Must-Cop: 25 Best Hip Hop Albums of 2011 (Part One)
The Tribe & Big Cats! – Forward Thinkers Movers Shakers
Label: The Tribe and Big Cats!
Release: January 25
Minnesota trio The Tribe and Big Cats! team up for their newest effort, Forward Thinkers Movers Shakers. The group bares the torch of Minnesota’s name-brand, home-grown hip hop sound, crafting personal and sharp rhymes with sample-driven percussion.
Big K.R.I.T.- Return of 4Eva
Big K.R.I.T. delivers on his latest free offering. The southern rapper continues to redefine the region with his brand of street-savvy, yet conscious and relate-able rhymes.
Download: Big K.R.I.T. – Return of 4Eva
Blueprint – Adventures in the Counterculture
Release: April 5
Blueprint’s newest effort marks a clear transformation for the Ohio MC. Adventures in Counterculture proves to be a floozy-like adventure in genre and sound, illuminating a renewed sense of artistry for an artist that’s been fairly quiet as of late. After facing numerous setbacks accounted largely to sample complications, Blueprint reemerges with a record — largely sample-free — that bends the expectations of listeners and leaves even the most die-hard hip hop fans with a new-found appreciation for the art of experimentation.
Random Axe – Random Axe
Label: Duck Down
Release: June 14
One of the most highly-sought-after releases for 2011 delivers the work of Sean Price, Black Milk and Guilty Simpson all under one disc. The trio certainly didn’t disappoint; although the final product did surprise some listeners. Black Milk laced the album with mostly light and thin beats which served as a stark contrast to the gravelly and guttural spewings of the album’s rappers. Either way, the project delivered.
Get FamiliarJ. Kennedy
Meet Midwest-by-way-of-SD MC/producer, J. Kennedy, and check out the premiere of his brand new project, ‘California Dreaming’.