The 25 Best Hip Hop Albums of the 2000’s

#25. Raekwon – Built for Cuban Linx Pt. II – Wu-Tang, Wu-Tang!… Built for Cuban Linx Pt. II wasn’t the best Wu album to be released this decade (you’ll see that later), but it was a very vital Wu album for the time period. The Wu-Tang Clan released a lot of “material” in the 2000’s (well over 50 albums), but many of them were not received favorably by fans or critics alike… By 2009 most hip hop fans felt like the best years were behind the group, and then something happened… this album came out, and it re energized the Wu faithful… Built for Cuban Linx II wasn’t a game changer for the group, but it did prove one thing. Wu-Tang was still capable of producing a great product when they don’t stray to to far away from their “core” Wu-Tang sound…

#24. Freeway – Philadelphia Freeway – Rock-A-fella Records was unstoppable in the early 2000’s! I could list off all of the great rappers in their stable back then, but that would seriously take up half a paragraph and I don’t think that I want to waste your time like that, so ill just say this… What Death Row Records was to the mid 90’s, is what Rock-A-Fella Records was to the early 2000’s…

#23. Scarface -The Fix – Rock-A-fella Records was unstoppable in the early 2000’s! Oh wait I literally just used that… Hmmmm… Okay I got it!… Scarface was unstoppable in the early 2000’s!… Okay that may be bit of an exaggeration , but he was still damn good during that time period . Plus didn’t he have an album called “Untouchable” in the late 90’s? “Unstoppable”, “Untouchable”, “Unbreakable”… The sh*t’s all same in my opinion…

#22. Young Jeezy – Lets Get It: Thug Motivation 101 – I bought this album on my 15th birthday. I was visiting my uncle in Seattle, Washington, and as a birthday present he bought me a hand full of albums that were chosen by me. If I remember correctly the other albums that i bought for my birthday were the debut Tony Yayo album (not even worth googling the name) and the Chamillionaire’s debut album (not even worth googling the name)… It is safe to say that “Thug Motivation 101” was the best album I got that day… Oh and I remember my uncle at the time saying that I was crazy at the time for being and listening to rap music… Ill be sure to remind him of that conversation when I hit 100,000 Facebook followers… We’ll see who will be laughing then Wahaha! (This my “evil” laugh by the way)…

#21. UGK – UGK (Under Ground Kingz) – I’m a firm believer that being “trill” is one of the most important qualities an individual can possess… Growing up in the mid 2000’s made me a huge fan of southern rap. In particular the Under Ground Kingz. I was singing “A Pocket Full of Stones” before i even knew what that sh*t mean’t (I’m still 100% sure).. Anyways… This is my favorite UGK album!… A “double disc” album with ton of classic songs. Whats not to like?… The album was worth a purchase for the Andre 3000 feature on “International Players Anthem” alone, but I digress…

#20. Lupe Fiasco – Food and Liquor – I feel like I would of put this album a bit higher on this list if Lupe Fiasco actually skateboarded. That might sound like really  a dumb statement, but do you know what else is dumb?… Having your first hit record be about something that you don’t even partake in… While white’s have continued to steal from blacks for centuries, Lupe Fiasco is the only African American I know who “bit off” the white culture and has lived to tell about it… I guess that fact only makes this an album worth recognition…

#19. Kanye West – Late Registration – People like to forget about how great “Late Registration” actually is. Just because “Gold Digger” was one of the “singles”, that doesn’t mean that this isn’t a quality project as a whole… “Touch the Sky”, “Drive Slow”, “Crack Music”, “Bring Me Down”, “Diamonds From Serra Leone Remix”, “Late”… There are a ton of classic Kanye records on this joint and rap fans need to “Wake Up” to… Do you get it? The first track is titled “Wake Up”, and I told people they need to wake up… Ugh… Never mind, moving on…

