Welcome to our 13th annual Illuminati 2G Hip Hop Awards. Here we recognize the best albums of 2013 in the world of hip hop. We break in down into regions as by what was the best album from the east, west, midwest and dirty south. All the selections are made by Illuminati 2G so if ya got beef wit the picks, hit me up on email or the message board.
Best East Coast Album: Talib Kweli: Gravitas
In a year overall that was quiet to start for the east, things definitely picked up in the 2nd half. The end result this month was a stellar indie project from Talib Kweli. Gravitas showcased a completely rejuvenated MC and lively production. And so is the way of the industry, another artist doing promotion and distribution 100% through himself.
Honorable Mention: Czarface, Troy Ave, Jay-Z, Roc Maricano, The Godfathers, Noreaga, Papoose, Joe Budden, Ransom, Havoc, Prodigy, LL Cool J, R.A. The Rugged Man, Styles P, Pusha T, Malice, Drake, ASAP Rocky
Best Dirty South Album: Big K.R.I.T.: King Remembered In Time
Krit is one of a dying breed in the hip hop game. Self sufficient, MC (and a damn good one), producer (underrated) and relentless work ethic. Where many expected an immediate splash with his debut album last year, the lukewarm response was followed up with arguably the best free album of the year.
Honorable mention: Slim Thug, Paul Wall, Chamillionaire, Z-Ro, Goodie Mob, Juicy J, DJ Paul, Da Mafia 6ix, Lil Wayne
Best Midwest Album:Black Milk: No Poison No Paradise
Black Milk continues with his stellar streak of dope projects and No Poison, No Paradise is no different. The Detroit representative is another rapper/producer phenom in the game and 2013 was a great year for Midwest hip hop.
Honorable mention: Eminem, Jon Connor, Slum Village, Tech N9Ne, Slum Village, Bone Thugs N Harmony
Best West Coast Album:Durag Dynasty- 360 Waves
This west coast super group of Planet Asia, Killer Ben, Tristate, and Alchemist dropped a heater of a debut album. Amazing production and the album had that Wu Tang feel of MC’s going in trading bar for bar. The west has gone back underground but what an underground it is.
Honorable Mention: Snoop Dogg/Dam Funk, Terrace Martin, Daz & WC, Nipsey Hussle, Game, Celly Cell, Tash, Dom Kennedy, Hopsin, Jehuniko, Dizzy Wright, Trap, Mav, E-40
Album Of The Year Rittz: The Life & Times Of Jonny Valiant- Brutally honest, brash and vocally breathtaking, Rittz absolutely blew me away with this album. It STAYED in the whip all year and it was refreshing to have a MC thrive and flourish off LYRICS & CONTENT. Incredible project, congrats to Rittz.
Best Comeback: Kool G Rap
Best Indie Album: Rittz- The Life & Times Of Jonny Valiant
Most Slept On Album: Rittz- The Life & Times Of Jonny Valiant
Biggest Flop: Atlantic Records- Little to no promotion from any of their top releases this year
Best Mixtape- Jehuniko: Spiritual Warfare IV/The Fire Within
Best Group Album- Czarface
Best New Artist- Rittz
Best Producer- Statik Selektah
Most Entertaining “Beef”- Artists responses to Kendrick Lamar’s Control verse
Best Compilation- Statik Selektah- Extended Play
Best Guest Appearance- Kendrick Lamar-Control
Best Rap Quotable & Diss Song: Kendrick Lamar-Control & Common- Stay Scheming (Drake Diss)
Best Lyricist- Ransom
Best Song- Rick Ross
Biggest Disappointment: No Detox , AGAIN
Label of the year: Young Money
Deaths in Music- Chris Kelly of Kriss Kross, Tim Dog?, Mr. Magic, Killah P
|Number||Album||Artist||1st-week sales||1st-week position|
|1||The Marshall Mathers LP 2||Eminem||793,000||1|
|2||Nothing Was the Same||Drake||658,000||1|
|3||Magna Carta Holy Grail||Jay-Z||527,000||1|
|5||Born Sinner||J. Cole||298,000||2|
|6||I Am Not a Human Being II||Lil Wayne||217,000||2|
|8||Long. Live. ASAP||ASAP Rocky||139,000||1|
|10||Watching Movies with the Sound Off||Mac Miller||102,000||3|
Overall, I thought 2013 had some incredible albums. There once again seems to be a resurgence in consicous rap so hopefully we will hear more of the same in 2014. Region wise, I liked the things that I heard from the East and the West all year. Especially the west, alot of new artists and crews dropped great albums this year. TDE seems poised to take over in 2014 and even though we did not get an album from Kendrick, he was the most talked about MC in 2013 with his Control verse. Seems like that grimey east coast sound is making a comeback with artists like Troy Ave dropping his stellar Live From New York album. The South was relatively quiet this year, but definitely that some dope releases.
The Midwest kind of was quiet this year but Rittz and Black Milk dropped dope albums and Eminem dropped his long awaited MMLP 2. This along with Twista and Tech N9NE helped to put the Midwest back in the stoplight. Let’s hope yall fans ain’t sleeping the next time. I want to take this time to thank all of the fans and visitors that have supported the site since day one. So many dope interviews this year, DJ Muggs, Stalley, Krayzie Bone, Big Hutch, AK-47, Trap House, Mav the list goes on, over 125 interviews and counting this year and over 100 interviews for the 5th straight year. MAJOR THANKS TO JEHUNIKO, ROXY, ADAM MURPHY & T. They both put in a ton of work with their interviews and features. Both are truly Illuminati 2G to the fullest.
We got more in store including continuing our podcast radio show, our popular Sanctuary mixtape series and a street album and we are trying to build up our forum so alot more is in the works. Also we hope to get our first I2G hosted live show coming soon. Too many artists to name, you know who you are. Thank you. We will continue to bring the heat as we go into our 14th year. 2013 was our best year, and we have alot in store for you guys in 2014 so keep it locked here at Illuminati 2G! Hoped you liked the awards.