2003 was a much better year than the previous two. I had a hard time coming up with a list of 10/20, as you can see by my list of honorable mentions for songs.
BC’s Top 10 LP’s of 2003
10) Zion I – Deep Water Slang V2.0 – Another inconsistent LP from Zion I, but the good outweighs the bad enough to crack the top 10.
9) Lexicon – Youth is Yours – I dug this LP and thought it was solid all the way through. It was nice to hear their stuff sprinkled throughout Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle.
8) Loius Logic – Sin-A-Matic – This one took a while to grow on me, but when it did, I was glad I gave it multiple listens.
7) Brother Ali – Shadows on the Sun – Brother Ali building his catalog of dope songs. A solid LP.
6) Jedi Mind Tricks – Visions of Gandhi – I really had to go back and listen to this to find out how much I liked it. I really dig Stoupe’s production, although, their LP’s tend to have some average songs mixed in with the amazing ones. Vinnie can rip the mic in half, but also spits some ignorant crap, so it might not be for everyone.
5) J-Zone – $ick of Being Rich – One of my favorite producers and an underrated MC. There are some classics on this LP.
4) J-Live – Always Will Be – Unskipable EP from one of the best.
3) P.O.S. – Ipecac Neat – Another Minneapolis MC. Maybe I’m a little biased, but every one of his LP’s has been something that I’ve listened to over and over and over again. A great debut.
2) Cunninlynguists – Southernunderground – Another great LP from the fellas from KY. This is the one that cemented them as one of my favorites.
1) Outkast (Big Boi) – Speakerboxxx – Just Big Boi y’all. To me, his album was much better than Andre’s, even though Andre got all the press, or most of it. I think most hip-hop heads would agree to this being better, but maybe not. It is to me.
BC’s Top 20 Songs of 2003
20) Kicking Knowledge in the Face – P.O.S. – A basic drum beat with a little guitar mixed in. The beat changes up a couple times and P.O.S. changes speeds along with the beat. A nice track overall.
19) Strapped – Jaylib w/ Guilty Simpson – I didn’t get into the album as much as some, but this was the stand out track to me with it’s orchestral loops and the addition of Guilty Simpson.
18) Gimme, Gimme, Gimme – J-Zone w/ Masta Ace – MA coming down to Zone’s level and kicking some lyrics about young, immature ladies. It’s a J-Zone beat, so it’s a dope one, of course.
17) Diablos – Louis Logic w/ Celph Titled – Lou and Celph kicking some hardcore over a string-laced beat.
16) Brokenhearted – Lexicon – Nick and Oak reliving some experiences with the opposite sex. The chorus makes this song a stand out, with the repeated “Love you” from some singer.
15) Always Will Be – J-Live – I think the best song from J-Live’s EP. The entire EP is unskipable and J-Live even has a song by that name on the album. J-Live is always dope.
14) Blah Blah Blah – Brother Ali w/ Slug – I don’t know how to explain the beat, but it’s damn good. Slug and Ali drop some bragging battle rhyme verses and play off each other nicely. Great song.
13) Bowtie – Big Boi w/ Sleepy Brown and Jazze Pha – One of those horn heavy funk tracks off of Big Boi’s superior LP (to Andre that is).
12) Southerunderground – Cunninlynguists – A nice start for CL’s 2nd LP. The beat has a nice piano loop, some scratching, some grunting and an Andre 3000 sample.
11) Cheeba Cheeba – Zion I w/ Aceyalone – Another example of Amp Live creating a near perfect beat. Aceyalone and Zumbi have contrasting voices (which is prone to happen w/ Zumbi, I guess) that work well together.
10) Dos Factotum – Louis Logic – Get your drink on w/ Louis Logic. Louis spitting, possibly vomiting, lyrics about drinking over an acoustic guitar-laced beat.
9) Battle Me – C-Rayz Walz w/ Natacha Elossaint – C-Rayz doing what C-Rayz does, bragging on the mic with large amounts of humor. The r&b hook actually works for me. “I’m not Santa’s helper, I’m not rapping for free.”
8) Le, Le, Le – Zion I – If you really love your mama say le, le, le! Not sure what that means, but this is a cool song. Video quality is harsh:
7) Duct Tape – P.O.S. – I love this song. What I assume is a somewhat autobiographical song about P.O.S. and his mother struggling with an abusive husband/father.
6) Animal Rap – Jedi Mind Tricks w/ Kool G Rap – I love Stoupe’s production and how he uses a lot of string instruments and orchestral sounds. This one features some horns as well as G Rap guesting on the 1st verse. Vinnie kills his verse and the first bar or two are just fire.
5) Tame Az It Ever Wuz – Tame One – The LP wasn’t consistent, but I just dig this track with the scratching samples over the chorus get you fired up. Lyrically, Tame talks about drugs (big shock), disses El da Sensai and how he’s going to take out other MC’s.
4) Seasons – Cunninlynguists w/ Masta Ace – Kno, Deacon, SOS and Ace rap about hip-hop and use the 4 seasons to weave in metaphors about hip-hop. The beat is, as usual, a nice one.
3) Forest Whitiker – Brother Ali / Whatever You Say – Little Brother – Me being indecisive. BA – Ali’s
song about embracing his differences with an organ (?) heavy beat. Dope song. LB – I still need to go back to this LP, I liked it, but didn’t get into it as much as a lot of people, but this song stood out to me. A great song.
2) The Way You Move – Big Boi w/ Sleepy Brown – The top 2 songs are Outkast, so you know these for sure. Another funky track from Speakerboxxx.
1) Hey Ya – Andre 3000 – Just a great song. I wasn’t a huge fan of Andre’s The Love Below. Most of the beats were real nice, but Andre’s attempts at singing were interesting to say the least (some was good, some real annoying).
The Fine Print – King Geedorah
Walkman Music – J-Live
Bring Em Out – T.I.
A Storms of Swords – Jedi Mind Tricks w/ Planetary
Eatadiccup – J-Zone w/ Celph Titled
Choir Practice – J-Zone w/ J-Ro and King Tee
Church – Big Boi
Old School – Cunninlynguists
Hellohihey – Lifesavas
Party Party People – Lexicon w/ Dizzy Dustin
Don’t Be Afraid – Lexicon