Artist: The Fugees Track: "Ready or Not" Album: The Score Listen
An all-time hip-hop record -- it'd make my top 10 list -- The Score spoke about race relations, police profiling, gang violence, black ancestry as intelligently and cleverly as any before or since its 1996 release date. The production is as smooth as Dr. Dre's The Chronic; Lauryn Hill, Wyclef Jean and Praz meshed for a singular sound that brought the diverse influences of each emcee into a simmering cauldron of sound. They were rhymes of angst and love, respect and rage that neither embraced the crime and bravado of street life nor shied from analyzing innercity life from curbside experience.
It's a masterpiece. Go buy it now.