What makes a great rap album? It's about style. It's about artistry. It's about challenging the norm. It's about staying in control of your music, rather than chasing trends. There were many such albums in 2007, so narrowing this list to 27 was a bit challenging. Without further ado, I give you the 27 best rap albums of 2007.Honorable Mentions: Bayani (Blue Scholars), How You Sell Soul to a Soulless People Who Sold Their Soul? (Pubic Enemy), and Port Authority (Marco Polo).
New rappers often gripe about the state of hip-hop before they even get a chance to release an album. The problem with rookies is that they do all the talking that their music should be doing, and eventually they succumb to the status quo. Consequence, who has been around since the days of A Tribe Called Quest, doesn't waste his major debut lamenting hip-hop's poor health. Instead, he offers his wit and creativity as cure.
This ambitious effort from hip-hop thespian KRS-One and veteran producer Marley Marl arrived less than 5 months after Nas' controversial Hip-Hop Is Dead ,so it's no surprise that it was barely mentioned in conversation. Still, it's hard to ignore the Teacha's hardbody rhymes backed by Marley's Midas touch."Hip-Hop Lives" [Video]
Ultimate Victory boasts some of 2007's best unheard tracks, but Chamillionaire's clean-rap approach left some unimpressed. Critics argued that the album sounds stiff without the N-word and other cuss words that make hip-hop go around. A closer look at Cham's early discography, however, reveals that he never cussed that much to begin with, and this album is barely groundbreaking in that regard. Instead, what sets Victory apart is Koopa's ability to switch from political commentary to street anthems in one breath. He rails against the Bill Reilly's of the world ("Morning News"), pontificates on the essence of hard work ("Won't Let You Down"), and still finds time to elope to his beach house ("Ultimate Vacation").
22. Black Milk - Popular Demand
Match Scarface's unflinching ghetto reportage with some jittery, cinematic production and the result is M.A.D.E. Raucous, gripping, and ear-grabbing. The tunes on this 10-song album flow easily, like a conversation overheard through a backyard fence.
After one listen, you could hardly tell that Below the Heavens is Blu's introductory CD. The 21-year old wordsmith addresses issues that range from label woes to daily struggles with the ease of an O.G. Sound architect Exile provides a coherent backdrop of smooth grooves to back up Blu's clever narratives.