Various Artists

The Very Best of Death Row

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Released nearly a decade after the two-disc Death Row's Greatest Hits, the single-disc Very Best of Death Row is both somewhat necessary and a little bizarre. It's could be meant to right some wrongs of the earlier compilation (wisely including the original mix of Dr. Dre's "Let Me Ride" and Warren G's "Regulate"), or it's a roundabout way to welcome Petey Pablo to the fold (his "Off tha Chain," featuring Kurupt, closes out the disc as a bonus track). It's definitely not a complementary release, since it shares a number of the tracks with its predecessor. No matter what, this compilation shortchanges both the label and the consumer; there's no way that these 14 tracks (at just over an hour), as a whole, can make for the best representation of one of the most notorious rap labels. Tireless picks: "Let Me Ride," "Regulate," Snoop Dogg's "Who Am I," Lady of Rage's "Afro Puffs," 2Pac's "Ambitionz az a Ridah."

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