Posts tagged “Hip-Hop

Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 1. MC Lyte

If you ask hip-hop fans who the greatest male emcee of all time is, you’re more than likely to get about 20 to 25 different responses. Now, switch the question to “Who’s the best female rapper of all time?” and, alas, you’re more than likely to end up with the same answer 9 out of 10 times: MC Lyte.

With gems like “I Cram to Understand U (Sam)” and “10% Dis” from her 1988 debut, Lyte As a Rock, MC Lyte changed hip-hop’s perception of femcees without changing her outfit. Instead, she cloaked herself in dignity and integrity. And did I mention that she could run circles around many of her male counterparts with her take-your-hats-off wordplay? Lyte’s originality, smooth flow, substance-packed content, and impeccable delivery, make her the unquestionable queen of rap music.



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 2. Lauryn Hill

Long before she nabbed 5 Grammys for her debut, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, Ms. Hill was already in contention for the throne. As one-third of 90s super group, Fugees, L’Boogie quickly established herself as the focal point of the crew. By seamlessly blending jaw-dropping lyricism with social commentary, she helped make The Score the magnum opus of Fugees’ catalog and, more importantly, a certified hip-hop classic.

On Miseducation, Lauryn unleashed the best fusion of hip-hop and R&B of the last decade. Her stellar songwriting flourished from song to song, whether grappling with spirituality (“Final Hour,” “Forgive Them, Father”) or stroking sexuality without exploiting it (“Nothing Even Matters”). Like Lyte and Latifah before her, Lauryn shines without drawing unnecessary attention to her sexual ambiance.



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 3. Queen Latifah

Queen Latifah couldn’t have picked a more appropriate stage moniker. Thanks to a brilliant mesh of social commentary and political consciousness, this queen had no problem attracting a cult-like following from the jump off. Latifah was one of the first to demand self-respect and gender equality in hip-hop. Who can forget the Grammy-winning “U.N.I.T.Y.” (from Black Reign), where she made it clear that addressing her as a b***h is a quick way to get yourself “punched dead” in the face?



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 4. Missy Elliott

Not only is Missy one of the best, she’s also one of the most versatile hip-hop artists, period. A multi-faceted entertainer, Missy writes, raps, sings, and produces all her songs. Her music videos are consistently innovative and intriguing. To crown it all, no other female rapper has ever been able to match Missy’s level of success.



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 5. Da Brat

Discovered by Jermaine Dupri in ’92, Da Brat (like MC Lyte and Queen Latifah) exploded into the hip-hop scene at a time when female rappers were almost unheard of. Against all odds, her debut, Funkdafied, became the first platinum-selling album by a female rapper. Unlike Lil’ Kim and Foxy Brown, Da Bra-ta-ta skewered sexuality early on in her career. Instead, she relied on her dashing delivery and double time flow.



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 6. Jean Grae

With three solid releases–Attack of the Attacking Things, The Bootlegg of The Bootlegg EP, and This Week–under her belt, South African-born, New York-bred rapper Jean Grae has been spinning heads for the past 10 years or so. What makes Grae stand out from the pack is her combination of humor and seriousness. Whether poking fun at herself on “Going Crazy” or rhyming about loyalty and dedication on “My Crew,” J.G. does it all with a touch of excellence.

In 2005, Jean hooked up with producer 9th Wonder for a full length collaboration dubbed Jeanius. A widespread internet leak forced her to shelf one of the best collaborative hip-hop albums you’ll never hear. Previously down with Babygrande Records (Canibus, Hi-Tek), Jean Grae is now signed to Talib Kweli’s Blacksmith imprint.



Get It Done Entertainment Presents: “On Deck” hosted by DJ SUSS ONE of POWER 105.1 is AVAILABLE for DOWNLOAD NOW!!

Track List and Artist:
1- DJ Sussone Intro
2- “Winner Theme”
3- “Never Gonna Quit”
4- DJ Sussone Skit
5- “Clapped’em” Nine Feat. 45 Grizz
6- “Lucky Girl”
7- “There Were Two Of Me”
8- “Test Drive” Skyzoo
9- “Coolin”
10- “Hold It Down” Kid Ink Feat. Jon Connor & Kevin Cossom
11- DJ Sussone Skit
12- “Stop Cryin”
13- “Wateva” M Will Feat. Mac Miller
14- “Movin Out”
15- “The Letter” Emilio Rojas Feat. Tenille
16- “Hero” , Son-Ray,
17- “What To Do” Feat. Inspectah Deck, Cappadonna, Trajik
18- “My Homie” Schoolboy Q
19- “No Title” Anastasia
20- “DJ Sussone Outro

Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 7. Rah Digga

Rah Digga first showcased her lyrical tenacity by dropping verses here and there as a member of the Busta Rhymes-led Flipmode Squad. Digga eventually solidified her place with the electrifying Dirty Harriet LP. Rah’s ability to craft commercially viable tracks while still dropping hardcore gems makes her stick out from the rest.

Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 8. Lil’ Kim

Lil’ Kim’s The Naked Truth was the first album by a female rapper to be awarded 5 mics in The Source magazine. Whether or not the accolades were well-deserved is another story. However, Kim’s impact on hip-hop is unquestionable. Since her Hard Core debut in 1996, Kim has spawned a slew of emulators, who are eager to replicate her libidinous lyrics and in-your-face persona.



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: # 9. Eve

Before she went all Hollywood on us, Eve was often heralded for her superb songwriting. Hits like “Satisfaction,” “Gangsta Lovin’” (with Alicia Keys) and “Let Me Blow Your Mind” (with Gwen Stefani) showcased her unique ability to appeal to a broad audience without losing her edge.



Article: 10 Best Female Rappers: #10. Foxy Brown

Granted, Foxy gets plenty of backlash for her raunchy lyrics, but, let’s not forget that she also contributed to some of hip-hop’s most notable hits. LL Cool J’s “I Shot Ya” and Jay-Z’s “Ain’t No N***a” would’ve never sounded the same without Fox Boogie’s catchy couplets. Brown has also managed to garner a measurable amount of success on her own three discs: Ill Na Na, Chyna Doll, and Broken Silence.



Article: The 25 Most Iconic Hip-Hop Cars by CARLOS MATIAS

This is definitely an article worth reading. Cool cars, cool background stories and interesting mentions in Hip-Hop lyrics.



Article: Hip Hop Fashion Trends

Hip hop vogue trends are not a newcomer to the trend scene by any indicates. In fact, this model has been around since the 1980′s, when celebrities like Will Smith and Christopher “Kid” Reid showed youth how it must be performed. Of program, hip hop fashion developments have evolved more than the previous two decades as tastes and types have modified to correspond with the culture of the time.

The fashion rules the entire world, its people and the globe markets. So prepare your self for the latest vogue developments of this 12 months. When we speak the word trend the first point we affiliate it with is females. The ladies of the planet are truly fashion crazy and they go to all extremes to stay with the fashionable developments.

Quite a few individuals have gone nuts over hip hop; be it the culture, the music, the trend, or all of these mixed. In spite of the reality that hip hop has been a trend for decades, several people nevertheless love this genre, especially when it arrives to trend.

Hip hop style has taken the entire world by storm. Since the 1970s till today, everyone continues to follow it, and even famous personalities these as Beyonce and Jay-Z are iconic in their hip hop fashion.

Brands like Dickies, Chuck Taylors, and Raiders contributed to the popularization of pants, sneakers, and baseball caps, respectively. Even Chanel joined in, featuring models sporting the traditional search of hip hop: black leather jackets and gold chains, or black attire with silver chains.

Hip hop style is almost everywhere. Hip hop outfits designers have certainly made a mark in today’s style. Urban style is far more than oversize football jerseys, and baggy jeans for males and skintight mini-dresses, and very low rise jeans for girls. Truly, urban clothes has developed over the many years to incorporate a extensive selection of styles.

The song is really catchy the dance is exciting and the style represented goes in opposition to the grain fully, which is why it is so prosperous. People are always looking for the hot new factor and leopard skinny jeans and fitted t-shirts are it! Or are they? The starters of the new dance craze are have set a trend and as common the masses will adhere to.

Hip hop garments have become much more and a lot more well-known, representing a fashion which is generating a statement. As any other vogue trend, hip hop outfits have modified over the a long time and they have been adopted all around the entire world.

Baseball caps are not just a hip hopstyle, but an American classic that will never ever go away. The only factor that has transformed is the fact that an actual baseball staff require not be advertised on the hat. They can be plain, make a political statement, or have a brand or band logo on them.

The individuals who are seeking to have a fantastic Xmas in the hip hop model must decide on clothes that suits them the finest. The Christmas of 2009 has gone and so has the pattern and the new 2010 style has been launched by the best of the vogue giants. The outfits that excellent for all the folks are hip hop style.

There could be a new trend creating between the hip hop crowd. It is a Kevlar lined hoodie. Kevlar is an ultra sturdy synthetic fiber employed in creating entire body armor. It is more powerful than steel of the exact same fat. In contrast to steel, it is machine washable, light excess weight, and flexible. The Kevlar lined hoodie is becoming promoted by a handful of organizations as currently being stab-proof and abrasion resistant.

In 1983, Casio designed the G-Shock with one goal in head – to develop the world’s toughest look at. It really is attributes incorporated a extremely distinctive search, exact time (like the second, moment, hour, day, and month), and triple safety for the elements, module, and situation.

Hip hop outfits has taken the US as nicely as the planet by storm. It is not since the style adheres to regular approaches of dressing, but since it is special and various. Dressing to the pattern does not often price a lot of money possibly.

Now each key fashion house claws to get or maintain market place share for their urban put on line. Think about it, in which else does a item have hundreds of individuals endorsers (rappers) who indirectly market place your merchandise every time they seem just before millions.

Hip hop jewellery can be discovered in gold, platinum and silver. As compared to silver, jewellery manufactured of gold and platinum are a lot more pricey. There are specific functions that make hip hop jewellery diverse from other folks.



Article: The Top Hip Hop Models 2010

Jessica Burciaga

Laura Dore

Jaye Santi

Nyla B

Daphne Joy




Article: The Top 10 Road Rage Songs By: Brad Iger

Road rage is part of human nature. If you spend enough time every day in your car, inevitably some jackass will pull a stunt that just defies all logic and regard for the motorists around them. Once you’ve experienced this enough times, you’re bound to lose it sooner or later. So when you end up going off the deep end, you might as well have a kickass soundtrack to compliment the fury.

10. Metallica “Battery”

The slow and somber acoustic guitar strumming that opens Master of Puppets serves as the perfect red herring for what’s to come. Suddenly the ethereal melodies turn into roaring thunder, and from then on there’s no turning back, dishing out pure, aggressive thrash till the last note of the song. This actually mimics the road rage phenomenon quite well – one minute you’re calmly going about your business, the next minute it’s vehicular mayhem. With the constant, propulsive force of this song, you’ll have an apt refrain to flip out to.

