Deep Black

Listeners had to travel far beyond mainstream to find sublime black music in 2002

10. It's official: The best rappers are white – and emotionally disturbed! Not since 1991, the year that gave us Vanilla Ice, Marky Mark, 3rd Bass, and Young Black Teenagers, has there been a year where more talented, milk-colored MCs came out to play. Eminem broadcast his latest litany of personal grievances with The Eminem Show, but two MCs easily managed to out-emote Slim Shady. Slug, of the Minneapolis duo Atmosphere, crowned himself the wigger prince with God Loves Ugly, asking for a pound and a hug when he wasn't asking for his groupies' soaking panties. And El-P – rapper, producer and CEO of the much-hyped indie label Definitive Jux – made sure everyone felt his wrath with the bruising Fantastic Damage.

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