BEST HIP-HOP DJ - 2000
As with his mates in Atmosphere, Abilities keeps such a high profile in the Cities that you might think his rep is overinflated. But as with his mates in Atmosphere, his skills are too undeniable for backlash to gain any currency. Not only does his mix tape, Finally, display the abilities he's named for, it remains a telling snapshot of the late-Nineties Minneapolis scene and a map of how that scene intersects with the national hip-hop underground. Rarely indulging in the flashy samples that crasser DJs employ to grab the outsider's ears, Abilities lends an almost ambient feel to the low-key, bass-driven East Coast tradition of underground DJing. And so with all respect due DJ King IXL, DJ Boogie, Stage One, and whoever is on the one and the two tonight at the Red Sea, Abilities knows what he's doing, and he works hard for the acclaim. Don't hate him because he's dutiful.