9. N.W.A. “Straight Outta Compton”
If this track doesn’t make you want to take down stupid pricks on the freeway, check your pulse because you’re probably already dead. Right out of the gate you get this constant click track and James Brown guitar riff that matches the pace of the road perfectly. Then suddenly Ice Cube is right in your face telling you to crush every sucka who gets in the way. Word to the mothef**ker.

8. Rage Against the Machine “Bulls on Parade”

If nothing else, the name of this band should tip you off to the intentions of their music. True to form, “Bulls on Parade” immediately grabs you with the kind of vitriol you get when some jerkoff cuts you off and then slams on the brakes just to shave a couple seconds off their otherwise pointless commute. The sinister, lumbering bass line that follows works as a backdrop to the frustration of watching your existence grow ever shorter as you battle just to get back to the package of stale Top Ramen and well-worn Victoria’s Secret catalog that you call home.

7. Pantera “F**kin’ Hostile”
Well, the title is kind of a give away, isn’t it? No high-falutin’ concepts here, just distorted vocals conjured up from hell and down-tuned guitars chugging furiously against your eardrums. For some reason, thrash metal seems to have both the ideal pacing for driving fast and the teeth-grinding anger that effectively gets people pissed off.

6. The Bronx “Heart Attack American”

One of the few punk bands left who seem to be making music as a source of catharsis instead of profit, and the opening track of The Bronx explodes out of the speakers with absolute ferocity. The track is a no-frills anthemic battlecry with a simple message: F**k everything. It truly makes you want to lash out against all the oppressive elements of the world around that keep you complacent and passive. If that happens to be another motorist, well, sooner or later someone’s gotta teach them a lesson.

5. Nine Inch Nails “March of the Pigs”

Is there a way to make a drum kit sound pissed off? Well, Trent found a way. This fine example of industrial rock destruction has this sort of surging effect to it, much like what you might experience when repeatedly smashing into the back end of someone’s car after you’ve finally hit your patience quota for stolen parking spots. And just when you think everything’s cool, it hits you in the face again with even more force than the first time. Vindictive.

4. Iggy and the Stooges “Search and Destroy”
While this track starts out in a relatively tame fashion (for this list anyway), it’s like a locomotive that just keeps gaining momentum. Or, in this case: chaos and fury. Released in 1973, this song became one of the prime templates for what would later be termed “punk rock.”

By end of the song, it’s total mayhem and dissonance as Iggy’s screaming about being “the forgotten boy, the one who’s searching to destroy.” In this case, you’ll be destroying the soul of the guy who pulled into the fast lane going 30 miles an hour. And it all dissolves into distorted cries of anger (or joyous wrath?) as massively overdriven guitars shriek and wail just before it all grinds itself to a halt.

3. Slayer “Angel of Death”
This truly is the soundtrack to hell. I mean, if hell is as awesome I hope it is. This song is relentlessly evil in every respect, be it lyrics about sadist human experiments or the enormity of the malevolent rock being delivered to your ears.

Drummer Dave Lombardo has this style that just makes everything systematically brutal that, even when things go completely apeshit at about the 3:35 mark after the solo kicks in, it’s totally insane and yet completely together simultaneously. Which is much like the mentality of a seasoned road rager: beyond logic yet somehow still functional.

2. Misfits “Bullet”
Unashamedly offensive, pissed off, anthemic, and without an ounce of filler – “Bullet” may be the perfect punk song. The track is an ode to the assassination of President Kennedy and young Danzig’s… uhh… “attraction” to the first lady.

It is the celebration of violence and death. It spews pure hatred in all the right ways, and at just the right tempo. Putting this track on makes your middle finger stronger. It was tough not to make this one #1, because it is an ideal song for road rage as it sets a brilliant tone and speed for vehicular psychosis.

1. Motorhead “Ace of Spades”
Motorhead and automotive mayhem go together like coke and cheap strippers. Could there ever be a better track to accompany Mad Max? The answer is NO. When someone asks you what “Driving Rock” is, you do not respond “Radar Love.” Not unless you want a bitch slap. Instead, you put this track on.

When this song kicks in, it grabs you by your face and screams, “Bury the goddamn throttle and drive like a maniac!” And of course, you do, because Lemmy demands it.



Industry Tips & Advice: How to Create a Music Image That Sells

Creating an image is the most important tool for a recording artist today! This shows you how to develop one that sells.

Article: The 500 Greatest Hip Hop albums plus the other ones that are honorable mention.

2/28/11 Yes I know this list is predictable that it precicely the point of it. This is a general consensus view as of December 2004. This list also needs to be severely updated.

22 thousand views I need to add some more. the never ending saga continues. best of luck on your hip hop ventures may you all dig in the crates may god continue to bless you. 12/7/08 the anny of pearl harbor know your history.

Goddamn I hope I get this done soon It has been 3 years. There maybe some bumps and a lot of add on’s. Right now I have putting most of my eggs in the singles basket.

Not all reviews are positive I have some classic albums that were panned as failures when they were first released althought my Illmatic bias will always be there. I will forever keep that one quote because that is the most glowing quote of hip hop ever. Comments
| | | | |

[ 1 - 100 ] 101 – 200 201 – 300 301 – 388 >>
Illmatic (1994)

The best ever. Not really anything else is as good. The Beats and the Rhymes were very innovative. The Beats by DJ Premier, Large Proffesor, Pete Rock and others has that old school vibe and lets Nas tear it up on the Mic. This is also a emcee in top form of where they need to be as he displays a perfect style-Flow and social conscience as it blends from song to song. The flow of the album is redicules and the only ones at it’s level are A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul. The First song is one blessed by Premier “NY State of Mind” and this is where he put down of Hip Hops finest lines.The Next song is Lifes a Bitch” where AZ makes a famous guest apperaence.
Even thought every track is perfect the best one I believe is “It Ait hard to tell”. Nas perfectly blended his increddible lyrics with atmospheric production and increddible vibes.Top 5 all time in all 3 categories. Other Nas albums expecially Lost Tapes or great to.

5 Mics – Classic – …I must maintain that this is one of the best hip-hop albums I have ever heard…No cliched metaphors, no gimmicks…Never too abstract, never superficial. Even the skit-intros are meaningful…
The Source (04/01/1994
Straight Outta Compton (1988)

Not only is this LP Gangsta it is also very Funky album to. From beginning to end you will feel Compton like a drive by. From the parties and the chilling out to the Ruthless violence this CD will make you feel like you are from the C.P.T. from songs like “Strait out of Compton” and “Gangsta Gangsta” that represent the hood to the song that was a protest “F**K the Police” to just songs about hanging out “Parental Discretion iz Advised” “If it aint Ruff”. To the songs that are about a subject “Dopeman” and a “B***H iz a B***H”
this album is great from beginning to end. Also of Note is Express Yourself. Make sure to buy this album. It is the second best

5 stars out of 5 – …Their landmark blend of pop, rage and skilful self-marketing conitnues to reverberate….
Uncut (11/01/2002)

5 stars out of 5 – …One of hip-hop’s crucial albums…
Rolling Stone (10/01/2002)
Public Enemy
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988)

5 Stars – Indispensable – …the greatest rap album of all time, a landmark and classic….
Q (09/01/1995)

10 (out of 10) – …the greatest hip-hop album ever….this wasn’t merely a sonic triumph. This was also where Chuck wrote a fistful of lyrics that promoted him to the position of foremost commentator/documentor of life in the underbelly of the USA….
NME (07/15/1995)
Dr. Dre
The Chronic (1992)

This album is one of the First soundtracks of hip hop original material ever. The album plays like any artists greatest Hits album and has everything you can ever want in a hop album from tight lyrics by Dr.Dre are by the guest stars of Kurupt-Snoop-Daz-Rage. All rappers show up correct and times are even world class like on
“Stranded on Deathrow” and goes into some of the best beats ever on record like the song “B***** Aint S***”.Then you go into the pattoned G-Funk music of the single “Let me Ride”.Then there is the funny and another sex ode of there manliness on “Deeez Nuuuts” and finally goes to the parties that are at happening in South Central
“Nothing but a G’Thang”. 7 years later Dre released a classic follow up but hopefully his much anticipated “Detox” will be released soon.

4.5 Stars – Excellent Plus – …Following the hype behind one of his hardest tracks ever, `Deep Cover,’ Dre has unloaded all over this album with the same furified intensity….An innovative and progressive hip-hop package that must not be missed…
The Source (02/01/1993)

4 Stars – Excellent – …A hip-hop masterwork full of big beats and little surprises….THE CHRONIC drops raw realism and pays tribute to hip-hop virtuosity…
Rolling Stone (03/18/1993)

…No one in the pop universe makes more visceral–or more visual–music than he does….THE CHRONIC storms with rage, strolls with confidence, and reverberates with a social realism that’s often ugly and horrifying… – Rating: A+
Entertainment Weekly (01/08/1993)
Wu-Tang Clan
Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (1993)

One of the most original hip hop albums of all time. Started the love with Underground. The 9 rappers have been heroes since this albums release. From the grimey horrorcore beats by the RZArector to the weird rhymes of Meth and ODB to the wordplay and mad skills of The Genius-The Rebel INS and Ghost to the Mafia/Scarface at heart Raekwon to the other rappers Masta Killa and U-God to the off shoots. This album has funny kung fu type fighting and plays like a Kung Fu movie.There were a mix of rap styles and a lot of raw game.
Key Tracks to check for in any order. The 5 ones you need to know
Bring the Ruckus-Clan in Da Front-Mystery of Chessboxin
C.R.E.A.M.-Protect ya Kneck. If you want to here some weird funky beats and ODB mixed with the raps of Raekwon or Rebel INS start here.
All Eyez on Me (1996)

The Finnest double disk in Hip Hop history expecially side 1.The Raps are all over the place he goes from sexcapades like on “How do you want it” to being just a flat gangsta “2 of Amerikaz most wanted” with Snoop Dogg and other tracks like “Tradin Wall Stories”
and then he goes in to being into his inside feelings “Heartz of Men”
and “Only god can jude me” and then goes on a car ride in Cali with his boy Dre on the remix of “California Love”. Like on most double CD’s the second CD can get long winded but is still pretty good songs like “Shorty wanna be a thug” to “Whunda why they call you B****” to a thrilling posse cut “Aint Hard to find”. There are many classics and the shortcommings are easily triumphed by the better tracks. There are to many classics to listen to. It may not be as good as his album Me Against the World but it is easier to listen to.

