Dorrough - Get Big

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To build a career and have a string of hits, it helps to be versatile and clever. And that's something Dorrough just doesn't seem interested in being on Get Big

In 2009 Dallas rapper Dorrough had a huge hit - by Dallas Rap standards anyway - in “Ice Cream Paint Job.” The track cracked the Billboard Top 40, peaking at #27. It’s no surprise why the song was so popular. It was, like the confection of its title, a fun treat packaged as an uncomplicated, doggedly repetitive track gleefully free of substance. It might have been asking too much for a rapper from a region not known for producing huge national hits to repeat that feat on his second album, Get Big. And it doesn’t appear that Dorrough’s sophomore album has a hit of that magnitude, but what’s more regrettable is that it sees him failing to evolve at all.


Opener “Sold Out” features a stuttering beat, crunchy guitars, and intermittent video game blips. The chorus of “Already sold out” is clearly about selling tickets/records/etc. because Dorrough isn’t worried in the least about artistic integrity. And that’s fine, but that needn’t stop him from also being concerned with writing better lyrics and creating songs that don’t all bleed together. Dorrough has a big, dynamic voice and a winning personality, but it’s not enough to make up for a depressing dearth of hot lines. Next up is the title track and current single, “Get Big." Former Yung Joc hit-maker Nitti does a great job of recreating the sound Mannie Fresh popularized with the Big Tymers, right down to the pausing delivery of the chorus, where Dorrough’s affable confidence is enough to carry the song. “M.I.A.” is a song that boasts a memorable chorus and attempts to show a more sensitive side of the Dallas rapper and is, for the most part, successful. Dorrough expresses the desire to get away from the stress of everyday life and seeks refuge in religion and weed. But the atmosphere is ruined by lines like “You can’t walk without crawling first / You can’t stand without falling down / And when you down on the ground / Stand back up on the mound and then swing hard,” which show both a reliance on platitudes and a fundamental misunderstanding of the game of baseball. Though to be fair, I am sure Dorrough knows you don’t swing from the mound and that may be more irritating – he just couldn’t be bothered to correct the line. Unfortunately, that lazy lyricism mars many tracks on the album. On “Si Si I Like” he indulges in the corny, delayed punch-line style currently in favor with Drake and Big Sean: “Shakin’ that monkey / Make me want to go bananas / Let me see you throw it back, Joe Montana.” Further along, “My Name” features just one of the many times the Texas emcee raps a word with itself” “Out of work like Craig on Friday / But I get paid like every day Friday.” And on risible first single “Hood Chick Fetish” he unleashes this extremely ugly (and unoriginal) phallic image: “She ain’t tryin’ to be a model but she look like a bottle / Put lil’ mama on a flyer have everybody there / So I’ma get it goin’, get it goin' / Tryna take her to the spot so I can hit her with this midget arm.”

“Hell of a Night” and “In the Morning” are two bright spots on the album. The former is an unhurried account of a night out whose breezy attitude is far more welcome than more abrasive “going out” which seem to think they can badger you into having a good time. The latter with its synth string lines and syrupy female vocals create a suitably sunny environment. Though unfortunately Dorrough feels the need to amend one of his punch-lines with the line, “That’s a joke not a real statement / And you know it’s going down like a real basement,” which just leaves the listener distracted with wondering was a fake basement would be like.

The guest appearances are, for the most part, disappointingly forgettable, but given the list of collaborators that’s not especially surprising. Jim Jones delivers a few bars about having a bunch of money in an uninteresting way on the otherwise energetic club-ready “Get Em Live.” Ray J is totally unmemorable fulfilling his role as the budget R&B dude of the moment on the album's worst track “Breakfast in Bed.” Yo Gotti does a decent, if serviceable, job of describing the titular character on “Hood Chick Fetish,” a track whose grating, repetitive chorus will have all but the most patient listener jabbing the skip button. Slim Thug’s generic “I’m in your girl” verse on “Handcuffs” is more distressing because he is capable of much better. The only standout, as far as guests go, is Juvenile whose closing, double-time rap on “Way Better” is by far the most exciting moment on Get Big.

