Sure. There will probably never be a producer compilation as impactful and great as Dr. Dre’s The Chronic, but that doesn’t mean that the Hip-Hop architects of today can’t construct some seamless sonics that are just as groundbreaking. A distinct sound, cohesive transitions, and a career-launching ear for new talent is what leaves the skip button untouched for these classic compositions.
While we wait for the good Dr. to take his time “Detoxing,” here’s AllHipHop.com’s ode to the Top 5 of the 2000s bunch:
1. The Alchemist’s Russian Roulette:
Alan “The Alchemist” Maman brings out the most chilling of verses out of his emcees with his suspenseful and hair-raising backdrops. For his third compilation, Al played a risky game of Russian Roulette with a squadron of hungry MCs and Russian Pop samples. The end result was 30 short movements of one sweet symphony of samples that redefined once again what a Hip-Hop producer could accomplish with a crate full of records. Bravo.
2. 9th Wonder’s Dream Merchant vol. 2:
If dreaming had a soundtrack, Patrick “9th Wonder” Douthit would be the executive producer. After leaving his critically acclaimed group Little Brother in ‘07, 9th dropped a new batch of his smooth bass and soulful samples that sounded like they might have came from angels on Dream Merchant vol 2. Working with a group of unknown but talented group of singers and MCs (like a young Rapsody), 9th would prove that he would be the go-to guy to craft complete Hip-Hop meals that would stick to your ribs for years to come.
3. AraabMuzik’s Electronic Dream:
A great musician uses his instrument not as an instrument but as an extension of himself. There might not be a producer who embodies this sentiment as much as Abraham “Araabmuzik” Orellana does. With lightening like hands that can produce a live neck-snapping beat on nothing but a MPC, the in-house Dip-set producer proved that he is more than just the man behind Camron’s comeback projects. He is a musical prodigy who had an Electronic Dream that he would merge hypnotizing trance samples with high-hats and kick drums to create one of the hardest all-instrumental albums ever. House music didn’t know it could sound so menacing.
4. Ski-Beatz’s 24 hour Karate School:
Making a comeback as an MC is hard. Making a comeback as a producer could be called mission impossible but Jay-Z’s “Dead Presidents” producer David “Ski Beatz” Willis had found a way. By revamping his horn, guitar, and bass driven sound to give a new generation of MCs like Curren$y their own distinct flavor, Ski-Beatz pulled himself out of producer purgatory and placed himself along the most in demand producers of the day. His debut album, 24 hour Karate School, was a testament to Ski’s versatility as a producer who could cultivate his sound among the lyrical-depth of Jay Electronica and also compliment the stoner-stunting of Wiz Khalifa.
5. Hi-Tek‘s Hi-Teknology2: The Chip:
Tony “Hi-Tek” Contrell is a producer’s producer. Just ask his boss, Dr. Dre. After causing some Rawkus on the Train of Thought with Talib Kweli, Hi-Tek decided to serve his musically-thick beats to the veterans and upcoming MCs of the early ’00s on his Hi-Teknology compilations. The second album in the series, Hi-Teknology2: The Chip, would spawn Hip-Hop classic collaborations like “Music Is Life” with verses from Nas and Common, and a heart-warming message from the late J Dilla. On this compilation, Hi-Tek brought Hip-Hop into the new millennium with rich musicality that could still make your head nod.
There are waaaayyy more dope examples than just these! Sound off on your favorite producer compilations in the comment section.