Redman Malpractice

On the surface, the fifth album from the funk doctor Spock follows the same formula of the previous misadventures of this crude and irreverent MC. As always, the former EPMD protégé enlists Erick Sermon for some of the production, indulges in juvenile humour and delivers the fifth instalment of the "Soopaman Luva" series, and although things get started nicely with the raucous "Diggy Doc," there's something seriously awry. The first warning sign is the single "Let's Get Dirty," with its "flavour of the hour" anthemic keyboard stabs, it's Redman's most transparent attempt to make a track strictly aimed at the club. The irony is that Redman has already unwittingly made a fistful of club bangers that never fit the mould for a crossover single, and this blatant reach out to the iced-out crowd is uncharacteristic of his grimy persona. Along with the increase in commercial edge to his music, another worrying development is that Redman's bread and butter elements also come up short. Aside from the odd flash of brilliance, he phones in cruise control flows and includes way too many dumb-ass skits. One of the weakest links is the inclusion of UK producer Adam F., known for the drum & bass classic "Circles," on many tracks. His hip-hop production is derivative, anaemic and dilutes any salvation the music may bring to the situation. "J.U.M.P.," with George Clinton, and the percolating "Uh Huh," produced by Toronto's Saukrates, are among the bright spots, further underlining the talent the veteran blunted MC from the bricks has when he focuses on what he does best, instead of casting sideways glances at the antics of his jiggy label-mates. (Def Jam)