Every year, the internet receives pieces of work that shut down social media that we call mix tapes and albums. Even in the madness of what people have dubbed The Worst Year in History, the year of 2016 brought out the best of Hip/hop and R&B artists. They managed to release some insane bodies of work to the internet to make this a great year for music. Below are 15 of Boom Philly’s best albums/mix tapes of 2016. These are some of the best for various reasons, and in no particular order!
What was your personal favorite?
Chance the Rapper – Coloring Book
First off, Chance’s Coloring Book was Grammy- nominated for Best Rap Album. The Chicago emcee made history this year, changing the rules of the Recording Academy by becoming the first and only streaming album to be nominated.
“Milly rockin’, scoopin’ all the blessings out my lap”
Coloring Book embodies melodic tones of gospel and R&B with Chance The Rapper spitting amongst friends, Kanye West, T-Pain, Justin Bieber, 2Chainz, Lil Wayne and Young Thug, just to name a few.
Future – Purple Reign
Released in January 2016, Future rang in the New Year accompanied by DJ Esco and Metro Boomin. The trio honestly did what they do best; craft an intoxicating tape that follows Future through the good, the bad, the ugly, high and low. Following the success of 56 Nights , Purple Reign is crafted with a dark, tonic production that carries Future’s Instagram quotable catch phrases. #FutureHive earned the beginning of 2016 with hits like “Inside the Mattress”, “Perkys Calling” and “Wicked”.
Young Thug – Jeffery
No, My Name is Jeffery was the official name of the album that details Young Thug and his love for his idols including Rihanna, Kanye West and Harambe (R.I.P). Just by looking at the song titles, you may wonder why would Thugga Thugga make an album about these artists? With pulsating beats and Young Thug’s voice dripping over each track you’ll soon find out its deeper than that. Paying homage is the takeaway from the album with Thugga’s twist on repping for his idols. In “RiRi” Young Thug pays homage to Rihanna by referencing “work” throughout the hook and recreates some of the Rihanna aesthetic throughout the song. Young Thug took off with Jeffery in the 4th quarter of 2016, continuing to give listeners and rappers a run for their money.
Lil Uzi Vert- Lil Uzi Vert vs. The World
The authientic sound of Lil Uzi Vert explains why Lil Uzi Vert vs. The World put the city of Philadelphia on the map for 2016. With production from Metro Boomin and Maaly Raw, Uzi shined through on hits like “Money Longer”, “P’s & Q’s” and “Hi Roller”.
21 Savage- Savage Mode
Issa Savage. 21 Savage’s Savage Mode was the chronicle of Atlanta spoken by a true savage. 21 Savage gives listeners a look inside The Life and Times Vol. 1 of Atlanta trap rappers. Summer 2016 was taken aback by 21 Savage with the anthem “No Heart” that included production from Metro Boomin that brings out the gritty and gutter 21 Savage and Savage Mode makes a real trap story for the audience.
YG- Red Friday
Following up Still Brazy, YG took 2016 by storm with Red Friday. Along with hard hitting L.A. beats by DJ Mustard, YG’s “Get Out Yo Feelin’s” gives us a taste of Still Brazy with lyrics like “Oh, that’s why they mad/ Please, somebody, tell me why they mad”. Always a good storyteller through visuals, YG gleams on “One Time Comin'” , a tale of his brush with police brutality that details the current state of America today. Without any questionable authority, YG’s strong holding sound and politically correct adhesiveness makes Red Friday a top hitta on our list for 2016.
Meek Mill- DC4
The long-awaited arrival of DC4 was none less than what we expected. With teasing Instagram clips and album art, Philly’s own Meek Mill showed up. After the public ongoing beef with Drake, Meek survived all the backlash and cooked up something special. DC4 starts off on a high note with “On the Regular” (does he not have some of the greatest intros) as Meek illustrates the fact that he is far from over and his career is not even close to ending. Meek brings in Tory Lanez to body “Litty” with his own captivating voice. DC4 finishes out with Nicki, Lil Uzi Vert and 21 Savage to settle the score of features that explains that Meek didn’t lose in the rap game in 2016.
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