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WYDU’s Look at 2010: Trav’s 50 Favorite Albums/Mixtapes of 2010

by Travis on January 19, 2011

As 2010 creeps into our collective rear view mirrors, yours truly is fashionably late as usual. We got my PERSONAL favorite 50 albums (with a few mixtapes mixed in) of the year 2010. Now this means that they were my favorite, not what I think were the collective best of the year, so it’s an OPINION. This is what I played the most, what I found myself going back to time and time again. I listened to less hip hop material this year than in years past, with a chunk of time going to checking out old Argentine rock records and Brazilian Tropicalia albums while I was down in South America as well as my current psychedelic rock phase that I’m currently going through, but I’m guessing I still listened to over 300 different projects, EPs, mixtapes, instrumental albums (EPs and Beat/Instrumental albums had their own list this year). To be included on this list means something. It means your project left an impression on me and I listened to it more than a one and done that so often happens to me these days. There were also some that I really wanted to fit on to the list, but 50 was more than I wanted to include, but props to those that I’ve taken the time to post on BH throughout the year. If I didn’t like it, it wouldn’t have been on the site.

Couple things to point out, there were a few “Free Albums”, most notably the Sinitus Tempo and Obii Say album Vinyl Proxy 1965, it took the honors for favorite free album of the year. I expect big things out of this duo in the coming year and yours truly will be pushing them any chance I get. Another great album was the Front Porch Poets album For The Record. The smooth soulful sounds captured me.

2010 also was the return of the female for me. I’m not one to separate the sexes, a dope emcee is a dope emcee whether they are male or female, but people tend to forget that. This year, four females came with solid albums, most notably Boog Brown’s album with Apollo Brown (who probably takes the crown for being involved with three different albums on the list) The Brown Study. Tiff The Gift was the great new comer and should have gotten way more press than she got. Dessa from the Doomtree collective was a multi-layered album that had poetry, hip hop, and even some singing. It was this diversity that sold me, plus the fact that I have a little crush on her. Then there was Eternia who proved she could rock the mic just as hard as any “boy”. Backed by longtime hip hop vet Moss, Eternia dropped a well rounded album in At Last that had personal tales, mic rockin’ and everything in between.

The most slept on album on my list has to go to the Junk Science crew, who is one of the most consistent groups going right now. Three albums in a row by them and all would be in my top 20 for their respective years. They might not be for anyone, but for those cats who have similar tastes as me, they are well worth checking out.

A couple of projects that were on the list that even surprised me. Meaning they were artists and/or types of hip hop that I wouldn’t picture myself liking all that much. One was  Qwel & Maker’s Owl. I’ve loved Maker’s beats, but I’ll admit at times Qwel loses me with his lyrics. Owl was nothing short of genius, both lyrically and musically. It’s an album that could move up even more in the future. The other was NoCanDo’s Jimmy The Lock. Project Blowed is a collective of ultra talented and sometimes ultra hard to listen to artists. NoCanDo made an album, something that a lot of battle rappers simply cannot do. I found myself playing Jimmy The Lock a lot in the first quarter last year.

As for my favorites, there wasn’t much separating the top five albums this year. They were all probably considered my favorites at some point during the year…..what were they? Well, let’s just see.

1. Celph Titled & Buckwild – Nineteen Ninety Now Nineteen Ninety Now - Celph Titled & Buckwild or Physical Product

2. The Left – Gas Mask (mp3) (Vinyl)

3. Roc Marciano – Marcberg Marcberg - Roc Marciano (Physical)

4. Freeway & Jake One – The Stimulus Package The Stimulus Package (Deluxe Edition) - Freeway & Jake One (Physical)

5. Apollo Brown – The Reset (MP3) (Physical)

6. Damu The Fudgemunk – Supply For Demand (physical product)

7. Qwel & Maker – Owl (Buy MP3 or Physical)

8. Junk Science – A Miraculous Kind of Machine A Miraculous Kind Of Machine - Junk Science (Physical)

9. Obii Say & Sinitus Tempo – Vinyl Proxy 1965 (Free Download)

10. Kno – Death Is Silent Death Is Silent - Kno (physical)

11. Black Milk – Album of the Year Album of the Year - Black Milk (Physical)

12. Deacon The Villain & Sheisty Khrist – Niggaz With Latitude (Physical)

13. Atmosphere – To All My Friends, Blood Makes the Blade Holy To All My Friends, Blood Makes the Blade Holy - The Atmosphere EP's - Atmosphere (Physical)

