2003 was a great year for hip hop, especially with the two best hip hop albums of the year (and arguably the best of the entire decade from 01-2010) in Get Rich or Die Tryin’ and Speakerboxxx/The Love Below
I previously didn’t listen to any 50 cent mixtapes, but I did hear the song ‘How to Rob‘ and what I was exposed to was a gangster. Simple as that. Macho, bravado attitude that walked with confidence, and did a lot of trash talking on the mic. The thing was that he could say these things, and get away with it. In the album, his mafioso approach from start to finish was damn near reminiscent of NWA, or if we’re to keep it in the East Coast, I’d say The notorious B.I.G, as musically blasphemous that may sound. His cocky approach made him automatically stand out, because he wasn’t trying to be humble at all. He came to say what he had to say, call out some names, fire some shots (no pun intended), and there we have a hip hop classic. I don’t even remember buying this album, but I have the hard copy, and I rolled with G-Unit (I had my “gangster” phase in Grade 9 & 10. Didn’t work so well). If you don’t have this album, then I really don’t know what to say if you’re a hip hop fan. BUT, that’s why I’m here. So enjoy. You know what? Take The Massacre too. I enjoyed that as well.
Speakerboxxx/The Love Below
Outkast is my favourite hip hop group of all time, I’ve told you this before, I’ll say it again until I die. This double album garnered the highest honour of Album of the Year at the Grammys in 2004. This double album was enjoyable start to finish. I also have the hard copy for this CD (IN A JEWEL CASE! THEY DON’T EVEN MAKE THOSE…………as much anymore), and might I say that Speakerboxxx gives you all of the ignorance you’re looking for. The more up tempo beats, the harder lyrics, and more club music (See: The Way You Move). Then, you have The Love Below, the more R&B approach, but not all the way slowed down in pace. It keeps its theme relevant throughout, but it brings a softer side of the album, which is what 3K is known for. Personally, this is the better half of the whole album, simply because of a more consistent theme throughout and the songs were simply amazing (Roses & Prototype my personal favourites). Greatness all around, and yes, this is a classic to have. Now, is it their BEST album? That’s a different debate. Hard to debate with Stankonia, ATLiens & Aquemini. Shoot, throw in SouthernPlayalistiCadillacFunkyMuzik just for kicks. They haven’t released an album together since 2006 (Idlewild), so hopefully we can get one from them this decade. But, for now, enjoy Speakerboxxx/The Love Below, in which I have provideth (as well as the rest of their discography for bonus)