The proper follow-up to his 2008 effort Silverback Gorilla -- 2009’s Life on D-Block was more of a mixtape -- Donnie G: Don Gorilla kicks it up a notch when it comes to commercial appeal, but don’t think this D-Block representative has gone soft. Get past vibrant, pop-influenced highlights like the polished “Blood & Tears,” the smooth “for the ladies” cut “Party After 2,” and the appropriately titled “Club Jam Packed” with DJ Webstar, and the man is grinding as hard as ever, combining that Ghostface delivery with a Jadakiss flow and winding up with something entirely Louch. Highlights from the dark side include the powerful Bun B feature “Ol’ Skool,” the Black Uhuru-biting (“Guess who’s coming to dinner?/Mighty D-Block”) “Picture Phone Foreplay,” plus the paranoid hood track “Get It Poppin’,” which is about as tense as a hostage situation. The great, loose number “Dinner Guest” brings the D-Block reunion fans always live for and when “Nite Falls” grabs its hook from an old Planet P record, Sheek joins the ‘80s rock-sampling class of 2010 in grand style. Stick with the mixtapes if you want straight gutter, but this crossover is killer no matter how ugly the cover.
AllMusic Review by David Jeffries