Is the Game's new album the Doctor's Advocate "out" now, i.e. freely available via the Internets? I spent most of the weekend either at the BGM or out celebrating the Cardinals' first World Series win since I was about four months shy of two years young, as well as the fact that St. Louis (er, at least the part no one lives in) is now officially somewhat more dangerous than Baghdad.

Suffice it to say I've got some catching up to do.

I checked XXL this morning and I see they've got all of these new tracks from the Game album as well as some new shit by Nas, so I figured what the fuck: I'll take a look at them and make sure nothing's wrong with them.

You can listen to all of these right now in XXL's Bangers section.

Without further ado.

The Game, "Lookin' at You." Um, I thought Dr. Dre wasn't supposed to be on this? If this ain't him, it's the guy who's actually been "producing "his shit for the past several years anyway. As far as Dre beats go, this is neither the best nor the most unique-sounding of them. But I'll take this over that "Lost Ones" shit he did with Jay. Whoever that old jig talking is saves Game from having to come up with an interesting chorus on his own. That's smart thinking!

I like how they bleeped out Fiddy's name at the end of the last verse.

The Game feat. Busta Rhymes, "Doctor's Advocate." The one where the Game raps about how Dr. Dre won't take his calls anymore. In his ill-advised "drunken" flow that he used on one of the lesser tracks from the Documentary. Then Busta Rhymes chimes in and starts talk-rapping to Dre as well. The fuck? Dre must not talk to very many people on the phone, even if they're ostensibly his own employees. Which makes you wonder what he does all day.

The Game, "Ol' English."
Have I mentioned before on this site how I don't particularly care for slow music? It's not so much that I find that slow music can't be good in general. But I find that even bad music sounds pretty good so long as its pretty fast. I like this one well enough though. In fact, it's not altogether different than "Dreams" from the Documentary. The raps might even be better, but this doesn't do very much, now does it?

The Game feat., "Compton."
What the fuck is this bullshit? If my city had its own anthem featuring from the Black Eyed Peas, I'd be pissed! Never mind the fact that my city has its share of anthems by gay-ass Nelly. That's neither here nor there. I like the fact that they've given it such a hard beat though. You barely notice, but it works the same sample as De La Soul's "Stakes Is High." Dilla flipped it way better though.

The Game feat. Nas, "Why You Hate the Game." Supposedly this is nine minutes long, but XXL only has the first five, as a sort of preview. Yikes! Not to get all Nigel Tufnel on you bitches, but why not just make two four-and-a-half minute songs? I don't know that I'm convinced that most songs ("Mr. Jones" excepted) would be that much better if they were twice as long.

As far as recent Just Blaze productions go, this is less of a headache than "Show Me What You Got," but it's still no "Kingdom Come." In fact, dare I say it's kinda boring? It reminds me of that shit Nas did on Late Registration. There might be too much going on musically for him to really come off the way he does on, say, "Everything I Love" from Diddy's album, which is much better than this.

BONUS: Nas, "Hip-Hop Is Dead." Again, this is just a snippet of the entire track, lest there was an entire new Nas song to listen to. Meanwhile, Jay's got at least three singles and a video at this point. The fuck? Also, what's the deal with this using the sample as motherfucking "Thief's Theme?" Shit, if that's all there going to do, why not just put "Thief's Theme" on this album as well and just pretend as if it's a new song. Who in the world thought this was going to be a good idea? Nas himself? Was there ever a meeting about this in the Def Jam offices? Inquiring minds want to know.

Final Thoughts: Well, now I'm jazzed about the new Game album and not-so-jazzed about the new Nas album, but that's more or less the way I felt before anyway. I knew having doing beats on Hip-Hop Is Dead wasn't going to be a good idea when I first heard about it months ago, but I do find it especially ironic that him and Teh Ghey almost made a good song together. Almost. None of these new Game tracks are on the level of the best shit from the Documentary, but they aren't so far off either, and these days I'm not sure how much more you could really ask for.