#14. Das Racist, Relax
Released: September 13
Initially written off as "joke rap" hipsters by paranoid hip-hop gatekeepers, Das Racist transcended all pejorative pigeonholes with their official debut Relax. It's hard not to embrace an album that's so assured in its dizzying mix of high- and lowbrow fuckery—where else can you hear references to Lockheed Martin alongside giddy "Booty In the Air" anthems? This is underground hip-hop for 2011, free of the pretentions that made so-called "backpack rap" so obtuse and inaccessible.
Heems and Kool A.D. know how to have fun like few others in the game today, nonchalantly spitballing an endless supply of inventive non sequiturs—and sparing nobody, including themselves. But cut through all the insanity, and at their core you'll find some serious lyricists who revere forefathers like Kool G Rap and El-P. It's amazing what you can get away with when you're fucking great at rappingggggggg.