When people look back at the year in music for 2010, it will be defined in many different ways. They will talk about the artists who made an impact, the live performances the world saw in person or on YouTube, the albums that hit and missed.

But what they should be talking about is all the free music that became available via the Internet. With 2011 fast approaching, XXL takes a look back at hip-hop's new hustle. Whether you want to call them mixtapes or free albums, hip-hop artists today are no longer waiting for labels or even retail to pick up their album and sell it to their fans. Instead of saying "BUY MY ALBUM!" they're screaming "DOWNLOAD MY ALBUM!"

Well, we at XXL downloaded a lot of albums this year, hundreds of them. And in good old year-end fashion we had to make a list of the 100 best mixtapes we heard this year. We start things off with the 100-50.

100. Artist: Los
Mixtape: Shooter (Hosted by DJ Ill Will & DJ Rockstar)
Baltimore-based spitter Los' second mixtape this year was his strongest one yet, showcasing his versatile flow and establishing him as one of the game's brightest young emcees.