15 Great Instrumental Hip Hop Albums – Hip Hop Golden Age

INSTRUMENTAL (2) Some of us listen to Hip Hop chiefly for the lyrics, others for the beats. Most of the times it will be a combination of both that determines how much we like a song or an album. And tied though lyrics are important in music – particularly in Hip Hop – it will be the beats that first catch our ear and capture our interest. For this list, we have selected 15 great instrumental Hip Hop album. Throughout Hip Hop history there have been more excellent implemental Hip Hop albums than you might expect – these 15 ( and the ones in the estimable mentions ) are decidedly worth checking out. What say you ? Are your favorites listed here ? Did we miss any ? Share your opinion in the comments !

15. Blockhead – Uncle Tony’s Coloring Book (2007)

NYC-based producer Blockhead ( according to himself his stage name comes from the shape of his head : “ While it ’ s not square, it ’ s pretty cheeseparing ” ) may be best-known for his product work for abstract wordsmith Aesop Rock, and he produced for acts like Cage, Hangar 18, Open Mike Eagle and Murs. He besides dropped a count of great instrumental albums, Uncle Tony ’ s Coloring Book – his third base – arguably is the best of them ( although Music By Cavelight has to be considered good adenine adept ). This album offers pot beats and wellbeing, attention-getting grooves – resulting in a fun, feelgood album. You can ’ thyroxine go wrong with Blockhead .

14. Company Flow – Little Johnny From The Hospitul: Breaks & Instrumentals Vol.1 (1999)

This is a hate-or-love-it kind of matter. It surely isn ’ triiodothyronine easy listening like some of the other albums on this list – alternatively Little Johnny… is dense, night and murky. And while it could be argued that this album could have been therefore much better if El-P and Bigg Jus flowed on the beats like they did on their classic predecessor Funcrusher Plus, taken for what it is – an experimental implemental album – Little Johnny… works just finely. In fact, the futuristic beats laid down by El-P and Mr Len are nothing short-change of bright and so far ahead of its time we still haven ’ thymine caught up however. “ World of Garbage ”, “ Bee Aware ”, “ Happy Happy Joy Kill ”, “ Shadows Drown ” and “ Suzy Pulled a Pistol on Henry ” are just a few of the highlights, but the wholly album is dope – if you are able to open yourself up to it .

13. Cold Legistics – Northern Star (2010)

This is a great and wholly slept on album, by Cold Legistics – a beatsmith based out of Providence, Rhode Island. Northern Star is a follow up instrumental to his 2009 campaign Deeper Than You Think, and a great postdate up it is. Northern Star is a feel-good album that will undoubtedly appeal to fans of the more lay back side of Hip Hop. Atmospheric and classy, this is an album that deserves more attention .

12. Rob Swift ‎– Soulful Fruit (1997)

Released on Peanut Butter Wolf ’ second Stones Throw Records, Soulful Fruit is the introduction solo album by turntablist Rob Swift, produced by himself and fellow turntable giants Mista Sinasta and the late Roc Raida – with both of whom he was one of the master members of DJ-collective The X-Ecutioners. excellent beats, cutting, scratching and mixing on this album, which may be most noteworthy because of the 14-minute live track “ Rob Swift vs. Rahzel. ” where Swift challenges fabled beatboxer Rahzel to imitate his routines, Rahzel transforms into “ Super DJ ” and answers each time. Epic. soulful Fruit arguably is one of the best turntablism albums ever made, and surely one of the most influential .

11. Metal Fingers – Special Herbs Vol. 2 (2002)

Special Herbs, Vol. 2 is the second album in the Special Herbs series of implemental works released by MF DOOM under the Metal Fingers nickname. The album ’ s entitle is slenderly mislead, in that it is not an wholly newly volume : the first installment in the Metal Fingers serial, Special Herbs, Vol. 1, appears again as the first nine tracks of Vol. 2, and a note on the cover explains that the latter “ contains Volumes 1 & 2 ”. These two volumes are the inaugural two in a long series of Special Herbs albums ( with sometimes overlapping tracklists ), and arguably the best of them all. special Herbs gives us what we can expect from MF DOOM : far-out but superb and eminently recognizable beats, possibly besides experimental at times for fooling listeners, but a must-have for fans of left-field Hip Hop in cosmopolitan and MF DOOM in particular .

10. The Roots – Dilla Joints (2010)

What a protection ! The fabled Roots crew pay regard to the late and great J Dilla offering their renditions of 13 of Jay Dee ’ s greatest cuts. More a mixtape than a ‘ even ’ album, and never officially released as a Roots album, Dilla Joints is readily available on-line however. Go check it out if you missed out on it somehow .

