My top ten favourite Albums of the Year:
Joey Bada$$ – B4.DA.$$
“All in all, supporters of the Brooklyn emcee will no doubt be impressed and satisfied with what he has delivered, which is a mature improvement on his first two efforts, showing clear growth in both delivery and lyrical content. As it is the first major Hip Hop release of 2015, it will be fascinating to see if the album is still talked about throughout the year, or when compared with other expected Hip Hop releases of 2015, that should include Drake & Kendrick Lamar’s new albums. Irrespective, Joey Bada$$ has laid down a solid foundation in which to build his mainstream career on”.
Drake – If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late
“Drake has surprised almost everyone with the release of, If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late. The quality of the project – irrespective of its status of album or mixtape – cannot be denied, with Drake once again providing listeners with irresistibly memorable tracks to last throughout the year, or at least until Views From The 6 eventually comes”.
Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp A Butterfly
“To Pimp A Butterfly is so metaphorically profound and sophisticated that a single listen of the album is not enough to fully soak up and embrace the true essence of what Lamar is attempting to communicate. Compared to good Kid, m.A.A.d City, Kendrick’s latest offering probably isn’t musically superior, but his opinion on social, political and racial issues that he divulges throughout the album could not be more appropriate at this time, therefore making it’s impact more prevalent than just the musical art form”.
Action Bronson – Mr. Wonderful
“There’s a lot to like about this album, for example, the immaculate production, as Action Bronson consolidates his current position in Hip Hop, but a concern people may express is that Mr Wonderful hasn’t expanded on much that we don’t already know about him. Other than impressively sharing some genuine, personal thoughts on ‘A Light In The Addict’ and in spurts during ‘Baby Blue’, the album lacks any real story or emotive depth. Of course, such things have never been associated with Bronson, so to expect it now could be seen as unfair. Overall, it’s another project that Action Bronson’s fans can enjoy for the foreseeable future”.
Curren$y – Pilot Talk III
“The consistency in both the quantity and the quality of Curren$y’s work is to be commended, putting him alongside the likes of Big K.R.I.T. in that respect, gradually earning the respect that his efforts warrant. Though he briefly swam in the mainstream with The Stoned Immaculate, it seems Curren$y feels more comfortable soaking in the adoration of his underground recognition”.
A$AP Rocky – At.Long.Last.A$AP
“The title of the album seems to establish the feeling of Rocky finally achieving exactly what he wanted to with a studio album. The core fans of the Harlem rapper will truly enjoy how this album plays, while detractors will find it difficult to criticise the impressive, if extensive, body of work. The cohesion between the contrasting types of production is near perfect allowing Rocky to exhibit his somewhat overlooked lyricism, as he expresses sentiments of a more personal tone. At.Long.Last.A$AP was certainly worth the wait and has definitely confirmed the potential many Hip Hop followers heard in Rocky a few years ago”.
The Internet – Ego Death
“For any fans of soul and R&B that haven’t yet had the pleasure of interacting with The Internet’s music, it’s fair to say you’ve been missing out. The band’s latest offering, Ego Death, acts as a continuation of their style, developing both sonically and lyrically from their last album in impressive fashion. Initially, it’s difficult to find a song that is skip-worthy, which obviously makes for a very satisfying listen. The Internet’s growth is obvious to hear on Ego Death – as was the case on their previous album – with this latest project being their most accomplished piece of work, so far”.
OthaSoul – The Remedy
“It is evident that OthaSoul have worked tirelessly on the musicality of the project, with interludes and skits supplementing the overall concept, which is clear and well thought out. The impeccable production makes for a cohesive, consistent and engaging listen, and one of the standout projects from the UK this year. If there is a sickness infecting the city of London, OthaSoul are doing their upmost to provide the remedy”.
Drake & Future – What A Time To Be Alive
“What A Time To Be Alive delivers exactly what you would expect from the people involved; some of the most face-screw-worthy production provided by Metro Boomin, an endless variety of flows from Future and Drake doing what only he seems to know how to do by making anything seem accessible to listeners. Two originators of their respective “lanes” have come together to create one of the most talked about albums of the year”.
Freddie Gibbs – Shadow Of A Doubt
“Freddie Gibbs is very much on a roll at present, continuing his strong 2014 with another impressive year, and Shadow Of A Doubt acts as the most obvious indication of that. It was always going to be difficult to better his work with Madlib on Piñata, but Gibbs has seamlessly managed to his great form with another exciting album”.
Dr. Dre – Compton: A Soundtrack by Dr. Dre
Little Simz – A Curious Tale Of Trials + Persons
Mac Miller – Go:od AM
Sango – Da Rochina 3
Intalekt – IIWII (It Is What It Is)