Remember Delo's Hood Politics?

Houston's history is dotted with albums that, fairly or un, have been swept aside. We'll examine them here. Have an album that you think nobody knows about but should? Email

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Hood Politics (Self-released, 2010)

Delo is a Missouri City rapper who, as proof that the music industry is neither fair nor unbiased, does not yet rate on everybody's Favorite Underground Houston Rappers list.

He exists in his most beastly modes on tracks that are either a) warm and earthy; b) hearty and bass-driven; or c) the exact opposite of both of those; he'd likely never try it, but we suspect he'd be crazy on something by Lex Luger. But even when he gets it wrong, the soft rasp of his voice is almost always interesting, even when he's not rapping about interesting things. It bodes well for his long-term listenability.

Hood Politics is his first solo tape and a strong, demonstrative effort. If you were to argue that it was one of the best Houston mixtapes of 2010, you would not be wrong.

How Auspicious Is The Intro Track?

Very. "Ghetto Boy" is a funky, funky, modish take on traditional blues-rap. It's hard to imagine how it could be more effective. Our mouth felt dusty listening to it. We hear Samuel L. Jackson is considering making a really bad movie about it where he chains a girl to his radiator.

Obvious Contradiction on the Album:

In one instance, D is a hungry, dirty ghetto boy; in another he's a gazillionaire reporting on the state of the cosmos from his space-ready solid-gold helicopter (our words, not his). He's perfectly capable of doing that type of rapping, but his best songs always sound like they're the most honest ones. It's why "To Kill A Mockingbird," his take on one of Eminem's most humanizing tracks, is absolutely pulverizing; he sounds like he's telling truth the entire time.

Best Song on the Album:

"Ain't My Style" is so, so brutal. It will never, ever get radio play, but it is very nearly masterful. This is when he's at his best; when he's allowed to just run. It's the same reason "Ghetto Boy" is so good - he doesn't sound like he's concerned with anything at all.

With "16 David," for example, it's neat, but it's not all that compelling. It's like he's playing to the chorus. Here, where there's no traditional framework, he sounds completely comfortable and genuine. The first minute of it is the best minute on the album, and very likely one of the best minutes of any Houston rap album in 2010.

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