Saturday, January 2, 2010

25 Of The Best Hip Hop Albums of 2009

First, let me start by saying that 2009 was an incredibly good year for hip hop music. Of course, there is always going to be bullshit out there. But, in my opinion (and especially with the way I actually look for dope music) the good far outweighed the bad, and I was able to ignore the bad pretty successfully.

Last year I abandoned the top 25 and just listed a bunch of my favorite albums. But, this year was even better than '08, so the list would be ridiculously long. So, I brought back the top 25 and did my best to narrow it down. This is in no way an exhaustive list. I tried my best to pick my very favorite albums, but that means I had to leave out some other really great ones as well.

Feel free to comment and let me know what you agree/disagree with, and what you think I overlooked. Most likely I heard it (and maybe agree with you about the quality), but just couldn't fit it on the list. But, if not, I always want to be turned on to good music. So, let me know about it!

1. Tanya Morgan - Brooklynati
2. Fashawn - Boy Meets World
3. Kam Moye (AKA Supastition) - Splitting Image
4. Mos Def - The Ecstatic
5. Brother Ali - Us
6. Diamond District - In The Ruff
7. Jay-Z - The Blueprint 3
8. Raekwon - Only Built 4 Cuban Linx Pt. 2
9. Skyzoo - The Salvation
10. BK One - Radio Do Canibal
11. K'naan - Troubadour
12. Dynas - The Apartment
13. Eminem - Relapse
14. Slaughterhouse - Slaughterhouse
15. Marco Polo & Torae - Double Barrel
16. Kid Cudi - Man on the Moon: The End of Day
17. DJ Spinna - Sonic Smash
18. Classified - Self Explanatory
19. MC Esoteric - Saving Seamus Ryan
20. Rapper Big Pooh - Delightful Bars
21. U-N-I - A Love Supreme
22. Finale - A Pipe Dream and a Promise
23. Zion I - The Takeover
24. Cormega - Born & Raised
25. Toki Wright - A Different Mirror

UPDATE: Mixtapes, EPs, and Disappointments

Some of my favorite mixtapes of 2009 (in no order):
Joell Ortiz Covers the Classics
TiRon - Ketchup
Sean P - Kimbo Price
J. Cole - The Warm Up
Drake - So Far Gone
Nero - Alive & Vibrant / Relive the Moment
Skyzoo - The Power of Words
De La Soul - Are You In?

Some of my favorite EPs of 2009 (in no order):
Lupe Fiasco - Enemy of the State
Greenhouse (Blueprint & Illogic) - Electric Purgatory Pt. One
Crooked I - Mr. Pigface Weapon Waist
Atmosphere - Leak at Will
Brother Ali - The Truth is Here
Rob Viktum feat. Donwill - Aight, New Drink
Slum Village - Villa Manifesto
Joe Budden - Escape Route

Top 5 Biggest Disappointments:
1. BlackRoc - The making of video blogs were good, but the final product was really weak.
2. Rakim: The 7th Seal - For a decade in the making, we should have gotten a lot more out of the R. And, what was with all of the R&B hooks?
3. Clipse: Til The Casket Drops - The album is put together well, but the Clipse will never live up to their potential, I guess. This album shows no growth, and is thus, pretty boring.
4. Sha Stimuli: My Soul to Keep - After so many unbelievable mixtapes, this was a kind of underwhelming debut. The content was there, but the production was subdued and almost empty on pretty much every song, and Sha never switched up his flow at all. That made the album boring.
5. Felt 3: A Tribute to Rosie Perez - I love Murs & Slug, and appreciate the new approach to the Felt series that Aesop brought, but this one just didn't do it for me.

Albums from veterans you should have heard in 2009:
KRS-One & Buckshot - Survival Skills
Masta Ace & Ed O.G. - Arts & Entertainment
Souls of Mischief - Montezuma's Revenge
OC & AG - Oasis

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