14. Ghostface Killah – Apollo Kids (Physical)Apollo Kids - Ghostface Killah

15. Blame One – Endurance Endurance - Blame One

16. Strong Arm Steady – In Search of Stoney Jackson (Physical & MP3)

17. Front Porch Poets – For The Record (FREE DOWNLOAD)

18. Statik Selektah – 100 Proof (Physical)

19. Constant Deviants – Concrete Utopia (Wax)

20. Blacastan – Blac Sabbath (CD)

21. ESQ & Chikaramanga – The Succession (CD&Wax)

22. Pack FM – I F*cking Hate Rappers (Physical & MP3)

23. SmooVth – Little Boy Blue (iTunes) (CD)

24. The Heart & Brain – Mbodiment (iTunes)

25. Statik Selektah & Termanology – 1982 (CD) (iTunes)

26. Skyzoo & Illmind – Live From The Tape Deck (CD) (iTunes)

27. Boog Brown & Apollo Brown – Brown Study (Physical) (Bandcamp)

28. John Robinson & Lewis Parker – International Summers (Physical) (iTunes)

29. Spon 2 – Beat Fanatic Classics (iTunes) (Physical)

30. Reason – Landlords & Lullabies (Buy all flavors)

31. The Roots – How I Got Over (Physical) (iTunes)

32. Tiff the Gift – Cool, Calm, Chill (Physical) (iTunes)

33. Nocando – Jimmy the Lock (Physical) (iTunes)

34. Crown Royale – Crown Royale (Physical) (iTunes)

35. Black Sheep – From the Black Pool of Genius (iTunes) (Physical)

36. Amad Jamal – Barely Hagin’ On: The Chronicles of a Brotha Like Rodney King (physical)

37. Panacea – 12 Step Program (physical and MP3)

38. Akello & Coincidence – Breathing Room (FREE DOWNLOAD)

39. Kooley High – Eastern Standard Time (FREE DOWNLOAD)

40. Von Pea – Pea’s Gotta Have It (Physical) (iTunes)

41. Little Brother – Leftback (physical) (iTunes)

42. Intuition – Girls Like Me (Bandcamp) (physical)

43. Dessa – A Badly Broken Code (Physical & MP3)

44. Eternia & Moss – At Last (physical) (iTunes)

45. Goldminerz – The Gold Rush (physical)

46. Gangrene – Gutter Water (iTunes) (Physical)

47. Clan Destined – A Story Never Told (bandcamp)

48. Dumhi – The Jungle (physical & Mp3)

49. Hezekiah – Conscious Porn (iTunes) (Physical)

50. Rozewood – 2012 (physical & mp3)

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Eric January 19, 2011 at 10:14 am

Damn good lost hombre

Mello January 19, 2011 at 10:47 am

BLAMM! #2, #5, #27!!! That’s what’s up Travis, much appreciated for everything all year round!

jrrider January 19, 2011 at 11:38 pm

Damn that top 5 is exactly where its at!! Couldn’t have said it better myself. Your just missing the Joell Ortiz banger and this list would be a masterpiece.

Josef Zehetner January 20, 2011 at 5:42 am

I don’t why i just can’t get really down with that buckwild and celph stuff. Not that i don’t like it – but i think you guays are a little overrating it. I like the style of Celph but i don’t see the “innovative” part you guys taöked about in your “Bloggerhouse approved”. Rapping over old beats – don’t a lot of guys do that on mixtapes? It’s not eye opening shit like the Apollo Brown stuff. The Stimulus Package is a really nice project – but to ut it on the same level as the Roc Marciano and The Left?
I really liked that you had the Strong Arm Steady in your list, it gets forgotten (Eric) because it droped in the last week of 09.
I really have to check out the Junk Science.
Thanks for the list! And it’s not my intention to hate on the 1990 now stuff. As i sayed i like it, but just not that much that i would understand why you guys rate it that high!

Travis January 20, 2011 at 9:28 am

JR, it’s funny, I actually had the Joell Ortiz on the list, albiet further down, but when I went to put the buy links up for it, I realized it hasn’t “officially” dropped yet. Amazon fucked up and released the mp3 version by accident and then pulled it back. It’s not supposed to be out until next month.

Josef, as mentioned, it’s all tastes. While I’ll agree with you (I didn’t write the review on the Celph album) that’s it’s not exactly innovative, I just love it because it sounds like an album I would have loved back in ’96 or what not. I’m an old codger, so QUALITY throwback albums will always win me over. It’s all about tastes I suppose. The Strong Arm Steady had to stay on my radar, besides, I still count release days by when the physical product ships and it didn’t for that album until Jan althought the mp3′s dropped in Dec. If you liked the previous two Junk Science albums, then you would probably like this one.

ali roukia January 20, 2011 at 11:54 am

good ranking, it misses snowgoons “kraftwerk” and marco polo and rustee juxxx “the exxecution” and “the stupendous adventures of marco polo” tho

jrrider January 20, 2011 at 11:09 pm

Lmao Yeah your right. Does that mean it will be on next years list? I would put that Fat Joe verse from killed for less up against just about anything thats came recently. Grown man gutta shit

Poodie January 27, 2011 at 8:51 am

BOOG BROWN BABY!!! Dont sleep on Adrift Da Belle either who released “Garden State Parkway” Spring 2010


Commish CH February 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Yo son for the first time in a few years, our top lists actually have a few of the same joints. Crossovers like Tim Hardaway. Glad to see Junk Science getting some shine and I’m loving the fun West Coast vibe that Nocando brings. I’ve told some people that if Nineteen Ninety Now came out in the summer of 95, that it would probably be in my alltime top 25; it just hits that classic Boom Bap that wants me to dig out my Tims and roll in the 93 Jeep Wrangler. CHeers.

jay February 2, 2011 at 4:35 am

wheres big krit’s album at??

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