Sign up for our newsletters   

Baltimore City Paper home.
Print Email

Top Ten

10 Best Albums: Rjyan Kidwell

By Rjyan Kidwell | Posted 12/20/2000

Outkast, Stankonia (Arista/LaFace) Outkast knows precisely when to throw you a curve ball and when to hit you with an irresistibly catchy hook. Stankonia twists and tweaks the conventions of pop and hip-hop and ends up with the perfect blend just about every time.

Savath + Savalas, Folk Songs for Trains, Trees and Honey (Symbiotic/ Hefty) When Scott Herren dropped this jazzy debut this year, he proved that he's one of the most promising up-and-coming producers around. Think Tortoise with more focus on the electronics and a smoov pop sensibility.

DJ Kenny K, What?!? He Rockin Club Too?!!? (Club Kingz) An indispensable tool for instant dance parties. If you don't know about Baltimore breaks (the Mobtown equivalent of Miami bass), then you better get on it.

Talib Kweli and Hi-Tek Reflection Eternal (Priority/Rawkus) Kweli and Hi-Tek took the lead in the pack of the new bohemian hip-hop when they dropped the anxiously awaited Reflection Eternal. The pair come tight with a versatile record of booty-movers, reflective raps, and positive hip-hop anthems.

Phthalocyanine, 25 Tracks Fer 1 Track (ziq019/Planet Mu) The angriest music I have ever heard. On this disc, Dimtri Fergadis unleashes seven brutal, percussive tracks bitterly mocking the idea of repetition in music.

Zammuto, Willscher(Apartment B) Nick Zammuto's debut album of warm, textured, and strikingly original deconstructions of the sounds you can make with guitars. Squirming, skittering, delightful post-music.

Dead Prez, Let's Get Free (Loud) Dead Prez's lyrics are bold, incendiary indictments of an institutionally racist society. Probably the most intense album of the year, and bound to elicit a strong emotional reaction (one way or the other) in any listener.

Vladislav Delay, Entain (Mille Plateaux) The average length of the tracks on this CD is just under 20 minutes, yet when it's over, I always want to hear it again. A hint of four-on-the-floor heroin house mixed with the most sublime dubby ambience this side of Brian Eno.

Common, Like Water for Chocolate (MCA) Gorgeous, organic hip-hop production that is still tearing up the radio, only slightly overshadowed by the complex, masterful MCing of Common.

Don Caballero, American Don (Touch and Go) Don Cab did right to put aside their faux-metal chops and kick out some upbeat--even catchy at times!--jams, all without losing the musical virtuosity that has made it one of the biggest names in indie rock.

Related stories

Top Ten archives

More Stories

The Year In Tracks (12/15/2009)
. . . just in the case the album really is dead.

The Year in News (12/9/2009)

The Year in Movies (12/9/2009)

More from Rjyan Kidwell

Arresting Development (6/11/2008)
Dan Deacon, Myth, and Magic: Some Notes On Exploding Up From The Underground

Mind Blowin' (8/21/2002)

Points of Disorder (3/6/2002)
Running Riot With a PS2

Comments powered by Disqus
CP on Facebook
CP on Twitter