Stankonia

by OutKast

Released October 31, 2000 via LaFace Records

Reviewed October 29, 2020

Top tracks (based on community voting)
Ms. Jackson (74%), B.O.B. (69%), So Fresh, So Clean (53%)

Across cultures, darker people suffer most. Why?


Stankonia is not exactly a place you go, more a place you end up. It's a strange and twisted phony of the American dream -- a trap. In an album sharing its namesake, OutKast put everything on the line doing justice to the magnitude of this hellscape.


Stankonia is not afraid to evoke whimsicality, embrace trauma, describe reality and fly the artists' freak flags. It speaks volumes for itself in an array of languages: rap, rock, funk, gospel, psychedelia, all jettisoned across a terrain of Organized Noize. This album exercises massive reserves of energy in seismic bursts that make for timeless thrills and endless momentum.


In one album, Outkast became simultaneously their most famed and incalculable selves yet. Stankonia is truly the perfect storm of Outkast's creative peak, refined songwriting and raw modes of expression. Like an apple pie stuffed with chitlins and hog maws, Stankonia remains a smelly monument to the American dream. – DeVán (10/10)


In 1995, André 3000 told the world “The South got something to say” after OutKast won Best New Rap Group at The Source Awards. They had a lot to say on ATLiens, they had a lot to say on Aquemini, and you’ll be damned if you think that pattern stopped with Stankonia. Pioneers of the Dirty South style, the duo continually emphasized their appreciation for their region at every turn. Stankonia expanded upon these ideas with a more experimental take on their pre-existing sound, shifting more toward a Southern-funk sound that pulled from hip-hop, funk, blues, gospel, psychedelia, and more. André 3000 adopted a more melodic delivery, while Big Boi offered a more direct, high-energy flow as the two delivered statement after statement, infusing social commentary and stank into every cut. – Dominick (9/10)


It’s hard to believe that after three incredibly distinct and absolutely legendary albums, the duo of André 3000 and Big Boi found yet another mountain to climb and plant their flag into. Only this time the mountain wasn’t a mountain, it was a pile of trash in a landfill called the United States of America and the flag they planted was black and white. While ATLiens and Aquemini existed in a predominantly southern hip-hop atmosphere, Stankonia reaches further than Georgia in both sound and themes, exploring subjects that initially sound wiser than the musical elements but in reality are just as chaotic and abrasive. Yes, the musicality can be off-putting to Aquemini purists, but Stankonia sounds like a cynical satire comic upon review – something you wouldn’t understand unless you really thought about it. And when the punchline finally hits through the energetic drum breaks, funky slap bass, screeching backing vocals, and host of other creative liberties, it makes you laugh because it’s all so real. Pax (8.7/10)


A hip-hop partnership of the highest order, Big Boi and André 3000 were always meant to be. Stankonia opened the doors for mainstream success while remaining true to the whole OutKast ethos, with “Ms. Jackson” being the cornerstone of OutKast's career and what made them household name. An upward trajectory of insurmountable proportions was in store for the Atlanta crew, and it has only grown stronger since. Home to some of the biggest bangers in hip-hop history with “B.O.B.” and “So Fresh, So Clean,” Stankonia can be looked upon as a bit of a left turn in OutKast's catalogue. A hint of experimentation in the right hands does wonders to spice things up. Stankonia is a triumph for hip-hop and nothing short of a game-changer. The mainstream didn't know the scale of OutKast’s repertoire and reach. BREAK. – Peter (8.5/10)


DeVán: 10/10 | Jared: 10/10 | Daniel: 9.2/10 | Cam: 9/10 | Dominick: 9/10

Enth: 9/10 | Pax: 8.7/10 | Hadley: 8.5/10 | Peter: 8/10 | Victoria: 8/10