I can't understand how Mike Skinner is getting so many votes. His first two albums were good but he followed them up with a string of absolute clunkers. I think the more you listen to him his technical limitations start to show. He records everything drunk. Rhymes in a cockney accent but he's from Birmingham. He's definitely had his moments but he's put out way too much cack to be considered the best.
I just read his book and the funny thing i noticed about his music career is that his best album "Original Pirate Material was reorded using Fruity Loops and when he got signed he started using Logic. I think he had to keep to the streets style but tried to complicate it and the whole streets mantra was a young geezer from london, smoking spliffs and taking drugs but also living. I think mike skinner grew outta the streets and thats why people started not to like what he was trying to do. The Streets was recorded in his box room in his rented flat it was this simplicity that made the streets who the were, a cult classic.... Complicating it made it not simple... Thats just my opinion, i don't think anyone could keep up the streets for as long as he did...