2012 is coming to a close and it's that joyful time of year: LIST SEASON. As the title states these are my top 10 favorite hip-hop and r&b albums of the year. This list is open to official albums, EP's and mixtapes alike.
NOTE: At the time of posting I have not listened to Game's Jesus Piece or T.I.'s Trouble Man: Heavy is the Hand, not that I think either would make this list but you never know.
10.) Big K.R.I.T. - 4eveNaDay: I was between this and his debut album that dropped this year and I think I enjoy this tape a little more, KRIT is putting the south back on the map for real. (check out "Boobie Miles")
9.) Chiddy Bang - Breakfast: I just love this album, it's fun, uptempo, with surprisingly conscious lyrics, just a great album. (check out "Baby Roulette")
8.) Killer Mike - R.A.P. Music: You could say i slept on this, I heard from the guys at DeadEndHipHop that it was a crazy album and they were right, this album is real, Mike's lyrics and flow mixed with El-P's production go together perfectly. (check out "Reagan")
7.) Joe & Box - We Just Fucked Your Beat Vol. 2: Who woulda thought a mixtape from 2 white boys could be this good? It just is, the burn every beat they spit over and the replay value is just insane. Look em up on Datpiff.com and get all 3 of their tapes for free. (check out "House Party")
6.) MGK - Lace Up: Machine Gun Kelly's long awaited debut album isn't perfect but it's a damn good start, his wild and crazy songs are there but the album is surprisingly heartfelt and I love it. (check out "End of the Road")
5.) Lupe Fiasco - Lupe Fiasco's Food & Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album: As a supporter of Lasers I was hoping this album would be a mix of Lupe's older stuff mixed with the Lasers sound and for the most part that's what we get. There are a couple insufferable hooks but overall it's a great album. (check out "Lamborghini Angels")
4.) Frank Ocean - channel ORANGE: I'm not a big r&b fan, I'm a fan of The Temptations, Marvin Gaye, John Legend, Anthony Hamilton and that's about it. But I have to admit, Frank Ocean delivered a damn near perfect album, his voice, his lyrics, the few features on it make it an amazing listen.
3.) Nas - Life is Good: If you know me, or have been following me, you know that Nas is one of my favorite rappers of all time, so you know I was looking forward to this album, and it did not disappoint. His hooks aren't usually that great but he stepped it up on this, and I don't need to mention his amazing lyrics. Nas continues one of the most impressive discographies is hip hop. (check out "Daughters")
Now these next two are both my number ones, only because I enjoy them differently, one I can casually listen to and love and the other I listen to all the way through and view it as a movie almost, so without further ado:
1 .) Macklemore x Ryan Lewis - The Heist: After becoming my favorite rapper of the year and releasing songs that I listen to on a daily basis I decided to buy this album and it is as perfect as an album gets. I listen to literally every song, there's even an instrumental track that I love ("BomBom"). Between the silly songs to the emotionally driven personal tracks Macklemore shines. For the first time ever I fell in love with a producer, and Ryan Lewis is that producer, it's so clean yet so dirty at the same time, this album is the reason that rappers work with only one producer for a project. (check out any song, seriously.)
1.) Kendrick Lamar - good kid, m.A.A.d city: Coming off of Section .80 Kendrick had a lot to live up to, but if there's one guy that can live up to it and even surpass it it's Kendrick Lamar. This entire album is flawless, the seamless transitions into separate tracks and how the skits tie the story together is amazing. Kendrick is a narrator in the story but he's also the protagonist and at times he's even the antagonist. If you like hip hop you have to love this album, it's that good. (just like The Heist, check out any song, seriously.)
Well, there it is, the top 10 hip-hop/r&b albums of 2012. It was a pretty great year, there was a ton of crap released(see 2Chainz, Meek Mill, Tyga) but if you look just a little harder you can find greatness. Here's to 2013!