Pitchfork – “Super Ugly“:
Hip-hop thrived under a “take what you can and make something out of it” ethos. Don’t have drums? Take them off your parents records or, later, find a machine that’ll do the work for you. Labels won’t listen to your demo? Press up your own records or, later, dub a tape. Nobody’s giving you a video budget? Tape yourself on a camcorder and send it to local access. In hip-hop, this DIY approach was never as explicitly politicized as it was in punk or indie, it was mostly circumstantial and evolutionary. But that relative obliviousness made it all the more subversive. Hip-hop tore down all class norms without even thinking about it. Singing was beautiful; rappers spoke. “Real” instruments were sophisticated; producers abandoned them. Some of the greatest moments in the genre have been borne out of mistakes or accommodations. The things that the rest of the world saw and heard as ugly became the norm for rap fans.