9. Dr. Octagon – Instrumentalyst (Octagon Beats) (1996)

OK, this is cheating a morsel. This is basically the integral Dr. Octagonecologyst album without Kool Keith ’ mho vocals and lone slightly remixed and with a slenderly altered track list. Most of the times an instrumental adaptation of an album originally released with vocals plainly is pleonastic, but Instrumentalyst is a noteworthy exception to that predominate. even though Kool Keith ’ s alone lyrics are an integral part of what makes Dr. Octagonecologyst the classic that it is, the product by Dan The Automater ( with the aid of KutMasta Kurt and turntablist DJ Qbert ) is absolutely phenomenal besides – indeed innovative, eerie, and spaced-out that the instrumentals can easily stand on their own. So : owning both Dr. Octagonecologyst and Instrumentalyst is not strange, but recommended .

8. Pete Rock – Petestrumentals (2001)

PeteStrumentals is an excellent instrumental album from the legendary Pete Rock, his second solo let go of after the evenly amazing Soul Survivor ( which featured an all-star cast of guest emcees providing vocals to complement Pete Rock ’ s soundscapes ). PeteStrumentals is largely instrumentals only, fair a match of tracks feature vocals. PeteStrumentals offers one hour of soulful excellence by one of the best beatmakers in the bet on always.

7. Lord Finesse – The SP1200 Project: A Re-Awakening (2015)

Lord Finesse not merely is an excellent punchline rapper, he is a top producer a well. For this undertaking, Finesse jab deep into archives to bring us a pot album filled with previously unreleased SP1200 boom bap heat. Mixed and mastered to make it sound crisp and fresh, this album is a Hip Hop jewel of the highest degree, showcasing the craft of one of the game ’ s most underappreciated producers .

6. RJD2 – Deadringer (2002)

What do you know about Deadringer ? Deadringer is the first studio album by producer and DJ RJD2 from Columbus, Ohio. RJD2 gained recognition as a producer for a lot of artists from avant-garde label Def Jux, arsenic well as his being part of well-respected groups such as Soul Position. Deadringer is the foremost in a string of solo albums. The album features song contributions from Blueprint, Jakki da Motamouth, and Copywrite, but those three tracks aside the album is wholly implemental. From the fetid undoer “ The Horror ” to the dark blues of “ Smoke & Mirrors ” to the soul of “ Good Times Roll Pt.2, ” – this album shows capital variation and is absolutely coherent at the lapp time. Great beats, timely scratches, and beautiful soundscapes combine into a powerful box. Don ’ thyroxine let the kind of ghastly album cover throw you off – this is an essential implemental Hip Hop album .

5. Damu the Fudgemunk – How It Should Sound Volume 1 & 2 (2010)

Damu the Fudgemunk is a supremely underestimate manufacturer and DJ, responsible for a wholly bunch of excellent releases. His official debut album as a member of Y Society was Travel at Your Own Pace  ( 2007 ) a superior Hip Hop album, evocative of true-school Hip Hop by the likes of ATCQ and Pete Rock and CL Smooth, with its liberal practice of wind and soul samples and scratching throughout. In other collaborations and a number of solo releases he amassed a loyal follow but remains underappreciated by broader audiences. Bundling some of his best instrumentals on How It Should Sound volume 1 & 2 results in an album full of great beats and great vibes – this is a tasteful boom-bap masterpiece that shouldn ’ thyroxine be slept on .

4. Madlib – Shades Of Blue (2003)

Critically-acclaimed underground Hip Hop manufacturer, MC, and DJ Madlib has been responsible for so many incredible pieces of music it ’ s hard to list them. His collaborations with MF DOOM as Madvillain and J Dilla as Jaylib are universally recognized as classics, and his bring as part of Lootpack and as Quasimoto has led to some unforgettable Hip Hop a well. not to mention his workplace on the boards for artists like Talib Kweli, Percee P, Guilty Simpson, Freddie Gibbs and many many others. Under his own name, he dropped A LOT of quality instrumentals. His Mind Fusion and Beat Konducta series are overall excellent, but the true bejewel in the crown of his implemental solo releases has to Shades Of Blue. Shades of Blue has Madlib remixing music from the archives of Blue Note Records, the celebrated sleep together label. The result is a neat masterpiece of an album. Everything works, down to the stunning breed art and crown, which is brimming with Madlib ’ s court to Blue Note and the era. This beautiful reinterpretation of the classic 60 ’ s and 70 ’ s Blue note era leads to a Hip Hop-jazz fusion that deserves a place in any music lovers collection. Solid gold .

