Top Albums of 2016
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- Black Star-David Bowie
“Black Star” is truly a masterpiece. As we all know, David Bowie passed away this year and this album is essentially the story of his battle with cancer and reconciliation with death. I am uncertain that there has been an album made by a dying man and released after his death. This album is possibly the most heart wrenching and possibly one of the best albums in the last decade. David Bowie has delivered one of the best musical swan songs in history.
- Coloring Book-Chance the Rapper
Chance the Rapper’s “Coloring Book” is a fantastic follow up to 2011’s Acid Rap. It seems that Chance has really matured as there is a clear improvement on the production. Chance beautifully blends gospel music and contemporary hip-hop. However, it was slightly disappointing to see that Chance chose to go with more generic features on his album. Instead of Ab-Soul and Twista, who were featured in Acid rap, his features in this album were Lil Wayne and Justin Bieber. Despite this, Chance seems to have gotten the best out of his features. This album is great.
- untitled unmastered.-Kendrick Lamar
2015’s “To Pimp A Butterfly” was highly acclaimed, so following it up is a challenge. While this is not a new album in the same way, it seems “untitled unmastered.” is a continuation of the “To Pimp A Butterfly” era. The album is for all intents and purposes is a B-sides album. The cuts on the record are rough around the edges, but for the patient listener are worth it. It is truly amazing to see that even when Kendrick is not “trying” persay he is making better rap than most others out there.
- 4 Your Eyez Only-J. Cole
Once again J. Cole has tried to go double platinum with no features and he very well could be successful. “4 Your Eyez Only” embraces the modern jazz rap sound that has become so popular over the last few years. J. Cole delivers some great pop rap tracks, while also tackling some heavy topics. This album is a great successor to 2014’s “2014 Forest Hills Drive”.
Drake, while not delivering anything groundbreaking, has delivered another album ripe with hits. He exercises the same R&B/ Rap sound we are used to from him. However, unlike “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late” the album focuses less on rap and more singing. There’s a reason the 6 God is held to such high mainstream acclaim and this album is a perfect reason why.