Japanese pressing includes one bonus track, 'Bread & Butter'. Def Jam. 2006.
Despite their signing to Def Jam, on Game Theory the Roots head in a direction opposite from all the trendy, commercial formulas that the label has pioneered. This is as intensely a "Roots album" as anything they've put out, the rightful sequel to their brilliant, creative Phrenology (unlike their last album, the off-balance Tipping Point. Game Theory is a dark and brooding affair, not just in Black Thought's foreboding lyricism but also in its musical textures. There's a layer of melancholia running beneath nearly every song, whether in the heavy thump of "In the Music" or the frenetic verve of "Here I Come." Track-for-track, this isn't The Roots' most scintillating collection of songs, but listened to from end-to-end, it's actually a remarkable achievement in album-making. Every song builds into the next one, and those willing to experience Game Theory as a 47-minute suite of 13 songs will be richly rewarded by how precisely the whole puzzle fits together. --Oliver Wang --This text refers to an alternate Audio CD edition.