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Getting Paid 

Wednesday, Aug 1 2007
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Who would have thought a white albino from Minnesota would have the hip-hop record of the year so far? The Undisputed Truth — Brother Ali's third full-length on Minneapolis' Rhymesayers label — combines the introspection people love about underground hip hop with the brick-thick hooks people love about mainstream rap. His cadence and delivery have been refined nearly to perfection, and somehow his stories about single fatherhood, Islam, and even racial discrimination manage to avoid shrillness. Beats from the Rhymesayers' in-house producer Ant — himself at the top of his game — anchor anthems like "Watcha Got" and "Truth Is," which celebrate old-school hip-hop ideals while rocking harder than an AC/DC concert. Brother Ali plays as part of the Paid Dues Independent Hip Hop Festival, underground rap's answer to Rock the Bells, along with Blueprint, Cage, Hangar 18, Living Legends, Mr. Lif, Sage Francis, and Grouch & Eligh.

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Ben Westhoff

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