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Old 10-21-2010, 01:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: New York
Posts: 9
Default The Best Rap Albums - The Test of Time

Hello all,

Lately I have been considering what makes an album truly great. What makes people constantly look back to the past and buy albums by bands/performers like The Beatles, Elton John, or Ray Charles?

Let's assume that "great" music is so because of an x factor that is specific from album to album. Using the Beatles as an example, while Sgt. Peppers might be considered the first true concept album and one of the earliest/most inspired usage of studio effects, Abbey Road is a seamless album, described by some as a fifty minute long experience rather than a collection of tracks. These albums have stood the test of time and will, hopefully, continue to be popular albums for a long time. Perhaps you disagree with how I've judged these two albums' timeless qualities and think I might have overestimated their long term appeal, but leave that aside for the moment.

The crux of this post is such; what are the rap albums that will be popular fifty years from now? What are the truly timeless albums, and why?

For those who wish to reply, I think that merely listing an album is not enough for this discussion. What makes the album(s) you like timeless?

For example:

I was in 8th grade when Kanye West's College Dropout came out. That album had such an effect on me that I remember exactly where I was the first time I played it through. Over the past seven years, The College Dropout is still played regularly on my ipod; I even have the vinyl (which I converted into .flac) to listen to. While once I listened to just the beats (and the beats are still out of this world), as I've grown older I've developed a real love of the lyrics. While not as complex or impressive perhaps as other rappers, West rapped about issues that everyone can relate. "Spaceship" perfectly describes the experience of working at a ****ty job. Though I can't really relate to drugdealers being some of my role models, "We Don't Care" is a great song about perseverance. "Family Business" is a song about family love. How can one not love this album?

Any suggestions are welcome. I would like this thread to become a place of real musical debate about what makes an album a universal classic. Let's avoid the "x album is better than y album", or "x rapper is better than y", and just discuss rap's classic albums.
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