Illmatic XX [20th Anniversary Edition]

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Illmatic XX [20th Anniversary Edition] Image
Metascore
89

Universal acclaim - based on 8 Critics What's this?

User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 113 Ratings

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  • Summary: The remastered reissue of the rapper's debut 1994 release a disc of remixes, demos and unreleased versions of songs.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. 100
    Like all great works of art, Illmatic isn’t just about the story it tells; it provides us with a fully-fledged character study of the genius behind it.
  2. Q Magazine
    Apr 28, 2014
    100
    The original beats are still as fresh and inviting as a newly changed bed. At 10 tracks, Illmatic is satisfying lean and cohesive--remarkably so for a hip-hop album with five producers. [May 2014, p.125]
  3. May 22, 2014
    100
    Illmatic is timeless because of Nas’s introspective, hyper-detailed approach to his daily life--even to moments that don’t seem particularly notable.
  4. Apr 21, 2014
    90
    Illmatic by Nas is a 10/10 classic hip hop album. It's essential, and that's undeniable. Illmatic XX when taken as a whole, isn't.
  5. Nov 6, 2014
    78
    The Demos, Remixes & Live Radio half of Illmatic XX, the 20th-anniversary celebration of the Queensbridge rapper's seminal debut, deviates the right direction from its 10-year predecessor.
  6. The Wire
    Jul 21, 2014
    70
    No album in hiphop history has been less in need of a padding. [Jun 2014, p.63]
  7. Apr 21, 2014
    60
    The trouble with Illmatic XX isn’t what you hear, but what you don’t hear. In a vacuum, it’s an unexpectedly well-preserved snapshot of Golden Era, New York Hip Hop. Sonically, it strikes the perfect balance between cleaning up the original recordings through the advent of digital remastering without eliminating subtleties such as the crackle of a needle over vinyl.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 13
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 13
  3. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Mar 22, 2015
    10
    This rating is for the actual Illmatic. 9.1/10. I'd probably rate this one almost the same as the original............................................
  2. Sep 5, 2014
    10
    I don't listen to a lot of rap and hiphop, but this album is so freaking good. I love all the songs. It's maybe the best album of all time.I don't listen to a lot of rap and hiphop, but this album is so freaking good. I love all the songs. It's maybe the best album of all time. Nas.. you're a legend!!! Expand
  3. Apr 30, 2014
    10
    Not much to say, a classic album (the best hip hop album ever), packed with new remixes and new tracks. Illmatic will have a huge impact onNot much to say, a classic album (the best hip hop album ever), packed with new remixes and new tracks. Illmatic will have a huge impact on hip hop forever, the remixes have great beats, the newly added tracks are good too. Expand
  4. May 1, 2015
    10
    Quite possibly the greatest hip-hop album of all time. Nas' flows and lyrics are impeccable and often outrageous in places "You couldn't catchQuite possibly the greatest hip-hop album of all time. Nas' flows and lyrics are impeccable and often outrageous in places "You couldn't catch me on the streets without a tonne of reefer, that's like Malcom X catchin' the jungle fever". The concepts are based upon Nas' tough New York upbringing; including gang warfare, drugs, desolation and urban poverty. This helps add a sense of realism to the album, making it highly relatable to the youthful generation. It's easy to see where Nas is coming from in a lot of these songs.

    The beats to accompany the lyrics are just as impeccable and include elements of jazz and old-school hip hop in places, mastered by the pioneering DJ Premier, along with Large Professor and Q Tip. Illmatic is 10 tracks of pure genius. At only 20 years old, Nas blew the world of hip-hop away with this album. A true classic; as recognised by this 20th Anniversary Edition.
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  5. May 10, 2014
    10
    Stilll the best Hip Hop Album of all time. I still prefer the original but i liked that they added some new stuff that feels like it wasStilll the best Hip Hop Album of all time. I still prefer the original but i liked that they added some new stuff that feels like it was recorded when Illmatic was first written. Check out "Im a Villain" Expand
  6. May 13, 2014
    10
    This originally came out before my time so have only really gotten into it now. Still sounds fresh, has mad beats, lyrics and flow. Can seeThis originally came out before my time so have only really gotten into it now. Still sounds fresh, has mad beats, lyrics and flow. Can see how this is a classic and rated as pretty much the best rap album of all time Expand
  7. Sep 5, 2014
    8
    An amazing album. Though I don't think the remixes really add much (in fact I think they are a bit lame), the classics from the original albumAn amazing album. Though I don't think the remixes really add much (in fact I think they are a bit lame), the classics from the original album are still there and are just as good as ever. The sound quality has also improved (or so they say; I haven't noticed much a different). If you haven't bought Illmatic, I'd suggest saving $5.00 by buying the original (which I would give a 10/10). Expand

See all 13 User Reviews