Hip Hop Album/EP of the Week (Nov 11th - Nov 17th, 2022) 2 Albums!!
The 3rd Album in the KD Series from Legendary Queensbridge NYC Emcee "Nas" and Talented Producer "Hit-Boy" entitled "King's Disease 3" was released on 11/11/2022 and certainly delivered in terms of expectations. It's not my favorite in the KD series but it's a solid, quality effort from Nas and Hit-Boy. The music reflects the signature sound we've come to appreciate from the previous 2 KD Albums, but the most significant difference with this project is its mainly solo verses from Nas, it's been a long time since I've heard a Nas album with no additional Emcee features. I think the only album he's done with no Rap features is The Lost Tapes. This album clocks in at 17 tracks but just as long as the previous KD2 album with a duration of around 50 mins. The production has a nice mixture of soulful and upbeat tracks. Subject matter wise, the music reflects topics about Nas' growth and longevity as an Artist, the obstacles he's overcame, his love and recognition for his hometown of Queens, his words of wisdom for young Rappers and youth in the hood, avoiding violence and investing wisely. He also has a few dope concept records, one about a previous relationship situation, and another related to the topic of Beef (conflict). He touches on the subject of getting older on the track "Once A Man, Twice a Child", reflects on first time experiences on the song "First Time", and speaks on a number of other interesting topics. The standout tracks of the album (imo) are Legit, Reminisce, Serious Interlude, WTF SMH, Once a Man, Twice a Child, First Time, Don't Shoot and Beef. A few of the songs have cool beat changeups as well, including tracks Michael & Quincy, WTF SMH, and Don't Shoot. Overall the album showcases Nas in top form lyrically, it displays his longevity and continued excellence as an Emcee (after over 20 years of releasing Hip Hop albums). It's also really amazing to see that Nas and Hit-Boy's Emcee/Producer relationship has continued to flourish. Technically this is their 4th Album together considering the "Magic" album they released at the close of last year, KD3 is certainly a thoughtful and dope project that keeps the upbeat and fresh soulful momentum from beginning to close of the album. At 17 tracks and 51 minutes in duration, the album gets better as you listen from track to track and keeps interest all the way through. Check out Nas and Hit-Boy's "KD3" album now available on digital streaming platforms
Another dope Album that came later in the previous week (released on Nov 15, 2022) was the New Collabo Album from Detroit Producer "Apollo Brown" and Chicago Emcee "Philmore Greene" entitled "Cost of Living". I also chose this Project as Best Hip Hop Album of the Week due to its warm signature Soulful Boom Bap sound by Apollo Brown, coupled with Philmore Greene's thoughtful and clear delivery as an Emcee. In my opinion, this is one of Apollo Brown's best work production wise, since his albums with Che Noir and Raheem DeVaughn. The production is Rich, Soulful and Warm! Philmore's rhyme delivery is straightforward, commanding and clear. On the album, he reflects on subjects like integrity, overcoming obstacles, coming up in the streets, dealing with challenges of the hood, the changing of times, immaculate lyricism, cruising through the hood, the pursuit of freedom, dealing with loss, broken promises and more. Most of the music is centered around the subject of dealing with the trials and struggles of coming up in the hood and dealing with the street life, but it's told from a precautionary perspective, sharing wisdom while presenting the tough realities. The album also does not have much features, only one vocal feature from Emcee "Evidence" and also a Producer feature from "Rasheed Hadee". Overall the Album is mature, thought provoking and certainly Soulful. My favorite tracks are Immaculate, Freedom, Keep Going, Just Imagine, It's Different and Where's the Love. Apollo Brown and Philmore Greene's new album "Cost of Living" is now available via Mello Music Group on bandcamp and digital streaming platforms