Top 10 Albums of 2015 (Article)

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10.  Every Hero Needs a Villain

Czarface (Killah Priest, 7L & Esoteric) re-up their side project, Every Hero Needs a Villain. Says Eso: “What we’re about is coming to wreck shop, constructing abrasive but engaging verses within the darker corners of pop culture.” Every Hero Needs a Villain features Wu members Method Man and GZA, as well as R.A. the Rugged Man, Meyhem Lauren, among others. Hear snippets of the album.

Dom Kennedy - Dom Kennedy -

9.  Dom Kennedy – Dom Kennedy

Dom Kennedy is a collection of what you might call warm weather music. The self-titled set by the bearded L.A. man is perfect for BBQ parties. It’s stripped down so you get a good whiff of Dom’s summer breeze flow, with just one guest appearance (Boo Bonic).

Release Date: June 2. 2015 More »

Jedi Mind Tricks - The Thief and the Fallen -

8.  Jedi Mind Tricks – The Thief and the Fallen

Friends since high school, MC Vinnie Paz and producer Stoupe the Enemy of Mankind of Jedi Mind Tricks reunite for their eighth album, the electric Thief and the Fallen. Features Dilated Peoples, Eamon and R.A. the Rugged Man.

Release Date: June 2, 2015 More »

Skyzoo - Music for My Friends -

7.  Skyzoo – Music for My Friends

Skyzoo has come a long way from losing a BET freestyle battle (remember those?) to Jin. The transition from battling to album-making is a tricky one for most MCs. The Brooklynite has steadily grown and matured over the years, sharpening his writing skills along the way. His sprawling new set, which he’s calling Music for My Friends, features Roots lyricist Black Thought, soul man Bilal, Detroit poet Elzhi and D-Block general Jadakiss.

Denzel Curry - 32 Zel -

6.  Denzel Curry – 32 Zel / Planet Shrooms

10 to Watch alum Denzel Curry has been relatively quiet since 2013’s Nostalgic 64. That changed with the arrival of the new 14-song project, 32 Zel / Planet Shrooms. The Dungeon Family-inspired set features Big Rube, Mike Dece, J.K. the Reaper and more.

Stream: Denzel Curry – 32 Zel / Planet Shrooms

Troy Ave - Major without a Deal -

5.  Troy Ave – Major without a Deal

Troy Ave’s first proper retail album, Major without a Deal, will satisfy the East Coast craving you didn’t know you had. It’s delightfully flavored with a blend of New York rap solons, Jadakiss, 50 Cent, Cam’ron, Fabolous and Fat Joe among them.

Release Date: May 5, 2015 More »

Pete Rock - Petestrumentals 2 -

4.  Pete Rock – Petestrumentals 2

Undone dishes, blank pages and dirty laundry shiver at the sight of Petestrumentals 2. The Chocolate Boy Wonder’s latest volley hits your heart and brain at all the right spots. I dare you to listen to “Dilla Bounce (R.I.P.)” with dry eyes.

Release Date: June 23, 2015 More »

King Push -

3.  Pusha T – King Push

The newly braid-less Pusha T has been quietly unveiling new music to set the stage for his second solo album, King Push. Between “Lunch Money” and Major Lazer’s “Night Riders,” Push has his fans thoroughly pumped. But there’s more to the tale.

“I dropped ‘Lunch Money’ to show how far out me and ‘Ye are going to go, just sonically,” he told Rolling Stone. “Now, I feel like people don’t know where the hell I’m going to go on the next record. And that’s where I want them to be. ‘Unorthodox’ has become synonymous with Pusha T’s music, back to records like ‘Grindin.’ Everybody’s gonna be really locked in and shocked to see how I’ve raised the level of musicality from My Name Is My Name to King Push.”

Release Date: June 30, 2015

Donnie Trumpet - The Social Experiment - Surf -

2.  Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment – Surf

Surf is the collaborative album between Chance the Rapper’s side project, The Social Experiment and Donnie Trumpet. It’s a captivating listen that starts out strong and ascends to brilliance, with Chance linking the vast and varied pieces together.

Release Date: May 28, 2015 More »

Vince Staples - Summertime 06 -

1.  Vince Staples – Summertime 06

If I said I was over the moon for Vince Staples’ proper debut, I’d be lying. I’m over the moon, under the moon, around the moon and full of moon for this one.

Here’s Vince’s Instagram post announcing Summertime ’06.

“Love will tear us apart. Nov 30th, 2005 was the beginning of the loss. The following summer multiplied it. Beaten paths, crowded with the hopeless. Same song every day, listening to the words of a dead man destroyed by his own mind and body. Why? Because at the end of the day we’re all dead anyway. At least where I come from. Love tore us all apart. Love for self, love for separation, love for the little we all had, love for each other, where we came from. Jabari, Chris, Shard, Tom, Richy, Tyson, Tony, Shelly, Phil, Marcel, Brandon, Steve, Jaron, Tay. Too many to name, too much to forget. Some lost to prison, some lost to Forest Lawn, some turned snitch. Some still here but it will never be the same. Bandanas, Stealing Levis and Nike Sb’s. Derringers and Sidekicks. Its crazy how little you notice and how greatly those things impact. Summer of 2006, the beginning of the end of everything I though I knew. Youth was stolen from my city that Summer and Im left alone to tell the story. This might not make sense but that’s because none of it does, we’re stuck. Love tore us all apart. Summertime ’06, June 30th.”

Summertime 06 is a double LP with 10 tracks apiece. It co-stars Jhene Aiko, Future, Kilo Kish and Joey Fatts.

Listen to “Señorita”

Release Date: June 30. 2015 More »

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