Humanity Has Not Known Funk Like This: Best Del the Funky Homosapien Albums

Image Credit: Songkick.com
Hip-hop for everyone, for the freak in you, for your funky side, Del is one of the smoothest rappers ever, and what’s more, he’s intensely unique and just a touch on the bizarre side. Now, you might recognize that this dude is as old school as his age will allow. What you might not realize, however, is the fact that Ice Cube is his cousin, and that Cube gave him his start in Da Lench Mob in the late 80s. In 1991, Ice Cube helped him release his first solo album I Wish My Brother George Was Here. Soon after he branched out on his own, becoming a renowned solo artist and working on an extensive array of collaborations and mixtapes as well as an abundance of solo albums. Of them all, I’d have to say these 5 provide the best examples of the raw talent, eclectic nature, and dynamic hip-hop concepts that define Del.

5 Full Circle

The most recent album released with his group Hieroglyphics, it’s simply pure, unadulterated hip-hop true to its distinguishable form.Granted we’re juggling verses and influences from 9 members, this is essentially the group in which Del really took off, and it’s great to hear the improvements that took place from the already incredible 3rd Eye Vision released in 1998. Plus there are “Classic” examples of quality Del all over this album like on the funky, up-tempo “Halo” or the hard hitting “Powers That Be.”

4 Gorillaz

Now you get to go “Oh that guy, yeah I know who Del is.” Of course you do. Who doesn’t like cartoons mixed with rock mixed with rap. And I’m being serious. I’m not trying to be condescending. This is the best animated music group next to Dethklok, even if they did come out first. Seriously, “Clint Eastwood” is such a smash hit; Trey Anastasio from Phish actually covers it with his side project T.A.B. and the original video was definitely on heavy rotation in your college cafeteria the year it came out. For some mellow instrumentals check out “Dracula” and “Double Bass” but for good old Del check out “Rock The House.”

3 Deltron 3030

This might be one of my all time favorite albums. Dan the Automator composes beats that are futuristic in a very non-sterile, vibrant manner. It’s a hip-hop concept album, featuring Del as Deltron Zero, an interplanetary traveling rap star fighting for freedom from the New World Order. Attacking computer systems on “Virus” discussing enlightenment on “Upgrade (A Brymar College Course)” and returning to Earthin “Love Story” after winning the intergalactic rap battle in “Battlesong,” he’s literally all over the place on this album.Listen to this one from beginning to end, it unfolds like a novel or a good sci-fi flick.

2 Parallel Uni-Verses with Tame One

Let the mainstream flake on works like this. Honestly I prefer this type of art to stay sacred. This album, produced by Parallel Thought and featuring Del and Artifacts member Tame One, is both an analysis and a blending of old school and new school hip-hop. True to form, this album handles topics from poetry to prison to girls to guns, but in the intelligent, non-gangbanging manner of the Funky Homosapien. For the hardcore, check out “Keep It Up” and “Specifics” and for something a little more recognizable as the multifarious style of Del check out “Teddy” and “Flashback.”

1 Root Stimulation

His most recent solo album, Root Stimulationbrings to the table over 21 years of greatness. With nothing to prove, Del let’s his flow unfold naturally for the duration of this album. To give a little something extra though, he teamed up with L.A. clothing line Grassroots California providing package deals at various rates including items like stickers, posters, key chains, and more. Pretty cool stuff if you’re into the underground and appreciate helping up and coming businesses. For the straight forward, in your face punch of Del, check out “Bars to Rock” and “Hyperactivity,” and for some funk on the down tempo check out “Am I Live Enough” and “Wooden Nickel.” The whole album is dope; don’t sleep.

Keep in mind; Del has a substantial catalogue of music, and an exceptionally comprehensive approach to the art. So let me know if there’s some work you think I left out. Otherwise, check it out, there’s some great material here.

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