#18.. Common – Be – 3 straight albums by Chicago MC’s? Yeah Chicago was well represented in the 2000’s… Don’t forget Twista was out there killin’ sh*t as well… “Kamikaze” was a damn good album! Almost good enough to crack this list… As far as Common was concerned though, the 2000’s were like a rollcoaster ride for him… His career hit an all time low when he released “Electric Circus”, but then he signed with G.O.O.D Music and things started to pick up for Common Sense. “Be” followed by “Finding Forever” were the 2 albums that reignited his career and made him viable rap contender again. I’m looking forward to a “Top 25 Common list”, that sh*t is going be litty…

#17. Eminem – Eminem Show – I remember listening to this album for the first time while going on a field trip to San Francisco. I believe that my favorite song off the album back then was “Superman”… Yup, I was basically a weirdo pervert back then too… Wahahaha!!!… Moving on…

#16. Nas – Stillmatic – Okay, so here’s the deal… I knew I needed a Nas project somewhere on this list… To me “Stillmatic”, “God’s Son”, and “The Lost Tapes” are all around the same level, but I decided to give “Stillmatic” a slight edge over the other two mainly based on the fact that it was an extremely crucial album for Nas career at the time (Jay-Z beef). Plus you can’t go wrong picking an album that had both “Ether”, and “One Mic” in it’s song listings. Those two separate factors made this decision a “no brainer” for me…

#15. The Diplomats – Diplomatic Immunity – Easily the coolest hip hop album cover ever made!… Did anyone else watch that 90’s cartoon “Tailspin” as a kid? That’s what I think of every time I see this album cover…

#14.  Lil Wayne – Tha Carter III – I was a senior in high school when this album came out and MY GOD this album was BIG!!! It wasn’t 50 Cent “Get Rich or Die Tryin” BIG, but it wasn’t too far off...

#13. Lil Wayne – Tha Carter II – Back to Back “Carter” albums?!?… No one can deny that Wayne popularity was extremely high back in the 2000’s. Whatever Wayne touched would become a Billboard number 1 record back then, so having two Lil Wayne albums on this list doesn’t seem too farfetched… By the way I like “Tha Carter II” a little bit more then “Tha Carter III” because it was a bit less “commercial sounding”, so if anyone was wondering about the reasoning of the order there is a quick explanation for you….

#12. Jay-Z – The Black Album – I have mixed feelings about this album… Yes this was a great album when it came out and everything, but it’s slide down my personal Jay-Z list because he didn’t actually retire after this album. If Jay had actually retired after he was finished making this project, I feel like today this album would be considered legendary, but since he didn’t; most Jay fans see this as just “another album”…

#11. Ghostface- Supreme Clientele- This Is easily the best Ghostface album of his entire career! With tracks like “Mighty Healthy”, “One”, “Apollo Kids”, and “Cherchez La Ghost”,  putting this album high on this list was a must…

#10. The Game – The Documentary – In 2005 the west coast had basically no one in the rap game (I was there, i can attest). It wasn’t till Hurricane Game came around when us west coasters truly felt like we had a real advocate for our coast… I sometimes wonder how different The Games career would look like if he had Dr. Dre executive produced all of his albums… Do you think people would be throwing in Game’s name in these “Top 5 rapper” discussion’s?… I guess we’ll never know…

#09. Outkast – Speaker Boxxx/The Love Below – Damn! Double Disc albums were still poppin’ in the 2000’s! I’ve lost count of how many I’ve put on this list so far, but there have been a few… I sometimes wish that there were more “double albums” that would be released nowadays. I know Vince Staples tryed to do it with “Summertime 06”, and a few rappers have released albums on consecutive weeks (The Game, and Future), but it’s just not the same man…

