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Best Underground Hip Hop Groups

Unlike their mainstream counterparts, underground hip hop is exactly what it sounds like: rappers who haven't quite hit the mainstream, yet retain a strong, devoted following. The best underground rappers are generally independent rappers who are signed either to an indie label or no label at all and whose lyrical matter discusses either social issues, political issues and other types anti-excess subjects. Some of the best underground rappers are also known as conscious rappers and to some, as the forebearers of alternative hip hop. No matter what your definition of underground hip hop is, the best rappers in this genre are widely respected by their peers due to their ability to not give in to external pressures to strike it big, yet are remaining true to their underground rap roots.

So, who are the best underground rappers? When you think of underground hip hop artists, some of the big names (at least by underground rap standards) are Big L, Aesop Rock, Dead Prez, Madlib, El-P, Atmosphere and Blackalicious. These are some of the most respected names in rap music. Many of the best underground rappers are recognized for retaining the original hip hop ethos and message of change, and the top underground artists are critically acclaimed for producing original, refreshing sounds that deviates, yet doesn't encompass popular rap.

That said, it's up to you to determine who are the best underground rappers. If you think someone is missing from this list of underground hip hop artists, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best underground hip hop bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest underground hip hop musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular underground hip hop bands that you might've heard of. (86 items)

Best Underground Hip Hop Groups Bands/Musicians
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  1. 1
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    added by danman082200
    Revolutionary Vol. 2, Revolutionary, Volume 1

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  2. 2
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    The Big Picture, Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous, Children of the ...

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  3. 3
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    Labor Days, Bazooka Tooth, Float

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  4. 4
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    added by danman082200
    Knock Madness, Raw, Haywire

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  5. 5
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    added by Makumim
    Internal Affairs, Desire, Y'all Know the Name

    ; buy at  
  6. 6
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    Vaudeville Villain, Operation: Doomsday, Special Herbs and Spices

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  7. 7
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    Lucy Ford: The Atmosphere EP's, God Loves Ugly, You Can’t Imagine How Much ...

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  8. 8
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    added by danman082200

    buy at  
  9. 9
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    - 11

    added by Makumim
    Fantastic Damage, The Cold Vein, Weareallgoingtoburninhellmegamixxx3

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  10. 10
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    First Born, By the Throat, E&A

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  11. 11
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    Let's Get Free, RBG: Revolutionary but Gangsta, Turn Off the Radio: The ...

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  12. 12
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    Earl, Doris, Chum

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  13. 13
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    The Torture Papers, The Unholy Terror, Ritual of Battle

    ; buy at  
  14. 14
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    added by WyattBanham
    East coast rapper signed to funk volume

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  15. 15
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    The Unseen, The Further Adventures Instrumentals, Yessir Whatever

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  16. 16
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    Bacdafucup, All We Got Iz Us, Bacdafucup

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  17. 17
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    added by danman082200
    Die Rugged Man Die, Legends Never Die, Legendary Classics

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  18. 18
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    added by danman082200
    Trunk Muzik 0-60, Radioactive, Arena Rap EP

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  19. 19
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    Soul on Ice, Rasassination, Eat or Die

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  20. 20
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    Below the Heavens: In Hell Happy With Your New Imaginary Friend..., The ...

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  21. 21
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    added by danman082200
    Shadows on the Sun, Us, Rites of Passage

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  22. 22
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    added by WyattBanham
    Justin Ritter (born September 28, 1987), better known by SwizZz. He is best known for significantly collaborating with childhood friend Hopsin, and being signed to his record

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  23. 23
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    The Future Is Now, Sabacolypse (A Change Gon' Come), The Green CD/DVD

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  24. 24
    + 31
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    Blazing Arrow, NIA, The Craft

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  25. 25
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    Resurrection, Here Come the Lords, House of Lords

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  26. 26
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    2000 Fold, Razor Tag, Megadef

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  27. 27
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    added by danman082200
    Dr. Lecter, Blue Chips 2, Converge / Dropdead Split

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  28. 28
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    German Lugers, Black Snow, German Snow

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  29. 29
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    Built From Scratch, General Patton vs. The X-Ecutioners, Airwave Invasion ...

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  30. 30
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    added by danman082200
    Black Flag, Lace Up, Half Naked & Almost Famous

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  31. 31
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    Special Herbs and Spices, Volume 1, Scars & Memories

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  32. 32
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    Ode to the Ghetto, Dice Game, Highway Robbery

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  33. 33
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    Hope, Hopestrumentals, All Word No Play

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  34. 34
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    Bombay the Hard Way: Guns, Cars & Sitars, A Much Better Tomorrow

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  35. 35
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    Hard 2 Kill, Say Uncle 2 Hard 4 Hip Hop, Once Upon A Time In Brooklyn

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  36. 36
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    Below the Heavens: In Hell Happy With Your New Imaginary Friend..., Give ...

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  37. 37
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  38. 38
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    The Moment of Truth, 'Til My Casket Drops, Blocc Movement

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  39. 39
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    added by dilla4ever
    Anti-Smiles

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  40. 40
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    The Mighty Ocean & Nine Dark Theaters, You and Yer Good Ideas, Seven ...

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  41. 41
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    Tetragammoth, Do Tell, Knucklebone

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  42. 42
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    Welcome 2 the World Within, Spiral Like the Nine, The Afterlife of Jazz ...

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  43. 43
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    400, Waikyoku, Gigabyte/Streets of Tokyo

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  44. 44
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    House of Bees, Volume 2, Fallen House

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  45. 45
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    added by lionza93
    Ghost Busters, Wheely Wheely, A Memorial Tributed

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  46. 46
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    added by HipHopNow

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  47. 47
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    added by KidYola
    YOLANATION

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    Fake Flowers R.I.P. #3, Fake Flowers R.I.P. #2, They Hate Francisco False ...

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    new! & added by Christian Plattner

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    new! & added by Christian Plattner
    Diesel Truckers, Masters of Illusion, Urban Legends / Let Me Talk To You ...

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