Evan's Top 10 of 2018
By Evan Watson
Continuing with our Executive Boards Top 10 Albums of the list, here are mine!
1. Pusha T-DAYTONA
Kicking off Kanye West’s “Wyoming Sessions”, Pusha T’s third studio album comes in at 22 minutes. This album. with 7 songs, is hard hitting and makes every minute count. Pusha T uses the sampling prowess of Kanye West to compliment his strong rhyming abilities. Includes features from Rick Ross and Kanye West that were perfectly placed on the album. Although the whole album is all around fantastics, some notables include “Santeria”, “Hard Piano”, and “What Would Meek Do?”
2. Saba-CARE FOR ME
Saba’s second studio comes in at 41 minutes but delivers in every way. This is an album a lot of people have not heard of, but it deserves a chance. With similarities to Chance the Rapper, this Chicago rapper put together a 10-album masterpiece that references his purpose for writing raps, coping with the death of his best friend, and his difficulties dealing with fame. This is a very emotionally driven album that gives the listener a view of what Saba’s beliefs and passions are in a very personal way. On the most notable song “PROM/ KING”, he makes references to some of his struggles with women, his deep relationship with Walter, and the moments leading to Walter dying. This song along with “HEAVEN ALL AROUND ME” leave the listener empathetic of the situation but also looking for more music by Saba. 2019 will be a great year for Saba.
3. Mac Miller-Swimming
This was the fifth and final studio album created by Pittsburg rapper Mac Miller. Some references made by the deceased rapper include discussion of his prior relationship with Ariana Grande, his mental growth over the years, and some struggles he faced with the fame that he received. Mac Miller shows his pains and emotions through the vocals and lyrics he provides and gives the listener a journey in to his own dark struggles to give the listener the chance to listen to the mistakes Mac Miller has made and hopefully learn from them. Some notable tracks include “Perfecto”, “Self Care”, “Small Worlds”, and “2009”
4. Mick Jenkins-Pieces of a man
This is the second studio album from Chicago rapper Mick Jenkins. A lot of eyes were on Mick Jenkins after his previous album “The Healing Component” flopped, but he came back with a very strong 17 song album topping out at 53 minutes. This album includes an all-star team of producers such as Kaytranada, THEMpeople, and BadBadNotGood. This album has a great display of lyricism from Mick Jenkins with melodic beats to compliment it. This album includes A feature from Ghostface Killah on the best song of the album “Padded Locks” which includes mesmerizing instrumentals with hard hitting base to match. This comeback from Mick Jenkins was definitely worth the wait and will be something worth playing for years to come.
With Smino’s second studio album in the books this is something different from most rap that is out right now, which makes it special in comparison to other albums. Smino uses a different form of rapping with quick pace to provide a beautiful harmony that keeps the listener clinched to every word he says. This is definitely a fun album with upbeat sounds and crisp lyricism. Almost every song on this work is a stand out because of the difference it has from everything else on this album. Every song has a different feel that elicits happiness and excitement for the listener.
6. Travis Scott-ASTROWORLD
The widely acclaimed 3rdstudio album from Houston rapper Travis Scott lived up to the hype it has received. This album includes homage being paid to Travis Scotts home town on “R.I.P. SCREW”, “5% TINT”, and “HOUSTANFORNICATION”. Travis Scott features Drake, Juice Wrld, Sheck Wes, 21 Savage, Nav, Gunna, and Kid Cudi. Production includes Travis Scott, John Mayer, Tay Keith, Thundercat, and Tame Impala. This album is something Travis Scott has teased for a while now stating that it was something different and crazy from other stuff that he has put out. The deep hitting base and psychedelic sounds create an interesting mood that Travis Scott takes advantage of with fluid bars and strong excitement that matches the production on the project. Some notable songs include “ NO BYSTANDERS”, “HOUSTONFORNICATION”, and “5% TINT”
7. Playboi Carti-Die Lit
Die Lit is the 1st studio album from Playboi Carti. Although Carti is not known to be up in the rankings as a lyrical artist, he does have a way with his words to compliment the beat and provide the listener upbeat party music. His style is something different from other artist which makes him so appealing to music listeners. This album includes features from Chief Keef, Nicki Minaj, Young Thug, Lil Uzi Vert, and Travis Scott. Some notable songs include “R.I.P.”, “R.I.P. Fredo (Notice Me)”, “Love Hurts”, and “Mileage”.
This is Sahbabii’s most colorful album to date. His use of slant rhyming and his unique style of rapping coupled with the very happy and outgoing beats puts the bow at the top of the present which is Squidtastic. Although a lot of his rhyming has much to do with sexual relationship, he is able to put a spin on each time that he says it to make it different from the last time. This album was produced by his older brother T3 and shows through the consistency of sound and how a positive vibe is maintained through the whole project. Sahbabii has influences from the likes of Young Thug which he has taken advantage of and displays very well on each song he has put out. Some notable songs include “Squidrific”, “Army”, and “Sunny Days”.
9. J. Cole-KOD
The fifth studio album for Dreamville artist J. Cole conveys a strong message in 42 minutes. Although the album acronym could mean many things J. Cole makes reference to the age of drug use in America today as well as infidelity in relationships and greed and the chase many have for money. J. Cole gets right to the point with the intro speaking about how society deals with pains associated with living and how some cope with them. This album has remnants of Jazz and trap to create a beautiful display of lyricism with a deep-rooted purpose and drive behind it. Some notable songs include “1985(Intro to the Fall Off)”, “Kevin’s Heart”, and “KOD”.
10. Curren$y, Freddie Gibbs, The Alchemist-Fetti
Coming in at 23 minutes, Curren$y, Freddie Gibbs, and The Alchemist put together a strong project of hard-hitting samples by the Alchemist backed by the lyricism prowess of Curren$y and Freddie Gibbs. These two rappers are able to come together and display strong energy and complimentary attributes to each other. Every track provides a new 70s/80s feel that mesmerizes the listener. Some notable songs include “The Blow”, “New Things”, and “Now and Later Gators”.