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Favourite emcee(s) in the underground and why? Include their best album.

RuffDraft Members, Writer Posts: 4,753 ✭✭✭✭
edited August 2010 in The Essence
I'll start:

Cise Star (of CYNE)


He's one of my favourite artists because of his ability to cover a wide-range of subjects, he has a good storytelling ability with a nice flow. He's appeared with producers from Japan but largely remains an underground power with his group CYNE (Cultivating Your New Experience). Along with his rhyming partner Akin, Cise raps over beats from Speck and Enoch, which are of a high standard. They experiment with their sound and have a number of great albums as a collective. My favourite album of theirs being Evolution Fight which features a number of tracks listed below.


  • RuffDraft
    RuffDraft Members, Writer Posts: 4,753 ✭✭✭✭
    edited August 2010
    Okay, I'll go again...



    Another of my favourite artists originates from Toronto, Canada. He goes by the name of k-os and has a number of albums that I regard to be Canadian classics, if hip hop classics. Ranking at the top of the list would be k-os' Sophomore Album release, Joyful Rebellion, which came out in 2004. Featuring tracks that have been sampled by adverts, Joyful Rebellion showed k-os' conscious rhymes mixed with his soulful voice. Exchanging views on the state of hip hop with tracks like 'Emcee Murdah', k-os never the one to shy away from controversy, rhymed 'money and fame, can lead to emcee murdah' and exclaimed 'hip hops not dead, it's really the mind of the emcee'. Whilst 'emcee murdah' was all around him, k-os never struggled to find his feet with any of the tracks from this album, with timeless production that was lead by k-os himself for the majority of the tracks, k-os converted himself back to the man he used to be following his tour from his debut album 'Exit'. Rhyming over nice drums, k-os infectiously sings 'I tried it, I couldn't find it, now I just wanna get back to me, back into the man I used to be'. With an album as beautiful and of as high a quality as Joyful Rebellion, it's hard not to write an essay on k-os' genius and will stop here.

    He has followed up Joyful Rebellion with two other albums entitled 'Atlantis: Hymns for Disco' and his 2009 effort, 'Yes!'. Happily, I shout 'Yes!' at the release of any new material from k-os and will be searching this link for k-os' new mixtape which features music from Drake and Sebastian Granger, the mixtape (which was set to drop yesterday), is going to be released on Monday according to his facebook. The mixtape will feature 10 new tracks, some of which, never made 'Yes!'. I for one, cannot wait.

    1993 Musical Essence single that k-os wasn't happy with... (I don't know why!):

    Two tracks featured on 'Joyful Rebellion' (not necessarily the best!):

    Two tracks from his 2009 release 'Yes!':
  • rip.dilla
    rip.dilla Members Posts: 17,412 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited August 2010
    I don't know if they are underground (?) but elZHi and Phonte do it for me...



    In the UK... its def Funky DL...
  • Neslom
    Neslom Members Posts: 431
    edited August 2010


    Need a shoulder? Use mine
    On the verge of burstin if you didn't cry
    It's just a shirt, it'll dry
    Headin towards self-destruction, might help discussin
    With other people cause your dealt with your self-reluctance



    Brother (Watching)
    With mental slavery, the shackles is loose
    And its hard to cut chains when they attached at the roots



    Yo, poison pushers making paper off of pipe dreams
    They turned hip-hop to a get-rich-quick scheme

  • beats&rhymes
    beats&rhymes Members Posts: 195
    edited August 2010
    One-Be-Lo for obvious reasons. One half of Binary Star. An underrated mc who in my opinion is ill as 🤬 , this dude kicks pure knowledge. Don't sleep on this mc!!!
  • Neslom
    Neslom Members Posts: 431
    edited August 2010
    One-Be-Lo for obvious reasons. One half of Binary Star. An underrated mc who in my opinion is ill as 🤬 , this dude kicks pure knowledge. Don't sleep on this mc!!!

    Great choice, I thought about mentioning him. Hip Hop Heaven, Propaganda, E.T., The Underground are some of my favorites
  • satyrone
    satyrone Members Posts: 4,696 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited August 2010
    just to name a few

    Aesop Rock
    Planet Asia
    Ryhme Asylum(uk)
    Company Flow-my altime fave group period.

    and theres more but to many to name.
  • ninjasenses
    ninjasenses Members Posts: 157
    edited August 2010
    DEL the funky homosapien...you know why? DELTRON3030. It is actually my favorite album all time. From begging to end, the album is epic. I mean the way he tells a story, not just one song, through a whole album is amazing. Also the fact that it was a concept album blows my mind because only rarely do you see such a thing. In fact right now i cant think of any other hiphop artist to do that. He laid down the sickest rhymes in ways that no one else could. He's isnt my favorite emcee ever, but he is one of my favorites and this album is reason i chose him.

    another one of my fav's is slug, i think his rhymes and metaphors are dope. I like the way he evolved as an emcee also, he grew with the music. He set himself apart from the rest of the hiphop crowd, and some people hate him for that with his content. But he definately stayed true to the essence of hiphop, just in a different form and thats why I like him.

    I could go on, i have so many emcees i could list...but im kinda 🤬 and i dont feel like typing. :tu
  • RuffDraft
    RuffDraft Members, Writer Posts: 4,753 ✭✭✭✭
    edited August 2010
    And another one....



    Back as far as 2005, a man from Somalia who escaped the civil war to freedom aged 13, released a hip hop album that dared to make '50 Cent look like Limp Bizkit'. Whilst the story of rocket propelled grenades and stories of war being 'no place for a child, especially when he's rolling with an AK and a smile', made the aforementioned statement a true one; K'Naan, who moved on to Toronto, Canada following a short spell in NYC, approached his debut album with honesty and a story to be told. Coming from a musical background and after hearing music sent to him by his father during the war in Somalia, K'Naan listened to some of the great hip hop artists of the past, such as Rakim, and learnt to scribe his own raps from an early age.

    His debut album, 'The Dusty Foot Philosopher', was a mix of African rhythms and hip hop beats. It followed a self-released project entitled 'My Life is a Movie' which I have yet to listen to, although a number of tracks appear from this release on his Dusty Foot album. Featuring production from Brian “Field” West and Gerald “Track” Eaton (a.k.a. Jarvis Church), 'The Dusty Foot Philosopher' covers life as a boy in war-torn Somalia and discusses the struggles of his native country in general. As an emcee, K'Naan is gifted enough to write raps that make you want to rewind a track and as an Artist he is able to pen uplifting songs that have led him to be the face of the World Cup in 2010 (soccer/football) with a remix to Wavin' Flag which saw him tour over 80 countries with FIFA.

    As he lies between underground and mainstream success, it's interesting that K'Naan is ready to head back into the studio. With a Sophomore LP entitled 'Troubadour', K'Naan was accused of coming with a more 'over-produced' pool of tracks. After collaborating with David Guetta and Will I Am, it'll be interesting to see what his third offering has in store for us. But until then, I highly recommend readers to check out the two albums in his catalogue, as well as his mixtape series with J. Period which is available for free download here.