There’s a ton of music released every year, and unless you’re really on top of things, there’s a ton of great music you’re going to miss. That’s where this list comes in. Everything on this list is something that I thought was really good and saw little attention for online in forums, blogs, and on Reddit.
A BREUKELEN STORY
MASTA ACE & MARCO POLO
Masta Ace is in my top 5 rappers of all time. A Long Hot Summer is one of my top records ever. So of course when Ace has a project coming out, I’m all over it. Marco Polo laced Ace with some amazing beats and the features on here are fantastic. This will be in my top 10 for 2018.
LISTEN TO: Three feat. EMC and The Fight Song feat. Pharoahe Monch
ORDER IN CHAOS
REKS & SHORTFYUZ
REKS has been one of my favorite MC’s since Grey Hairs back in 2008, so I was pretty hyped for this. Shortfyuz can have some hit or miss beats for me, but he was pretty good here. The one thing that may turn people off here are some severely homophobic lyrics.
LISTEN TO: Searchin’ feat. Joenny Vargas
LISTEN TO: Deal With It feat. Hydroponikz
TIMES LIKE THESE
LISTEN TO: The Lique
LISTEN TO: Mama’s House feat. Hobo Johnson
SON OF YVONNE
DJ HAZEY 82
DJ Hazey 82 remixes classic wordsmiths with amazing producers. His other works include Native Tongues over Soulchef beats, Apathy and OC over Kno, and more. This time he mixed one of my top 5 rappers with one of my favorite new producers, Phoniks. The result is spectacular.
LISTEN TO: Da Pro
Elzhi is killer with the pen. If you haven’t listened to his work with Slum Village or his solo efforts like Elmatic and Lead Poisoning, do yourself a favor. He’s joined here by Khrysis from the Jamla crew. His beats are overshadowed a bit by Elzhi, but it’s a smooth listen.
LISTEN TO: To Do List
LET THEM KNOW
ROGUE & RELLY
Josi Green has always made quality music, but his production on this record (handled by Ro Marsalis and Gold Haze) is simply fantastic. If you’re unfamiliar with Green, check out his collective A.I.M. and his project F.O.C.U.S. from 2015.
LISTEN TO: Games We Play feat. Ro Marsalis
I guess this is sort of “cheating”, since Knox still hasn’t put out his debut album, but he did release six or seven loose tracks this year and they’re all great. I have them grouped as an EP in iTunes. Don’t sleep on this guy, he’s on his way and 2019 could be big.
LISTEN TO: Dreamers