Sunday, February 17, 2008

1988: HIP-HOP'S GREATEST YEAR? just did a cool feature on the best hip-hop albums from 1988. Indeed, it was a great year for hip-hop. RS cites Public Enemy's It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back at #1, and I'd definitely agree. I don't know if I got into that album in 1988 - I think I happened upon it the following year - but, wow, I still remember being blown away by how awesome/different/aggressive the album was. And I'm still knocked out every time I hear it today.

At #2 was Run-DMC's Tougher Than Leather. At the time that it came out, they seemed kind of over, but when the album was reissued a year or two ago, I felt like it was a pretty good album that I "slept on."

Soon after I got into P.E., I also got into Ice Cube and Ice-T, both of whom are represented on this list. N.W.A.'s Straight Outta Compton is on the list, as is Ice-T's Power. Both are great, but I got into Cube from his solo debut, AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted, which I actually prefer to N.W.A. I know, blasphemous. My favorite Ice-T albums were The Iceberg/Freedom Of Speech... Just Watch What You Say and O.G. - Original Gangster.

The list also included great albums by EPMD, Eric B & Rakim, Boogie Down Productions and even DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince. Yeah, it's easy to just say, "Yeah, hip-hop was better back then." But, it was. Still, there are great albums being put out today, look at Kanye West, Common and Nas to name three. Like the No Expiration masthead says, "There's always great new music being made."

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