Wednesday, March 5, 2014

BRL 2013 Year in Review (Part 2)

30. Tonedeff – Glutton (75.5)
29. John Legend – Love in the Future (75.5)
28. Louis Logic – Look on the Blight Side (76)
After seven years without a solo album, Louis Logic finally released a new record in 2013. Logic handled all the production himself, which at times resulted in some mediocre and same-sounding beats. But overall it was another great release from one of the most technically gifted rappers in the game. The album's opening track, "A Day Late & a Dollar Short" was one of my favorite songs of the year.
27. Cold War Kids – Dear Miss Lonelyhearts (76)
I discovered a lot of great music listening to University of Findlay's radio station last year. One band that I re-discovered was the Cold War Kids. "Miracle Mile" was getting a lot of plays and it was a great song, which prompted me to further investigate their latest LP. It was a slow burn of an album, where I only liked a few songs at first, but by the end of the year, it become one of my favorites.
26. Big Sean – Hall of Fame (76.5)
G.O.O.D. Music's most polarizing figure showed his great potential in 2012 with an excellent mixtape and stole the show on Cruel Summer. And that potential became more realized this year with his sophomore effort, Hall of Fame. This album showed the Detroit can do more emotionally driven subject matter, in addition to his swagger raps.
25. Mayer Hawthorne – Where Does this Door Go? (77)
24. Dessa – Parts of Speech (78)
This album came out right before I moved to Chicago. I didn't play the fourth track of this album until a few months after getting this album. The third track is the excellent lead single "Warsaw," where Dessa proves her battle rap chops. But the first two cuts - "Man I Knew" and "Give Up Your Ghost" - are as fierce of a one-two punch to start an album as any I can remember. When I finally got to the entire album, I realized Parts of Speech was damn good.
23. Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience (part 1) (78.5)
22. Tuxedo (Mayer Hawthorne & Jake-One) – Tuxedo (78.5)
Mayer Hawthorne had a pretty solid year between his third LP, Where Does This Door Go? and his "secret" project with Seattle beatmaker Jake-One. His latest full-length is probably his best album, but his 3-track Tuxedo managed to have the three best songs he made all year. "Do It" is one of those undeniable songs, that you love the second you hear it.
21. Ugly Heroes (Apollo Brown, Red Pill & Verbal Kent) – Ugly Heroes (78.5)

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