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Eric’s Biggest Disappointments of 2011

by Eric on January 4, 2012

“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.

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Praverb January 4, 2012 at 12:04 pm

Thank you for this list…I agree with a few and I need to check out a few of these projects.

Vaughan Johnson January 4, 2012 at 12:09 pm

I loved Lasers. Lupe’s complained about the final product publicly and it’s clear that there was a lot of label interference to try to make it sound more mainstream. It’s a lot hookier than his first two records but despite the obvious pandering, I think it works pretty well.

Still, I’m hoping they leave him alone if he ever gets around to doing LupEND or whatever his last record is supposed to be called.

Ziga January 4, 2012 at 12:16 pm

Tyler’s album is probably the biggest dissapointment of the year. Yonkers was one of the best songs this year. I wish the whole album went in that direction but it didn’t.

Travis January 4, 2012 at 1:12 pm

Only one that will get any argument out of me is Cunninlynguists. I loved that album, and thought it was better than Dirty Acres… Everything else, if I don’t agree, I can see your reasoning.

Eric January 4, 2012 at 2:52 pm

LOL, I actually even like Kno’s solo shit better.

Thomas January 4, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Agree with some disagree with others. I love Phonte’s joint. I would add Pete Rock/Smif-n-Wessum, all of Murs joints this year, and Redman’s “Reggie” was released December 2010 not this year.

Eric January 4, 2012 at 3:37 pm

Yeah, but the shit of it is….I never realized Redman’s shit dropped in ’10, that’s how amped I was to listen to it…took me all of March, LOL….I think the production on “monumental” balanced the lyrical shortcomings of Smif N Wessun out a bit…BTW, been contemplated a “rappers who need to call it quits, yesterday” post…but that may ruffle a few feathers, lol

Eric January 4, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Good call on the Murs joint(s) BTW, real weak….

Thomas January 4, 2012 at 4:08 pm

Redman’s album was on the top of my disappointed list last year. It hurt me to listen to that album. The production on the Pete Rock/SW joint was just as bland to me as the rhymes were. I love Murs, but he sounds good over 9th’s production to me. I didn’t Ski Beatz joint either mainly due to the rhyming not the production.

Josef Zehetner January 5, 2012 at 4:52 am

I would add the Styles P – bacause of the Production. Styles P can be one of the best in the game, like he demonstrated on features such as “Black Hand Side” or on the mentioned Pete Rock/SW this year – thats why i was expecting much of his album. But on the Album “MC” he, again, chose the wrong beats for himself. The Phonte Album is obvious! Phonte raped better 7 years ago – but he sings better now (again for example: “Black Hand Side”).

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