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Top Five Albums To Listen To

In this day and age there is many many ways to listen to music and it makes it easier to listen and discover new music, but it also allows a lot to slip through the crack and become unnoticed. Many people also stick to the norm and don’t look for anything that could slip under the radar, so here’s five great albums you never listened to (in no particular order).

  1. Imperial- Denzel Curry

This was the debut studio album from South Florida rapper, Denzel Curry. Initially released as a mixtape, it was re-released under Loma Vista records. Other notable artists on the label include Iggy Pop, Ghost, and Marilyn Manson. From the get-go it shows a new side to Curry with catchy hooks and much more personal lyrics, while still keeping the intense rapid fire speed rapping he is known for. The album brings you into the eyes of Denzel showing you Carol City, Florida through his experiences, focusing on violence, gang activity, the death of his brother, and the death of his friends that were in prison. He even managed to grab Joey Bada$$ and Rick Ross for two songs on the album. It’s a great album that shows the reality of street life, the strength of brotherhood, and to embrace your own differences and be your own person

Best Tracks: “ULT,” “This Life,” “Me Now,” “Zenith,” feat Joey Bada$$, and “If Tomorrow’s Not Here.”

  1. American Boyfriend: A Suburban Love Story- Kevin Abstract

The sophomore album from Texas bred, Kevin Abstract. From the title you can pretty much get the gist of the album, a modern day love story of a teenager while also going on a journey of self-discovery, only this one is a little different. This details the story of Abstracts struggle to come to terms with his own sexuality, becoming a pop star, discovering love, and learning how to love himself. From the albums opener “Empty,” you get the bright pop vibe of the album with an amazing hook, which many say is Abstract’s strong suit. The album features production from Romil Hemnani and backing vocals from Roy Blair, who shines most on the track “Runner.” The album is a feel good journey of introspection, becoming yourself, and coming to terms with where you are despite the struggles that you have faced before.

Best Tracks: “Empty,” “Seventeen,” “Yellow,” “Runner,” “Papercut,” “Miserable America,” and “Echo.”

  1. Telefone- Noname

The debut mixtape from Chicago native, Noname, is truly a hidden gem. Initially gaining traction from fellow Chicago artist Chance the Rapper, she took to her own on this. Infusing elements of jazz and rap together, it leads to an amazing blend of undeniable talent. Tackling topics such as the struggles of living in Chicago to losing her first born child. The album is full of bassy, jazzy, and twinkly instrumentals that bring a feel good vibe no matter what the lyrics are saying. It’s an album of self empowerment, struggle, and not fearing making something of yourself. You are truly doing yourself a disservice by not listening to this album.

Best Tracks: “Yesterday,” “Reality Check” feat Akenya & Eryn Allen Kane, “Casket Pretty,” “Shadow Man” feat Pheolix, Smino, & Saba, and “Bye Bye Baby.”

  1. Flame Emoji- J.K. The Reaper

A 6 track EP from North Carolina rapper, J.K. the Reaper, holds a lot of emotion in its short run time. The album focuses mostly on the idea that no matter how hard he works he’ll never be famous. It’s a very dreary album that speaks for most people who are stuck in a rough place and can’t seem to get out of where they are. The six tracks are full of smooth flows, booming bass, and great features. Specifically Premier Jones on the opening tack “Lie 2 U,” where he comes off with a very fast hard hitting flow while settling down into the song. He speaks from a point of view where he feels like an outsider, who can’t seem to get out of the live he’s been seemingly trying to get out of. It’s obviously like most underground rap speaks a lot on the violence and drugs that he sees everyday. But aside from some of the stereotypes it will hold your attention throughout each of the 6 tracks.

Best Tracks: “Kids on Drugs,” “Calculate,” and “Don’t Go Outside.”

  1. Be Patient- City Morgue (Zillakami & Sosmula)

The first official release from New York duo, City Morgue. This is a short brutal assault from both rappers Zillakami and Sosmula. Initially gaining traction for their extreme style of rap and insane music videos they have continuously blown up since. While only a 3 track ep, it is insanity the whole run through. They take everything to the extremes from their lyrics, delivery, appearance, and production. This album is not for most mainstream rap listeners though, as like previously stated it very harsh from the lyrics, to the explosive sub bass on each track. They duo seem to have an almost perfect blend of hardcore punk and modern trap music (just watch their live footage). They continue to pump out each ear drumming track to their very dedicated fanbase until they finally release their full debut album/mixtape, hence the name Be Patient.

Best Tracks: “Trainspotting,” “Drag Me To Hell,” and “Nitro Cell.”

Each of these albums and ep’s are very different, so they have something for just about everybody. Do not skip out on some of these released because you will be missing out on some very talented and extremely great music. If you do happen to listen to any of these, I hope that you enjoy all of these just as much as I did.

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Written by

vandendombrowski@shorian.org

Van Dombrowski is a senior at Lake Shore High School who has been writing for The Shoreline for the entirety of his senior year. His passion lies in music, which he hopes to be able to pursue a career in. Though unaware of exactly where he wants to go to college he continues to pursue, despite having no clue of what he's doing.