Big Sean’s “I Decided” Album Review

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TRACKLIST

1. Intro
2. Light ft. Jeremih
3. Bounce Back
4. No Favors ft. Eminem
5. Jump Out the Window
6. Moves
7. Same Time Pt. 1 ft. Twenty88
8. Owe Me
9. Halfway Off the Balcony
10. Voices in My Head/Stick to the Plan
11. Sunday Morning Jetpack ft. The-Dream
12. Inspire Me
13. Sacrifices ft. Migos
14. Bigger Than Me ft. Flint Chozen Choir & Starrah

FAVORITE TRACKS: Light, Bounce Back, No Favors, Moves, Same Time Pt. 1, Owe Me, Halfway of The Balcony, Voices In My Head/Stick To The Plan and Sacrifices.

Finally, I get to talk about one of my favorite artist. Some say he’s corny (idiots). To me, Big Sean is the furthest thing from corny so please stop with this blasphemy of a statement. Sean has shown he has what it takes to be one of the game’s elite. (He’s Elite, No Debate) The 28-year-old musician had to put an insane amount of work in early in his career, which led to him getting signed to Kanye West’s GOOD Music. His hard work did not stop here. Big Sean’s first official studio album, 2011’s “Finally Famous,” which featured the likes of Chris Brown and others, reached a peak position at #2 on US Rap and Hip Hop charts. Next, 2013’s Hall of Fame offered up even more artist collaborations with a peak position at # 3 on the charts. Once his position was stable with collaborations on his albums with Drake, Tyga, and Asher Roth, among others, Big Sean began dipping his toes into producing. Self-producing his third album, 2015’s “Dark Sky Paradise,” is now certified platinum, proving Big Sean is here to stay. “Dark Sky Paradise” was a massive and hard-earned leap forward for Big Sean. When pressed, you could make arguments of Big Sean being the best in the game or at least you can put him in the same conversation as King Kendrick and Jermaine. The album was also unapologetically mean. Of course, its breakout hit was “I Don’t Fuck With You,” but the same bitterness was applied across the LP to foes and exes alike.  Now Sean has blessed us with a long overdue, highly anticipated project, “I Decided.” This project features production from many collaborators from Kanye West, Amarie Johnson, Metro Boomin, DJ Mustard, DJ Khalil, Detail, Travis Scott and more. The conceptions that challenge Sean as an artist, “I Decided” seeks to push past the boundaries of a “one size fits all” style genre in today’s game.

Big Sean is so underrated. I think people choose to look over him way too often. He can go bar for bar with any rapper, yes I said it. Sean Don can go bar for bar with all of your favorite artist and the best of them. It’s known that he does have lyrical ability but also musically, he has the ability to make absolute quality meaningful music. As we look at all of Sean’s projects, they’ve each have gotten more emotional.  This new album might be his most emotional to date.

The album starts with an oh so relaxing positive vibe on “Light,” which features Jeremiah, showcases Sean’s raw lyrics that give strength and hope in a world filled with struggle. This is a very good way to start off an album if you ask me. It sets the tone of what to expect, at least I thought. The next track is the dark and lead single “Bounce Back,” which as of January 24th reached Gold status selling 500K units sold since being released. Sean was smart with having this as his lead single because this track was so “Big Sean.” My only issue was with this as a lead single, was that it was kind of misleading of the emotion that I Decided brought. Like “Bounce Back” sounded like it belonged on Dark Sky Paradise but I suppose it works out on this project just fine. Other than that, “Bounce Back” has some serious high energy. You can tell the song was made for commercial success, meaning that it can be enjoyed in many different ways. Perfect for the gym, your weekend “rager” or just to bump in the whip. I personally enjoy its energy, but someone might enjoy his message of being resilient and some might enjoy the track for the beat.

Continuing on, we arrive at “No Favors,” where Big Sean hits us with some serious heat followed by a SLIM SHADY APPEARANCE…. (YES I WAS THIS EXCITED WHEN LISTENING TO THIS TRACK AND HEARING THE RAP GOD POP UP). Eminem leaves his mark on “No Favors” quite nicely. His verse was beyond vulgar, repulsive, and whatever words you believe are necessary to describe his verse, but it was dope! With “No Favors,” we have a track reaching for updated sounds meshed with the vintage rap sound; the track is a really solid work of art. This was probably my favorite song off the album. When Sean first came out, these were the type of tracks that he made till Drake sort of stole his style (whoops). (S/o Reuben for the Reminder) I love these kind of songs man, songs in which Sean completely loses himself in the seriousness of the beat. On the verses, Big Sean is really rapping showing off his ability to be this witty/clever rapper with nothing but heinous bars. This is my favorite Big Sean; I believe he’s at his best when he is rapping like this. I would prefer someone else on this track, but at the same time I could never complain that I got to hear an Eminem verse.

“Jump Out The Window” had somewhat of an angry and frustrated tone. It was an okay cut, not one of my personal favorites but I don’t mind it.  It has a slower pace which relies on vocals to emphasis the stress that is felt within the song. This frustrated track is followed by a little bit more of the vintage styling of Sean with “Moves.”

“Moves” was the album’s second single and it received great feedback from listeners. From “Moves” we lead into “Same Time Pt. 1.” It says that the track is featuring Twenty88 but if you actually are hip to Sean and his bae, Jhene Aiko, they together are Twenty88. Their chemistry is undeniably amazing. This snippet of a track was such a tease and has me excited for the next Twenty88 project.

The Twenty88 teaser track the subject matter is switched over to the lover turn rival resentment story with “Owe Me.” This song reminds me of a Drake track so much. Possibly its due to Sean’s melody on here in which he killed. (Maybe he did Drake, better than Drake? Kidding chill out Patients of Marvin’s Room) I loved this track though.

Sean keeps things interesting with “Halfway off the Balcony” where he kind of raps about the stress of a successful career. It’s a gloomy track that’s kind of depressing but of course Sean makes it sound GOOD. While it might be the most blah song (the dullest) on the album, you cannot deny that it is one of the most challenging tracks to put together.

On the album’s tenth track, “Voices in My Head/Stick to the Plan,” Sean raps,

“Voices in my head sayin’ I could do better Voices in my head sayin’ that I knew better I done seen this shit happen a hundred times on the regular But I still crossed the line like I’m blind (damn) Voices in my head saying I could do better You always do the same shit”

In a later verse Sean raps about having suicidal thoughts:

“Voices in my head attacking what I’m thinking Bullet to the head might be the way to free it If I leave my body I can free the spirits Swear to God my death of fear just keep on shrinking Wishing I could go back to the nineties back when I was dreaming Me and my dog was on a mission like we Kel and Kenan”

I Decided” is about what Sean would do if he could re-live his life with the greater wisdom he now feels he has about the consequences of his decisions. With this track, the lyrics take on a new meaning. Rather than just being a reflection of his current state of mind, they represent what Sean would be thinking if he’d let his life take a different path than the path he has chose. I loved this track because it’s concept and it is super relatable. We all have or had those nights where we are up late contemplating some of these similar thoughts, I know I do.

“Sunday Morning Jetpack” is a track that is well suited for reflection and giving thanks. It’s a great way to follow up to “Voices In My Head/Stick To The Plan.” The hook on “Sunday Morning Jetpack” goes:

“Thanking God for all my set backs ‘Cause he the reason I’m able to get back This feels like my Sunday morning jetpack Feel like I sent the prayers up and got blessed back, whoa Feel like I sent the prayers up and got blessed back This feels like my Sunday morning jetpack, yeah”

Sean went from suicidal thoughts and contemplating the decisions he has made to giving thanks to God and his prayers being answered and in return God continues to bless his life. Having The Dream on this track singing the bridge reminded me of Kanye’s “Ultralight Beam” from TLOP. Kanye did have a hand in production and Big Sean did state on the Breakfast Club the Kanye did give him a few key suggestions on several songs.

Next on the album we slide with ease into “Inspire Me.” This was a very laid-back cut dedicated to Sean’s mom. Cool track and dedication to Mom but “One Man Can Change The World” was way better, just saying.

Shifting gears, we have the horror film-esque sound with the utilization of various sound effects; Sean presents us with “Sacrifice” featuring Migos. Big Sean Quavo and Offset show off their pure vocal talents to create a tune of trials one often experiences through the climb from the down. There is so much about this track that makes it hip hop gold! For instance the song is beyond catchy, like extremely catchy. Big Sean provides us with a dope verse and chorus that is easy to rap along to. Sean’s verse is not the best lyrically, but it definitely does its job in appealing to the listeners. The contrast of styles though is what really highlights this song. You have Sean’s aggressive lyrics, Offset’s flow, and Quavo’s charm and Quavo just being Quavo is what really makes this song so golden but let’s not forget the real MVP, Metro Boomin. This man literally makes beats to only hits. He makes trap beats sound like classical Mozart pieces and I LOVE IT! I was really feeling this track as you can see. This track definitely is tied with “No Favors” and “Voices in My Head/Stick to the Plan” as my favorite song off the album. Also, on a side note, why does Takeoff never get asked to hope on these features when someone asks for Migos? Like how do these conversations go when you ask for Quavo and Offset but not Takeoff.

