Label: Top Dawg, Aftermath, Interscope

What more is there to say about this record—one of the most-discussed hip-hop LPs in recent memory? It's an unusual record, self-critical, self-conscious, thoughtful, nuanced—and those aren't even the reasons it's become one of the most impressive records of the decade.

While many are enamored of the album's subtle charms, what makes it truly work is its interest in truth above trends, its fascination with genuinely complex, difficult problems, and its unwillingness to reach for easy answers. It's also a musically accomplished work, something that isn't just admired, but is enjoyed. David Drake

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