3 Stars (out of 5) – …Even as garden-variety thug, 2Pac shows more skill than most. He deserves to have all eyes–and ears–on him.
Rolling Stone Magazine (04/04/1996)

9 (out of 10) – …ALL EYEZ is his angry, end-of-tether, couldn’t-give-a-s*** meditation….an immense spewing of indignation and provocation, set to a brilliantly varied range of G-funk grooves….Tupac blasts out his non-PC opinions…with a competition-eliminating relentlessness…
NME (03/02/1996)
A Tribe Called Quest
The Low End Theory (1991)

To call this album original would be a under statement. This album is extremely fun plus every song is perfect and they blend in all really well. From song to song you get top quality hip hop that is both great and Fresh. From the Beautiful “Excursions” to the Phife blessed “Buggin out” to the great “chech the Rhime” then the best produced song “We got the Jazz” and finally the all time posse anthem “Senario”. This was extremally great produced album and had effortless rhymes by Q-Tip and Phife Dawg. This maybe the second best album ever behind Illmatic for best all around rap CD.
The Notorious B.I.G.
Ready to Die (1994)

4.5 Mics – Slammin’ – …READY TO DIE, the debut from Brooklyn’s own Biggie Smalls (a.k.a. The Notorious B.I.G.), echoes the attitude in full Ghettovision color, showing us that the true `American way’ is to hustle for yours…
The Source (10/01/1994)

4 Stars – Excellent – …With his prodigious, often booming voice overwhelming the track, he sweeps his verbal camera high and low, painting a sonic picture so vibrant that you’re transported right to the scene…
Rolling Stone Magazine (11/03/1994)
Snoop Dogg
Doggystyle (1993)

Even thought every one says how Gangsta this is that is not what the album is best remembered for. Sure it can get hardcore but this album is more concern with smoking weed then smoking blunts.This was one of the most hyped albums in hip hop history and went to #1 and he was the first artist to have there debut album debut at the top spot. Snoop remembers to have a lot of parties and Funky good times with songs like “Gin and Juice” “Ladi Dodi” and “Whats my name” songs that are for the “Gz and the Hustla’s” and “Murder was the Case” to other posse cuts featuring Dre on the boards and Kurupt, The Lady of Rage, RBX and Nate Dogg on the album.It is not as good as the Chronic but is still probally the 4th best West Coast album

4 Stars – Excellent – …DOGGYSTYLE is filled with verbal and vocal feats that meet its three-mile-high expectations….DOGGYSTYLE speeds through 55 minutes of constant talk as if on a suicide hot line….
Rolling Stone (01/27/1994)

…[Snoop] emerges as an MC who lives up to all of his advance hype….
The Source (02/01/1994)

…[DOGGYSTYLE] is the most limber, low-rider gangsta album to date…it’s easy to be impressed one moment and appalled the next… – Rating: B-
Entertainment Weekly (12/10/1993)

…Snoop is good, no doubt about it. His cool, lazy drawl is unique, evocative, rhythmically complex–the perfect foil for Dre’s thick, tense beats…The big story on THE CHRONIC was Snoop stealing Dre’s thunder; on DOGGYSTYLE, Dre snatches it back….
Vibe (02/01/1994)
De La Soul
3 Feet High and Rising (1989)

5 stars out of 5 – …The expansive confidence of youth’s first flush flows through its grooves…
Uncut (06/01/2003)

…Fine and innovative….An antidote to all the guns and macho bluster, it was supposed to herald a new touchy-feely age for hip hop…
Q (08/01/1999)

-Where the hell is the 5 Mic rating dont give it to Lil Kim this it.
Boogie Down Productions
Criminal Minded (1987)
Mobb Deep
The Infamous (1995)

4.5 Mics – Superior – …By favoring straightforward, near spoken-word deliveries over stylish vocal gymnastics, Mobb Deep earn credibility, winning the crucial battle between style and substance….reminiscent of a young Erick and Parrish…
The Source (06/01/1995)

9 – Near Perfect – …state-of-the-art East Coast reportage: drug-selling, police-fleeing, and homie-dying vignettes, all told with vivid detail and a deadpan thousand-yard flow….If only to clock a stunning panoply of mike skills, THE INFAMOUS is indispensible…
Spin (08/01/1995)

…Over mostly self-produced, bare-bones beats, the pair’s hard-edged rhymes paint a chilling picture of life on their mean streets….Underground rap-heads–and those who can break away from Jeep beats–will rejoice… – Rating: B+
Entertainment Weekly (05/05/1995
Raising Hell (1986)

5 stars out of 5 – …the apex of pre-Public Enemy, beatbox-based hip hop, a monument of massive, crisp beats plus the genre-bending ‘Walk This Way’…
Vibe (12/01/1999)

5 stars out of 5 – …This kicks butt…
Rolling Stone (09/05/2002)
Reasonable Doubt (1996)

4 Mics – Slammin’ – …[Jay-Z] moves from hip-hop sidekick to Mafia-style front man, blowing up the spot with vivid tales about the economic reality fueling what’s left of contemporary ghetto politics….His lyrics create cuttingly clever rhymes that ride bomb tracks…
The Source (08/01/1996)
-Later changed to 5 Mics
Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… (1995)

4.5 Mics – Superior – …Raekwon…sprays out lyrics like gunfire….On CUBAN LINX, a barrage of sound effects, screams, samples and dialogue conjure up images of a gangsta movie….another success for Shaolin’s finest…
The Source (09/01/1995

…rapper Raekwon at his lightning-quickest and producer RZA at his razor sharpest….Underneath the meaty rhymes are RZA’s spooky, discordant keyboards and wailing female vocal samples… – Rating: A-
Entertainment Weekly (08/18/1995)

…Raekwon rips through rhymes like no other lyricist exists–he looks at every other MC like dinner. Not quite a solo debut, Rae puts his man Ghost…down on practically every cut….since practically every MC who knows…something was itching to get…on this album, those who made the cut…are cream…
Vibe (09/01/1995)
Eric B. & Rakim
Paid In Full (1987)

4 stars out of 5 – Sixteen years down the line, the bold minimalism of Eric B’s work and Rakim’s mic control seem little less than biblical.
Uncut (02/01/2004)

Producer-Rakim what is it that Eric B actually do to get top billing he did not produce are rap on this album
Ice Cube
AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted (1990)

5 stars out of 5 – …Beautiful anarchy, a mercilessly funky record…
Rolling Stone (03/20/2003)

Ranked #2 in Vibe’s Top 10 rap albums – …A visceral classic…
Vibe (06/01/2002)
Me Against the World (1995)

To me this is definantly Tupacs finest work. It is still my Favorite album because of the emotional depths he travels to. This is not his top album but it is definantly his finest. Each and every track is great and tells a great story.”If I die tonight” and “Death Around the Corner” or about Death.”Me Against the world” is literally that.
On “Old School” and “Outlaw” he talks about being a little brat and “Dear Mama” is dedicated to his mama.It’s sad this album does not get the respect in the Gangster circles as it does else where.

4 Stars – Slammin’ – …ME AGAINST THE WORLD follows suit as [Tupac] releases his best work by far….a manisfestation of Tupac’s talents becoming completely whole as they are mixed with the tracks that may, for a change, overshadow him…
The Source (04/01/1995)
-Changed to 5 Mics
ATLiens (1996)

4 Mics – Slammin’ – …OutKast and their producers Organized Noize understand that without growth, audiences do mature beyond the artists….Big Boi and Dre have gone out of this world into a new dimension of sight, sound and mind…
The Source (10/01/1996)
Slick Rick
The Great Adventures of Slick Rick (1988)

Producers include: Ricky Walters, Jason Mizell, Hank Shocklee, Eric Sadler. The Last 2 are in the Bomb Squad

4 stars out of 5 – …Articulate, street-smart cartoons…[drawn] in technicolor lunacy…
Q (09/01/2000)
Beastie Boys
Licensed to Ill (1986)

Bloody Essential – …There’s lots of self-reverential bragging, more tenuous rhymes than are usually permitted by law and, most importantly of all, an unshakably glorious celebration of being alive….A surprisingly enduring classic.
Melody Maker (07/22/1995)

4 Stars – …LICENSE TO ILL remains the world’s only punk rock rap album, arguably superior to NEVER MIND THE BOLLOCKS…knowing that apathy and slovenliness were just around the corner…
Q (09/01/1994)
Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth
Mecca and the Soul Brother (1992)

…laid-back beats and meandering jazz samples surround Smooth’s vocals, which are cool, textured and direct…
Option (11/01/1992)
A Tribe Called Quest
Midnight Marauders (1993)

4 Stars – Excellent – …With their third album, MIDNIGHT MARAUDERS, Quest do what they’ve always done – ignore all of the current trends in hip-hop and deliver a solid collectable…
The Source (12/01/1993)

I am not sure but I believe there producers the Unmah were Seff Anslem-Yauncey “Jaydee” Douglass-Ali Shaheed Muhammed and Q-Tip

…[A Tribe Called Quest's MIDNIGHT MARAUDER] sounds as fresh as their first…rappers Phife and Q-Tip manage to hold attention without resorting to gun references or expletives… – Rating: A
Entertainment Weekly (11/12/1993)
Run-D.M.C. (1984)
Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik (1994)

..If there is such a thing as southern hip-hop…you’ll get closer with Outkast’s lazy, sprawling grooves, its casual funk…and it’s about time that someone told today’s weed-obsessed youth to get up, get out and get something/Don’t spend all your time trying to get high…. – Rating: A
Entertainment Weekly (05/27/1994)
The D.O.C.
No One Can Do It Better (1989)

3 Stars – Good Q magazine
Main Source
Breaking Atoms (1991)

-5 Mics from the Source
Aquemini (1998)

5 Mics (out of 5) – …Aquemini is a brilliant record….Throughout the record Dre and Big Boi showcase their verbal trademark–cool, staccato flows steeped in the everyday slanguage of the Deep South…
The Source (11/01/1998)

Spotlighting equally the talents of Dre and Big Boi may be the key to their artistic transcendence. They also rip the rap envelope by trading samples for distinctive instruments like Kalimba and harmonica (a la Earth, Wind & Fire and Curtis Mayfield).. – Rating: A
Entertainment Weekly (11/06/1998)
De La Soul
De La Soul Is Dead (1991)

4 Stars – Excellent – …No hip-hop album since perhaps L.L. Cool J’s Mama Said Knock You Out or De La Soul’s first outing has arrived so sonically crafted by personality and musicianship as De la Soul Is Dead…`De La Soul Is Dead’ confirms first that `3 Feet High and Rising’ was no fluke and second that these guys are true hip-hop scholars…Spin (1991
-Source 5 Mics
Black Star
Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star (1998)

The Source (11/98, p.198) – 3.5 Mics (out of 5) – “…With a delicate balance of Black Nationalism, well-chosen interludes and lyrics to go, high-pitched metaphor specialist Kweli and straight-up showman Mos prove that they’re more than just ‘lyrically handsome’…”

