Sorry, folks, but this is just the list. I've been working on/revising this list (on and off) since August or September, but battled with myself on how to execute it, or just flat-out got distracted and set it aside.
What I plan on doing sooner or later (hopefully sooner) is to do an extended version of the list, by writing small blurbs about each album, including why I think it's special.
Let me just say before giving you the goods, that this list in no way reflects my opinion of the 25 greatest Hip-Hop albums of all time, although some of these titles belong there. You can feel free to agree or disagree with this all you want, as we all have our ideal group of greats. By all means, please reply and even give me your idea of what you think belongs on a list of this nature, whether it's on here or on Twitter. I will say that I am unapologetic for the list being heavily East Coast in nature, as I'm from the East. And yes, I count 2Pac as part of the East, as he is from Brooklyn, NY, was raised in Baltimore, and even talks about NY in his earlier work. All the West Coast noise he was yelling didn't really come until Death Row signed his death certificate by getting him out of jail.
Similar to my music video list, this is not the first, and it will not be the last.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Now with no further ado, I present the list in no particular order (because I'm lazy):
1. 2Pac - Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z.
2. Notorious B.I.G. - Ready 2 Die
3. A Tribe Called Quest - Midnight Marauders
4. Tha Pharcyde - Bizarre Ride 2 Tha Pharcyde
5. Ice Cube - The Predator
6. Public Enemy - It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
7. Wu-Tang Clan - Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)
8. Nas - Illmatic
9. KRS-ONE - Return of the Boom Bap
10. De La Soul - 3 Feet High and Rising
11. Fugees - The Score
12. Deltron 3030 - Deltron 3030
13. Common - Resurrection
14. Run DMC - Raising Hell
15. Dr. Dre - The Chronic
16. Jay-Z - Reasonable Doubt
17. Black Sheep - A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
18. Pete Rock and CL Smooth - Mecca and the Soul Brother
19. Mos Def - Black on Both Sides
20. Kanye West - Late Registration
21. El-P - Fantastic Damage
22. Camp Lo - Uptown Saturday Night
23. Gang Starr - Moment of Truth
24. Outkast - ATLiens
25. Eric B. and Rakim - Let the Rhythm Hit 'Em