With 2012 gone, I decided to make my very own cliché list of what I’m looking forward to in 2013 in regards to Hip Hop.
2012 has seen some great things happen in the mainstream, as well as the independent and/or underground scenes. The most standout story is probably the success of Kendrick Lamar’s Good Kid, m.A.A.d city, and the beginning of the TDE takeover. I just can’t wait for another year in Hip Hop to begin. In no particular order, here’s what I anticipate in 2013:
1. Royce Da 5’9″ solo project
With Slaughterhouses first major release out of the way, the 4 butchers of lyricism now have time for themselves to put together their solo efforts. Personally, my favourite member of the group is Crooked I, but Royce takes the cake when it comes to solo albums. His Bar Exam series would prove that, a long with previous albums including his post-slaughterhouse releases Success Is Certain and Street Hop. I’m sure he’s cooking up something for 2013 right now as we speak. PS: He dropped a recent freestyle that was nothing short of mediocre, but that doesn’t mean he “fell off”. Relax.
2. Unit 6 – Ab-Soul & JMSN
The Black Lip Pastor (formerly bastard) of TDE had a great independent release in 2012, and will continue his run in 2013 with his upcoming collaborative project with JMSN. Soulo’s Control System album really stood out to me last year, so without a doubt, anything with his name on it this year will be something special to me. JMSN is someone I’m new to, but his trippy and psychedelic sounds on his project Priscilla proved to me that he is also someone to look out for. They leaked out a track entitled ‘Nibiru’ that had me researching some…some things. Check it out below.
3. Oxymoron – ScHoolBoy Q
Say what you will about Q, but this guy works. His flow and style has been jocked, I swear! Q put together 2 great tapes Setbacks, and the gritty groundbreaking Habits & Contradictions. His 2013 independent release should be something to look forward to, as he stated himself that Kendrick forced him to “make a classic”. Let’s see what Q’s rendition of a classic is! Other than me being somewhat a fan of his solo work, I can’t wait to hear the Kendrick feature. They honestly have nothing but classics together in my opinion. It’s hard to pick out my favorite by the two of them, but ‘Birds and the Beez’ stands out to me. Check below. Other mentions would include, but not limited to: Blessed, Live Again, and Spiteful Chant.
4. Born Sinner – J. Cole / Cole & Kendrick 2013 Collaborative Project
I didn’t like J. Cole’s debut album as a whole. It had its moments, but to me it wasn’t solid overall,especially in comparison to his previous mixtapes. But the new single ‘Miss America’ has been on repeat since it came out. Really different stuff that represents the revolutionary and introspective side of Cole. His sophomore effort shouldn’t cease to amaze and impress. Peep Miss America below, as well as The Jig Is Up by Kendrick Lamar off the collab project he’s doing with Cole. These 2 will bring it on this tape. If you heard HiiiPower which was produced by Cole, then you must be as excited as I am! This is “Just the tip of the iceberg!”
5. Doris – Earl / Wolf – Tyler, The Creator
Last but not…actually, probably least, I’ll be looking forward to solo projects from Odd Future’s Tyler, The Creator and Earl. Earl is someone who surprised the hell out of me with ‘Chum’. I know the dude can rhyme and his style is more of an acquired taste per se, but I never really was too interested in his work until ‘Chum’. He set the bar nicely for what to expect from his upcoming album Doris. Tyler on the other hand, his long absence due to touring (I guess?) has led me to only be ready for the unexpected when it comes to this guy’s outrageousness. Goblin was a cool album, Bastard was dope as hell, and I’m only anticipating what’s to come next from him and his other OF cohorts. Watch the video for ‘Chum by Earl below.
Some other mentions I can think of off the top of my head are:
- Danny Brown 2013 Release
- Big K.R.I.T 2013 Release
- No Love Lost – Joe Budden
- No Malice 2013 Release
- My Name is My Name – Pusha T
- Anything else from Slaughterhouse (Royce, Crooked, Budden, Joell) and Black Hippy (Kendrick, Soulo, Q, Jay Rock), including collaborations between the 2 powerhouses.