Finally “I Decided” comes to an end with the vibes felt on “Light” with “Bigger Than Me,” featuring The Flint Chozen Choir and Starrah. This was a great way to close out the album with some uplifting vibes. I think its kind of cool how this is like one of those songs feature during ESPN’s First Take and during some the NCAA and NBA games featured on ESPN also.

Conclusion:

Big Sean’s I Decided had a lot going on, with majority and almost all of it being good. So let’s face it, the album has conflicting styles. Some tracks are high energy, while others are suicidal sounding, super chilled vibes and it’s an emotional roller coaster that I actually appreciate. Throughout, Sean goes from relying on others words, to thinking he knows answers, to borderline giving up on life. The album is truly a therapy session in the form of music. Another key is Sean knows himself. What I mean when I say this is more than anyone in the game, Sean knows his sound when it comes to picking beats. This is why I’m not surprised with what I hear production-wise. However, my one issue was with the features. We got features from Migos and Em. But where the hell was the rest of G.O.O.D Music? This was an issue I had with Kanye’s TLOP also. But fine, even if I let my thoughts on features slide, I feel since this is a super personal album there shouldn’t be any features anyway. Any who! “I Decided” is a very meaningful album to listen to, which is something that I cannot say for other projects I’ve heard in the last couple of months. It’s a well-rounded album full of deep emotion. With “I Decided” fans will find messages of hope and resilience throughout with a couple speaker knockers for the whip.

I PURPOSELY DID NOT MENTION ANYTHING ABOUT THE KENDERICK AND SEAN BEEF BECAUSE IT HURTS MY HEART..

 

Rating: 9.0/10

GoldLink “At What Cost” Album Review

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Tracklist

1. Opening Credit
2. Same Clothes As Yesterday ft. Ciscero
3. Have You Seen That Girl?
4. Hands On Your Knees ft. Kokayi
5. Meditation ft. Jazmine Sullivan and KAYTRANADA
6. Herside Story ft. Hare Squead 
7. Summatime ft. Wale and Radiant Children
8. Roll Call ft. Mya
9. The Parable of the Rich Man ft. April George
10. Crew ft. Brent Faiyaz and Shy Glizzy
11. We Will Never Die ft. Lil Dude
12. Kokamoe Freestyle
13. Some Girl ft. Steve Lacy
14. Pray Everyday (Survivor’s Guilt)

BY POPULAR DEMAND!!! Here I am reviewing GoldLink’s “At What Cost” album. You guys know I usually tweet out if I think a project is dope or not and save the details for the review. I did not do so this time around. I took to Twitter and simple said, “I have a few things to say about this GoldLink project” and left it at that. It’s been about a month now so it’s time to speak up. I will not sugar coat shit here and I will not say what you guys want me to say. I’ll be honest I’ve always thought GoldLink was dope and he had potential, but now I STRONGLY BELIEVE he could be something serious and is here to stay and shake up the game forever.

GoldLink delivered a musical gem with “At What Cost.” GoldLink gives us an album that celebrates his city with excellence. Upon the album’s release, GoldLink told VIBE that “My biggest influence is my city.” This is easily seen throughout this project! GoldLink first started making his name in 2014 with the mixtape The God Complex. He immediately made an impact on audiences with his self-termed style, “future bounce”. 2015’s “And After That, We Didn’t Talk,” followed in the same sonic groove. “At What Cost” flips the script on his first two releases, moving away from “future bounce” and more towards the regional sounds of D.C.T he two singles “Crew” and “Meditation” got us primed for the hip-hop and dancing energy that the album exudes across fourteen tracks. The features on here were beyond impressive. The lineup included Jazmine Sullivan, Kaytranada, Steve Lacy, Radiant Children, Koyaki, Mya, Hare Squead, April George, Ciscero, Shy Glizzy, Brent Faiyaz, Lil Dude, and Wale. It was pretty dope that some of these featured artists hailed from the DMV. None of the features on this album felt superfluous or unnecessary which is rare these days.

At What Cost opens up with “Opening Credit” is an array and clash of sounds. It’s dark and scrambled because you can’t make out what’s going down and what nor the direction will be.  There is a scrambled message though towards the end. “I’ll will never rest in peace, Not even when I’m dead. My soul will be fighting. You don’t stop ’til all of us dead. ‘Til the old District of Columbia go up in gunsmoke.” Interesting right?

“Same Clothes As Yesterday” was definitely one of my favorite tracks on here! It features Ciscero who right out the gate speeds and splurges all over the track. This was a perfect match with the beat’s vibrancy and upbeat tempo. GoldLink follows up and as we expect smashes his verse. The song keeps the repetitive hook going to close out the song and that’s what grabs you, a catchy aspect to infect your brain and stay with you.

“Same Clothes As Yesterday” is followed up by the early contender for the song to top your summer playlists, “Have You Seen That Girl?” On here GoldLink does GoldLink and flexes his ability of storytelling. He talks to us through seeing his potential dream girl. This was a real dope track content wise of course but production on here stood out to me. A steady and maintained electronic beat that keeps the drums slamming throughout, never letting up. Gotta love it.

With “Hands On Your Knees” following up, for a second GoldLink takes us back to the spinning times of Disco and Soul Train with Kokayi acting as a DJ to encourage everyone to let loose and “do that shit!” This track served as an interlude and it was great segway into “Meditation.” This Kaytranada production was too smooth and it accompanied with cool and rhythmic lyrics from both GoldLink and Jazmine Sullivan…. BANGER ALERT. GoldLink never lets up as he raps about romancing, loving the apple of his eye, and just enjoying life. Jazmine Sullivan comes in as a silk smooth voice providing the chorus and bridge. Kaytranada does an excellent job with changing the beat on a dime and retaining the original feel and sounds helping the song progress back and forth between GoldLink and Jazmine.

The next track up is “Herside Story.” Here GoldLink teams up with Hare Squead (Jessy Rose) and for track with that has that “rough around the edges” feel and it sounds fantastic. GoldLink is rapping in short burst here and his rapping compliments the beat real well. Also Hare Squead did his thing on here too!

At this point, we have officially hit the halfway mark on the album and the album slowly takes more of a personal and intimate sound on “Summatime” with talks of love lost and women relations populate the track. GoldLink and Wale come across as two poets speaking on past relationships and old tales, showing off their eye for details in a short and sweet track as Radiant Children do the heavy lifting with the chorus. Wale and GoldLink = GOLD.

We got a real electronic bounce and jolt of energy with “Roll Call” featuring Mya…..YES MYA. Y’ALL DONT UNDERSTAND HOW SYCED I WAS WHEN I SAW HER AS A FEATURE ON THIS ALBUM. I WANT HER SO MOTHA…. never mind. Mya shows D.C major love as she owns the hook and GoldLink as well in his rapping, He lightly talks about the day to day DMV life and showing what’s happening whether it’s partying, bravado, or just speaking on the hood in general. The production here was masterful with the instruments behind them, allowing them to be comfortable on the track and accentuate their fields.

“The Parable of the Rich Man” is the most polarizing track on the entire album. Sonically it’s the most distinctive as both GoldLink and April George borderline sound like they’re coming through TV static or something. This was not really one of my faves but it was a solid track.

Now we arrive with “Crew,” the smash single off the album that provided you with that feel good vibe and caused you to nod your head as GoldLink, Shy Glizzy, and Brent Faiyaz work in unison to create one of the the album’s many highlights. The blend of fast paced raps, Shy Glizzy attacking the track, and Brent assisting with a matter of fact voice for the hook plus the minimal sounds backing them up provides an insanely catchy track that’ll stick with you long after the song is over.

“We Will Never Die” displayed  a angry and ready to flex on anyone Goldlink and I loved it! This track featured Lil Dude, someone I wasn’t too familiar with but I vibed with his verse. This track was definitely the most rap heavy and monotone. The production is very simplistic which is a good thing that allows the two MC’s speak their peace about gangs, youth, and letting violence happen if need be.

Okay now we talk about the “Kokamoe Freestyle.” GoldLink goes in on this very tough tribal futuristic sounding beat. He does not hold back on here what so ever! It’s hard hitting, funky, and maintains the bounce you’ve heard for most of the songs on the album. Basically, production on this track was “dumb lit.” Once again GoldLink tells us a story and this time is about where he’s been and where he’s at now, violence in the streets, relations to gangs, and the relationship to the police. I love how this track ends with the closing vocals. Remember… “Trigger has no heart.”

On the second to last track, “Some Girl,” The drums alone should grab your attention. Production on here was heavy hitting. GoldLink brought on Steve Lacy on this track singing on the hook about searching for love (BY THE WAY Get Hip to Steve Lacy). I liked these two pairing up on here a lot. We have two like-minded artists to create a unique sounding love song.

