49. Run DMC: Raising Hell
Do you like Rap Music? Have you heard Raising Hell by Run-DMC? You haven’t? Guess what... you’re not a real rap fan.
Raising Hell is one of those things that every rap fan has to listen to and at the very least appreciate to be taken seriously. Ranked up there with albums like LIcense to Ill, Ready to Die, Enter the 36 chambers and Low End Theory as part of the important historical moments in hip-hop.
You don’t get a better opening song quite like Peter Piper. The song exemplified everything that made Run-D.M.C. great. You get them trading off rhymes at rapid fire, great beats and scratches from Jam-Master-Jay and more fun fairy tale reference-brags than you can handle.
It sets the standard for all the other great classic tracks on the short album including It’s Tricky, You Be Illin, My Adidas and Walk This Way, the latter being the first hit song to bridge the gap between hip-hop, rock n roll and pop music; this would be perfected a few months later by everything the Beastie Boys did on License to Ill.
Chris Rock (as well as creditable music magazines) have all called this the first great rap record. There’s a reason for that, because it is a great record and it’s one of the first important rap albums. This brings me back to my original point, if you like rap, you own it to yourself to at least listen to this album at least once.
If you’ve been reading these articles as long as I’ve been writing them than you’re aware that 9 times out of 10 my albums are moderately known or only appreciated to a specific type of person. Run DMC is one of the few records on this album that’s importance has been pointed to and praised by various sources (including The Sources’ 100 rap albums; 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die and Time’s 100 Greatest Albums just to name a few).