Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The 25 Best Underground Rap Albums Of All Time (Part 8)

 (Image taken from: musicya.net)

6. Gangstarr- Moment of Truth
Released in 1998
Label: Noo Trybe/Virgin/EMI Records

Probably the most commercial record on this list, Gandstarr’s, Moment of Truth, is still an underground album through and through. With DJ Premier and Guru returning from a four year hiatus doing what they do best (He’s the DJ and I’m the MC, essentially), they came back with a vengeance with only a little lag along the way. With the first single, “You Know My Steez,” getting heavy rotation on BET and MTV when it was first released, this album was a testament that the underground, when brought to the surface, could make quite a stir. This album definitely took it, “above the clouds.”

Best track: Work

 (Image taken from: undergroundhiphop.com)

5. The Circle of Tyrants-Self-titled
Released in: 2005
Label: Psychological Records

Underground legends Goretex and Mr. Hyde, join brothers Ill Bill and Necro on this album with startling results. Every track on this self-titled and only release from the mega group (Goretex has since had a falling out with Necro) is excellent, with “The Four Horsemen,” which samples a western, probably being the most noteworthy and impressive track of them all. Hell, even the rock/rap songs are hardly a misstep here and actually compliment the rest of the brutality. We’ve listened to this album more times than we can count. It's death rap at its finest. Oh, and it doesn't hurt that this is the best album that Necro has ever produced.

Best track: The Four Horsemen

 (Image taken from: pidgeonsandplanes.com)

4. Dr. Octagon-Dr. Octagonecologyst
Released in: 1996
Label: Dreamworks/Geffen/MCA Records

Coming to you live from outer space is Kool Keith, with yet another one of his bizarre creations, Dr. Octagon. Dr. Octagonecologyst is one of those rare releases that even those who don’t know a lick about the underground knew about for some reason, often citing “Bear Witness,” as their starting point, or singing the chorus to “Blue Flowers,” like it was, “Singing in the Rain.” Whatever got them on board, it probably wasn’t Kool Keith’s out-there, surrealistic lyrics, as he had been serving those up since his Ultramagnetic MC’s days and he never made the kind of waves that this release did. No, we’re thinking there’s just something wonderful about a man who doesn’t mind donning multiple alias, and Dr. Octagon just happened to stick. It doesn’t hurt that Dan the Automator’s production is amazing and that Kool Keith is as bizarre as ever. Hip-hop, meet your Ziggy Stardust.

Best track: Earth People


Scott said...

Great call on Dr. Octagynacologist. This guy deserves more credit than he gets. I don't know if guys like DOOM or Del or even Tyler would be as commercially successful if not for Kool Keith blazing the trail.

Rich Knight said...

So true, so true.