Maybe it’s asking too much to expect clever lyrics or a range of musical styles from a rapper who is so clearly focused solely on commercial success. After all, if his goal is to sell it’s not hard to argue that the path of repetitive, simple music is the easiest way to get a little fame. But to build a career, to have a string of hits, it helps to be versatile and clever. And that’s something Dorrough just doesn’t seem interested in being on Get Big. Maybe he will be next time when this album fails to achieve the promise of its title.

18 Comments

  • Bauce

    Rofl at this nigga tryin to be strictly commercial and yet he belly flopped to 5,000 units first week. LAUCE just like the mavericks & cowboys

  • AL QEADA /PAKISTAN DIV

    mike jones jr.

  • T

    how many fuckin anonymouses' are there?

  • Anonymous

    beats dont mean shit cuz, if u wanna listen to beats go download some instrumentals and listen to that, this is "rap" music and ya lyrics play kinda big part in it, this aint rnb or snap its rap lyricall is the only way to go, thats why em,nas, and jay sell out madison square garden and sell out areans all over the world and all these untalented beat rappers go to jail, just make mixtapes or disappear cuz they cant compete with real talent

  • Anonymous

    son theres a reason why he reviews tracks and you dont, your ignorant to music, its good that u support your talent and you show out for your state but, drorrough is garbage just another snap rapper who isnt gonna have any kind of big career, ya he'll sell some records maybe sell some more ring tones but thats it, at the end of the day in about 5yrs. no one will remember who this guy is and he'll just be another name in the long list of snap rappers who were one hit wounders period

    • Anonymous

      Hey douche bag im guessing you are probably the reviewer for this page. So 1st off go fuck yourself because your job as a hater is a waste of an occupation. I never said i like dorrough sure he isnt lyrical and isnt going to make an impact on the rap game but who gives a shit just review the album and move dont sit there and talk shit about the rapper from beggining to end because you have some kind of personal problem with the dude. At the end of the day he has more money than both me and you and i respect that, you should too instead of hatin.

  • Anonymous

    Im from Dallas and I laughed all the way from beggining to end on this review. Not because i dont like Dorrough, but because this reviewer was a fucking asshole and was straight hating on dorrough for no apparent reason. He just kepy talking all kinds of shit about the dallas rap scene and dorrough himself. sounds like the guy has a personal problem with dorrough, maybe dorrough fucked his girl with his "midget arm" lol

    • Desperado

      I feel u my man...all the reviewers on this site critize anyone that isnt fully LYRICAL...unless ur Lupe or Nas or Em ur gonna get hated on....people need to just calm down n LISTEN TO THE MUSIC...Dorrough got the best beats around yet he dont even mention that shit

  • Purp Kobain

    "It might have been asking too much for a rapper from a region not known for producing huge national hits" what kind of hoe ass jab at Texas was that

  • T

    its worse than juveniles beast mode, which aint actually that bad.

  • stress

    Im no Dorrough fan, in fact after listening to this only 1 song made the ipod but DAMN this reviever seems to be hating hard hard hard. Questioning his artistic integrity, maybe thats who he is. I wonder if he was in real life all bout bitches,money and drugs but said "To make it in rap Ima rap like Talib Kweli" if you niggas would call him a sell out whose not being true to hisself then. Must be a new york nigga, QUIT HATING, START WRITING

  • real talk

    absolutely horrible

  • slit

    really no growth? this album was actually really good which i didnt expect cause his last one was mehh! but sure i mean it doesnt have all the heart and soul but its not a straight sex drugs bitches album there is a little more to it if you actually listen! but i mean if yall niggas wnna hear whiny shit then stick to dat wigger eminem!

  • 718rob

    so why the fuck did dude below give it a 5?

  • Chupps

    Good review, as albums go it's Bad. Music that obviously tries to be commercially successful is only useful as singles. Albums filled the same formula get boring quickly as there's little creativity and substance. Lyricists make great albums. Commercial rappers make great singles.