January 7, 2011

2O1OHHH SHOT Year In Review

My thoughts on 2010, from a hip hop point of view.

Best Albums of 2010
You have to feel for the hairy crack man. He drops an incredibly mean underground album which bangs from start to finish, including the smash Slow Down which every one of your favourite rappers lined up to freestyle over. The sad truth is this dude could release The Dark Side Vol. 2, Vol. 3, Vol 17 et al, and they could all be dope, it’s just that people don’t want him to win. Sad face.

9 - Aloe Blacc – Good Things
It’s always upsetting when the opening titles and theme music are better than the show it proceeds, which is exactly what happen with How To Make It In America. It didn’t hurt Aloe though. The title soundtrack helped push his feel good music out to the masses – myself included. On a side note; dude used to rap with Exile in a group called Emanon. Blues.

8 - Gangrene – Gutter Water
Probably the most slept on album of the year. Maybe because when you listen to the album you kinda wish they’d saved the beats for people who are a little nicer with their word play. Having said that, what Alchemist and Oh No lack in rhymes they more than make up for in beats. If it wasn’t for Yeezy’s Runaway, Chain Swinging would have been my favourite song of the year.

7 - Termanology & Static Selektah – 1982
Taking it back to the old formula of one MC and one DJ, Termanology and the Static Selektah produced a classic sounding album which anyone in their late 20’s and over would appreciate.

6 - Joell Ortiz – Free Agent
Technically, this album comes out in February but everyone has had their hands on it since November. Fail. That being said, Joell has been murdering your favourite rappers instrumentals (see I Go Off) for the past six months now, which has served to create quite a nice buzz for the self proclaimed “Porto Rican with the soul of Pun's” sophomore album.

5 - J.Period – Michael Jackson Tribute The Man Or The Music
Every year now we can expect a flood of MJ mixtapes on his birthday, and death day. The one that stood out above them all was the excellent Man or the Music release – full of acoustic demos and classic cuts throughout MJ’s career. All mixed together perfectly by J.Period.

4 - Celph Titled & Buckwild – Nineteen Ninety Now
Formula for a classic: get a top rhymer to rap over vintage beats from the mid-90’s that have been collecting dust. Is it really that hard to figure out? How and why the fuck has this concept not been done before. Just like Term and Statics 1982 release, it helped remind us how good hip hop was back in the day. Instant classic, even with such a shitty album cover.

3 - Evidence – I Don’t Need Love EP
Rapping over chopped up Beatles samples isn’t a new thing, but when it’s done right it’s dope. Think Danger Mouse’s Grey Album. When it’s not done right you get Wu-Tangs Enter The Magical Mystery Chambers (I really wanted to like that). And it was a free download. Chur Ev.

2 - Kanye West – MBDTF
There’s been so much said about this dude and this album already. In my opinion it’s a very good album. It’s not a classic like so many people, sites and magazines have mentioned. But it is a very good album. The PR, the G.O.O.D. Friday downloads which proceeded the album dropping were incredible. OHHH SHOT pretty much became OHHH KANYE in the lead-up to the album dropping.

1 - The Roots – How I Got Over
These guys just can’t make a bad album. How I Got Over was a slightly different sound to what you’re used to on a Roots album, but it didn’t disappoint. If you don’t own this album something is wrong with you.

And the Best Album of 2010 
Ghostface Killah – Apollo Kids
The Wu’s most consistent rhyme killah did it again. Coming back from the embarrassingly bad Wizard of Poetry album, the Wally Champ sticks to what he does best – hard rhymes over soulful boom bap. Only thing that could have changed it for the better would have more Ghost and less features. Word is Supreme Clientele 2 is in the works and due for a late 2011 release. Say word.

Song of the Year
Kanye West – Runaway ft. Pusha T
This song killed when it debuted at the VMA’s, and it still knocks now. Say what you will about the man, but the world is a much more entertaining place because he’s in it.
DOWNLOAD: Kanye West - Runaway ft Pusha T

Best Verse
Nicki Minaji – Monster
“Pink wig, thick ass, give 'em whip lash”. Not only is her flow ridiculous on this, she also outdid the two biggest names in hip hop right now.
DOWNLOAD: Kanye West - Monster ft. Jay-Z, Nicki Minaji

Most Disappointing Album
DJ Premier – Year Round Records ft. various artists
It's not that it was bad. It’s just that an album full of Premier beats should be amazing.

Best Non Hip Hop Album
Black Keys - Brothers
A little cliché I know. But it’s dope.
DOWNLOAD: Black Keys - Everlasting Light

Best Show Stealing Verse
Black Thought on Ghostface’s ‘In The Park’
This actually should have gone to Nicki's Monster verse but in the interest of picking something else it goes to The Roots Black Thought. I love hearing him rap hard over gutter beats. When’s his overdue solo album coming out?
DOWNLOAD: Ghostface - In The Park ft. Black Thought

Song I Expected To Blow Up In 2010, But Didn’t.
Drake – Light Up ft. Jay-Z
I’m not a fan of Drake, because I’m not gay or a women, but this was this standout track from his album. Over a very smooth beat Drake raps up with young old Hov who drops some gems.
DOWNLOAD: Drake - Light Up ft. Jay-Z

WTF, Really Award
Pretty much a retarded rapper dissing a dude with down syndrome. Click here. It’s hard to watch.

Best Beat
Gangrene – Chain Swinging
Hip hop grime by two of hip hops best producers breathing.
DOWNLOAD: Gangrene - Chain Swinging

You Should Breath Now Award
Joell Ortiz’s 100 bars on Battle Cry.
DOWNLOAD: Joell Ortiz - Battle Cry

Most Disturbing Music Video
Gangrene – Overdose
Try and hold down your last meal while watching it. Shit, try and get past the first 30 seconds without dry retching
DOWNLOAD: Gangrene - Overdose [video]

Expect Him To Own 2011
J. Cole
Check the Friday Night Lights mixtape (more specifically track 6) for your reason why. Plus he’s signed to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation label. It’s nice to have friends in high places.
DOWNLOAD: J.Cole - Firday Night Lights

What I Want To Hear Less Of In 2011
Wack Detox leaks.
You kept us waiting too long Andre. No one cares now.

What I Want To Hear More Of In 2011
Jay Electronica. The homeless (was, really) rapper from New Orleans, and Jay-Z’s latest signing, needs to drop more than just the odd free download on occasions. Album please. Ras Kass finding some form, and some decent beats would be appreciated. And Cage doing a Kanye and going back to hip hop would also be nice.

11 Reasons Why 2011 Will Be A Good Year
Ghostface Killah – Supreme Clientele 2
Raekwon – Wu Tang vs Shoalin
Evidence – Cats & Dogs
RA the Rugged Man – untitled album
Nas – untitled album and Lost Tapes 2
Immortal Technique – The Middle Passage
Mos Def’s G.O.O.D. Music album
Jay Eletronica album (not holding my breath)
J.Cole’s Roc Nation album
Pete Rock & DJ Premier Album
Jay-Z & Kanye West – Watch The Throne


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