11 Songs, 54 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Though it's credited to the duo, 1990’s Let the Rhythm Hit ‘Em is in effect the first Rakim solo album. The legendary Irish–American hip-hop engineer Paul C. was responsible for shaping the album's sound, though production duties were finished by Large Professor after Paul C.’s murder in 1989. The stealthy, tight-knit drum programming inspired Rakim’s most athletic rhyme feats, especially on the three opening cuts: a dazzling sequence of lightning reflexes. But Rakim went beyond mere speed, as proven by the leisurely, detail-oriented storytelling of “Mahogany.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

Though it's credited to the duo, 1990’s Let the Rhythm Hit ‘Em is in effect the first Rakim solo album. The legendary Irish–American hip-hop engineer Paul C. was responsible for shaping the album's sound, though production duties were finished by Large Professor after Paul C.’s murder in 1989. The stealthy, tight-knit drum programming inspired Rakim’s most athletic rhyme feats, especially on the three opening cuts: a dazzling sequence of lightning reflexes. But Rakim went beyond mere speed, as proven by the leisurely, detail-oriented storytelling of “Mahogany.”

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