Entertainment Weekly (10/23/98, p.80) – “…Mixing rugged street beats and rhymes brainy enough for boho B-boys (they cite literary references and quote Nina Simone) makes this Black Star shine bright.” – Rating: A-
Big Daddy Kane
Long Live the Kane (1988)
Boogie Down Productions
By All Means Necessary (1988)
Strictly Business (1988)
LL Cool J
Radio (1985)
Reflection Eternal
Train of Thought (2000)

This is my Favorite album of the 2000′s.
Producers: Hi Tek, Talib Kweli, Weldon Irvine.
Dr. Dre
2001 (1999)

-5 Mics from the Source
Producer-Dr.Dre & Mel Man
The Score (1996)

9 (out of 10) – …[A] sense of organic interaction is the hallmark of this album….the album’s most important factor…is its beats–chest-shaking, obscure-texture-having, freestyle-friendly beats…
Spin (03/01/1996)
Jeru the Damaja
The Sun Rises in the East (1994)

4 Stars – Slammin’ – …the music both contrasts and compliments his disjointed flow and deep poetical lyricism…
The Source (08/01/1994)
Producer-DJ Premier
Liquid Swords (1995)

…an intriguing paradox of wordplay and profanity, juvenilia and wisdom. – Rating: B+
Entertainment Weekly (12/22/1995)
Resurrection (1994)

3.5 Stars – Dope – …Common Sense’s no-b******* brand of hip-hop may not deliver the superficial thrills others have to offer, but there is no denying the intelligence and heart that guides it. This is one MC who lives up to his name…
The Source (10/01/1994)

4 Stars – Excellent – …Common Sense has succeeded in creating that rare thing: a solid hardcore hip-hop album. Hardcore not for the verbal body count but for the confluence of phat beats, smooth flows and dope rhymes…
Rolling Stone (02/09/1995)
Brand Nubian
One for All (1990)

…A peculiar merger of sexual boasting, self-promotion and occasional political perspective. The lyrics carom around easygoing pop-jazz riffs…
New York Times (12/16/1990)
-5 Mics from the Source
Producers: Brand Nubian, Grand Puba Maxwell, Dante Ross, Skeff Anselm, J. Gamble, G. Dajani, D. Hall.
The Blueprint (2001)

5 discs out of 5 – …Like a bookend [to his forst album 1996's REASONABLE DOUBT], or the second key on a double-bolt lock. Only better…he is our cleanest poet, rethinking space…
Vibe (11/01/2001)

5 stars out of 5 – …The sonics here are relentlessly ear-catching. Almost every tune sounds like a hit…
Uncut (12/01/2001)
-Producers include: Kayne West, Just Blaze, Trackmaster, Timbaland, Bink.
A Tribe Called Quest
People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm (1990)
Dead Serious (1992)

Highly Recommended – ..hard lyrics that simultaneously perplex, captivate, annoy, and amuse…DAS’s mission–to put the fun and Brooklyn back into hip hop–has been accomplished..
Spin (06/01/1992)

Producers: Chris Charity, Derek Lynch, A. Weston, W. Hines.
Public Enemy
Fear of a Black Planet (1990)

4 Stars – Excellent – …Public Enemy has never aimed for anything less than a comprehensive view of contemporary black America…FEAR OF A BLACK PLANET complements this ambition with stunning maturity and sophistication…
Rolling Stone (05/17/1990)
Stillmatic (2001)

3.5 out of 5 – …Poignant vignettes attest to Nas’ still superb descriptive ability….at his best, Nas is still one of the finest…
Vibe (02/01/2002)
-The Source gave it 5 Mics
The Pharcyde
Bizarre Ride II The Pharcyde (1992)

3.5 Stars – Very Good – …The Pharcyde combine the sing-songy vocal tones of those down-to-earthlings who reminisced about Tennessee with an intense enthusiasm and energy akin to the Leaders Of The New School….packed with soulful pianos and organs….enjoy the bizarre ride…
The Source (02/01/1993)
Bone Thugs-N-Harmony
E. 1999 Eternal (1995)

3.5 Mics (out of 5) – …Bone offer so much complexity and cleverness that you rarely catch…due to the flow and style…along with Prince (circa 1979) type melody…is just a sample of what to check for…
The Source (09/01/1995)
Ultramagnetic MC’s
Critical Beatdown (1988)

9 (out of 10) – Kool Keith is the Prodigy’s favourite rapper, and this relic of his time in the Ultramagnetic MC’s…is why….they knew what they were doing, and everyone’s been playing catch-up since. A bona fide classic.
NME (10/04/1997)
-A Source 5 Mic Classic
Gang Starr
Daily Operation (1992)

3.5 Stars – Very Good – …hypnotic and pensive–throbbing in a spare, intimate way….a remarkably good sequel [to 1990's STEP IN THE ARENA]….rises above most of the assembly-line, new-school hip-hop being churned out by most artists and labels…
Spin (07/01/1992)
Big L
Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous (1995)

4 Stars – Slammin’ – …he comes with ill animated lyrics, combined with metaphors that stun; a combo sure to have suckas on the run…
The Source (03/01/1995)
Goodie Mob
Soul Food (1995)

9 (out of 10) – …The insight and methods these four employ sets them apart from the rest of the flock. Their ability to look beyond the quick cash, murder-murder-murder-kill-kill-kill scheme of things is a bonus…
Rap Pages (12/01/1995)
Souls of Mischief
93 ‘Til Infinity (1993)
Gang Starr
Moment of Truth (1998)

4.5 Mics (out of 5) – This is the record that hip-hop purists who have long been tired of the artform’s commercial tendencies and lack of creativity have been savoring for….MOMENT OF TRUTH delivered the antidote to hip-hop afflictions…
The Source (05/01/1998)
Black Moon
Enta da Stage (1993)

Editorial reviews
4 Stars – Slammin’ – …Black Moon’s ENTA DA STAGE is a welcome return to the days when rap consistently reflected true musical and lyrical integrity….Make this jammie a priority…
The Source (11/01/1993)
The Diary (1994)

4 Stars – Slammin’ – …Scarface is business as usual lyrically…this Geto boy has tapped into something new and has laid the foundation for an even brighter future…
The Source (01/01/1995)
-Later Given the 5 Mic rating
Kanye West
The College Dropout (2004)

3.5 stars out of 5 – West has something to prove on DROPOUT….His ace in the hole is his cozy sound – dusty soul samples, gospel hymns, drums that pop as if hit for the very first time.Rolling Stone (p.153)
Beastie Boys
Paul’s Boutique (1989)

5 stars out of 5 – …A celebration of American junk culture that is still blowing minds today – even fourteen years of obsessive listening can’t exhaust all the musical and lyrical jokes crammed into PAUL’S BOUTIQUE…
Rolling Stone (02/06/2003)
Gang Starr
Step in the Arena (1991) [Single]

busts rhythms that boast without resorting to misogyny and profanity. And their lazy backbeats and playful brass flourishes serve as a backdrop not only for humour..but even wisdom. – Rating: B
Entertainment Weekly (01/25/1991)
Showbiz & A.G.
Runaway Slave (1992)

In terms of the musical content this CD is Top 20
Key Tracks-Still Diggin, Fat Pockets, Silence of the Lambs, Soul Clap and Represent
4 Stars – Excellent – ..this Bronx duo skillfully distill[s] the essence of the asphalt into gargantuan polyrhythms and freestyle lyrics straight from the old-school outdoor jams…an album of nuance with many layers of words and sounds that will age like fine wine..
The Source (11/01/1992)
Eric B. & Rakim
Follow the Leader (1988)

A Source 5 Mic album I believe if not it was by All Music Guide
Mos Def
Black on Both Sides (1999)
Ol’ Dirty Bastard
Return to the 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version (1995)

4 Stars – Slammin’ – …The third shot fired in the Wu-Tang revolution spotlights the crazy drunken flow of the Ol’ Dirty Bastard….a must-have for every real hardcore head….hardcore lyrics kicked live over a non-stop assault of that addictive Shao-lin funk…
The Source (05/01/1995)
The Slim Shady LP (1999)

This CD is quite different from the other two Eminem albums
Key Tracks-My Name is, Guilty Concience, Brain Damage,Role Model,
Bad meets Evil, and I dont give a Fuck

8 (out of 10) – …Eminem [aka Marshall Mathers] is humorous enough to be an honorary Beastie goy, and his scenarios are so far-fetched the songs almost never sound as ugly as they actually are. Mathers’s hard-knock raps translate hip-hop for folks with Wu-Tang decoder rings, articulating suburban anger and violent apathy through the lens of white kids’ experience…
Spin (05/01/1999)
Like Water for Chocolate (2000)

Key Tracks-Time Travlin, Cold Blooded, The Light, Funky For you, The 6th Since
4 mics out of 5 – …Reflects a more worldly Common….creating full-fledged jazz, funk and soul songs….this LP unfolds in 2 acts. Act I stretching the boundaries of traditional hip-hop….Act II finds [him] on an emotional roller coaster…
The Source (05/01/2000)
Method Man
Tical (1994)

4 Mics – Slammin’ – …His hoarse voice and sense of what’s metaphorically fly have seen him take over as hip-hop’s urban paramilitary….He shows a fragmented hip-hop nation what this music is really about…
The Source (01/01/1995)
Dead Prez
Lets Get Free (2000)

7 out of 10 – …an unfashionably political album that screams for change and a return to Afro-centric values in rap….a refreshing change to the current glut of buddy-boy, backslapping rap records. ‘Vive la revolution’ – fight the power.
NME (03/04/2000)
Lucy Ford: The Atmosphere EP’s (2001) [Compilation]
Puff Daddy & the Family
No Way Out (1997)

…with his new, imperious NO WAY OUT, Puffy places himself at the center of the pop universe….Ain’t nothin’ held him down yet….Say what you like, these tracks are soulful and charming…
Vibe (10/01/1997)
400 Degreez (1998)

4 Mics (out of 5) – …400 DEGREEZ offers a big ol’ steaming pot of musical gumbo filled with influences from dancehall, second-line brass jazz, Southern R&B, and old school hip-hop seasoned with plenty of bouncy beats…
The Source (12/01/1998)
Digable Planets
Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space) (1993)

3.5 Stars – Very Good – …a loving blend of jazz, old school hip-hop, Five Percent perspectives and off-center beatnik rhymes…the cool cat sound of jazz-hop is very much alive…12 tracks of pure peace vibes…both substantive and relaxing…
The Source (03/01/1993)
-Apparently there was not a thing called Mics back in 1993
Ice Cube
Death Certificate (1991)

…20 tracks of the most visceral music ever allowed in public… – Rating: A-
Entertainment Weekly (11/15/1991)
The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory (1996)

…The tracks are fat with funky menace (the upfront bass in `Life of an Outlaw’ smells of Bootsy Collins-meets-Robbie Shakespeare), and the choral-vocal effect in many of the raps has a street-corner, pass-the-bottle charge…
Rolling Stone (12/26/1996)
The Roots
Illadelph Halflife (1996)