#08. Q-Tip – Renaissance – You don’t see a lot of people mention this album in the “best of” anything. Personally I think that is a major oversight! I’ll be the first to say that I did not like Q Tip’s solo debut album that much. “Vivrant Thing” is a cool song, but besides that the album was pretty much a Frisbee… The “Renaissance” on the other hand… Well that’s a different story entirely… The thing that jumps out at me the most about this album is just how different this project sounds in comparison to what Q-Tip had done in the past… Not to mention in comparison to hip hop as a whole. What hip hop album sounds like this?… It’s the type of unique experience that only Q-Tip could provide and that’s precisely why this album is in my “Top 10″…

#07. Clipse – Hell Hath No Fury – Don’t you hate it when your favorite music group breaks up? That sh*t is always the worst! I can think of countless hip hop groups that I wish had made at least one more album, and the Clipse are one of them… “Till the Caskets Drops” wasn’t a masterpiece, but I know they still had some quality projects left in them, but I digress… “Hell Hath No Fury” is an absolute classic! Every song on here is a gem! No wasted seconds, just pure hip hop ecstasy!...

#06. Talib Kweli – Quality – Is it pronounced Kwa-li or Kwe-li? Doesn’t matter I’ve heard him on songs with Jay-Z, so that’s a pretty good indicator right there… (Not sure what was trying to do there)… but in all seriousness though, Talib Kweli is a legend! From a lyrical standpoint he’s one of the best from his generation! Not all of his projects have been as “Quality” as this one (get it?), but he’s been consistent with his out put, and he has been one of the most influential conscious rappers out there doing today…

#05. Kanye West – College Dropout – Whether you like Kanye West or not, one thing that everyone should be able agree upon is that “College Dropout” is a classic hip hop record… “Jesus Walks”, “Through the Wire”, Jay-Z’s classic performance on “Never Let Me Down”… These are only a few of the classic hip hop moments that were provided by this album…. And that’s not even mentioning the “Kanye bear” on the freakin album cover! The Bear Mannn! This sh*t’s hella classic!…

#04. 50 Cent – Get Rich or Die Tryin’ – Forget Jay-Z’s “Blueprint” album… This album right here is the actual rap album blueprint!… What other debut rap album went 12X platinum in its first year? This album was an absolute juggernaut when it came out in 03′. If someone were to tell me that this album had 10 number one singles in it I would probably believe them. Damn near every track on this album is getting “radio play” back in the day…

#03.  Kanye West – Graduation – The Debate for “what is the best Kanye album” is a long arduous one… New School fans say “MBTDF” or “808’s and Heartbreak”. Old school fans say “College Dropout”. I say “Graduation” is the best Kanye album of all time!… My thought process is pretty simple on this. You get old school Ye with some of his new school tendencies mixed in there for good measure. It’s kind of similar to when 2Pac made “Me Against the World” in 95… PAC had songs where he cared (a.k.a old PAC) and he also had songs where he didn’t give a f#ck (a.k.a new PAC). Does anyone agree with this logic?…

#02. Eminem – Marshall Matthers LP – I feel like some people might be under the impression that Eminem started “falling off” once switched his hair color back to brown in the mid 2000’s. While I do believe that is a valid observation, I personally believe that Eminem really started to “fall off” once he stopped wearing doo rags. Look at the evidence… After 2003 (The Eminem Show) you never saw him wearing a doo rag again. He switched his hair color around 2006, and by then the “fall off” was already well underway. Think about it… Oh and the MMLP is really good album by the way...

#01. Jay-Z – The Blueprint – For anyone who isn’t familiar with my stance on the Jigga man, here is a quick overview… Jay-Z is my favorite rapper of all time, and I consider this album (Blueprint I) to be the best album he ever made… Personally I don’t think Jay-Z has ever made a “10 out of 10″album, but he’s made at least two “9 out of 10” albums, and at least six “8 out of 10” projects which is the reason why he is viewed by most in such high regard. No one has been as consistently “great” as Hova… Not Nas, Not 2Pac, No one!…


The 25 Best Albums of the 2010’s so far: https://hiphopwontstop.blog/2017/08/09/the-25-best-hip-hop-albums-of-the-2010s-so-far/

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