As we reach the closing track “Pray Everyday (Survivor’s Guilt)” leaves GoldLink at a vulnerable place through the music. He hits us with bars discussing drinking, sexual lusts, and his position as a role model in the DMV and at large and what that means because that alone comes with some serious baggage. The choir helping him in the background tugs at the religious feelings and sentiments he shares on the track before the outro of a prayer takes us out.

Conclusion:

Favorite Tracks: I usually list my favorite tracks in the beginning but I would basically be listing every track. I loved this project that much. I probably could do without “The Parable of the Rich Man” , “Herside Story” and yeah that’s it!

“At What Cost” IS the most complete project of the year so far. It may even be GoldLink’s best work. My cousin KB and my boy Drew are some of the biggest GoldLink fans and they were the ones who got me hip to him. I thought he was dope then but after hearing this project I think it’s safe to say I’m a GoldLink SUPER FAN. With this project GoldLink has created an album that is a blend of summertime popish feels, with that real rap story telling enjoyment with sprinkles of GoldLink’s personal in depth look on what love, relationships, and life comes packaged with. Production on this project was “A1.” I was beyond impressed. This is a WIN FOR GOLDLINK and a WIN FOR GOLDLINK IS ALSO A WIN FOR THE DMV. I highly recommend you guys check out this project if you haven’t yet. You’re Welcome.

Also, I learned GoldLink and I go to the same barber as I was proofreading this whiles getting a cut!!!

Rating: 10/10

SAMPHA “PROCESS” ALBUM REVIEW

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TRACKLIST:

1. Plastic 100°C
2. Blood On Me
3. Kora Sings
4. No One Knows Me (Like the Piano)
5. Take Me Inside
6. Reverse Faults
7. Under
8. Timmy’s Prayer
9. Incomplete Kisses
10. What Shouldn’t I Be?

Favorite Tracks:Plastic 100°C, Blood On Me, Kora Sings,No One Knows Me (Like the Piano), Reverse Faults and Under

It’s safe to say Sampha takes his time and plots his musical creations very careful and he really understands when it is best to release them to the world! In 2010, he released his first EP, Sundanza. In 2013, he released his second, Dual. Then, he waited, and waited.(Waiting…..) In the meantime Sampha appeared on every big artist’s albums such as Kanye West’s “The Life of Pablo”, Frank Ocean’s “Endless”, and Solange’s “A Seat at the Table.” Those are some major features without ever dropping a full-length project.  Below are some of the very notable features:

• Drake (“Too Much,” “The Motion”)
• Kanye West (“Saint Pablo”)
• Frank Ocean (“Alabama”)
• Solange (“Don’t Touch My Hair”)

For a moment, it seemed Process would drop at the tail end of 2016, but then, he held it once more. Now, here we are in 2017, four years later since Dual; Sampha releases his debut LP, Process. Process is a real meditative project and on it Sampha processes grief and navigates his way through his self-discovery. You also see that Sampha is still trying to cope with heavy loss that he has battled in his life. His father, Joe, passed away from lung cancer in 1998. His mother, Binty, died of cancer in September 2015. It’s crazy to think about, but throughout Process, you feel/hear his mom’s spirit in the stillness of the music, pushing her son in his quest for understanding.

Sampha has even battled his own health struggles as well. Whiles on tour he discovered he had a lump in his throat. He immediately had an endoscopy after this discovery but doctors couldn’t determine a cause. This became a catalyst for the singer to assess his own mortality from this point moving forward. “Sleeping with my worries,” goes the opener in “Plastic 100ºC,” “I didn’t really know what that lump was.” In Sampha’s world, the piano is one of the few things that’s always been there for him. It’s never gotten sick or faded away from an illness. “You would show me I had something some people call a soul,” he sings on “(No One Knows Me) Like the Piano.” This fantastic ballad is one of the many standouts from this incredible debut album. Sampha found a way to incorporate R&B, soul, electronica, and dance all in one project without ever sounding disjointed for one second.

This project is pretty damn complete if you ask me. Some of my favorite tracks on here were Plastic 100°C, Blood On Me, Kora Sings, No One Knows Me (Like the Piano), Reverse Faults and Under. The other tracks were solid as well. There were no throw away tracks on this project, which is something that is pretty rare these days. The opening track, “Plastic 100˚C” starts off with the lyric, “thriving off your lessons, yes you are my lantern/A shy light comes around my ears/The more you speak, the more I see.” Sampha’s ability to switch up his sound is amazing. He can go from breathy to belting in the space of a verse, and he never sounds terribly strained unlike some artist.( Won’t name any names….lol)  At the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll find tracks like “Blood On Me”, which is somewhat propulsive and chaotic questioning of the oneself. With a hypnotic chant sitting under everything else, and the out-of-breath desperation in Sampha’s voice, “Blood On Me” is a visceral track with a nightmarish undercurrent. It marks Sampha out as someone with a real skill for painting very unique pictures. On “Reverse Fault,” he uses the car wreck metaphor as an analogue not for the dissolution of a relationship, but instead for his own complicity with in it.

One of the tracks that caught me off guard was the live show felt track “Under.” “Under” displays Sampha’s storytelling ability and his proficiency at making incredibly catchy danceable beats. As Sampha shouts “I’m gasping for air” on “Under”, with the waves crashing down around him, it’s a moment that catches you off guard. One minute you’re feeling the beat and the next you’re completely still; stunned by his sudden “cry” for help. Robyn, the producer on this track, did a great job on production. “Under” was probably my favorite track hands down. “No One Knows Me Like the Piano…” and “What Shouldn’t I Be?” embody the word “elegiac” to a T, and in doing so achieve the funereal sorrow that other artists spend their entire career drinking and drugging to attain. “No One Knows Me Like the Piano…” is a quiet, contemplative piano ballad, loaded with meaning, metaphor and beauty, it’s a model example of the power music can hold. Basically, this song is a story of Sampha finding himself at the bench of his piano at the young age of three years old. On top of that, this song serves as a love letter to his mom. If you listen carefully, the lines blur between her and the piano, which both have had such a defining influence in his life. After the first listen I probably replayed this song about 4 or 5 times, such a powerful track.

Conclusion:

Process was a solid project that was built to take your breath away from start to finish. It displays Sampha’s mastery as a lyricist, singer and as a musician. The album is a powerful one that is emotive and surprisingly, loaded with danceable hooks. Process is an impressive curtain-raiser to what is sure to be an equally impressive solo career for Sampha. It’s already clear that Sampha is a fine and expressive singer, but musically I was hoping for a little more of an electronic experimentation but Process is fine just the way it is. Sampha is seen as one of the most famous not-famous musicians right now but, that’ll all change soon. If you haven’t checked out Process I advise that you do! Thanks for reading!

 

Rating: 8.75/10

MIGOS “CULTURE” ALBUM REVIEW

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TRACK LIST

1. Culture ft. DJ Khaled
2. T-Shirt
3. Call Casting
4. Bad and Boujee ft. Lil Uzi Vert
5. Get Right Witcha
6. Slippery ft. Gucci Mane
7. Big on Big
8. What the Price
9. Brown Paper Bag
10. Deadz ft. 2 Chainz
11. All Ass
12. Kelly Price ft. Travis Scott
13. Out Yo Way

FAVORITE TRACKS: Culture, T-Shirt, Bad and Boujee, Call Casting,  Get Right Witcha, Out Yo Way and Kelly Price

“Raindrop, drop top (drop top)
Smokin’ on cookie in the hotbox (cookie)
Fuckin’ on your bitch she a thot, thot (thot)
Cookin’ up dope in the crockpot (pot)
We came from nothin’ to somethin’ nigga (hey)
I don’t trust nobody grip the trigger (nobody)
Call up the gang, and they come and get you (gang)
Cry me a river, give you a tissue (hey)
My bitch is bad and boujee (bad)
Cookin’ up dope with an Uzi (blaow)
My niggas is savage, ruthless (savage)
We got 30’s and 100 rounds too (grrah)”

Culture shows some serious improvement from the “Nawf” Atlanta trio’s debut album, 2015’s Yung Rich Nation. Since their breakthrough from the releasing of  the oh so popular ,still to this day that one song that comes on during a pregame, frat party or whiles in the club  that’ll have you losing your mind and ready to turn the f%ck up ,  “Versace,” and the Y.R.N. (Young Rich Niggas) mixtape they’ve been one of the most influential acts in hip-hop.Their most obvious mark on the culture has been the tight, triplet-laced flow they resurrected and if you ask, its something they have definitely perfected. Migos also did us a solid and brought us the “Dab”, Dab of Ranch Snacks, and injected a handful of slang terms into the syntaxes of aspiring rappers from all over the nation. The Migos have suffered through their fair share of legal hang-ups and incarcerations in the past, which then  followed some creative dry spells where they were just firing shots at everyone in the industry that were biting their styles. This time around though they have themselves a #1 Hit record, Bad and Boujee, and I am pretty damn sure that they want to stick at the top of the commercial music pyramid from here on out. 

