It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
Def Jam Recordings
Finding freedom in noise, cohesion in fragments, and power in words, PE’s second album has perma-canon status for a damn good reason (or several). Even if you divorce it from the cultural pressures of the late ’80s, the blunt-force musicality of Chuck D’s voice retains its ability to shock as sure as the revolutionary lyrics do, while Flavor Flav remains the ideal irreverent-hypeman counterbalance. And the Bomb Squad’s hyperfunk production made anyone still dismissive of sampling as an art form immediately irrelevant.