The golden age of hip-hop, from 1986 to 1993, gave the world an amazing number of great records. Unfortunately, some didn't capture the popular imagination and while their influence still holds strong, they don't have the legacy of respect they deserve. The prime example for me is the hip-hop record label Wild Pitch.
The label folded in 1996, having lost its distribution deal with EMI. Since then, the treatment of its back catalogue has been little short of criminal. Apart from leaving many wonderful artists without a label, it has left many classic underground hip-hop albums out of print. Rumours of physical beatdowns, outrageous mismanagement and a machete-wielding Main Source attempting to behead the label's A&R man notwithstanding, Wild Pitch released some groundbreaking albums. Take the bizarre and dark Four Horsemen from the Ultramagnetic MCs, the influential Main Source album Breaking Atoms, the NYC street king Lord Finesse, the conscious rap of School of Hard Knocks by Hard Knocks, the proto-gangsta styles of OC and the socialist black power rap of the Coup.