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Drake – So Far So Gone
The best “Hip-Hop” album/mixtape of the year, hands down. Drake’s carefully constructed lyrics and music selection is one of the best in a while. The mixtape certainly had the feeling of an actual album. That just shows Drake’s level of passion and dedication when it comes to his music. Respect that.
Call it a concept album if you like, but an album nonetheless. This fusion of rock/rap is one of the best I have heard in a while. It is a tightrope that many artists attempt to walk, but fall over to the cheesy side. This collection of artists and visionaries (Black Keys, Dame Dash, etc.) have produced something to behold. One of the best music experiences of this year.
J. Cole – The Warm Up
Back to Hip-Hop. A genre thirsty for genuine rappers. And J. Cole is just that. Possibly the best Rap album/mixtape after Drake’s “So Far So Gone”. The lyrical prowess, the story telling, the emotion, and solid beats definitely warm you up for the next big project coming from this guy. Salute the first artist of Roc Nation! well deserved.
Sleigh Bells – Crown on the Ground
I am not all-knowing when it comes to up-coming indie/alternative music. But I do keep an ear out, and I came across this group, Sleigh Bells, through a homie of mine. The songs have a hip-hop “knock” to them, and their energy is ridiculous. Definitely, at least in my opinion, one of the best up and coming indie bands who made their mark in 2009, with a bright future ahead. I even heard M.I.A. wants to work with them, and noticed that Mos Def was feeling them.
Land of Talk – It’s Okay
Last but not least – Land of Talk “It’s Okay”. Every now and then you come across a song that coincides with a certain mood your feeling at a point in your life. Well, in 2009, that was the case with this one. The song is so smooth, and it is composed so well, that you can’t help but to make it your own secret diamond in the rough. Only if it had a stunning video to accompany it. Oh wait, it does. And it’s everything you would imagine and more. Check it out here in Hi Def.