We’ve made it through the first quarter of 2020, through some tough losses and the whole quarantine thing there has been a ton of hip-hop album releases. Let’s talk about my favorites so far.
Heaven or Hell – Don Tolliver
Best Tracks: “After Party” and “Had Enough (feat. Quavo & Offset)”
On Don Tolliver’s debut album he attempts to maintain his own styling, but also follow label CEO Travis Scott’s blueprint. This leaves a bit to be desired from Tolliver, however, for a debut album this will do a good job in generating buzz for Tolliver and giving him a name in popular music. Hopefully he will give us a more true to himself sophomore album.
RUDEBWOY – CJ Fly
Best Tracks: “RUDEBWOY (feat. Joey Bada$$)” and “BLOCK PARTY (feat. Kirk Knight)”
Another debut album but this one is for Pro Era’s CJ Fly. Pro Era is a New York based rap collective, as a member of the group I have never really heard much from CJ Fly. On RUDEBWOY I was extremely impressed by Fly and his craft and vibes. The best songs on the album both came with features from fellow Pro Era members though. I will definitely be paying more attention to CJ from now on.
Eternal Atake – Lil Uzi Vert (LUV vs. The World 2)
Best Tracks: “Lo Mein” and “Prices”
Best Tracks: “Myron” and “Yessirskiii (feat. 21 Savage)”
In July 2018, Lil Uzi Vert announced his new album and then on December 9th he claimed it was finished. On March 6, 2020, after playing with the people for so long EA was finally released, a week later we got the “deluxe” album which was actually just another album in itself LUV vs. The World 2. 32 songs and almost 2 hours in total of new music for the people. Eternal Atake is a fairly well composed album with a theme and a general story as you go through it, LUVvTW2 is basically a fan service of songs that have been leaked or snippets that have been heard and unlike EA there are tons of features. Eternal Atake was great and worth the wait, add on the songs we’d been hearing for 2 years and some wonderful features and it worked out well.
Also, “Pop” is a banger for the ages.
Circles – Mac Miller
Best Tracks: “Blue World” and “Good News”
The last Mac Miller album ever is a tough one to swallow, but damn is it good. The album is gorgeous though, Mac really completes his evolution as a musical artist. On his last few albums he’s started singing more and incorporating sounds and getting experimental. Jazz music has become quite influential in the last 3 albums, but his lyrics are what drives this album home. It feels almost prophetic to listen to his subject matter through out the album. I loved it but it’s definitely tough to get through.
A Written Testimony – Jay Electronica
Best Tracks: “The Blinding (feat. Travis Scott)” and “A.P.I.D.T.A.”
In July 2007, Jay Electronica released his debut project. Now, in 2020 he has finally released the follow up album. On a 40 day and 40 night deadline he and Jay-Z recorded the 10 song album. 8 of the albums tracks have an uncredited Jay-Z feature, 1 song has a Travis Scott feature, and 2 songs have a feature from The-Dream. The album is phenomenal, I don’t know if it lives up to 13 years of hype, but it’s phenomenal. It comes with a very powerful subject matter and some of the best production in years. What made it a 9 for me instead of a 10 is we got 11 verses from Jay Elec and 6 verses from Hov. 13 years and it’s basically a short collaboration EP, but that doesn’t mean its not great. It’s going to take something special to dethrone my top 3 for the year, especially this one.
These are my favorites so far, thanks for reading everyone!