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The 50 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2015

By D.W., SPIN Staff, SPIN Magazine


45. Paris Pistol Politics

To Pimp a Butterfly was praised for avoiding the heavy-handed trappings of political masterworks; meanwhile, Bay Area vet Paris’ double-CD Pistol Politics is like two gigantic hardcover texts being dropped on your head. Connected to firebrands like Public Enemy and dead prez, the 48-year-old rapper self-funded this post-Ferguson/post-Charleston saga of pointed criticism and wonderfully dated MIDI funk that sits comfy between the Coup and DJ Quik. But it’s more shameless than either, with louche interpolations of “Jungle Boogie” and “Land of a Thousand Dances” just because the Ice-T-cum-Method-Man-voiced stockbroker can afford them. The funereal “Buck, Buck, Pass” and the breathless, Dylann Roof-naming title track are just two of many moments that weigh the inconsistencies of American gun culture, and even an inert Obama gets censured on “Change We Can Believe In”: “They hate ‘cause he black / We hate ‘cause he wrong.” Anger, who can direct it?

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