Five underrated albums released this summer that you should listen to
“Bandana” by Freddie Gibbs & Madlib
Heavy hitter Freddie Gibbs and one of rap’s most well-received producers, Madlib created the duo known as MadGibbs in 2011. They have since released five projects together, including critically acclaimed album, “Piñata,” which received a score of 82/100 from Metacritic and an 8.0/10 from Pitchfork. The hip-hop duo has returned for their latest project, Bandana, released on June 28, 2019. The album has turned the heads of rap fanatics because of Madlib’s simplistic yet effective production, coupled with Gibbs’ piercing rap style. Notable tracks from the album include “Freestyle Sh**t,” “Crime Pays,” “Palmolive” with Pusha T & Killer Mike, “Giannis” with Anderson .Paak, “Practice,” and “Cataracts.”
“Angel’s Pulse” by Blood Orange
Dev Hynes, also known as Blood Orange, returns with his latest project, “Angel Pulse,” following up from his previous critically acclaimed album, “Negro Swan,” which was given five stars by The Observer and NME. The 14-track project comes in at 33 minutes and calls upon notable artists such as Toro y Moi, Three 6 Mafia’s Gangsta Boo and Project Pat, singer Justine Skye, and many others. Notable tracks include “Gold Teeth” featuring Tinashe, Project Pat and Gangsta Boo; “Benzo,” and “Dark & Handsome” with Toro y Moi.
“The Iliad is Dead and The Odyssey is Over” by Murs, 9th Wonder, & The Soul Council
Legendary underground rapper Murs released his 7th project with critically acclaimed producer, 9th Wonder, on August 9, 2019. 9th Wonder has previously worked on Grammy nominated albums such as Kendrick Lamar’s “DAMN.” and Rapsody’s “Laila’s Wisdom.” “The Iliad is Dead and the Odyssey is Over” not only features production from 9th Wonder and his production group, the Soul Council, which consists of producers: Khrysis, E. Jones, Ka$h Don’t Make Beats, AMP, Fatin “10” Horton, and Eric G. The project’s notable tracks include “The Hulk,” “High Noon,” “Give Me a Reason,” and “Sin.”
“Eve” by Rapsody
It’s hard to believe that Rapsody was able to top her two-time Grammy nominated album, “Laila’s Wisdom,” but she does just that with “Eve,” her latest album which was released on August 23, 2019. “Eve” is an album dedicated to the celebration of black women, and each track is named after black women that have inspired her throughout her life. Notable tracks from this album include “Nina,” “Sojourner” with J. Cole, “Ibtihaj” with GZA and D’Angelo, and “Myrlie” with Mereba. These songs are named after Nina Simone, Sojourner Truth, Ibtihaj Muhammad, and Myrlie Evers-Williams.
“WSTRN Season, Vol. 2” by WSTRN
Louis Rei, Haile, & Akell Charles make up the British Hip-hop/R&B trio known as WSTRN. This release is made up of Louis Rei and Haile increasing their chemistry together as third member Akell continues to serve his prison sentence for violent disorder, which began in 2018 before the release of their previous project, DOU3LE 3AK. WSTRN’s take on rap and R&B is combined with dancehall and afrobeat influences to create catchy and memorable songs designed to keep the summer party going. Notable tracks from this album include “My Way,” “Lights, Camera, Passion” with Miraa May, “Buss Down,” “Night & Day,” and “Gangland” with Oakland rap group SOB X RBE.