As I listed above, my favorite tracks on Culture are Culture, T-Shirt, Bad and Boujee, Get Right Witcha, Out the Way and Kelly Price. I mean how could you not like Bad and Boujee? Same thing goes for T-Shirt which is beyond catchy, so catchy I caught my “momma” trying sing the lyrics the other day…strange I know. Kelly Price though might be my favorite song after Bad and Boujee. My guy Zaatar and I were talking and we peeped the tracklist for Culture the night before and we knew that It’d be our favorite song. We should already know that Quavo and Travis Scott mesh very well together, so with all of Migos in the equation why would it be different? 

As for the other tracks they were alright I suppose. Nothing special to me honestly but they could easily be favorite tracks by others. I didn’t list this as one of my favorite tracks but, “Slippery “is dope and it’s actually starting to grow on me honestly. None of the other tracks are bad, I just don’t care for them. BUT!!  “Deadz” was absolutely terrible if you ask me, but its okay to have on in the background whiles pregaming  before a night out or before you’re getting ready to hit the gym. 

“Out Yo Way” was a really dope track because its  an ode to the women that go the extra mile to take care of Quavo, Offset, and Takeoff, which is a theme their music does not really revolve around. You know? Seems necessary though that the ladies get a song for themselves since the female Migos following is surprisingly enormous! Many hip-hop fans had written  off Migos as one hit wonder status or a “fad” at one point, a fate similar to that of  my guys , Travis Porter . (I still remain a fan though)  

Lyrically Culture is a hit and miss but what are you to expect when the hottest record in the country starts with “raindrop, droptop.”  Bad and Boujee is still absolute fire but lets face it, we listen to Migos to hear Quavo and company tell us about trappin/plug meetings over very hard  trap beats that  we love to hear and for the party atmosphere their music brings. On top of what the Migos bring, these days we are fans of hearing  music  that revolves around designer things, girls, money and getting lit whiles unifying the human race (kinda sorta). This is what they are known for doing, It’s part of “Migos Culture” and that “culture” is well represented through out “Culture.” (That was cheesy as hell, I know)

Closing Points/Rating: 

  • Great Sophomore Album Follow Up.
  • Major Progression from Yung Rich Nation.
  • Mastering of Craft “Trap Story Telling”
  • Production Was Pretty Solid
  • #1 Hit Song “Bad and Boujee” . With at least 3 other song with High “Chart Topping” Ability. (T-Shirt is currently at #19 on Billboard Top 100 Songs)
  • Project Could Be Better But Its Solid For What It Is. 

Rating: 8.3/10

 Jawaharlal Nehru once said, “Culture is the widening of the mind and spirit.” “Migos Culture” is wide spreading and its not going to slow down anytime soon. Quavo Huncho is my spirit animal and may “Culture” help you find yours. 

Thanks for reading! ALSO, Thanks to all that are supporting me, giving me advice, and  for not blocking me or unfollowing me on Twitter when I’m promoting my blog like 30 times a day! Also, S/O to the bros Reuben and KB for letting me pick their brains some when I had writers block! Love y’all.

Anyways,  Leave A Comment Below Or Just Get At Me via Twitter: @SuaveMontana

Bless Up.

  Love,

                              Suave Ratatouille

NEXT REVIEW WILL BE SAMPHA’S “PROCESS” ALBUM 

TOP 50 ALBUMS OF 2016

Happy New Year Everyone! Can I say that still say that even though its February? Well I just did! I am very sorry for posting this way later than my original post date that I tweeted out originally. Life comes at you fast and I lost track of time.  Alright, so a lot of people that I have discussed music with were under the assumption that 2016 was not a good year for music! I don’t know how one think such thought! But my question to you is,  are you one of them? If so this top 50 list that I have put together is full of projects that definitely were loved by many and or had an impact on the culture in some way this past year. This list is constructed of my favorite projects this past year and I have listed them in MY OPINION what I felt were the 50 BEST ALBUMS of 2016. I looked at production quality, sound, album concepts, lyricism, and its effect and affect on the industry.

Please at the end comment what your favorite projects were and feel free to criticize my list, tell me how dope this list was or how bad it was. This was really tough to put together, hence since I am a month late from my original publish date, New Year’s Day.

Early Spoiler….. Lemonade is not in the Top 15 . Please do not come for me Bee Hivers. Okay, enough. Lets dive in……. *splash*

 

1

50. D.R.A.M – Big Baby D.R.A.M

1. Get It Myself
2. Misunderstoodft. Young Thug
3. In a Minute / In House
4. Monticello Ave
5. WiFi ft. Erykah Badu
6. Cash Machine
7. Broccoli ft. Lil Yachty
8. Cute
9. Outta Sight / Dark Lavender Interlude
10. Change My #
11. Password
12. 100%
13. Sweet VA Breeze
14. Workaholic (Bonus)

Favorite Tracks: Monticello Ave, WiFi and  Broccoli

 

2

49.  Solange- A Seat at the Table

1. Rise
2. Weary
3. Interlude: The Glory Is In You
4. Cranes In The Sky
5. Interlude: Dad Was Mad
6. Mad feat. Lil Wayne
7. Don’t You Wait
8. Interlude: Tina Taught Me
9. Don’t Touch My Hair feat. Sampha
10. This Moment
11. Where Do We Go
12. Interlude: For Us By Us
13. F.U.B.U feat. The-Dream & BJ the Chicago Kid
14. Borderline (An Ode to Self Care) feat. Q-Tip
15. Interlude: I Got So Much Magic, You Can Have It feat. Kelly Rowland & Nia Andrews
16. Junie
17. No Limits
18. Don’t Wish Me Well
19. Interlude: Pedestals
20. Scales feat. Kelela
21. Closing: The Chosen Ones

Favorite Tracks: Cranes In The Sky,  Mad, Don’t Touch My Hair and F.U.B.U

3

48. Madeintyo – Thank you, Mr. Tokyo

1. Broken Hearts
2. Skateboard P
3. Mr. Tokyo
4. Gucci Polo
5. Lose It
6. Drip
7. Time Of Her Life
8. Gwinett
9. Taking It Back
10. Untitled

Favorite Tracks: Broken Hearts, Skateboard P, Mr. Tokyo, Time of Her Life

4

47. 21 Savage x Metro Boomin- Savage Mode

1. No Advance
2. No Heart
3. X feat. Future
4. Savage Mode
5. Bad Guy
6. Real Nigga
7. Mad High
8. Feel It
9. Ocean Drive

Favorite Tracks: No Heart, X , Savage Mode, and Real Nigga

 

5

46. Denzel Curry – Imperial

1. ULT
2. Gook
3. Sick And Tired
4. Knotty Head ft. Rick Ross
5. Me Now
6. Story: No Title
7. This Life
8. Zenith ft. Joey Bada$$
9. Good Night feat. Twelve’len & Nell
10. If Tomorrow’s Not Here feat. Vares of Twelve’len

Favorite Tracks: ULT, Knotty Head ,  Story: No Title , Zenith

 

6

45. Danny Brown – Atrocity Exhibition

1. Downward Spiral
2. Tell Me What I Don’t Know
3. Rolling Stone ft. Petite Noir
4. Really Doe ft. Kendrick Lamar, Ab-Soul & Earl Sweatshirt
5. Lost
6. Ain’t It Funny
7. Golddust
8. White Lines
9. Pneumonia
10. Dance In The Water
11. From The Ground ft. Kelela
12. When It Rain
13. Today
14. Get Hi ft. B-Real
15. Hell For It

Favorite Tracks: Tell Me What I Don’t Know, Really Doe, Lost, Ain’t It Funny, and Hell For It

 

7

44. The Weekend – Starboy

1. Starboy ft. Daft Punk
2. Party Monster
3. False Alarm
4. Reminder
5. Rockin’
6. Secrets
7. True Colors
8. Stargirl Interlude ft. Lana Del Rey
9. Sidewalks ft. Kendrick Lamar
10. Six Feet Under ft. Future
11. Love to Lay
12. A Lonely Night
13. Attention
14. Ordinary Life
15. Nothing Without You
16. All I Know ft. Future
17. Die For You
18. I Feel It Coming ft. Daft Punk

Favorite Tracks: Starboy, Reminder, Rockin’, True Colors, A Lonely Night, and I Feel It Coming

 

8

43. Bon Iver – 22, A Million

1. 22 (OVER S∞∞N)
2. 10 d E A T h b R E a s T ⚄ ⚄
3. 715 – CRΣΣKS
4. 33 “GOD”
5. 29 #Strafford APTS
6. 666 ʇ
7. 21 M♢♢N WATER
8. 8 (circle)
9. ____45_____
10. 00000 Million

 

Favorite Tracks:  8 (circle) ,666 ʇ, 29 #Strafford APTS

 

9

42.  Lil Uzi Vert- Uzi Vert vs The World

1. Candian Goose
2. Hi Roller
3. Money Longer
4. Grab The Wheel
5. You Was Right
6. Baby Are You Home
7. P’s And Q’s
8. Team Rocket
9. Scott And Ramona

Favorite Tracks: Money Longer, You Was Right, P’s And Q’s

 

