2013 had some great music. From Rap to Hip-Hop to Pop to R&B, I listen to a lot of it.
Consequently, the following are my personal top 10 albums of the year:(FYI: You can click on the pictures to download any of these albums for free. You’re welcome, universe.)
10. Yeezus – Kanye West
Experimental – that’s for sure. When I first heard it, I was like “WTF you doing Kanye?” but then I listen ‘Blood on the Leaves‘ & I got it. Not to mention the classic that is ‘Bound 2‘; love that record. Yeezus, barely made the top ten on this list, but its defiantly a record you should at least listen to once.
Album highlights: Bound 2, Blood On the Leaves, Black Skinhead
9. Nothing Was the Same – Drake
This album was worse than Thank Me Later. That’s my opinion. But then again, I think Take Care was also a classic. Yeah, I know. But with all that being said, Drake is still a force to be reckon with. And gash darn it, Drake knows what the people like – catchy hooks, singing and rapping. Guess you can say nothing’s been the same since this past year. No hate to Drake, but I feel like he could have done better overall. NWTS felt a little lack-luster; thus landing it on the number 9th spot.
Album highlights: From Time, Pound Cake, Connect
8. The 20/20 Experience (Part 1) – Justin Timberlake
The current King of Pop, Justin Timberlake knocks it out of the park with his first album (part 1 – that is) in years. After a hiatus from his music career, The 20/20 Experience reminds us about what kinda songs Justin can deliver to our ears. Very simple, very easy to listen to, very dope. The 20/20 Experience (Part 1) had the right amount of songs and singles in it to make it one of the best selling albums of the year, and deserving of the number 8th spot on my list.
Album Highlights: Spaceship Coupe, That Girl, Strawberry Bubblegum
7. Watching Movies with the Sound Off – Mac Miller
Damn, I remember listening to Mac Miller back when nobody knew what a Mac Miller was! The kid has come a long way. And throughout Mac Miller’s career he’s gone through some changes and phases in his raps. Some of his stuff was hot, some of it was trash, and some tracks felt gimmicky (See Donald Trump). But with WMWTSO, I feel like Mac Miller truly found his voice. This was a very polish record, Mac Miller should feel proud to call this his best work to date.
Album highlights: Red Dot Music, Aquarium, Youforia
6. Where Does This Door Go? – Mayer Hawthorne
Holy Shit, where has this Mayer Hawthorne been?! This shit knocks. Now, A Strange Arrangement, will forever be in my personal favorite albums, but Hawthorne’s sophomore album How Do You Do? sucks balls. I feel like MH finally redeem himself with WDTDG. Mayer Hawthorne did it BIG TIME with style all over this record. From begging to end, the neon-groove style plays throughout. I really did love this album. Check it out. Highly recommend it.
Album highlights: Allie Jones, Crime, Where Does This Door Go
5. Born Sinner – J. Cole
Cracking the number 5 spot, is Mr. Cole himself. Born Sinner was better than Yeezus. It was more Hip Hop than Yeezus. But not only was Born Sinner an alternative to Yeezus when it first drop, it holds it own with the production and lyrics from J. Cole. Chaining Day is my shit, and I will
eventually get a Jesus Piece strictly because of it. It was just dope overall. If you haven’t checked it out, I highly recommend you do so. Immediately.
Album Highlights: Chaining Day, J and the Snakes, Power Trip, Let Nas Down
4. Because the Internet – Childish Gambino
Not only is this an album from one of my personal favorite rappers of the moment, it’s an experience. With a whole story and website, the music really ties everything together. I know its getting mixed reviews overall, but I love Because the Internet. I waited over a whole year for another Childish album, and I felt like he deliver. It’s so creative, it’s reminiscent of last’s year number one album Good Kid, m.A.A.d. City from Kendrick Lamar. Because the Internet deserve to be consume by those who like Hip Hop, its like nothing out there and stands on its own as a great piece of work.
Album highlights: The Worst Guys, Telegraph Ave (Oakland by Lloyd), Sweatpants, Urn
3. Acid Rap – Chance the Rapper
I took a chance with this rapper. Heard him on a few tracks and liked his style. So when Chance the Rapper dropped Acid Rap, I was like ‘Sure, I guess I’ll check it out’, and I was pleasantly surprise by what I heard. This is a very well polished group of songs that cultivated into a dope album. With the production, features, and lyrics, Chance the Rapper’s Acid Rap makes a name for itself, even landing in the billboard charts for its free release! What’s even crazier is that Chance is still a relatively new (and young) artist that not that many people know about. If he keeps this up, he’s going to win a Grammy. Count on that. Can’t wait to hear Chance the Rapper’s next project.
Album highlights: Juice, Pusha Man, Lost, Chain Smoker
2. Magna Carta Holy Grail – Jay-Z
Dropped (relatively) out of the blue, Magna Carta Holy Grail came with force during the summer of 2013. If you haven’t heard the album, you must be living under a rock. The production alone deserve a Grammy. You can hear the quality of music when you play this album. Accompanied by Jay-Z’s lyrics, the MCHG album one of the dopest albums Jay-Z has ever put out.
It doesn’t hurt that Jay’s bigger-than-life attitude and swagg go hand in hand with every single song that is on this album. From when you press play till the very end, you will be entertained. The Magna Carta Holy Grail is a complex piece of work, and Jay-z (the coolest guy in Hip Hop) makes it look easy. Loved this album, and you should too. Don’t forget, if you want to hear this for yourself, just click on the picture to download.
Album highlights: FuckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt, Part II (On the Run), Somewhereinamerica, La Familia
1. The Marshall Mathers LP 2 – Eminem
Yes, it lived up to the hype. Eminem is the Rap God. No argument, just accept it. The begining of the album alone deserves a standing ovation for the words Eminem just spit. I’ve mention the word Grammy on this list, but if anybody is actually going to win one in 2014, its probably going to be Eminem. No joke. The MMLP2 is complete piece of work that further extends the first original MMLP legacy.
Its a classic and some people may not agree with that, but they will come around. Eminem has such away with words that he’s almost overrated and underrated at the same time (See Rap God). Its no only just the singles that make this album stand out, it’s the whole overall feel to it. It has that Slim Shady persona that many have been waiting to hear for awhile. There are still lines in MMLP2 that I’m discovering and replaying.
Its not too complex, but its defiantly something you need to hear a few times over because its so good. From pop singles, to retrospective songs, to comedy bits and songs, you can find it all in this album.The bonus tracks ain’t bad either. I absolutely love Wicked Ways – it should have been a part of the original. Just my opinion. If there is one album you should have listen to in 2013, it’s the Marshall Mathers LP 2.
Album highlights: Bad Guy, Asshole, Rap God, Love Games, The Monster, Wicked Ways
- Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
- Beyoncé – BEYONCÉ (Visual Album)
- Fabolous – The Soul Tape 3
And that’s it folks. Sorry Wale.
– ezb14 outz.