This year marks the 10th anniversary of Blu & Exile’s classic 2007 album, Below the Heavens. In celebration of that milestone, the rap duo released In the Beginning: Before the Heavens, a prequel to the original LP.

The 14-track collection features unreleased material that didn’t make the original recording, including “On the Radio,” in which Blu laments about radio stations not playing real rap music anymore. Production on the LP is provided by Exile and it's nothing but pure boom-bap greatness.

In a synopsis for their project, Blu & Exile write:

In The Beginning: Before the Heavens is made of up songs that are raw and untouched, keeping the authenticity of Blu and Exile’s creativity at the time. The album has guest appearances from familiar names like Dr. Oop, Donel Smokes, Aloe Blacc and Blame One. While 'Soul Provider,' 'Another Day,' and 'Party of Two' appeared on Blu’s Lifted EP, the majority of these songs showcase Blu rapping at his peak, maintaining his underground attitude as he dishes on reaching star status ('Constellations'), getting radio play ('On the Radio'), or opposing views in a problem-ridden world (“You’re Gonna Die Someday”). Exile, meanwhile, builds a golden hip-hop era feel with head-nodding samples and DJ scratches."

Enough said. Enjoy streaming In the Beginning: Before the Heavens above via SoundCloud. Or better yet, cop the album on iTunes.

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