10

41.  Noname-Telefone

1. Yesterday
2. Sunny Duet (feat. TheMIND)
3. Diddy Bop (feat. Cam O’bi & Raury)
4. All I Need (feat. Xavier Omar)
5. Reality Check (feat. Akenya & Eryn Allen Kane)
6. Freedom (Interlude)
7. Casket Pretty
8. Forever (feat. Joseph Chilliams & Ravyn Lenae)
9. Bye Bye Baby
10. Shadow Man (feat Saba, Smino & Phoelix) 

Favorite Tracks: Diddy Bop, All I Need, Bye Bye Baby, and Shadow Man

11

40.  DJ Khaled- Major Key

1. I Got The Keys ft. Jay Z and Future
2. For Free ft. Drake
3. Nas Album Done ft. Nas
4. Holy Key ft. Big Sean, Kendrick Lamar & Betty Wright
5. Jermaine’s Interlude ft. J. Cole
6. Ima Be Alright ft. Bryson Tiller and Future
7. Do You Mind ft. Nicki Minaj, Chris Brown, Jeremih, Future, August Alsina & Rick Ross
8. Pick These Hoes Apart ft. Kodak Black, Jeezy & French Montana
9. Fuck Up The Club ft. Future, Yo Gotti, Rick Ross & YG
10. Work For It ft. Big Sean, Gucci Mane & 2 Chainz
11. Don’t Ever Play Yourself ft. Jadakiss, Fabolous, Busta Rhymes, Fat Joe & Kent Jones
12. Tourist ft. Travis Scott & Lil Wayne
13. Forgive Me Father ft. Meghan Trainor, Wiz Khalifa & Wale
14. Progress ft. Mavado

Favorite Tracks: Nas Album Done, Holy Key, Jermaine’s Interlude, Work For It and Don’t Ever Play Yourself

 

12

39. Beyoncé – Lemonade

1. PRAY YOU CATCH ME
2. HOLD UP
3. DON’T HURT YOURSELF ft. Jack White
4. SORRY
5. 6 INCH ft. The Weeknd
6. DADDY LESSONS
7. LOVE DROUGHT
8. SANDCASTLES
9. FORWARD ft. James Blake
10. FREEDOM ft. Kendrick Lamar
11. ALL NIGHT
12. FORMATION

Favorite Tracks: Hold Up, Sorry, Freedom, Formation

 

17

38. Bauer-Aa

  1. Church
  2. GoGo!
  3. Body
  4. Pinku
  5. Sow
  6. Day Ones
  7. Good & Bad
  8. Way from Me ( feat. Tirzah)
  9. Temple (feat. M.I.A & G-DRAGON)
  10. Make It Bang (feat. TT The Artist)
  11. Kung Fu (feat. Pusha T & Future)
  12. Church Reprise
  13. Aa

Favorite Tracks: GoGo! , Pinku, Sow, Temple, Make It Bang, Kung Fu

14

37. Ty Dolla $ign – Campaign

1. $Intro
2. $
3. Campaign feat. Future
4. $$$(Where) feat. Migos
5. 3 Wayz feat. Travis Scott
6. Juice
7. Zaddy
8. Hello
9. R&B
10. Stealing
11. Clean
12. My Song feat. 24hrs
13. Pu$$y feat. Trey Songz & Wiz Khalifa
14. No Justice feat. Big TC

 

Favorite Tracks: $, Campaign , 3 Wayz, Zaddy, Stealing, Pu$$y, and No Justice

15

36. YG- Still Brazy

1. Pops Hot Intro
2. Don’t Come To LA (feat. Sad Boy, A.D. & Bricc Baby)
3. Who Shot Me?
4. Word is Bond (feat. Slim 400)
5. Twist My Fingaz
6. Good Times (Interlude) (feat. Syke 800, Duce, Marley Blu & Burnt Out)
7. Gimmie Got Shot
8. I Got A Question (feat. Lil Wayne)
9. Why You Always Hatin (feat. Drake & Kamaiyah)
10. My Perception (feat. Slim 400)
11. Bool, Balm & Bollective
12. She Wish She Was (feat. Jay 305 & Joe Moses)
13. YG Be Safe (feat. The Homegirl)
14. Still Brazy
15. FDT (feat. Nipsey Hussle)
16. Blacks & Browns (feat. Sad Boy)
17. Police Get Away Wit Murder

Favorite Tracks: Don’t Come To LA, Word is Bond, Why You Always Hatin, Bool, Balm & Bollective , Still Brazy, and FDT

16

35.  Childish Gambino- “Awaken, My Love!”

1. Me and Your Mama
2. Have Some Love
3. Boogieman
4. Zombies
5. Riot
6. Redbone
7. California
8. Terrified
9. Baby Boy
10. The Night Me And Your Momma Met
11. Stand Tall

Favorite Tracks: Have Some Love, Boogieman, Redbone , and California

 

13

34. Rihanna – ANTI

1.Consideration ft. SZA
2. James Joint
3. Kiss It Better
4. Work ft. Drake
5. Desperado
6. Woo ft. Travis Scott
7. Needed Me
8. Yeah, I Said It
9. Same Ol’ Mistakes
10. Never Ending
11. Love on the Brain
12. Higher
13. Close to You
14. Goodnight Gotham
15. Pose
16. Sex with Me

Favorite Tracks: Consideration, James Joint, Work, Desperado, Woo, Needed Me and Same Ol’ Mistakes 

18

33. Dvsn – Sept. 5th

1. With Me
2. Too Deep ( The Song That WILL be Playing As Bae And I Are Making Suave Jr.. LOL)
3. Try / Effortless
4. Do It Well
5. In + Out
6. Sept. 5th
7. Hallucinations
8. Another One
9. Angela
10. The Line

Favorite Tracks: With Me, Too Deep, Do It Well, Sept. 5th, and Hallucinations

 

19

32. Charles Hamilton – Hamilton, Charles

  1. Oh Well
  2. Clowns
  3. Everyone 
  4. Correct
  5. Be With You
  6. Make Yourself Over
  7. Man’s World
  8. MVP
  9. Only Christina Knows
  10. Real Life
  11. Stay There
  12. Ugly Supermodel

Favorite Tracks: Oh Well, Everyone, Correct, Be With You, Man’s World, Real Life

 

20

31. Majid Jordan- Majid Jordan

  1. Learn From Each Other
  2. Make It Work
  3. My Love feat. Drake
  4. Small Talk
  5. Pacifico
  6. Shake Shake Shake
  7. Love Is Always There
  8. Warm
  9. Something About You
  10. Day and Night
  11. King City
  12. Every Step Every Way

Favorite Tracks: Small Talk, Pacifico, Shake Shake Shake, Warm, Something About You and Day and Night

21

30. ASAP Ferg – Always Strive And Prosper

1. Rebirth
2. Hungry Ham
3. Strive (feat. Missy Elliott)
4. Meet My Crazy Uncle (Skit)
5. Psycho
6. Let It Bang (feat. ScHoolboy Q)
7. New Level (feat. Future)
8. Yammy Gang (feat. A$AP Mob & Tatianna Paulino)
9. Swipe Life (feat. Rick Ross)
10. Uzi Gang (feat. Lil Uzi Vert & Marty Baller)
11. Beautiful People (feat. Chuck D & Mama Ferg)
12. Damn Not Again (Skit)
13. Let You Go
14. World Is Mine (feat. Big Sean)
15. Phone Call With Breezy (Skit)
16. I Love You (feat. Chris Brown & Ty Dolla $ign)
17. Grandma (Skit)
18. Grandma

Bonus Tracks:

19. Don’t Mind ( feat. French Montana and Fabolous) 
20. Back Hurt (feat. Migos) 

Favorite Tracks: Strive, Psycho, New Level, Yammy Gang, Don’t Mind and Back Hurt 

22

29. Young Thug-Jeffery

1. Wyclef Jean
2. Floyd Mayweather ft. Travis Scott, Gucci Mane & Gunna
3. Swizz Beatz
4. Future Swag
5. RiRi
6. Guwop ft. Quavo, Offset & Young Scooter
7. Harambe
8. Webbie ft. Duke
9. Pop Man ft. Wyclef Jean
10. Pick Up the Phone ft. Travis Scott & Quavo (Bonus)

Favorite Tracks: Wyclef Jean, Floyd Mayweather, Harambe, Pop Man, and Pick Up the Phone

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28. Gucci Mane- Everybody Looking

1. No Sleep (Intro)
2. Out Do Ya
3. Back on Road (ft. Drake)
4. Waybach
5. Pussy Print (ft. Kanye West)
6. Pop Music
7. Guwop Home (ft. Young Thug)
8. Gucci Please
9. Robbed
10. Richest Nigga In The Room
11. 1st Day Out Tha Feds
12. At Least a M
13. All My Children
14. Pick Up The Pieces (Outro)
15. Multi Millionaire Laflare [Bonus]

Favorite Tracks:  Back on Road, Waybach, Pussy Print, Guwop Home, 1st Day Out Tha Feds, and Gucci Please

