Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Favorite Albums of 2009

Music nowadays might now be what it once was (especially hip hop) but there's still a lot of quality stuff coming out. I mean come on, you know there's still some heat left in the oven when two certifiable bangers, BP3 and OBFCL2, drop on the exact same day.

Raekwon - Only Built For Cuban Links II
Direct sequel to the 1995 classic which was one of the very best Wu-Tang solo efforts. Picks up right were the first left off and the Chef don't miss a step. My favorite hip hop album of 2009.

El Michels Affair - Enter the 37th Chamber
Wu-Tang inspired live instrumental album. I thought it might be stupid at first, but damn I keep playing this one over and over--gonna wear the vinyl out!

Ghostface Killah - Ghostdini, Wizard of Poetry in Emerald City
Pretty Tony gets a little bit RnB on us but doesn't cheese out. Maybe not as good as his last couple albums, but still a very solid effort. Spun this one a lot.

Jay Z - The Blueprint 3
The third installment of the Blueprint trilogy spawned one of the best NYC anthems in years. A bit long, but nowhere near as sprawling as the BP2 mess.

Lee Fields & The Expressions - My World
My favorite album of 2009 hands-down, and one of my favorites of the whole decade. Authentic soul that coulda been lifted straight outta the 1970s. Highly recommended.

Mayer Hawthorne - A Strange Arrangement
White kid from Detroit channeled 60's-style Motown proper. Totally unoriginal, but that makes it even more perfect. I even cop'd the heart-shaped 12" single for my wife.

Mos Def - The Ecstatic
He dropped two classics early in his career--Black Star with Talib Kweli, and Black on Both Sides--and then fell off, seemingly focused on acting. He came back strong on this though, back in true form.

Drake - So Far Gone
This man seemed to come out of nowhere, caught me totally by surprise. This isn't the style of hip hop I typically listen to--it's definitely a softer, pop-ier sound--but I like it.

Wale - Attention Deficit
Another album that's outside my normal preferred style of hip hop. I admit I slept on this at first; glad I woke up tho, it's a solid album that caught me on the first listen.

Honorable Mentions:
These are some more albums and mixtapes I liked this year, but didn't quite make my top-9 list for one reason or another. Good stuff tho, definitely worth checking these out too.
  • Braille & Symbolyc One - CloudNineteen
  • Carlos NiƱo & Miguel Atwood Ferguson - Suite for Ma Dukes
  • De La Soul - Are You In?: Nike + Original Run
  • Diz Gibran - Soon You'll Understand
  • Doom - Born Like This
  • Exile - Radio
  • Fashawn - Boy Meets World
  • Frank Ramz - Make The Road By Walking
  • Has-Lo - You Can Live Thru Anything If Magic Made It
  • J Dilla - Jay Stay Paid
  • Jabee - Must Be Nice
  • Jazz Liberatorz - Fruit of the Past
  • KiD CuDi - Man On The Moon: The End Of Day
  • Large Professor - The LP (originally recorded in 95/96)
  • Madlib - Beat Konducta Vol. 5-6: A Tribute To...
  • Method Man And Redman - Blackout! 2
  • Panacea - Corkscrew Gaps EP
  • Royce Da 5'9 - Street Hop
  • Saigon - All In A Day's Work
  • ScholarMan - The Pull Forward EP vols. 1 & 2
  • Waxolutionists - We Paint Colors
  • Wu Tang Clan - Chamber Music

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