3. Brother Ali-Undisputed Truth (Plus bonus disc) (review)
“Undisputed Truth” begins with the birth of a new MC (“I came in the door 1984 . . .”) and that first track tells of fights over lunch money and growing up hard. Every track after that is pure brilliance. In a year where Jay-Z returned to his roots, Wu-Tang reunited, and Ghostface released another characteristically mind-blowing album, the best rap record belonged to Minneapolis’ Rhymesayers artist Jason “Ali” Newman. With a delivery that changes from song to song, hopping from the powerful growl of Ice Cube to the nasal, martyrous Eminem to the chanting, get-up-and-dance cadence of Jay-Z, Ali proves he can do any style, and does it mostly without stooping to silly gangsta bravado, profanity, or lame sex raps. Producer Ant (of Atmosphere) does some of the best work of his career here, but the show belongs to Ali. Never lazy, always stretching, this album is a must-buy, plain and simple. If you can score a copy of the limited release bonus mixtape CD, featuring tracks produced by MF DOOM and Pidgeon John, you can count yourself doubly blessed. There is not a single skippable song, not a single missed opportunity, no flaws at all on this, the best hip hop record of 2007.
Doomage – Brother Ali and Slug, Produced by MF Doom (from the bonus album)
Live From the Chippie (from the bonus disc)
Truth Is (Passion of the Weiss’ #16 best hip hop cut of the year)