2c7f75eb720a7ce1ab1dc915573b9bd5-1000x1000x1
27. Young Jeezy- Trap or Die 3

1. In the Air
2. G-Wagon
3. It Is What It Is
4. Where It At ft. Yo Gotti
5. All There ft. Bankroll Fresh
6. Going Crazy ft. French Montana
7. Bout That ft. Lil Wayne
8. So What
9. Let Em Know
10. Recipe
11. Goldmine
12. U Kno It
13. Like That
14. Sexé ft. Plies
15. Pretty Diamonds ft. Chris Brown
16. Never Settle

Favorite Tracks: It Is What It Is, Where It At, All There, Going Crazy, Bout That, Recipe, and Sexé

f8b7b5322cfee561373377996f1d52a6-1000x1000x1
26. Roy Woods- Waking At Dawn

1. Sonic Boom
2. You Love It
3. Gwan Big Up Urself
4. How I Feel
5. Down Girl
6. Switch
7. Got Me
8. Why
9. Menace
10. She Knows About Me

Favorite Tracks: Sonic Boom, You Love It, Gwan Big Up Urself, How I Feel, and Why

26

25. Rae Sremmurd- SremmLife 2

1. Start a Party
2. Real Chill feat. Kodak Black
3. By Chance
4. Look Alive
5. Black Beatles feat. Gucci Mane
6. Shake It Fast feat. Juicy J
7. Set the Roof feat. Lil Jon
8. Came a Long Way
9. Now That I Know
10. Take It or Leave It
11. Do Yoga
12. Over Here feat. Bobo Swae
13. Swang
14. Just Like Us

Favorite Tracks: Start a Party, By Chance, Look Alive, Black Beatles, Shake It Fast, Do Yoga, and Swang

 

27
24. Belly – Inzombia

1. Die Alone
2. The Day I Met You
3. Trap Phone ft. Jadakiss
4. Frozen Water ft. Future
5. Re Up ft. Nav
6. Consuela Ft. Young Thug and Zack
7. Outkast ft. Ty Dolla $ign
8. Hollywood Interlude
9. Seven Day Love ft. Ashanti
10. Actin Different
11. Can’t Feel A Thing 

Favorite Tracks: The Day I Met You, Trap Phone,  Re Up, Consuela, Outkast, and Actin Different

 

39

23 . Frank Ocean- Blonde

1. Nikes
2. Ivy
3. Pink + White ft. Beyoncé
4. Be Yourself
5. Solo
6. Skyline To ft. Kendrick Lamar
7. Self Control ft. Austin Feinstein & Yung Lean
8. Good Guy
9. Nights
10. Solo (Reprise) ft. Andre 3000
11. Pretty Sweet
12. Facebook Story ft. SebastiAn
13. Close To You
14. White Ferrari ft. James Blake
15. Seigfried
16. Godspeed ft. Kim Burrell
17. Futura Free

Favorite Tracks: Nikes, Ivy. Solo, Solo (Reprise), White Ferrari and Godspeed

 

30

]22. Run The Jewels – Run The Jewels 3

 

1. Down (feat. Joi Gilliam)
2. Talk to Me
3. Legend Has It
4. Call Ticketron
5. Hey Kids (Bumaye) (feat. Danny Brown)
6. Stay Gold
7. Don’t Get Captured
8. Thieves! (Screamed the Ghost) (feat. Tunde Adebimpe)
9. 2100 (feat. BOOTS)
10. Panther Like a Panther (Miracle Mix) (feat. Trina)
11. Everybody Stay Calm
12. Oh Mama
13. Thursday in the Danger Room (feat. Kamasi Washington)
14. Report to the Shareholders/Kill Your Masters

Favorite Tracks: Call Ticketron,  Hey Kids (Bumaye), Stay Gold, Everybody Stay Calm, and Report to the Shareholders/Kill Your Masters

 

9a5c17a513399fb5e5917b088e5b0ceb-600x600x1
21. Vic Mensa- There’s A lot Going On

1. Dynasty (Intro)
2. 16 Shots
3. Danger
4. New Bae
5. Liquor Locker (feat. Ty Dolla $ign)
6. Shades of Blue
7. There’s A Lot Going On

Favorite Tracks: Dynasty , 16 Shots, Danger, Liquor Locker, and There’s A Lot Going On

 

31

20. Post Malone- Stoney

1. Broken Whiskey Glass
2. Big Lie
3. Deja Vu ft. Justin Bieber
4. No Option
5. Cold
6. White Iverson
7. I Fall Apart
8. Patient
9. Go Flex
10. Feel ft. Kehlani
11. Too Young
12. Congratulations ft. Quavo
13. Up There
14. Truly, Austin Post
15. Leave
16. Hit This Hard
17. Money Made Me Do It ft. 2 Chainz
18. Feeling Whitney

Favorite Tracks: Big Lie, Deja Vu, White Iverson, I Fall Apart, Patient, Feel, Congratulations,  and  Money Made Me Do It

2919. Logic- Bobby Tarantino 

1. Illuminatro
2. Flexicution
3. The Jam
4. Slave II 
5. A Word From Our Sponsor
6. Wrist ft. Pusha T
7. Super Mario World
8. Studio Ambience At Night: Malibu
9. 44 Bars
10. Slave
11. Deeper Than Money

Favorite Tracks: Flexicution, Slave II, Wrist, Super Mario World, and Deeper Than Money

38

18. Bruno Mars- 24K Magic

1. 24K Magic
2. Chunky
3. Perm
4. That’s What I Like
5. Versace on the Floor
6. Straight Up & Down
7. Calling All My Lovelies
8. Finesse
9. Too Good to Say Goodbye

Favorite Tracks: 24K Magic, Chunky, Perm, That’s What I Like, Straight Up & Down and Finesse

32

17. Kendrick Lamar- Untitled Unmastered

1. untitled 01 | 08.19.2014.
2. untitled 02 | 06.23.2014.
3. untitled 03 | 05.28.2013. feat. Terrace Martin, Bilal, Thundercat & Anna Wise
4. untitled 04 | 08.14.2014. feat. SZA & Lance Skiiiwalker
5. untitled 05 | 09.21.2014. feat. Anna Wise, Jay Rock & Punch
6. untitled 06 | 06.30.2014. feat. Cee-Lo Green
7. untitled 07 | 2014 – 2016
8. untitled 08 | 09.06.2014.

Favorite Tracks: untitled 01, untitled 02, untitled 03, untitled 07  and  untitled 08

33

16. Ab-Soul- Do What Thou Wilt.

1. RAW (Backwards) [feat. Zacari]
2. Braille (feat. Bas)
3. Huey Knew THEN (feat. Da$H)
4. Threatening Nature
5. Womanogomy
6. INvocation (feat. Kokane)
7. Wifey vs Wi-Fi /// P.M.S (feat. BR3)
8. Beat The Case /// Straight Crooked (feat. Schoolboy Q)
9. Portishead In The Morning /// HER World
10. God’s A Girl?
11. Now You Know
12. D.R.U.G.S
13. Evil Genius (feat. Teedra Moses & Javonte)
14. Lonely Soul /// The Law (Prelude) [feat. Punch & SZA]
15. The Law (feat. Mac Miller & Rapsody)
16. YMF

Favorite Tracks: RAW (Backwards) , Braille, Huey Knew THEN , Threatening Nature, Womanogomy, Wifey vs Wi-Fi /// P.M.S, D.R.U.G.S, The Law, and YMF

34

15. Dave East- Kairi Chanel

1. It Was Written
2. Type of Time
3. Again
4. Can’t Ignore (ft. 2 Chainz)
5. From The Heart (ft. Sevyn Streeter)
6. 30 Niggas
7. Keisha
8. Eyes on Me (ft. Fabolous)
9. S.D.E. (ft. Cam’ron)
10. Don Pablo
11. The Only Thing
12. The Real Is Back (ft. Beanie Sigel)
13. Slow Down (ft. Jazzy)
14. Don’t Shoot
15. Bad Boy on Death Row (ft. The Game)

Favorite Tracks:  It Was Written, Type of Time, Can’t Ignore, Keisha, S.D.E., Don Pablo, Don’t Shoot, and Bad Boy on Death Row

35
14. Travis Scott-Birds in the Trap Sing McKnight

1. the ends ft. André 3000
2. way back ft. Swizz Beatz & Kid Cudi
3. coordinate ft. Blac Youngsta
4. through the late night ft. Kid Cudi
5. beibs in the trap ft. Nav
6. sdp interlude ft. Cassie
7. sweet sweet
8. outside ft. 21 Savage
9. goosebumps ft. Kendrick Lamar
10. first take ft. Bryson Tiller
11. pick up the phone + Young Thug & Quavo
12. lose ft. Cassie
13. guidance ft. K. Forest
14. wonderful ft. The Weeknd

Favorite Tracks: the ends, way back, through the late night, beibs in the trap, sweet sweet, guidance, and wonderful

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13. Big Sean & Jhene Aiko – TWENTY88