4.5 Mics (out of 5) – …an emotional and spiritually-fulfilling aural experience….the Roots blend vibes with a cornucopia of rappers, vocalists and artists…
The Source (10/01/1996)
Whut? Thee Album (1992)

4.5 Stars – Excellent Plus – ..an LP to mush all competition dead in the grill…Redman lives up to all expectations…Make way for the new funk material..
The Source (11/01/1992)
Boogie Down Productions
Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop (1989)
Big Pun
Capital Punishment (1998)

4 Mics (out of 5) – …He’ll rhyme every possible word in a line because he wants to be twice as nice….CAPITAL PUNISHMENT’s all about execution…
The Source (06/01/1998)
The Lost Tapes (2002)

Key Tracks-My Way-U Gotta Love it-Nothing last Forever-No Idea’s Original-Purple-Poppa was a Player-Fetus

4 stars–…Tightly stitched narrative and stunningly precise detail…easily among Nas’ best work.
Rolling Stone (10/01/2002)

9/10 Masterpiece. These were throwaways. Were these not good enough for what. When they saw the light of day they were far better then the alrighty great albums they were on.
Freestyle Fellowship
Innercity Griots (1993)

…Here’s some L.A. rap that doesn’t reek of post-riot jargon or empty gangsta threats. These four L.A. bohos use fluid rhymes and funky jazz jams to create some of the best hip-hop vibes since Boogie Down Productions’ `Criminal Minded’… – Rating: A-
Entertainment Weekly (07/23/1993)

3.5 Stars – Very Good – …an innovative step in the `next’ direction…The best thing about this group is that they dare to be different. They provide rap with a new perspective…
The Source (03/01/1993)
Digable Planets
Blowout Comb (1994)

…the overall tone is so laid-back you might nod out to the ambient-jazz grooves and stoned-soul stylings… – Rating: B+
Entertainment Weekly (10/21/1994)
The Marshall Mathers LP (2000)

Key Tracks-Stan-Who I am-The Real Slim Shady-Kim-Criminal

4 mics out of 5 – …You wanna peep [this LP], if not for the intense lyrics and witty punch lines, at least for the chance of witnessing one of the craziest MCs grow up right before ya ears.

…Should forever erase the notion that [he] is the Elvis Presley of hardcore hip hop. If anything, he’s rap’s Eric Clapton: a white boy who can hang with the best black talent based on sheer skill – enhancing the art form instead of stealing from it.

…Even more abrasive and offensive….proving again that his imagery and storytelling abilities stand tall over most other rappers
-That has to be by the Eminem haters the Source
It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot (1998)

Well this is a really good CD in terms of just pure raw lyrical ability.DMX never gets like this anymore.The beats are kind of bad but the lyrics and some of the guest can get quite pleasing.There are a number of good cuts on here like “Get at me dog” and a ode to the wrongs of the devil “Damien” to boastings of “Ruff Ryders Anthem” there are many other great songs to.

4 Mics (out of 5) – …DMX raps as if he’s about to explode….IT’S DARK AND HELL IS HOT is a mind-gripping opus that fully encompasses the appeal of one of rap’s newest sensations…
The Source (07/01/1998)

7/10 Great. The lyrics are grimey on here and the beats are hardcore this is some anthemic mix of hood boy and mainstream
The Roots
Do You Want More?!!!??! (1995)

4 Mics – Slammin’ – …they create a mod funk energy that many artists approach but, until now, have yet to master. The Roots come through with some raw, even progressive material without forsaking hip-hop tradition…
The Source (11/01/1994

7/10 There is no problem in calling this one great. You get live type beats with freestyled rhymes that deliver far more then they miss and the result is a flesh feel for hip hop even circa 94.
Group Home
Livin’ Proof (1995)

Some of the best beats ever on wax layed down by Premier
Key Tracks-Livin Proof-Suspended in Time-4 My sins-Supa Star

…a crew aided throughout their debut by the great DJ Premier….two distinct voices that mesh together to do work. And while their packaging is no-frills, the substance is there…
Vibe (02/01/1996)

8/10 Classic. The average lyrics cant fuck with the brilliance of the beats. These beats by DJ Premier are some of the grimiest and awesome beats ever laced. This is an experience beatwise
2Pacalypse Now (1991)

Key Tracks-Young Black Male-Trapped-I Dont give A Fuck-Violent-
Brenda’s Got a Baby-Part Time Mother

6/10 Recommended. In 1991 Tupac was already at the top of his game even before just the cops were paying attention.
It Was Written (1996)

Key Tracks-The Message-I gave you Power-Affirmative Action-Mobb Deep Joint-If I ruled the world-Silent Murder(IF it is on the album)

4 Mics (out of 5) – …Nas reveals himself not only as a rhymer, but also as a thinker….[He] explores the realm of ideas through stories, using example as a device to show rather than tell….IT WAS WRITTEN is an audio anthology of ghetto stories told by one of hip-hop’s most prolific writers. If ever there was a straight up genius in hip-hop…
The Source (08/01/1996)

6/10 Recommended. This only follows in the footsteps of the best rap album of hip hop history. Will make many fans dissapointed because of it but why this has Affirmative Action and I gave you power on it and those two songs make any rap album noteworthy
Harlem World (1997)

…rap’s newest bad boy more than holds his own on his solo debut. Reviews-Like Puff Daddy, he laces hardcore raps with pop hooks and drops Big Willie boasts….his distinctive marble-mouthed drawl, however, creates a regular-guy persona all too rare in hip-hop. – Rating: B+
Entertainment Weekly (11/21/1997)

6/10 Recommended. If you consider this his album it is good if you consider it a guest opus it is classic. I will say that it is just very good and has some dope grooves and beats.
Unfinished Business (1989)

7/10 Erick and Parrish should have made dollars with this great follow up to there classic debut.
50 Cent
Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2003)

Suberban Gangsta Rap at it’s Finnest for Target fans only he he he…
Key Track-What up Gangsta-Many Men-In da Club-Back Down-P.I.M.P.

…50 Cent may end up the Goliath he wants to be… – Rating: B
Entertainment Weekly (02/21/2003)

6/10 Recommended. If only his lyrics matched the quality of the productions and songs he would be one of the most respected
Talib Kweli
Quality (2002)

Key Tracks-Rush-Get By-Waitin for the DJ-Where do we go
4.5 discs out of 5 – …QUALITY’s rugged beats are more incensed than incense burning. Kweli’s flow is …potent, all winking wordplay, compelling imagery, limber cadences, and passion…
Vibe (12/01/2002)

7/10 This has his best song on it. It also has some great lyrics from one of the most concious emcees in the history of the game. This made his hop legacy of the new school cats
Aesop Rock
Labor Days (2001)

Another world class Lyricist who gets not much love the key tracks
Daylight-No Regrets-Labor Days-Coma-9 to 5ers Anthem
…[The] ambient grooves make the Wu-Tang Clan seem tired, while the hyper-enunciated rhymes make KRS ONE sound like a stutterer… – Rating: A
Entertainment Weekly (09/28/2001)
-He is no KRS-One but yeah he is a hell of a lyricist

7/10 The best lyricist that know one has ever heard of. Even if you have he would be on your list of greatest ever.
The Fix (2002)

Key Tracks-In Between us-In cold Blood-Guess who’s Back-On My Block
4 stars out of 5 – …A poignant, personal work, performed with clarity and conviction and imbued with the muscular spirituality that marks all of Face’s music. The result is outlaw truth well told and the best that hip-hop has offered up this year.
Rolling Stone (09/19/2002)

Included in Rolling Stone’s 50 Best Albums of 2002
Rolling Stone (12/26/2002)
The Source also gave this album 5 Mics

7/10 Is one of those albums where he lets the others take over but unlike many albums like that he remains the star of the show and he delivers some beautiful lyrics over heartfelt beats.
Geto Boys
We Can’t Be Stopped (1991)
DJ Quik
Quik Is the Name (1991)

Key Tracks-Sweet Black Pussy-Tonite-Born and Raised in Compton-Quik is the name-8 Ball

7/10 Quik always brought that Gangsta rap on a very high level. He remains one of the best producers of the west and he raps at a pretty high level to boot. Great stuff pop it now.
Warren G
Regulate… G Funk Era (1994)

Key Tracks-Regulate-Do you See-This DJ

Best news review-
Highly Recommended – …Truth be told, Warren G. wasn’t cut out to be a hardass. He’s a romantic, in love with soft sound…
Spin (09/01/1994)

8/10 Classic in the minds of those G-Funk afficianodo’s. This one has 3 pinnacle classics of the genre and the beats are slamming and the feel is magical.
Mobb Deep
Hell on Earth (1996)

Another LP I really must buy at the store. The Key Tracks apperantly are Animal Instinct-Drop a Gem on them-Exstortion-Man Down-Self Title

4.5 Mics (out of 5) – …Mobb Deep are probably the most intense, most authentic, most powerful practitioners of a specifically Eastern hardcore feel to touch the mic this decade…
The Source (12/01/1996)

7/10 This has some deep productions that show that the duo keeps it grimey as Havoc brings that grimey shit and Prodigy kicks some dope lyrics. There are no concerns here just great stuff.
The Notorious B.I.G.
Life After Death (1997)

I have not yet to here much of this album but the Tracks everyone talks about are Hyptonize-Kick in the door-Mo Money Mo Problems-Ten Crack Commandments-Sky’s the Limit

…LIFE AFTER DEATH truly rises, though, when Biggie is full control; he tells tales like a true alum of those hard-to-creep Brooklyn streets….LIFE AFTER DEATH is an olive branch to his divided kingdom….Long live the king!
Vibe (05/01/1997)

5 Mics (out of 5) – …Big documented the illmatic mean streets of his Bedford Stuyvesant stomping grounds….LIFE AFTER DEATH’s finest moments are the instantly catchy, future-radio-favorites….Big’s potent verses of violent death became a self-prophecy indeed.
The Source (05/01/1997)

7/10 There are many moments of brilliance but his debut was a classic and this is not quite to the Biggie pinnacle of his debut
De La Soul
Buhloone Mind State (1993)

Key Tracks-Eye Patch-Ego Trippin Pt II-I am I be-Breakadawn

Editorial reviews
…BUHLOONE MINDSTATE signals [De La Soul's] maturation as hip hop artists minus the pop hype and hysteria surrounding [3 FEET HIGH AND RISING]…a rap classic…
Vibe (11/01/1993)

7/10 Close to Classic. This is some superior knowledge hip hop and a return to there lighthearted selfs.
Kool G Rap & DJ Polo
Road to the Riches (1989)

Key Tracks-Road to the Riches-It’s A Demo-Men at Work-Poison

7/10 In my view this is there 3rd best album this has some of his best moments but the beats and menaceness are not what they were in his later works. Lyrics are on point always. This is definantly one of the years best
Big Daddy Kane
It’s a Big Daddy Thing (1989)

Key Tracks Self Titled-Young Gifted and Black-Smooth Operator-Warm it up Kane-I get the Job done. This album is pretty good he does a brilliant job with his lyrics and the beats were pretty good for late 80′s Hip Hop.

