One clear positive to come out of this decidedly psycho year is an influx of phenomenal Alternative Hip Hop records. The K has sorted through countless projects that have have dropped and excitedly presents…
The Top 3
Alternative Hip Hop Albums of 2020.
1. Armand Hammer – Shrines
Shrines is the fourth album to emerge from the New York Underground pair, billy woods and Elucid. On this album, the duo brings more of what we have come to expect from them and they do it well. Shrines is a dense landscape of complex metaphors and rhyme schemes, built on experimental, unnerving production. This album represents a continuation of the win streak for these two and is definitely worth a listen. The finely curated feature list includes many other stars from the underground movement. Recruitment of players like Quelle Chris, Pink Siifu, Akai Solo paints a picture of the unconventional, individualistic hip hop that defines the record.
2. Dos Monos – Dos Siki
There are loads of great Hip Hop projects that are neglected by American fans because they lie on the other side of the language barrier. While of course Hip Hop’s lyricism is what attracts some fans, the instrumental, delivery and flow can be enough, even if the listener does not speak the language. Dos Siki from Japanese trio Dos Monos proves that there is important music outside of the parochial bubble of American hip hop fans. These elusive emcees rap over bold, experimental beats and are forming their own very distinct sound. This project also includes an awesome feature from Injury Reserve . Rest in Peace Groggs.
3. Navy Blue – Àdá Irin
Most people know Sage Elsesser from his days with Odd Future or as a pro skater for Fucking Awesome and Supreme. He helped defined the look of a generation along with Sean Pablo, Na-Kel, Kevin Bradley and Tyshawn Jones in Supreme’s Cherry, and is continuing to define himself as an artist. As Navy Blue, Elsesser has became an influential force in the current generation of underground Hip Hop. Navy Blue’s debut full-length album is an intensely personal body of work that brings Sage Elsesser out of the shadow of his already accomplished career. In just under 30 minutes, Navy Blue offers an incredibly raw look at himself, the ones he loves and the troubles of coming into adulthood. Navy Blue’s soft-spoken delivery coalesces with the abstract, hazy instrumentals to form one entity, one that carries immense emotional weight and feels like a window into the world of Sage.
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