1. Déjà Vu
2. Selfish
3. On the Way
4. Push It
5. 2 Minute Warning ft. K-Ci & JoJo and Detail
6. Talk Show
7. Memories Faded
8. London Bridge

Favorite Tracks:  2 Minute Warning , Talk Show, Memories Faded, and London Bridge

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12. Kemba – Negus

1. FLY (Intro)
2. Caesar’s Rise
3. Kings Queens
4. The New Black Theory
5. Super Hero (Interlude)
6. Already
7. Psyrens (Curious)
8. Greed
9. Heartbeat
10. Hallelujah
11. We Made It
12. Brown Skin Jesus (Outro)

Favorite Tracks: Caesar’s Rise, Kings Queens, The New Black Theory, Already and Brown Skin Jesus

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11 . Mac Miller – The Divine Feminine

1. “Congratulations” Feat. Bilal
2. “Dang!” Feat. Anderson .Paak
3. “Stay”
4. “Skin”
5. “Cinderella” Feat. Ty Dolla Sign
6. “Planet God Damn” Feat. Njomza
7. “Soulmate”
8. “We” Feat. CeeLo Green
9. “My Favorite Part” Feat. Ariana Grande
10. “God Is Fair, Sexy, Nasty” Feat. Kendrick Lamar

Favorite Tracks: Dang!, Stay, Cinderella, Planet God Damn, My Favorite Part, and God Is Fair, Sexy, Nasty

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10. Isaiah Rashad- The Sun’s Tirade

1. Where u at?
2. 4r Da Squaw
3. Free Lunch
4. Rope ft. SiR // Rosegold
5. Wat’s Wrong ft. Zacari & Kendrick Lamar
6. Park
7. Bday ft. Deacon Blue & Kari Faux
8. Silkk Da Shocka ft. Syd tha Kyd
9. Tity and Dolla ft. Hugh Augustine & Jay Rock
10. Stuck in the Mud ft. SZA
11. A lot
12. AA
13. Dressed Like Rappers
14. Don’t Matter ft. Lance Skiiiwalker
15. Brenda
16. By george (outro)
17. Find a Topic (homies begged)

Favorite Tracks: 4r Da Squaw, Free Lunch, Rope, Wat’s Wrong, Park, Bday, Tity and Dolla, Stuck in the Mud,  Don’t Matter, and Find a Topic (homies begged)

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9. Saba- The Bucket List

1. In Loving Memory
2. Stoney
3. GPS
4. Church / Liquor Store feat. Noname 
5. Westside Bound 3
6. Most
7. Symmetry
8. Photosynthesis
9. The Billy Williams Story
10. Bucket List
11. American Hypnosis
12. California
13. World in My Hands

Favorite Tracks: In Loving Memory, GPS, Church / Liquor Store, Westside Bound 3, Photosynthesis, Bucket List, American Hypnosis, and World in My Hands

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8. Kid Cudi- Passion, Pain and Demon Slayin

Act I: Tuned
1. Frequency
2. Swim in The Light
3. Releaser ft. Kacy Hill
4. By Design ft. André 3000
5. All In
Act II: Prophecy
6. ILLusions
7. Rose Golden ft. Willow Smith
8. Baptized in Fire ft. Travis Scott
9. Flight At first sight/Advanced ft. Pharrell Williams
10. Does It
Act III: Niveaux de l’Amour
11. Dance 4 Eternity
12. Distant Fantasies
13. Wounds
14. Mature Nature
15. Kitchen
Act IV: It’s Bright and Heaven Is Warm
16. Cosmic Warrior
17. The Guide ft. André 3000
18. The Commander
19. Surfin’ ft. Pharrell Williams

Favorite Tracks: Frequency, Swim in The Light, By Design, All In, Rose Golden, Flight At first sight/Advanced, Does It, The Guide, and Surfin’ 

Side Note: GREAT BOUNCE BACK PROJECT SCOTT MESCUDI! 

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7. School Boy Q- Blank Face

1. TorcH
2. Lord Have Mercy
3. THat Part ft. Kanye West
4. Groovy Tony/Eddie Kane ft. Jadakiss
5. Kno Ya Wrong ft. Lance Skiiiwalker
6. Ride Out ft. Vince Staples
7. WHateva U Want ft. Candice Pillay
8. By Any Means
9. Dope Dealer ft. E-40
10. JoHn Muir
11. Big Body ft. Tha Dogg Pound
12. Neva CHange ft. SZA
13. Str8 Ballin
14. Black THougHts
15. Blank Face ft. Anderson .Paak
16. Overtime ft. Miguel and Justine Skye
17. Tookie Knows II ft. Traffic & TF

Favorite Tracks: TorcH, THat Part , Groovy Tony/Eddie Kane, Ride Out, Dope Dealer,  JoHn Muir, Neva CHange, Str8 Ballin, Blank Face and Overtime 

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6. A Tribe Called Quest- we got it from here… thank you 4 your service

Disc 1
1. The Space Program
2. We The People…
3. Whateva Will Be ft. Consequence
4. Solid Wall of Sound ft. Busta Rhymes, Elton John, Jack White
5. Dis Generation ft. Busta Rhymes
6. Kids… ft. André 3000
7. Melatonin ft. Marsha Ambrosius, Abbey Smith
8. Enough!!

Disc 2
1. Mobius ft. Consequence, Busta Rhymes
2. Black Spasmodic ft. Consequence
3. The Killing Season ft. Kanye West, Talib Kweli, Consequence
4. Lost Somebody ft. Katia Cadet
5. Movin Backwards ft. Anderson .Paak
6. Conrad Tokyo ft. Kendrick Lamar
7. Ego ft. Jack White
8. The Donald ft. Busta Rhymes, Katia Cadet

Favorite Tracks: The Space Program,Solid Wall of Sound,Dis Generation , Kids…, Mobius, The Killing Season, Movin Backwards, and Conrad Tokyo

REST IN PEACE PHIFE DAWG

“TOP 5, TOP 5, TOP 5!”

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5. Anderson Paak – Malibu

1. The Bird
2. Heart Don’t Stand a Chance
3. The Waters (feat. BJ the Chicago Kid)
4. The Season / Carry Me
5. Put Me Thru
6. Am I Wrong (feat. ScHoolboy Q)
7. Without You (feat. Rapsody)
8. Parking Lot
9. Lite Weight (feat. The Free Nations United Fellows Fellowship Choir)
10. Room In Here (feat. The Game & Sonya Elise)
11. Waterfall (Interluuube)
12. Your Prime
13. Come Down
14. Silicon Valley
15. Celebrate
16. The Dreamer (feat. Talib Kweli & Timan Family Choir)

Favorite Tracks: The Bird, The Waters , The Season / Carry Me, Am I Wrong, Without You, Room In Here, Come Down,Celebrate and The Dreamer

At number five, we have Mr. Anderson .Paak with Malibu! I feel like we all should know about Anderson .Paak by now but if not here is a little info on him. The West Coast-based rapper and singer/songwriter Anderson .Paak name is more prominent these days given his recent work on Dr. Dre’s Compton, where he appeared on six of 16 tracks, but even his sophomore album, 2014’s Venice, showed flashes of brilliance. Venice was an easy listen; on Malibu, .Paak celebrates his progression by acknowledging where he’s come from, the trials he’s endured and things he’s seen. Brandon Anderson Paak has seen a lot in his 29 years. His mother was a farmer from South Korea, and his father served in the Air Force and later worked as a mechanic until he was sent to prison. Malibu, his third album and most assured and most personal project yet, is informed by voices from the his past with features from the likes of the Game, ScHoolboy Q, and Talib Kweli who are given ample space to do their best work. Paak’s sound is one of a kind and you hear it throughout this project. This was a very sincere and soulful project but also community-oriented. On the final track, “The Dreamer,” Paak shared his success with his community, people who look like him and work to avoid similar pitfalls.  This is powerful message not only for people of color, but for everyone who exists beyond social constraints. It’s a beautiful reminder that, no matter what you’ve endured, you can go anywhere and reach glorious heights. Definitely a message and daily reminder we need to hear with all that goes on these days.

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4. J. Cole – 4 Your Eyez Only

1. For Whom the Bell Tolls
2. Immortal
3. Deja Vu
4. Ville Mentality
5. She’s Mine Pt. 1
6. Change
7. Neighbors
8. Foldin Clothes
9. She’s Mine Pt. 2
10. 4 Your Eyez Only

Favorite Tracks: For Whom the Bell Tolls, Immortal, DejaVu, She’s Mine Pt. 1, Neighbors, She’s Mine Pt. 2 and 4 Your Eyez Only

At four, we have “J COLE WENT PLATINUM WITH NO FEATURES!” Sorry, I meant at four, we have J. Cole with 4 Your Eyez Only. A lot of people did not think Cole brought it with this project as a follow up to 2014 Forest Hills Drive. One of my friends actual went ahead and said “this project was cool and all but it’s more of something you listen to whiles sipping some wine on a rainy day inside.” LOL. Shout out Stamp. I agreed with him after I let the hype surrounding the “Eyez’s” release disappear. Then I went back and did my homework.“Eyez” wrestles with the fragility of life and the importance of family ties. Cole also discusses some of his worst impulses throughout this project.Cole frequently focused on other points of view, mainly that of his late friend James McMillan, Jr., who was killed at 22. The album is peppered with references to his murder, and a testimony from a young girl in Fayetteville, which appears at two points on “Ville Mentality,” echoes the reality faced by McMillan’s own daughter. Then Cole is himself a new father on “She’s Mine, Pt. 2” which is about his wife and newborn child. The title track, which closes the album with a missive for those young girls, is anchored by his personal anxieties, making for some of Cole’s most affecting writing to date. Once again production on here was very solid and Cole will always bring the BARS. So many people feel like 2014 Forest Hills Drive was so much better than “Eyez,” which they are right about I suppose, but I think they were two different types of projects and we should give Cole his credited. I loved the narrative.

