Best Hip Hop Albums of 2020
2020 has been wild. And while some are crying that it’s been boring and uneventful, true hip hop heads are enjoying a renaissance with the best albums of 2020.
In a year like no other, hip hop artists were dropping albums that prove that hip hop is far from dead. And in fact, may have found it’s soul at the perfect time.
As the human experience has highlighted the divide between the haves and have-nots more than ever. Never has it been clearer that hip hop is still the most socially relevant art form in history.
We watched police murder and shoot unarmed black men in 2020. The world protested. Many uninitiated were in shock to the realities they saw. Hip hop wasn’t surprised. In fact, it was the opportunity for the most powerful music on the planet to scream, “why the fuck do you think we were screaming fuck tha police 30 years ago???!!!”
So with that back drop, I (THE MEAN) will announce Loud News Net’s first ever annual best of list – The Best Hip Hop Albums of 2020
10. Burden of Proof – Benny The Butcher
Griselda fam, Benny The Butcher hit us up with a banger of an album in 2020. As Griselda continued it’s conquest of hip hop in 2020, Burden of Proof by Benny The Butcher in October made it clear that he a torch bearer on that path. Banging beats and dope reality rhymes is a fresh dose of authenticity that is needed in hip hop.
Editor’s Note 12/5/2020: After smoking a blunt of Kush and throwing this in the headphones again, I’ve decided to move this album up to #4 on this list 💨
9. LA BELLA MEDUSA – ILL Bill
ILL Bill returned with some hardcore shit in 2020 when he dropped LA BELLA MEDUSA. WATCH THE CITY BURN is certainly a well timed banger from the Brooklyn native.
This album has some memorable features from Tech N9ne, Pharoahe Monch, Conway, Kool G Rap, Vinnie Paz and some dope sample based beats, reminding listeners that underground hip hop is alive and well.
8. No Pressure – Logic
A lot of cats hate of Logic. They’re just jealous in my opinion.
He’s not the dopest emcee and is often over-celebrated, but he puts in work and is often too flawless for his own good on tracks.
His “final” album before “retirement”, No Pressure, hits on the consistency that has been Logic’s career. Which automatically puts it on any best-of list, when compared to the half-ass garbage that permeated hip hop in 2020.
7. Lulu – Conway the Machine & The Alchemist
The first of two appearances by Conway The Machine and The Alchemist on this list. It was a busy year for these two. The Alchemist beats are just some real vibing head nod shit. But not robotic. His natural feeling production is what elevates him above others in the game.
Conway continues to establish his position in hip hop. 2020 was the year heads really need to take notice.
6. Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God – Busta Rhymes
Damn, we forgot about Busta. Shame on us.
Busta Rhymes dropped ELE2 and let everyone know he’s one of the greatest rappers of all time. Yea, the guy who stole the show on Scenario is still holding it down in 2020.
5. What You Gonna Do When the Grid Goes Down? – Public Enemy
When Chuck D speaks, heads should listen. The return of Public Enemy to my Spotify playlist in 2020 was a pleasant surprise. The track State of the Union (STFU) was an anthem heading into election season. This album sounds like vintage P.E. Raw, loud, powerful. It has all the elements to make it one of my best hip hop albums of 2020
4. Alfredo – Freddie Gibbs & The Alchemist
I always love seeing how The Alchemist teams up with the best artists to create magic. In the case of Freddie Gibbs, they connect to make the classic Alfredo.
This album is innovative and fresh. Something that has been lacking from hip hop for some time. This shit also got nominated for a Grammy! Well deserved for The Alchemist who has been putting it down for decades.
3. All My Heroes Are Dead – R.A. the Rugged Man
R.A. The Rugged Man is one of the most dynamic emcees in hip hop. He returned in 2020 and dropped All My Heroes Are Dead. The Long Island native collaborated with a number of legends on this album. “The Slayers Club” (featuring Ice-T, Vinnie Paz, Brand Nubian, Chris Rivers, Chino XL, M.O.P. and Onyx) is an example of the fire power this album brings.
2. From King to A GOD – Conway the Machine
Holy shit! Dudes still make raw ass hip hop in 2020???
Conway The Machine is an artist I’ve learned to love over recent months. Although I’m not as familiar with his music or background as some of the other names on this list. But real recognize real. And Conway is legit hip hop. The way it should be. That is why he ends up on this list twice and takes #2 on the best hip hop albums of 2020 list.
1. RTJ4 – Run the Jewels
Has there ever been an album with a more perfect release date? As America took the streets to protest systemic racism and murderous police, RTJ dropped their 4th studio album. To many this album was the soundtrack for the desire for change that was ignited across America in the summer of 2020.
I remember rolling beside protesters in Providence bumping Ju$t and Walking in the Snow out of my subwoofer. This album and 2020 were one. As America struggled with its ugly past and the present pandemic during the summer of 2020, Run the Jewels showed up just in time to tell the world to run their shit!
Run the Jewels’ RTJ4 the deserving winner of Loud News Net’s first ever Best Hip Hop Albums of the Year list. Hope you enjoyed my picks. Hit us up with your favorites.