtape that you will ever hear in your lifetime with Doug E. Fresh and Lil Boosie. There are appearances from Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Big Daddy Kane, KRS-One, Bun B, Pharrell, Lil Wayne, Mistah Fab, the Jacka, Wiz Khalifa, Fabolous and Rick Ross. There are beats from Dre and the Neptunes, Bink, and T-Pain.
It underscores the reason behind this Miami Heat-worthy accumulation of talent. For the life of him, Game cannot get a release date for his full-length album, which is supposed to be realeased by Interscope. He's not alone. At this point, rap release dates operate like shell games. One guess is as good as the next. The goal is to land a single on radio, take it national and force the label's hand. But for a variety of reasons ranging from popular caprice to politics, Game cannot land a hit single and the big names are one way to show that you're trying.
The new mixtape also has Dr. Dre chopping up a sample of Nina Simone's "Baltimore." Game's subjective matter can get easily repetitive and his name-drops remains excessive, but he raps well and has the best ear for beats outside of Rick Ross. There's something to be said for that. Whether or not anything from this tape will trigger an ultimate release of "R.E.D.," its release perhaps matters most to Game. Otherwise, fans of vintage West Coast gangsta rap will surely find their fix here.
And if someone has the time and judicious editing ability to distill the strongest moments of his last three mixtapes into one hour's worth of music, please let us know in the comment section.
-- Jeff Weiss
ZIP: The Game-Purp Mixtape
(Note: These downloads contain explicit language.)