Oh and for y’all Cole Album Debaters, You can make a VERY STRONG CASE THAT It goes Born Sinner > 2014 Forest Hills Drive > Eyez . What do you think?

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3. Kanye West – The Life Of Pablo

1. Ultra Light Beams (feat. Chance The Rapper, Kirk Franklin & The-Dream)
2. Father Stretch My Hands Part 1 (feat. Kid Cudi)
3. Father Stretch My Hands Part 2 (feat. Desiigner)
4. Famous (feat. Rihanna & Swizz Beatz)
5. Feedback 
6. Low Lights
7. High Lights (feat. Young Thug & The-Dream)
8. Freestyle 4 (feat. Desiigner)
9. I Love Kanye
10. Waves (feat. Chris Brown)
11. FML (feat. The Weeknd)
12. Real Friends (feat. Ty Dolla $ign)
13. Wolves (feat. Frank Ocean and Caroline Shaw)
14. Silver Surfer Intermission
15. 30 hours
16. No More Parties in L.A. (feat. Kendrick Lamar)
17. Facts (Charlie Heat Version)
18. Fade (feat. Post Malone and Ty Dolla $ign)

Favorite Tracks: Father Stretch My Hands Part 1, Father Stretch My Hands Part 2, Famous, Feedback , High Lights, FML, Real Friends, Wolves, 30 hours,  and No More Parties in L.A.

YEEZY YEEZY YEEEZY JUST JUMPED OVER JUMPMAN! Actually let me stop before yall think Kanye at 3 was me having him on a pedestal. I’m going to make this short and sweet. TLOP was DIFFERENT. Some say it was a “mess.” Some say it lacked “BARS.” Some say “he really isn’t saying much.” When is Kanye never not saying something. The man always has something to say and despite what you think of him hes a true artist and is passionate about composing his projects. TLOP has a freewheeling energy that is infectious and unique to his discography. He’s changed the genre’s DNA with every album, to the point where each has inspired a generation of direct offspring, and now everywhere he looks, he sees mirrors. He raps on “I Love Kanye.” “See, I invented Kanye, it wasn’t any Kanyes, and now I look and look around and there’s so many Kanyes.” I mean the message here is very clear. He’s through creating new Kanyes, for now. He’s content to just stand among  both those of his own creation and their various devotees. The features on here were A1. I personally thought production on this project was amazing. As for lyricism, fine they were nothing special but still the concept, production, features and it impact out weigh what some believed were “mediocre” lyrics.  

Ye’s explanation behind his title when asked was, “Which Pablo? Pablo Picasso, Pablo Escobar of course, Apostle Paul. [Paul] inspired and was the strongest influencer of Christianity. Pablo Escobar was the biggest mover of product, and Pablo Picasso was the biggest mover of art. And that mix between message, art, and product is The Life Of Pablo.”

With that being said Kanye see’s himself as a student of all three men. He’s the Escobar of the sneaker game, the Picasso of the music game and a messenger for the future generations. I loved  this project and we all know what Kanye’s had going since TLOP dropped. So those who hated TLOP maybe Turbo Grafx 16 will be that bounce back album. 

 

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2. Drake-Views
1. Keep the Family Close
2. 9
3. U With Me?
4. Feel No Ways
5. Hype
6. Weston Road Flows
7. Redemption
8. With You ft. PARTYNEXTDOOR
9. Faithful ft. Pimp C & dvsn
10. Still Here
11. Controlla
12. One Dance ft. Wizkid and Kyla
13. Grammys ft. Future
14. Childs Play
15. Pop Style
16. Too Good ft. Rihanna
17. Summers Over Interlude
18. Fire & Desire
19. Views
20. Hotline Bling

Favorite Tracks: Keep the Family Close, U With Me?, Feel No Ways, Hype, Weston Road Flows, With You, Faithful, Still Here, Too Good, Summers Over Interlude, Fire & Desire and Views

So at number two we have Views. When this album dropped at the end of April,  I immediately was like album of the year easy. Then I relaxed and I said at worst Top 5 of the year.  MANY of my peers were not with me on this at all. One person in particular tried to prove me wrong by saying, “Views is top five to you because its Drake. Everyone feels obligated to rank him high on everything” L.O.L right? Sounds like a Tory Lanez fan, I know.  Well world let me inform you that Views is at number two on MY LIST for more reasons than Aubrey Graham can find to not trust  women. This is a project that i can listen to at any time and it  gets better with each and every listen. There was one song that i legit thought could have been left of here and that was “Pop Style.” For some reason I guess taking Ye and Hov’s two two lines off made the song garbage. It lost it’s power.  

Many thought VIEWS felt too long and weirdly monotone, but the variation and the versatility of Drake actually shows you how good the 6 God really is. This project to me was one of his better projects. Not the best, but better than some other projects he’s put out (EXCLUDING TAKE CARE). Production is never an issue with Drizzy because 40’s always got his back. He’s credited for 12 of the 20 tracks on here. Views is a mix off Take Care, meets NWTS, meets If You’re Reading This, meets WATTBA with the new ingredient of Drake’s fascination with the 6’s  Caribbean influence.  You may say its too much going on one project but don’t we want this from our artist. We want our artist to show exactly what they are made of. Drake does that. I think now a days we prefer Drake the rapper over Drake the singer. But damn it the man can do both and he consistently reminds us why he’s one of the best in the game.

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1. Chance The Rapper – Coloring Book

1. All We Got ft. Kanye West and Chicago Children’s Choir
2. No Problem ft. 2 Chainz and Lil Wayne
3. Summer Friends ft. Jeremih and Francis & The Lights
4. D.R.A.M Sings Special
5. Blessings
6. Same Drugs
7. Mixtape ft. Young Thug and Lil Yachty
8. Angels ft. Saba
9. Juke Jam ft. Justin Bieber and Towkio
10. All Night ft. Knox Fortune
11. How Great (feat. Jay Electronica & My cousin Nicole)
12. Smoke Break ft. Future
13. Finish Line / Drown ft. T-Pain, Kirk Franklin, Eryn Allen Kane and Noname
14. Blessings (Reprise) ft. Ty Dolla $ign

Favorite Tracks:All We Got, No Problem, Summer Friends,Same Drugs, Angels, Juke Jam, All Night, Finish Line / Drown and Blessings 

At number one, we have Coloring Book! Chance the Rapper’s Coloring Book was the strongest album released this year hands down. When I first heard it, I was like this is dope but I was not wowed right away like some people were. I still was obsessed with TLOP and was giving VIEWS Nonstop praise.  Coloring Book is an uplifting mix of spiritual vibes that could probably “turn atheist into believers.” (Kanye Reference)  Thematically, Coloring Book is way different from Chance’s previous projects, and it turned out to show how truly gifted Chance really is. The features on here were also amazing! On “Mixtape” he had Young Thug and Lil Yachty. Yes, Yachty was a part of this holy grail of a project AND THEY CREATED A DOPE ASS TRACK. I did list my favorite tracks above but Summer Friends and Juke Jam were my absolute favorites on here. On the “Blessings” reprise that closes out the album, there’s an unaccredited “All of the Lights”esque group harmony courtesy of Ty Dolla $ign, Raury, Anderson .PAAK, BJ the Chicago Kid, and others. I think D.R.A.M was involved too. That colab right there alone on a closing track of that magnitude, GENIUS. Chance really did the damn thing with this one. It’s a more rewarding of listen than VIEWS, Malibu and 4 Your Eyez Only. It’s nearly as adventurous as The Life of Pablo. If you really take a look at it in execution and focus, you could say it was a lot similar to Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly. It sounds silly I know, but really think about it.  Both albums were personal and panoramic, full of conversations with God, and stepping outside of typical norms of hip hop. So to wrap it all up, Coloring book was an amazing album, Chance is an amazing artist, and I can’t wait to see what he follows up with.

 

Alright so that was my Top 50 Albums for 2016! Sorry If i pissed some of you off with my rankings but that is just how I feel!  Please comment with what you thought about the list, my short write ups on my top 5, advice, give me your top 5 and please share this with your friends and family!  I’m new to this and this article may be kind of rough so don’t be too harsh.Thank you!! 

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