“The Div”-Pac Div
Damn, this jawn really upset me. I mean, I freakin’ loved “Church League Champions”, and at least “Mania!” was half-way decent. However, Pac Div dropped a dud that was just as unexciting and bland at the album’s title. Borderline hipster ‘ish, Pac Div and The Cool Kids will always get play on my Ipod, however, it’s safe to say that the Chi’s Cool Kids eclipsed “The Div” by a landslide with “When Fish Ride Bicycles”.
“The Wonder Years”-9th Wonder
Was there any doubt that 9th Wonder’s oft-delayed, “The Wonder Years” would succumb to age. Trust me, you thought the production on ‘Te’s “Charity..” came off dated, take one listen to “The Wonder Years”. It’s amazing to me how 9th went from my favorite producer in ’05-’06, to one of the most drab, boring beatmakers in Hip Hop. I guess when you finally realize the simplicity of his production, it makes a huuuge impact.
I’m quite certain I’ll get ribbed for this selection, please keep in mind, this is my “biggest disappointments”. While CunninLynguists have remained as one of my favorite groups ever, “Oneirology” lacked the grittiness of “A Piece of Strange” and the playfulness and wit of “Dirty Acres”. Perhaps I had extremely lofty expectations for this follow-up, but honestly, aside from “Darkness”, “Oneirology” held absolutely zero playback value for me in 2011.
“Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang”
The Wu-Tang clan and it’s affiliates have one of the most die-hard, true fan bases in Hip Hop, which can be the gift and the curse. Of course, the aforementioned “group” will state that “Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang” is an instant classic, however, much like Wu’s seemingly “thrown together”, “Legendary Weapons”, “Shaolin..” truly lacked direction and cohesiveness. This LP couldn’t even hold a match to “O.B.4.C.L II”, no way….
“Charity Starts At Home” – Phonte
Make no mistake, “Life Of Kings” is prolly one of my top 5 tracks of 2011, but you’re kiddin’ yourself if you’re stating that “Charity..” is one of the year’s best. No doubt, I give ‘Te his props, lyrically, dude drops some gems and is one of the most clever and charismatic emcees in recent memory. However, the production on this LP sounds maaaaad dated. Phonte’s lyricism just couldn’t carry this LP alone.
“Goblin” – Tyler The Creator
Tell me “Yonkers” didn’t have you amped denna’ MoFo!? I mean, that was the closest ‘ish I heard to some good ‘ole Wu-ness in a minute! I remember Tyler boasting on Twitter that he may have created the first “sample-less” Hip Hop LP ever. Ah hem….maybe he should try actually sampling next outing?
“Lasers” – Lupe Fiasco
It’s arguable that Lupe’s debut, “Food & Liquor” is a modern day classic. Although, I actually prefer the advance/bootleg version. However, while I admit that “Words I Never Said” was catchy as hell, “Lasers” had me truly wondering with direction Lupe is goin’ in with this and his future output.
“Reggie” – Redman
I love Redman, his first 3, 4 if you wanna’ push it, LPs are mandatory listening. ”Reggie”, downright laughable and really uncomfortable. C’mon Red, we need somethin’ more than this with “Muddy Waters 2″.
“Watch The Throne” – Kanye West & Jay-Z
Good..but not great. I expected great, received decent. Confused? Me too, bumped “Watch The Throne” for a few weeks upon it’s initial decent, haven’t played it since…straight up.
“Cole World”-J. Cole
Wasn’t expecting much from the over-hyped emcee, received even less. This album was as fluffy as a pillow and hard to imagine it was intended for anyone over the age of 19.