Best Record Label
Besides Rhymesayers, Doomtree is Minnesota’s most famed record label, and it’s been firing on all cylinders lately. Doomtree’s most wide-reaching achievement of 2016 was the inclusion of Dessa — the crew’s lone female member and one of the most admired women in hip-hop, period — on The Hamilton Mixtape. But since the huge-selling mixtape was released by Atlantic, that was a W for Doomtree as a collective, not as a label. As for releases to actually come out on Doomtree Records, the big two came from Sims and P.O.S: The former released his earthquaking, Run the Jewels-esque magnum opus, More Than Ever, back in November, while the latter returned this January with the punk-rap assault Chill, Dummy, a triumphant comeback from his 2014 kidney transplant. In-house producer Paper Tiger contributed heavily to More Than Ever, while fellow beatmaker Lazerbeak executive produced both albums. The list of additional releases goes on — Cecil Otter’s three-song Dear Echo EP, Dessa’s single “Quinine,” etc. — but you get the picture: Doomtree’s still making major noise.
Readers’ Choice: Doomtree Records