The Washington Post

November 17, 1989, Friday Geoffrey Himes
Big Daddy Kane

“It’s a Big Daddy Thing” (Cold Chillin’/ Reprise). On his second album, Brooklyn’s Kane, the former DJ for Roxanne Shante, calls on guest production jobs by his original mentor Marley Marl, Riley and Prince Paul (De La Soul). These producers make Kane’s supple stream of syllables more musical than before, but they can’t do much with a voice that is thin and unforceful. Nor can they compensate for his unapologetic defense of pimps, sexism, conspicuous consumption and Louis Farrakhan.

7/10 This is way above average hip hop. I have heard better from him but in general this has some brilliant moments.



Article: Hip-hop violinist Jeff “Maestro” Hughes to play at Coffee at The Point at the Five Points Jazz Festival in Denver Saturday by Sam DeLeo

Talented. Handsome. And a symphony soloist. At age 10.

Talk about having to live up to your early promise.

“It was surreal,” Jeff “Maestro” Hughes said recently while recalling his solo violin performance with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra.

“I mean, I was submerged in the classical world; I was really working hard to accomplish this kind of thing, to make those auditions, to get myself in front of the symphony. But it was still unbelievable.”

Hughes, now 26, is one of the headliners at Saturday’s Five Points Jazz Festival, performing at Coffee at The Point at 6 p.m.

He’s performed at Denver Nuggets halftime shows and a Democratic National Convention party for then-presidential candidate Barack Obama. He also played at the 2008 Grammy Awards with the Foo Fighters.

The Denver native credits his mother for his early immersion in music. She enrolled her 3-year-old son in the Denver Talent Education Program, now the Denver School of the Arts, and he “learned to play like all the other 3-year-olds there,” joked Hughes. “Around that time I saw a performance on TV by Itzhak Perlman, and that really made an impression on me, also.”

With Perlman and Isaac Stern as influences, Hughes won a fellowship to study with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington while still in high school. He then earned a scholarship to the University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music and, like many college students, discovered worlds of new music.

He found voice for his violin amid hip-hop and jazz beats, and his influences stretched from Stephane Grappelli to Jean-Luc Ponty.

“I listened to all sorts of different music so that I could take jazz, hip-hop, classical, funk and blend them together,” said Hughes. “Like jazz musicians, I like to improvise in a song; like a hip-hop MC, I like to freestyle. But the music is also classical in that I take a riff and develop and repeat it until it’s something different than (what) you first heard

Erica Brown & Friends are set to play at Five Points Plaza during the Jazz Festival Saturday. (Alexis Clements, Provided by Erica Brown )introduced.”

If forced to put his music into a genre, Hughes reluctantly agrees to call it “modern electric instrumental music.” In the course of a song, he might perform unaccompanied Bach over a DJ playing a breakbeat, then shift wildly to “War Pigs,” by Black Sabbath, or a Beatles song before returning to the classical riff.

And a jazz festival is the natural home for such a gumbo of music.

In its eighth year, the Five Points Jazz Festival carries on the neighborhood’s rich history with the music. Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker and Billie Holiday led a roster of greats who played on The Rossonian Hotel’s stage at 27th and Welton streets. Duke Ellington is rumored to have written “Satin Doll” in a house on Curtis Street in Five Points.

But what is often overlooked is that classical music was a first passion for many jazz players.

Like Hughes, Purnell Steen — who performs on the main stage Saturday at 2:30 p.m. — was introduced to classical music at a young age by his mother.

“I had a dream of walking out on the stage at Carnegie Hall, flipping up my coattails and sitting down at the piano to thunderous applause,” said Steen. He enrolled in the music school at the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1959, hoping to become a classical musician.

“I was encouraged to teach instead. I was told ‘Negroes don’t play classical music’ — there were those kinds of forces then,” said Steen. “But you had to be nutty,

If forced to put his music into a genre, Jeff “Maestro” Hughes reluctantly agrees he would call it “modern electric instrumental music.” (Provided by Five Points Jazz Festival)and if you’re a true dedicated musician, you’re nutty. Music is a passion that becomes the driving force in your life, and it can’t be stopped.”

That driving force continues in the annual festival — and in young talents such as Hughes, who take it in new directions.

“I would love to work with the symphony again some time because that’s where my roots are,” he said. “But I just want to keep writing good music, to keep performing, to keep growing.”

Various venues along Welton Street. Activities begin at noon, performances at 1 p.m. Free;

1 p.m.: Curtis Fuller Sextet, Main Stage

Ronneka Cox & Tenia Nelson, Pianorama at Crossroads

Five Points Jazz Festival Heritage Orchestra (youth band), Cervantes’ Other Side

2 p.m.: Adam Bodine Trio, Coffee at The Point

Conjuntos Colores Salsa Latin Jazz Band, Five Points Plaza

2:30 p.m.: Purnell Steen and Le Jazz Machine, Main Stage

Gayle Leali and Jesse Dawkins, Pianorama at Crossroads

3 p.m.: Five Points Jazz Festival Combo (youth band), Cervantes’ Other Side

4 p.m.: Five Points Jazz Festival Tribute Awards, Main Stage

Andalus Jazz Express, Coffee at The Point

Freddy Rodriquez and the Jazz Connection, Five Points Plaza

Billy Wallace and Bobby Greene, Pianorama at Crossroads

4:45 p.m.: Wende Harston and the Hank Troy Quartet, Main Stage

5:30 p.m.: Neil Bridge & Steven Denny, Pianorama at Crossroads

6 p.m. Maestro Hughes, Coffee at The Point

Erica Brown & Friends, Five Points Plaza

6:30 p.m. Bob Montgomery and the Al Hermann Quintet, Main Stage



Article: Hip-Hop Rumors: 40 Glocc & Menace Gang Fight After Chain Snatching? by illseed


I tried to get a grasp of what was going on with this via my Twitter Fam, but nobody cared or thought it as just too negative. Well, the word is they showed up at the same place, 40 Glocc managed to snatch Menace’s chain and paid the price. This shows some kind of incredible fracas. WOW.

After the fight, 40 Glocc tweeted the following message and pic:


To these guys, I offer:

“Same Gang”


“Self Destruction”

I guess somebody has to die before we admit this is going too far?



Article: Jeremiah Tucker: Tyler gives hip hop true controversy, not Common by Joe Hadsall

JOPLIN, Mo. — Tyler, the Creator: “Goblin” Rating: C

I’m so happy rap is controversial again because at least it means it’s not dead. Fox News is objecting to Common, an uncommonly milquetoast rapper who has appeared on “Seasme Street” and GAP commercials, reading poetry at the White House, and the 20-year-old rapper Tyler, the Creator just released the most notoriously offensive album of the year, igniting all manner of debates about offensive art.

When I first wrote (favorably) about Tyler here it was sometime last year after I’d listened to “Bastard,” the album he released online that first brought him and his hip-hop collective Odd Future wider notice. But recently, with the media avalanche in anticipation of his first studio-released album “Goblin” out last week, Tyler has been nigh inescapable for anyone who follows music in print or online, but he’s not a household name.

So in the interest of public service, here’s what you need to know about Tyler, the Creator in order to decide if he’s the right replacement for Justin Bieber in your teenager’s heart.

• He’s a smart kid, a savant at music production, graphic design and Internet marketing, as well as an above average rapper

• His lyrics are misogynistic and homophobic with heavy doses of hyperbolic violence and bravado.There are numerous references to rape, including one notorious line about raping a pregnant woman so he can brag about having a threesome. All this vileness is padded with an incessant stream of profanity. Tyler works very hard to earn that parental advisory sticker.

• He also writes confessional lyrics about having suicidal thoughts, his loneliness, being misunderstood and his absentee father, often undercutting them with self-consciously deprecating lines about being “emo.”

I think that’s everything. Oh, wait:

• He also uses the word “swag” a lot.

On “Goblin,” Tyler’s deliberately shocking sentiments compliment his more reserved moments of self-reflection or, more accurately, self-absorption. Like “Bastard,” the conceit that ties the album together is an ongoing conversation Tyler has with his “therapist,” who is played by Tyler with his voice digitally pitched to a lower register.

Unlike anything I can recall hearing, “Goblin” puts you inside the headspace of a sulky teenage boy with all its attendant nihilism and overblown angst. The problem is that it’s an often repellent place to be for 74 minutes.

If I were still a teen boy, I can imagine loving this album — especially “Radicals,” a triumphant and anarchic 7-minute track that rests at the intersection of punk and hip hop. Over a snarling beat with entropic synth swirls, Tyler screams the album’s mission statement, which is, minus the cursing, “kill people, burn stuff, forget school.”

In the song’s quieter passages, Tyler explains he’s not telling kids to commit crimes, but rather encouraging them to do whatever they want and to stand for whatever they believe in and that he is an “expletive unicorn.” But for me, a decade on from being 19, this bluntness just elicits an eye roll, although I like the unicorn bit.

Similarly, I don’t get much of a thrill from listening to long passages about violating women. I understand there is a thrill to being transgressive — it’s central to the teen experience — but nothing in these violent fantasies are interesting enough to make me revisit them for pleasure. (I’m thinking especially of “Transylvania” and the incredibly dumb fellatio track with the unprintable name.)

At other times it’s less the offensiveness, and the sheer exhausting claustrophobia of being trapped in a monotonous slog through Tyler’s psychodramas. But when Tyler strikes that balance between inventiveness and nastiness, it’s thrilling.

The first singles “Yonkers” and “Sandwitches” are among my favorite songs of the year simply because the beat knocks and they’re among the few moments on “Goblin” where Tyler gets out of his own way. “She,” featuring Odd Future’s R&B crooner Frank Ocean, is catchy enough that it makes you grapple with the macabre misogyny of vintage Eminem that caps it.

“Analog,” “Her” and the opener “Goblin” are also worth engaging. But I doubt I’ll revisit much else on “Goblin.”

One of my favorite bits of music criticism is from the comedian Hannibal Buress, who said this about gangsta rap: “Gangsta rappers always talk about shooting people and killing but they still stick to the song structure like perfectly. Like, ‘Yeah, I will talk about killing more, but that was the 16th bar and we got to go to the chorus now. I want to be a marketable murderer.’”

That insight cuts to the deliberate artifice of a lot of rap, and while not much on “Goblin” adheres to a traditional pop structure, the album’s controversial subject matter has certainly garnered it an avalanche of publicity for an indie rap album. I suspect in the future Tyler will be confident enough to rely more on his obvious skills as a musician and rapper and less on trolling gimmicks to build his fan base.



