After a six-year recording hiatus, Redman returns to the mike with the engaging and stimulating, yet not particularly memorable, release of Red Gone Wild. Delayed and pushed back for more than a year, this album is plagued by the same poor promotion that delayed other recent label releases from the Roots, Method Man, Nas and Ghostface Killah. Sure, Redman can still ride a beat with the best of them, but the album's production, despite a few big names (Timbaland, Scott Storch, Pete Rock, Erick Sermon), comes off disjointed and does not do justice to his punch line-heavy delivery. The song “Gimmie,” which features a laid-back Pete Rock beat that samples Marvin Gaye, vibes well under Redman's often-hilarious rhymes, as does the sure-to-be Newark, New Jersey anthem “Dis Iz Brick City.” But the disc ultimately suffers from some of the very same problems as his prior releases: There are too many long skits, an overreliance on guest stars and too many generic marijuana ballads like “Merry Jane” (featuring Snoop and Nate Dogg) and “Blow Treez” (sampling Bob Marley). And with so much time lapsed since 2001's Malpractice lending him to questionable tween horror movies and the stoner flick How High it's too bad that Red didn't come out swinging. The ability is there; unfortunately, the execution is not.
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