The Best of 2008:
1.) j.DePina – Dusty 45′s: I listened to this joint over and over again just to see if I would ever get sick of it, and it hasn’t happened yet. Honestly, I don’t think it will ever happen. This may be my favorite instrumental album…ever—but that’s coming from someone who thinks Donuts is one of the more overrated albums of all time. Regardless, this album knocks from beginning to end, and I truly believe this year hasn’t seen a better release from any (yes, any) other artist. It’s the 401, gettin’ it done. If you missed this, download it here.
2.) Look Daggers – Suffer in Style: Everything I look for in an album is delivered here by 2Mex (of Visionaries) and Ikey Owens (of The Mars Volta) on this LP: originality and genre-bending creativity, blended with cohesiveness and consistency. Over the past couple years, 2Mex has slowly become one of my favorite emcees. Check for more about him in our “If you don’t know, now you know” section in the near future.
3.) Qwel & Kip Killagain – The New Wine: Qwel is pretty much my favorite emcee. Aside from the fact that he has the most ridiculous and mind-scrambling rhyme patterns, the best thing about Qwel is that he chooses to make his albums while working with only one producer. I can’t stress enough how much record’s benefit from this, and why more artists don’t do this is beyond me. So, needless to say, The New Wine is nice. Not Qwel’s best, but still very nice.
4.) Elzhi – Euro Pass: For me, there’s no question that Euro Pass, Elzhi’s mixtape from early 2008, is better than his studio LP, The Preface, that came later in the year. The clever narratives and intricate rhyme reciting heard from Elzhi on Euro Pass matches up perfectly with the production from Black Milk (probably his best to date), T3, and DJ Dez among others. There isn’t a single cold spot to be found on this entire CD.
5.) Invincible – Shapeshifters: Ever since I heard this girl kick rhymes on Eddie Ill & DL, I’ve been a huge fan. I’m really in awe as to how Invincible put together such an incredible debut LP: her rhymes are always on point, and her production selection couldn’t have been much better. I’m anticipating a strong sophomore LP within the next couple years.
Filed under: 401 Gettin' It Done, Album Talk/Review, Hip-Hop, Instrumental, Music | Tagged: 2Mex, A Vicious Cycle, Almighty, Atmosphere, Beautiful Minds, Behind the Stained Glass, Black Snow, Bored of Education, Brooklyn Academy, Changes in Atmosphere, Chief Kamachi, Da Ol' Jersey Bastard, Dela, Digi Snacks, DJ Babu, DJ Muggs, DJ Muggs & Planet Asia, Double K, Dr. Dooom, Dr. Dooom 2, Duck Season Vol. 3, Dusty 45's, Elzhi, EMC, Empire State, Euro Pass, First of all..., Fun DMC, Grey Hairs, Hour of Reprisal, Ikey Owens, Ill Bill, Invincible, j.DePina, Johnson&Jonson, Kam Moye, Karniege, Killah Priest, Kip Killagain, Kool Keith, KutMasta Kurt, Life is Expensive, Look Daggers, Masta Ace, Megagraphitti, Mekalek, Mighty Joseph, New Jack Hustle, Original S.I.N., Pail Language, People Under The Stairs, Planet Asia, Politics as Usual, Qwel, Reef the Lost Cauze, Reks, RZA, Self Centered EP, Shapeshifters, Shawn Jackson, Snowgoons, Sound Check, Suffer in Style, Supastition, Tame One, Termanology, The Mars Volta, The New Wine, The Show, Thes One, Time Machine, Vast Aire, Vordul Mega, When Life Gives You Lemons... | 8 Comments »