Article: Nuyorican Poets Bring Hip-Hop Style to the Brooklyn Museum by Jonathan Mandell

The performers in this collaborative series don’t let the august columns cramp their unique mix of poetry and performance art

Regie Cabico is a former Nuyorican Poets Cafe Grand Slam champion, which means he knows how to put his poetry over to a demanding crowd. He is also a former resident of Fort Greene, and indeed wrote an entire book of poems based on his life in Brooklyn, “I Saw Your Ex-lover Behind the Starbucks Counter.”

Yet, when Cabico goes on stage tonight at theBrooklyn Museum, along with other Asian and Asian-American performing artists in the fifth in a series of six events sponsored jointly by the museum and the Nuyorican Poets Café, he is going to tread carefully. At least for the first few seconds.

“I like to see how raunchy I can get in a crowd and I’m going to have to feel it out,” he says. He will start with his most anthologized poems,Check One, “pertaining to Filipino American identity … and I hope to get seedier and sexier from there.”

That’s fine with Daniel Gallant, who for three years has been the cafe’s executive director. “The Brooklyn museum is family-friendly, but our position is that we prefer to give poets free rein,” says Gallant.”It will all be thoughtful and sensitive even if it’s confrontational.”

For four decades, the Nuyorican Poets Café has helped define the culture of the Lower East Side. Its vivid mix of poetry, hip hop, stand-up and performance art — and music and video and theater – has traveled around the country and around the world via the touring artists who gain their reputation at the café. There are still long lines in front of what is now the most dilapidated building on East Third Street between B and C in Manhattan, the now-gentrified block that is the long-time home of the cafe.

But efforts of the café as an institution to branch out beyond its building, and not just to schools, began to intensify under Gallant.

In the most extensive collaboration so far, a group of Nuyorican Café poets, musicians and dancers have performed on the third Thursday of every month since January at the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Auditorium on the third floor of the Brooklyn Museum. Each month, there has been a different theme – one focused on female poets; another, African-American; a third, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender. The two remaining programs will present Asian poets this month and Latino poets on June 16th, accompanied, as always, by dancers and musicians. (Obviously, the Nuyorican – New York Puerto Rican — has gone beyond its original roots.)

The audience for the museum series has not been precisely the same as those who typically crowd the East Village café. There are more of them, for one thing; the auditorium holds about 200 people, about twice that of the café. They are also more comfortable; there are seats for everybody.

Mahogany L. Browne, host of the famed Friday Night Slam Series at the café, had never performed at the Brooklyn Museum before. But she lives nearby in Crown Heights, and drew a crowd that included people from the neighborhood who already knew her work. The people who attended the museum event, Browne says diplomatically, “were very interested and invested in the happenings on stage, though they may have been a bit quieter than a normal Nuyorican crowd.” And what is a normal Nuyorican crowd? “The Nuyorican Poets Cafe is a special place. Not only is it a mecca for poetry, but the people walk in wired and ready to experience anything.”

If the intimate setting of the cafe is intense, Gallant says, “there’s something more laid back and accessible about the experience at the museum.”

For his part, Cabico is sure the audience will be receptive to what he does – which he calls “slam poetry” and which he considers “a unique American art form like jazz” – given that Brooklyn is now full of “spoken word gatherings.”

He is excited about tonight’s event, which also features Tahani Salah, Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai, and Pandora Scooter, with music by pianist Nisha Asnani. “I love the line-up of performers most of whom I have worked with as collaborator and teacher. All of us are doing our own thing and showing that Asian American spoken word is varied. This is an unprecedented moment for the Nuyorican Poets Cafe to support a gathering like this.”

The poem with which he will open his set, Check One, begins:

The Government asks me to “check one” if I want money.

I just laugh in their face and say,

“How can you ask me to be one race?”

I stand proudly before you a fierce Filipino

who knows how to belt hard-gospel songs

played to African drums at a Catholic mass-

and loving the music to suffering beats,

and lashes from men’s eyes on the capitol streets

It ends:

I have danced jigs with Jim Crow and shuffled my hips

to a sonic guitar of Clapton and Hendrix,

waltzed with dead lovers, skipped to bamboo sticks,

belleted kabuki and mimed cathacali

arrivedercied-a-rhumba and tapped Tin Pan Alley-

and you want me to dance the Bhagavad Gita

on a box too small for a thumbelina-thin diva?

I’ll check “other”

Tonight’s performance of Nuyorican Poets Café takes place at 7 p.m. at the Brooklyn Museum’s Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Auditorium on the 3rd Floor. Free with musuem admission of $10, $6 students and senior citizens. Advance museum ticket purchase recommended, which can be done .



Music News: Nas Announces His Tenth Solo Album by STEVEN J. HOROWITZ

Esco reveals he’s inspired by Odd Future, Frank Ocean and Drake for his forthcoming LP.

Nas may not be putting out Lost Tapes 2, but promises to deliver with his forthcoming solo album. The Queens, New York rapper spoke with Billboard.com about progress to the follow-up to 2008’s Untitled, claiming that he’s in a new state of mind and is inspired by new cats in the game.

“The last record I did was, I was in a different place than I am now,” he said. “Now, I’m happy to express that different place and I’m just happy about music. I’m watching everyone do their thing, young guys, women, artists just doing they thing.”

Naming Odd Future, Lil Wayne, Drake and more as current influences, Nasty Nas said that his tenth solo LP doesn’t yet have a concept. “My new album that I’m working on is free flowing,” he said. “At this point, there’s not one concept that sums up the whole record. I’m just flowing. It’s really too early to tell who I’ll be collaborating with.”

He also acknowledged that Untitled wasn’t an entirely solid record, and that he’s learned from his mistakes. “I don’t want to look back on this record – because I can look back on my last record and I know that record, some songs didn’t belong there. I really overthought it. I don’t want it to be like that on this record,” he continued. “I want to be able to play this next record after it’s done and feel like I did it. I have to do something that’s new. It’s just in me. I have to do something that feels like it’s right right now, and it could last.”



Music News: “Dougie” Rapper M-Bone Killed in Drive-By Shooting by WHITNEY ENGLISH

M-Bone, a So-Cal hip-hopster with the Dougie-happy Cali Swag District, has died after being gunned down in a drive-by shooting late last night.

Police in Inglewood confirm that a man was killed by two gunshots to the head around 10:30 p.m. The victim was sitting in the passenger seat of a car when another vehicle pulled up alongside and unloaded “at least two rounds” into the car, according to Lt. Michael Marshall.

The victim was taken to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead on arrival. He was just 22.

Was there a motive?

“It looks like they knew each other,” says Marshall. “It was not a traditional drive-by.” However, investigators don’t have any suspects and are asking for tipsters to call in.

Police didn’t immediately identify M-Bone (aka Mante Talbert) as the victim, pending notification of next of kin.

But a publicist for the group has confirmed to E! News that indeed the performer, who was the group’s comedic presence, was the one killed—and claims he wasn’t being purposely targeted

“Cali Swag District member Mante ‘M-Bone’ Talbert was the victim of a random act of violence last night,” the rep says, calling M-Bone “an inspiration to his family, friends and fans.”

Formed last year by M-Bone, C-Smoove, Yung and JayAre, Cali Swag District immediately hit the charts with the huge crossover hit “Teach Me How to Dougie.”

Says the group’s publicist of M-Bone: “He was a hardworking, passionate artist and dancer that will be deeply missed.”



Article: 411 Music Ten Deep 4.22.11: Top Ten Comebacks by Andrew Moll

Welcome to the grand return of 411 Music Ten Deep! Life got in the way the past couple weeks, but everything is squared away now and we’re ready to move on to this week’s list on the Top Ten Comebacks, but we’ll first look back to the last column and the feedback to the Top Ten Albums of the 2000s:

do you listen to any heavy/aggressive music? just wondering.

here’s my list

1- glassJAw – Worship and Tribute
2- Deftones – White Poney
3- Portishead – 3rd
4- Bloc Party – Silent Alarm
5- Circa Survive – Juturna
6- Sage Francis – A Healthy Distrust
7- Cold – 13 Ways to Bleed on Stage
8- Death From Above 1979 – You’re a Woman I’m a Machine
9- Kanye West – Late Registration
10- Tegan and Sara – The Con
Posted By: philburttheturtle (Guest) on March 31, 2011 at 11:17 PM

Some, but not a lot to be honest. There are some, like Boris, Dillinger Escape Plan and the Austerity Program that either made or came close to making the lists for each specific year.

Beck’s Sea Change is undoubtedly a brilliant album. Glad to see it on the list.

I don’t really understand the one album per artist rule. The White Stripes released three albums that rank as some of the best of the decade (White Blood Cells, Elephant, and Get Behind Me Satan), and In Rainbows to me is more enjoyable than Kid A.

Some other notable albums from the 2000s:

OutKast: Stankonia
Bruce Springsteen: The Rising
U2: All That You Can’t Leave Behind
Green Day: American Idiot
Posted By: matt (Guest) on March 31, 2011 at 11:52 PM

I’ve been doing the one-per-artist thing since the column started and I realize it’s not always fair or 100 %accurate (with this list it was), but I’d rather not have a list that’s all Beatles songs or something.

I’m sorry but list is highly questionable. I think American Gangster was way better than the Blueprint. And what is your fear of mainstream albums. I mean, what’s wrong with American Idiot, or Common’s Be? I understand music sucked this decade, but I’m sure you can find non-undergroud music.
Posted By: thisisntme (Guest) on April 01, 2011 at 03:05 AM

American Gangster better than The Blueprint? Really? I liked that soundtrack too, but to me they’re not even close. And American Idiot was on the list of the best from 2004, if I remember correctly; remember just because something isn’t there doesn’t mean I hate it, it just means there isn’t enough room to fit everything that I liked.

Personally, I don’t buy Kid A as #1. It really is a highly over-rated work. Considering that statement, had you put Is This It by The Strokes at #1, it’d be a different story. Yes, I understand that that album as well may be considered over-rated and on so many Top 10 lists, but it’s for good reasons. The British copy, which is different than the American copy mind you, is the full rock and roll experience. While one could argue that Radiohead are in a league of their own, which many critics and fans of the band can agree on, The Strokes changed popular music for the decade. Is This It became the standard-bearer for rock in that generation, not just for the garage, indie and New York scenes but globally as well. Had it not been for Is This It, you wouldn’t have bands like Arcade Fire, Spoon, The Arctic Monkeys or Civil Twilight (all bands from different parts on the globe) being played on the radio or making it big. Radiohead may have sold out festivals under Kid A and Ok Computer, but The Strokes did that and started a revolution musically, paving the way for said-acts and many more to do the same. That, and they make rock and roll cool again. Let’s be honest because we all know that Radiohead can’t do that (is it really even considered rock music). So you can put Kid A up there, but Is This It is a far better, far more important album for that decade.
Posted By: Guest#8616 (Guest) on April 01, 2011 at 03:51 AM

As far as personal preference Kid A will win out over Is This It every time, in my opinion. And I would argue The Strokes didn’t have nearly the kind of impact on music that people thought they would have. They were supposed to lead the garage rock revival, but kind of got overshadowed by the White Stripes and never regained their spot. And while there is a thru-line from the Strokes to those bands you mentioned, I think Radiohead did just as much for it over the years with the totality of their work, and probably more. Both great albums, for sure, but I just think Kid A was aesthetically better and over the long term made more a mark.

