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Just a few Hip-Hop must-haves

J. Shaw
 
Illmatic
Illmatic
"One of the best debuts ever - unprecedented lyrical genius"
Fear Of A Black Planet
Fear Of A Black Planet
"Powerful, hard-hitting, political and most of all, aurally pleasing"
Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)
Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)
"Cue the end of the G-Funk Era - Wu Tang snatch the crown back for NYC"
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
"Very clever title - Raw and political, back in the day when Def Jam was important"
6 Feet Deep
6 Feet Deep
"Gritty horrorcore Hip-Hop, never rivalled. RIP Poetic."
Criminal Minded
Criminal Minded
"KRS at his best, pre-superiority trip. RIP Scott LaRock"
All of the Above
All of the Above
"Abstract, witty and level headed: J-Live - make way for him."
Soul on Ice
Soul on Ice
"Some slightly dodgy tracks, but 'Nature Of The Threat' is a racially observant classic."
Liquid Swords
Liquid Swords
"Take out the sleep-inducing Martial Arts clips and this is a straight classic."
Resurrection [Us Import]
Resurrection [Us Import]
"Common at his lyrical finest, before his soul-freak bandwagon era."
Enta Da Stage
Enta Da Stage
"Thunderous basslines, jazz influenced samples and Mobb Deep-esque rhymes.  Hardcore Hip-Hop doesn't come like this anymore"
Straight Outta Compton
Straight Outta Compton
"Ignore the fact that Ice Cube grew up in a white neighbourhood with both parents and this album sounds almost convincing"
Lifestylez Ov Da Poor & Dangerous
Lifestylez Ov Da Poor & Dangerous
"A mid-90's classic, Big L was hilarious, yet hard-hitting at times.  Almost rivals Gravediggaz in horrorcore terms"
Mecca And The Soul Brother
Mecca And The Soul Brother
"Truly emotional rhymes and GENUINE freestyles make this album worthy of almost classic status"
Death Certificate (Explicit)
Death Certificate (Explicit)
"Cube preaches to his own black nation and condemns their way of life."
Ready To Die
Ready To Die
"A unique blend of New York rhymes, laced with typically West-Coast, 'summer' beats."
The Chronic
The Chronic
"Dre's lyrics are so poor they're laughable, but the beats are heavy, chunky and summery and the guest emcees are on point"
Only Built 4 Cuban Linx
Only Built 4 Cuban Linx
"A heavy lyrical tirade of street life, the problems of the industry and general strife. Classic Wu solo."
Strictly 4 My Niggaz
Strictly 4 My Niggaz
"Tupac's second political onslaught.  Conscious rhymes laced with old-skool influenced beats."
The Sun Rises in the East
The Sun Rises in the East
"At times Jeru gets so deep into his own flow that his words actually stop rhyming.  Still, another NYC mid 90's saviour."
Doggystyle
Doggystyle
"The rap album of the last 9 summers, and many summers to come."
At the Speed of Life
At the Speed of Life
"hardcore rhymes, at times deeply personal.  One of few West-Coast classics."
The Slim Shady LP
The Slim Shady LP
"Eminem may take some stick for his mass appeal, but this album is sick, funny and lyrically coherent."
Reflection Eternal [Train Of Thought]
Reflection Eternal [Train Of Thought]
"Another deep and racially driven album; lacking in political stance."
The Infamous
The Infamous
"Hardcore, sick verbal representation.  Shocking that Mobb Deep were under 20 years of age at the time."