The  Diary Image
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 17 Ratings

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  • Summary: Originally set to be released in 2002 before being shelved by MCA, the sixth full-length posthumous release for the Detroit rapper featured production from such artists as Bink, Hi-Tek, Madlib, Nottz, Pete Rock, and Kanye West.
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Gangsta Boogie
It's gangsta, it's gangsta, it's gangsta It's gangsta, it's gangsta, it's gangsta It's gangsta, it's gangsta, it's gangsta It's gangsta, it's... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Apr 21, 2016
    80
    While The Diary has its shining moments, it also has some issues. ... For Dilla fans, The Diary proves to be an essential listening.
  2. Apr 14, 2016
    80
    There are musical and lyrical nods here to R. Kelly, Jay Z, Big Punisher and more. For better and worse, The Diary is strikingly of its time.
  3. Apr 19, 2016
    80
    The Diary is almost certainly for the diehards but even casual fans will find a lot to like.
  4. Apr 14, 2016
    70
    The Diary of J Dilla might not rival its maker's best output, but it's a pivotal and illuminating chapter, even when heard out of sequence. Just as importantly, it fulfills the wish of a master musician.
  5. 70
    What a solo album with all of his own bars over all of his own beats would have sounded like, we’ll never know; The Diary does more than enough to fire all of our imaginations, though.
  6. Apr 22, 2016
    60
    Hyped as the final batch of unissued material assembled during his lifetime, like most mythical artefacts, the reality proves a little disappointing. Not that there isn’t decent stuff to enjoy here. The Introduction and the Gary Numan-sampling Trucks are both capable head-nodders while The Ex features prime production work by Pete Rock and a brilliant vocal turn by Bilal.
  7. Aug 2, 2016
    40
    Dilla's legacy is invincible at this point, a point proved by the endless artists that still shout him out on their records. However, any lesser musician's entire discography would be forever tarnished by a release as lackluster as The Diary.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 3
  2. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Apr 16, 2016
    9
    Dilla shows his true talent on songs like The Creep. However i feel like some of his lyrics are very repetitive. Some songs on the album areDilla shows his true talent on songs like The Creep. However i feel like some of his lyrics are very repetitive. Some songs on the album are pretty short but other than that its an amazing album. Expand
  2. Apr 15, 2016
    8
    First let me introduce myself
    My peeps call me Dilla
    Known to write and produce myself The lost vocal album from the one and only.
    First let me introduce myself
    My peeps call me Dilla
    Known to write and produce myself

    The lost vocal album from the one and only. Experimental, soulful, and packed with bars. The Diary shows off Dilla's flow and abstract ideas. This would have been a "College Dropout" release for him. He gives us what we want. Grizzzzzzzzley songs.

    8/10. Minor flaws...Lyrics can be repetitive. And as with most Dilla...short songs, giving it a mix tape feel. We'll never know how complete these songs are but "The Diary" doesn't have any signs of of "cash grab". This is a Dilla album.

    Highlights: The Introduction, The Shining 1&2, So Far, **** The Police, The Sickness ft. Nas
    Expand
  3. Apr 17, 2016
    6
    In J Dilla's The Diary, the beats (by other producers for the most part) are excellent, but while the raps are intricately involved justIn J Dilla's The Diary, the beats (by other producers for the most part) are excellent, but while the raps are intricately involved just enough according to hardcore hip-hop standards, the topics addressed leave much to be desired. One or two pieces are good examples of social activism, but the rest are teenage in tone and briefly cut short of full song length. Overall, good though not great. Expand