2 things;

1. I’m sick of everyone proclaiming how good of a diss track Takeover is. Ether MURDERED Jay-Z. There was no comeback from that. In terms of albums, no doubt Blueprint > Stillmatic, but to compare Takeover to Ether is like comparing Takeover to Crank Dat Soulja Boy.

2.) Lack of Demon Days, Illinois (Sufjan), Late Registration (or College Dropout really) and Is This It means that this list is flawed. Completely agree with you on Funeral, Sea Change, and to a degree Kid A, but White Blood Cells is the better White Stripes album, and that pretentious hipster bullshit known as Animal Collective doesn’t belong anywhere near a top 10 list.
Posted By: Blode (Guest) on April 07, 2011 at 03:03 AM

1. But “Takeover” is clearly a better song than “Ether”, which in a sense proves the point that Jay-Z won that feud or whatever. (Of course, he had Kanye as his ace in the hole, but it’s still better.)

2. I hate Sufjan Stevens, I’m sorry. I found Illinois to be insufferable, and I have no idea what people hear in it, which must be what it feels like when someone like yourself listens to Animal Collective, so I guess I feel your pain.

Top Ten Comebacks

I was planning on doing this a couple weeks ago in honor of LCD Soundsystem and in the hopes that James Murphy will prove himself to be liar and get the band back together at some point. But now it has a double meaning since it “honors” my comeback from my brief hiatus, so everybody wins. Before we get to the list, though, we’ll look at the albums that just missed the cut, aka the honorable mentions.

Some Honorable Mentions: Mariah Carey; Dinosaur Jr; Gang of Four; Roy Orbison; U2

10. Elton John

Throughout the 1970s, Elton John was one of the biggest pop stars in the world, with a laundry list of hits to his name that included “Your Song,” “Levon,” “Crocodile Rock,” “Rocket Man,” “Tiny Dancer,” “Candle in the Wind,” “Benny and the Jets,” “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” and many more. Needlessly to say, whatever he touched at this period turned to gold, becoming as sure a thing on the pop charts as could be. Things changed in the mid-1980s as drug issues took their hold on John and he became less of a sure thing that he had been before.

So it was somewhat surprising when John re-entered the charts and the public consciousness with 1991′s The One, which hit number two on the charts and went double platinum in the US. It also allowed him the opportunity to become the newest hitmaker for Disney films, including the insanely popular soundtrack for The Lion King. Whether or not his work has been as good over the past couple decades as it was during his original heyday is up for debate, but there’s no denying that his comeback on the pop charts was nothing less than impressive.

9. AC/DC

There’s really no precedent for what AC/DC was able to accomplish on the wake of lead singer Bon Scott’s death in 1980. After the release of Highway to Hell the group was poised to fully break through and reach the top of the hard rock heap, but Scott’s death seemingly put a halt to that ascension. But the band decided to soldier on and find themselves a new lead singer, which they did in Brian Johnson, who more than ably stepped into Scott’s position and helped AC/DC create the album that would make them stars.

Back in Black was released in July 1980 and would become one of the cornerstones of hard rock music and sell over 49 million copies worldwide thanks to the strength of classics like “Hell’s Bells,” “You Shook Me All Night Long” and the title track. The gamble had paid off for the band and would continue to over the next three decades, became legends and eventually Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees. Considering the tragedy the band suffered, it’s amazing the heights that they would end up reaching.

8. Elvis Presley.

By 1968, Elvis Presley was in a drastically different position than the one he had been in a decade previously. The rock and roll era that he had been so important in ushering in was now led by the likes of The Beatles and Bob Dylan, and Presley was largely forgotten about, making movies in Hollywood and releasing albums that didn’t even crack the Top 80 of the charts. In hindsight, the time was perfect for Elvis to make his presence known again, and that’s exactly what he did with his NBC television special.

What is now commonly referred to as the ’68 Comeback Special became the highest rated television program of that year and was singlehandedly responsible for resurrecting Elvis’ music career. Featuring a mix of big production numbers and more intimate sons with Presley and his band on acoustic guitars with a small audience, the program was a huge hit and reminded people of the kind of dynamic performer Elvis had been and why he became a megastar in the first place.

7. Meat Loaf

There was quite literally no reason for anyone to believe that Bat Out of Hell II: Back Into Hell would become a massive hit in 1993, and yet, it did. The original, released sixteen years earlier, sold over 40 million albums worldwide and should have set Meat Loaf up for a long and fruitful career, but instead he had a career of diminishing returns until he and songwriter Jim Steinman returned the project that had previously given them so much success.

Even then, no one could have predicted that the sequel would go on to sell more than 20 million albums itself and spawn a massive hit in “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).” It was an amazing comeback story of the best kind, where a forgotten talent all of a sudden and against all odds comes back like, well, a bat out of hell, and reclaims the spot he had held onto once before. Nothing Meat Loaf has done since has matched that effort, but it doesn’t have to since one such amazing comeback surely is enough.

6. Tina Turner

Ike and Tina Turner were an incredibly successful duo throughout the 1960s with hits like “A Fool in Love” and their cover of “Proud Mary” making them stars. But as time went on, both their group and their marriage began to fall apart in the worst way possible. Eventually in 1978, Tina went out on her own in search of the kind of solo success that a talent like hers deserved.

After some years struggling commercially on her own, Turner broke through in a massive way with “What’s Love Got to Do with It,” which became a huge Number One hit and propelled her album Private Dancer to more than eleven million copies sold, and completing one of rock and roll’s greatest ever comeback stories. Her popularity stayed high throughout the years, with books, movies, albums and some of the most successful tours of recent times. It was a well-deserved comeback, where a talented performer gets their just dues.

5. Eminem.

Eminem was the great hip-hop superstar of the early 20th century, one who reached the zenith of pop music while straddling the line between Total Request Live and his harder-edged side. He was a funny, witty, talented young man who turned everything he touched into gold. From 1999-2004, Eminem sold more than 30 million albums in the United States alone, but eventually fell into problems with prescription drug use and eventually time away from the spotlight that resulted in some speculating his time as a star was over.

He didn’t do himself any favors with the uninspiring Relapse in 2009, which made it appear as if rumors of Eminem’s demise were pretty accurate. Things changed however with Recovery the following year, the multi-platinum, Grammy-nominated smash that saw Eminem reclaim the throne more than a decade after he took it in the first place, which is an eternity in hip-hop. It also shows that from now on, we’d probably be smart not to go and doubt Eminem’s ability to continue selling records.

4. Mission of Burma

Mission of Burma were never stars during their first tenure together, releasing one EP, one album, and playing countless shows around the country to probably very few people. So when the trio broke up in 1983 thanks in part to Roger Miller’s growing problem with tinnitus, the news didn’t exactly make waves among the industry except for those lucky enough to have experienced the band while they were around. The members went off into different projects for the next couple decades, but as time went by the band’s reputation grew, and the time was right for a reunion.

Reunion shows in 2002 went incredibly well, as the band was now much more popular than they had ever been in the 1980s. Three studio albums have followed in the years since, with each of them proving that the band accomplished something much more difficult than just matching or overreaching the popularity for a reuniting band; their newest work was considered to be just as good as the work they had done before, which isn’t an easy task for a group of older punk rockers. The band’s brutal live concerts ensure this new edition of Burma may not last much longer, but their time together this last decade ensure them a place beyond just stories about how great they were, and instead gave some more proof to the argument.

3. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band

The success, commercially and creatively, that Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band enjoyed for more than a decade is pretty remarkable and also tough to live up to. After Bruce split from the group in 1988, he went solo to varying degrees of success, but even with his triumphs, like an Oscar win for “Streets of Philadelphia” it just seemed like there was something missing. Everything was rectified in 1999 once we got the Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band reunion tour.

Playing 133 shows in 62 cities over 15 months, the tour provided the kind of quasi-religious experience that only this group could provide and laid the groundwork for a new studio album. It was an album that arrived at the perfect time, as The Rising reflected the America we were living in after September 11th, and while a Springsteen solo album might have done the trick, having the entire E Street Band just made everything that much better and that much more important. More albums and many more concerts have come in the following years, making it seem as if there was nothing to come back from in the first place.

2. Johnny Cash

This may shock you, but at one point Johnny Cash was not cool. By the late 1980s/early 1990s, saying “The Man in Black” didn’t conjure images of an outlaw and a music legend; it was just some old country star. Enter Rick Rubin, who sought to make Cash relevant again for a new audience and succeeded with 1994′s American Recordings, a collection of modern cover songs done with just a guitar and Cash’s voice; the album presented Cash to a new generation and gave his career another life.

Not even a 1997 diagnosis of Shy-Drager syndrome could stop Cash at this point, as he would go on to record three more American albums with Rubin, and even had himself one last hit with a cover of Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt,” as the song and accompanying video provided a fitting conclusion to Cash’s career and ultimately his life as The Man in Black died in September 2003. But that whole new generation saw him in a different light than they would have without Rubin’s help, and their newfound appreciation for what Cash had done is one reason why this deserves to be considered one of the great comebacks of all-time.

1. Aerosmith

Aerosmith were in some ways the preeminent American rock band of the 1970s, and one of the best and most popular thanks to “Dream On,” “Walk This Way,” “Sweet Emotion” and many, many more. But drugs, ego and whatever else eventually got in the way, and things began falling apart in 1979 when guitarist Joe Perry left the group. Things got worse from there, with the Steven Tyler and the remnants of the band releasing the amazingly awful Rock in a Hard Place in 1982, and it looked like the band’s time was done.

Eventually the band got back together and had moderate success with Done With Mirrors, but it took a rap group Queens to really bring Aerosmith back to the top. Their collaboration with Run D.M.C. on “Walk This Way” set the stage for an Aerosmith comeback, and they made the most of their opportunity. Permanent Vacation, Pump, and Get a Grip saw the band find a new home with the MTV audience and they were rewarded with massive success. It helped that they were a refocused and reenergized band releasing some of the best music they had ever created. Where Aerosmith goes from here is anyone’s guess but they’ve earned the right to do whatever they please thanks to what is undoubtedly the greatest comeback story in the history of rock and roll.

That’ll do it for this week folks, thanks for reading. If you have any questions, comments or concerns feel free to let me know, and make sure to leave your own lists in the comments. I’ll see you all next week. And if you’re out on your bike tonight, do wear white.




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