21. Isaiah Rashad – Cilvia Demo
This dropped all the way back in January but I didn’t forget about it. It was hilarious how prior to this project, so many people were disapproving of his signing to TDE. All the young, ignorant hip hop fans of the Internet were quick to crack jokes, calling him a wannabe Kendrick and so on. Once this thing dropped, Isaiah turned haters into stans. Cilvia Demo had a little something for everybody. Boom bap, southern, Outkast influences and even west coast influences. His sound his a melding of all these different predecessors from all over and he crafted that into a fairly unique sound. Overall, the project is just filled with great music and that hook from “Banana” is awesome shower singing material.
20. Intuition & Equalibrum – Intuition & Equalibrum
Here’s a very slept on pick from 2014. West coast emcee and producer duo of Intuition & Equalibrum dropped a very impressive album this year. It’s filled with good sounds and some great concepts including the song “STFU” where Intuition raps from the perspective of his girlfriend yelling/repromanding him. It’s a real telling and emotional album and those are the kinds of songs in hip hop that resonate with me the most. Nothing better than a good story told in a really cool sounding song. “Imagining” for example is a heartfelt song about how devastating its been to have his father develop Alzheimer’s Disease. Intuition’s just a hell of a storyteller.