I've said it a few times and I'll say it yet again. We are living in a new Hip-hop golden age. It is different from the past. Back then (be it 88-92 or 93-36 or 88-97 or whatever) the music was not as accessible. One had to hear a song on the radio or catch a video on Yo MTV Raps or the Basement. An article in the Source might have been compelling enough to buy a new tape or CD. But, you pretty much had to go to a record store and buy the physical album. Back then we had barriers to getting music. Today those barriers are gone.
Spotify or youtube or tidal or bandcamp or any number of services provide us with music instantly. Furthermore, just about anyone can be a recording artist. You don't need thousands of dollars to record an album. Some are recording entire projects on their phones.
A golden age of the past was marked with classic, groundbreaking albums. But not hundreds of them. Today's golden age is marked by a barrage of content. Maybe we don't have as many genre bending albums or albums that will change the course of the genre. But, what we do have is easily over 100 albums every year that are dope and enjoyable to listen to.
More artists are giving us more music. We must sift through all that content to find the gems and that's what we here at Everybody's Hip-hop Label are committed to doing. If you enjoy boom bap Hip-hop, then we think you will appreciate the music we find dope. Let us know!
Below is my top 30 Hip-hop albums from (mostly*) 2020. Enjoy the list and if you would like to see the full list of over 100 albums and read about several of them and more Hip-hop ish, then head over to 'the book' tab and check out our book, The Boom Bap Review.
Miles by Blu & Exile
As God Intended by Che Noir
Streams of Thought, Vol 3: Cane & Able by Black Thought
Ocean Bridges by Damu the Fudgmunk, Archie Shepp, & Raw Poetic
Milestones / The Bluest Note by Skyzoo
Rudebwoy by CJ Fly & Statik Selektah
Innocent Country 2 by Quelle Chris & Chris Keys
Seven Times Down, Eight Times Up by Elzhi
The Baltimore Housing Project by Jay Royale
Antithesis by Awon & BluntOne
Jazzy Vibes by Kid Abstrakt & Emapea
Snakes & Birds by Deca
The Sharecropper’s Daughter by Sa-Roc
Don’t Feed the Monster by Homeboy Sandman x Quelle Chris
A Beautiful Revolution Vol 1 by Common
lo&behold by lojii
WWCD by Griselda
Alfredo by Freddie Gibbs x Alchemist
Eileen by 14 Trapdoors X Camoflauge Monk
Pray for Paris by Westside Gunn
ELE 2 by Busta Rhymes
Forward Future by Jahi X Configa
Little Dominiques Nosebleed by The Koreatown Oddity
The Price of Tea in China by Boldy James & Alchemist
King’s Disease by Nas
Coby by Illah Dayz
Moment of Change by Raw Poetic & Damu the Fudgemunk
Jim Crow the Musical by Add-2
Jewelry by Your Old Droog
*I say mostly because we review albums for our annual book a little differently from the calendar year. We look at albums from the second Friday of November through the second Friday of November the following year.