Friday, May 10, 2013
12 highly anticipated hip-hop albums that may (or may not) be worth your dollar
Sounds coming from Talib Kweli, Kelly Rowland, Wale, and many more.
Summer is here. Pass the time with some highly-anticipated albums coming from prominent artists in the game. While many of the artists on this list are anticipated by many, I may not feel the same way. I hope you guys enjoy, and for good measure, what is your most anticipated hip-hop album of the summer?
Talib Kweli – Prisoner of Conscious (May 7)
Talib Kweli released his fifth solo studio album Tuesday, but it’s still worth mentioning. The Brooklyn native is the go-to guy when you want to escape from Tunchi and that flashiness lifestyle set forth in much of today’s hip-hop. If you listen to Kweli’s lyrics rather than hearing his music, he says something that could speak to you. With appearances by Miguel, Busta Rhymes, and Kendrick Lamar, this album is the one to set up your summer.
Eve – Lip Lock (May 14)
I never really noticed how great of an artist Eve is. I vaguely remember her first two hits, “Gotta Man” and “What Ya’ll Want.” She writes every one of her songs, something I never really knew. Her newest album, Lip Lock, is her first in more than 11 years since Eve-Olution. With a desirable hunger for [better] female emcees for today, Eve looks to bring back an old-school essence with her.
French Montana – Excuse My French (May 21)
French Montana is the biggest hip-hop artist on Bad Boy Records since Young Joc. French has had some hits with “Pop That” and “Freaks” earlier this year. His album has many guest appearances -- Birdman, Rick Ross, Scarface, and Snoop Dogg -- so his debut effort shouldn’t be bad.
The Dream – 4play (May 28)
The Dream has had a successful career producing and writing music for other artists like Beyonce and Britney Spears. He’s also had a great career of his own with five albums, one which was free download in preparation for this album. People are saying that babies are going to made the day his album is released, and I don’t doubt that.
Kelly Rowland – Talk a Good Game (June 18)
Kelly Rowland, along with Beyonce, has made a name for herself post-break-up with Destiny’s Child. She may not be a big as Beyonce, but she has the talent to support herself. The tracklist includes artists like Pharrell, Wiz Khalifa, and a small Destiny’s Child reunion with Beyonce and Michelle Williams. With "Ice" and "Kisses Down Low" the only two singles off the album so far, Talk a Good Game could become a good buy.
Fat Tony – Smart Ass Black Boy (June 11)
I’ll be honest, I never heard of Fat Tony until writing this article. I went to search for his music and found "BKNY." I thought the song has a nostalgic feeling and the song is very well produced. Can’t say I like it, but he does have a following online. Another single from his second album is "Hood Party" with Kool A.D. and Despot. Fat Tony doesn’t stand out for me, but many people are excited. I should just be grateful this isn’t another Lil’ Wayne CD.
J. Cole – Born Sinner (June 25)
J. Cole hasn’t released his sophomore album yet, and many people are waiting on the edge of their seats for it. It was delayed from a late 2012 release date to a January 2013 release date, and now the album is set to drop on June 25. His first studio album was critically acclaimed and his sophomore record is to be considered on par. Cole is producing the majority of the album himself, which is a good thing. He’s a better producer than he is an artist. Sorry, just saying.
John Legend – Love is the Future (June 24)
Legend is consistent with his music, and his last three solo albums were hits. He hasn’t released a solo album in about five years since 2008's Evolver, but he has done some work here and there, like working with The Roots and winning awards. Now it’s time for him to release another album and win more awards. Also, he has the best song on the Django Unchained soundtrack, "Who Did That to You." It’s worth a listen.
Tech N9ne – Something Else (June 25)
Tech N9ne is one of the few artists on this list who isn’t mainstream, but has had a successful career. His career, I may add, is a busy one, releasing 12 albums since 1999, four from 2009 to 2011 alone. While he didn’t have an album released last year, N9ne is looking to reintroduce himself with Something Else. I haven’t heard any singles yet, but the confirmed tracklist includes artists like Cee-Lo, T-Pain, Game, and B.o.B. This will be one CD you’re going to have to buy.
Wale – The Gifted (June 25)
Wale is probably one of the most sought-after rap artists today. He’s released two albums so far, Attention Deficit in 2009 and Ambition in 2011. His newest, The Gifted, is set to drop in June and one single has already been released, "Bad." "Bad" has already peaked on the Billboard chart at 27, his biggest chart topper to date, as a solo artist.
Skylar Grey - Don’t Look Down (July 9)
Skylar -- who you may know from "I Need a Doctor" or maybe even "C’mon Let Me Ride" -- is hopefully going to release her second album. She’s been making music since her first album back in 2006, like writing the lyrics to "Love The Way You Lie." Don’t Look Down was set to come out two years ago, but Eminem wanted to executive produce the album. So far two singles have been released, "Invisible" (way back in 2011) and "C’mon Let Me Ride," a sarcastic look at pop singers. If the album is anything like the two singles released, then we shouldn’t have a problem waiting until July.
Pusha T – My Name Is My Name (July 16)
Pusha T, one half of Clipse, is finally dead set on releasing a solo effort titled My Name is My Name. Not much is known yet about the album, but you can see artists like Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West, and Rick Ross featured on the few confirmed tracks already.
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