Some 'Best Of' Nonsense
EDAN - BEAUTY AND THE BEAT (2005)
I guess I'm a few months late to the best-of-the-decade superlative party, but fuck it. In the aughts hip-hop got soggy as shit - the music hit the mainstream like never before, and it definitely suffered because of it. However that's not to say there wasn't a lot of great output in the last decade, and we saw great albums from the likes of Binary Star, Ghostface, Mr. Lif, and particularly groups outta California like Blackalicious, Jurassic 5, People Under the Stairs, and the whole Stones Throw stable of artists. But then we also saw the rise of Edan, a triple-threat MC/DJ/producer from Boston. I don't know if his second album Beauty and the Beat is the "best" album from the last ten years, but I certainly think it's the "coolest." Edan is a very good MC, and he scratches well too, but the production on this album is just insane. Boiled down to a few words, this is "psychedelic hip-hop," which I of course mean in the best way possible. This is innovative stuff: he successfully meshes hip-hop with something reminiscent of a Krautrock sound and maybe like early Funkadelic's trippy rock. Running only 34 minutes, it flows together beautifully. If there's any justice, this'll go down as a classic.