3. DJ Q-Bert – Demolition Pumpkin Squeeze Musik (1994)

This is an obscure but incredible album, and amazingly hardly ever mentioned when it comes to best-ever Hip Hop instrumental albums – or even best-ever Hip Hop albums, time period. true, the focus on this album is turntablism and not self-crafted beats – but it still falls squarely in the ‘ instrumental ’ class and in full deserves a high invest on a list like this. DJ Q-Bert uses classical beats to incorporate with his scrape and sampling. The samples on this album occur from other artists ( including Rush, James Brown, The Honey Drippers, Jackson 5, Roxanne Shante, Too Short, The 5 Stairsteps, Bo Diddley and many more ), cartoons ( Racketeer Rabbit, Ren & Stimpy, The Huckleberry Hound Show ), comedian books ( including Spider-Man ), video recording games ( including Street Fighter 2 ), and movies ( including The Warriors and Style Wars ). demolition Pumpkin Squeeze Musik is a 60-minutes of non-stop rub & breakbeats extravaganza and without a doubt one of the best pure breaks-and-beats records always .

2. J Dilla – Donuts (2006)

Released precisely three days before his prematurely death on Feb. 10, 2006, Donuts turned out to be J Dilla ’ s magnum musical composition. Donuts is a fit reflection of Dilla ’ s creativity and musicality, and an apt tribute to his career. together with the # 1 on this tilt, it has become THE landmark album when it comes to instrumental Hip Hop. It serves as the perfect model and as a bang-up inspiration for countless aspiring beatmakers and DJs, showing where talent and dedication can lead to. Donuts is the monumental masterpiece from an amazingly talented musician who died much excessively young .

1. DJ Shadow – Endtroducing (1996)

Way ahead of its fourth dimension and enormously influential. DJ Shadow ’ s innovative sample arrangements inspired countless producers and musicians. Layered and musical as hell but at the same time Hip Hop to its core, Endtroducing merely is the best implemental Hip Hop album, always. Cuts like “ Building Steam With A Grain Of Salt ”, “ Midnight In A Perfect World ”, “ Changeling ” and “ Mutual Slump ” are highlights, but the whole album is dateless. Endtroducing is the absolute peak accomplishment in implemental Hip Hop .

Honorable Mentions

  • Herbie Hancock – Future Shock (1983)
  • DJ Krush – Krush (1994)
  • DJ Krush – Strictly Turntablized (1995)
  • Cut Chemist – Rare Equations (1995)
  • DJ Cam – Substances (1996)
  • DJ Babu – Super Duck Breaks (1996)
  • Prince Paul – Psychoanalysis (What Is It?) (1996)
  • DJ Vadim – U.S.S.R. Repertoire (The Theory of Verticality) (1996)
  • Mix Master Mike – Anti-Theft Device (1998)
  • Rob Swift – The Ablist (1999)
  • DJ Shadow & Cut Chemist – Brainfreeze (1999)
  • Mix Master Mike – Eye of The Cyclops (2000)
  • DJ Babu – Super Duper Duck Breaks (2000)
  • Invisibl Skratch Piklz – Shiggar Fraggar (2000)
  • DJ Q-Bert – Wave Twisters (2001)
  • DJ Shadow & Cut Chemist – Product Placement (2001)
  • Sixtoo – Duration (2001)
  • Madlib – Beat Konducta Series (2001 – )
  • DJ Shadow – The Private Press (2002)
  • El-P – Fandamstrumentals (2002)
  • Villain Accelerate – Maid of Gold (2003)
  • Sixtoo – Antagonist Survival Kit
  • Blockhead – Music By Cavelight (2004)
  • Blockhead – Downtown Science (2005)
  • K Def – Willie Boo Boo The Fool (2006)
  • Joe Beats – Diverse Recourse (2007)
  • Sixtoo – Jackals and Vipers in Envy of Man (2007)
  • RJD2 – The Third Hand Instrumentals (2007)
  • DJ Babu – The Beat Tape Vol. 1 (2007)
  • Damu the Fudgemunk – Spare Time (2008)
  • Blockhead – The Music Scene (2009)
  • DJ Signify – Of Cities (2009)
  • Flying Lotus – Los Angeles (2010)
  • DJ Babu – The Beat Tape Vol. 2 (2010)
  • Knxwledge – Klouds (2010)
  • Illmind – Beh!nd The Curta!n (2011)
  • Oddisee – Rock Creek Park (2011)
  • Apollo Brown – Clouds (2011)
  • Blockhead – Interludes After Midnight (2012)
  • 9th Wonder – Tutankhamen (Valley of the Kings) (2012)
  • Oddisee – The Beauty In All (2013)
  • Knxwledge – Hud Dreems (2015)
  • The Alchemist – Israeli Salad (2015)
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