The rap culture flexed its impact on the word by making 2017 an eventful one, hit after hit, artist after artist, album after album. An MEB EOTY list of 30 albums would still be extremely difficult to craft. Cheers to one of the most consistent and well-rounded years in hip-hop history.
Hip-hop’s leader of the new school continues to pave more concrete onto legendary lane. Kendrick Lamar hits a 4-peat with an album that hits the souls of backpack rap nerds, club goers, and R&B listeners without compromising why we first fell in love with the Compton MC. His ability to craft bangers that fit well in every sub-genre of rap, make it very hard for someone to argue of what K. Dot cannot do. Just sit down.
The alias “Big Homie Hov” is the most appropriate moniker, as hip-hop’s biggest success story drops an album full of financial gems, family business & personal venting. The minimalistic yet emotional beats take a backseat as Jay-Z bares a deeper soul. The convo-like rapping of his mother being a lesbian, shooting his brother, the Solange-elevator incident, and the infidelity of his superstar relationship, prove that the Brooklyn knight has a chink in his armor that the world finds an appreciation for.
After years of being openly frustrated of the industry and enduring media turmoil, the DMV poster child now has a child of his own and seems to be in happier place which smiles through his newest effort. Wale flexes his extremely under-appreciated pen over uptempo production that can be the soundtrack of a warm vacation or a family reunion. You can still be “real hip-hop” without being too scared to enjoy yourself and still lyrically dance on songs that can fit Top 40–a balance that Wale masters perfectly.
That old-head stereotype that southern rappers don’t have lyrics or substance is as whack as the closed-minded playlists made by the hypocrites who preach that cliche. Big K.R.I.T. deads all naysayers with a double-disc album loaded with soulful boom-bap joints with a country-fried tone. The beats hit the heart as heavy as the conent, which are on par to the J. Coles and Kendrick Lamars of the world. Krizzle turned alcoholism, personal woes and the negatives of fame into positive uplifting anthems.
How DJ Khaled rounds up the most popular artists to make mainstream hits, Statik Selektah does that for the underground. The Boston DJ not only crafted a rugged-raw NYC feel that fits in a modern realm, but enlisted collabs that you wouldn’t heard else where. PnB Rock singing perseverance over a boom bap beat and G-Eazy spittin’ over crispy snares with Joey Bada$$ is the reason Statik is important to the game. It’s the good ol’ hip-hop feel with a contemporary take, which makes a new breath of fresh air.
6. Joey Bada$$ – All-Amerikkkan Badass
7. Fabolous & Jadakiss – Friday On Elm Street
8. Meek Mill – Wins & Losses
9. Gucci Mane – Mr. Davis
10. Rick Ross – Rather You Than Me
Most-Anticipated for 2018: Pusha T