Alternative Hip-Hop

Alternative hip-hop refuses to conform to any of the traditional stereotypes of rap, blurring genres, drawing equally from funk and pop/rock, as well as jazz, soul, reggae, and even folk.

uknowhatimsayin

Danny Brown: uknowhatimsayin¿

Danny Brown is like 2010’s version of Funkdoobiest mixed with like Ol' Dirty Bastard on acid. I was enamored with him when I first heard his insane “Stoned is the way of the...
IGOR

Tyler, The Creator: IGOR

I have so little reference when it comes to stuff like IGOR. It isn't really hip hop. Though maybe it is? It sounds more like DJ Shadow's Entroducing.... than it does...
Testerossa

Yoni & Geti: Testarossa

Testarossa is a very specific reference for males of a certain age. So is Countach. I had posters of both on my wall as an adolescent. The Testarossa was on a p...
Dark Comedy

Open Mike Eagle: Dark Comedy

A better name than Childish Gambino, Open Mike Eagle didn't actually use a Wu-Tang Name Generator to create his stage name. His name is actually Mike Eagle and ...
Stakes Is High

De La Soul: Stakes Is High

Ah, De La's much maligned fourth album. For some reason, people and writers have said that De La went "hardcore" on this album. Uh, okay, if hardcore includes s...
51

Kool A.D.: 51

This one from the more Cuban half of Das Racist is another in a long line of mix tapes that I've downloaded in the last year. I'm still a little amazed that the...
Plastic Beach

Gorillaz: Plastic Beach

I know the two are about as similar as salt and pepper, but I can’t help but think of The Banana Splits whenever I see this band. Granted, these guys are cartoo...
Black Up

Shabazz Palaces: Black Up

Hip-hop is a tough slog sometimes. It's about reinventing yourself or dying. Just ask 50 Cent or Coolio. So that's why I was interested to hear this album, the ...
Sit Down Man

Das Racist: Sit Down, Man

I love free music. Unfortunately without the help of illegal download sites (which I would never do working for a record company and everything) or the occasion...
Beauty and the Beat

Edan: Beauty and the Beat

Trippy, layered and hypnotic, somehow Edan has found ways to continue to sample crap from all over the place. While his contemporaries are pounding out looped t...