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Boaz - Intuition
With "Intuition", Boaz arrives at his big moment prepared yet his execution somewhat lacks consistency.
Black Milk - If There's A Hell Below
If Theres a Hell Below is an amalgam of different sounds flawlessly arranged and sequenced; a fine work of artistic exactitude.
Run The Jewels - Run The Jewels 2
With "Run The Jewels 2," Killer Mike & El-P carved out a shrewd niche. The stakes are raised even further with their latest project.
Logic - Under Pressure
Logic's debut is more than a stirring lyrical symphony welded to superior production, it is a condensing of '90s grit and modern production into something new.
DJ Quik - Midnight Life
"The Midnight Life" refocuses DJ Quik's gaze inward; well into the third decade of his career, he's turning over new sounds and breaking ground in the process.
T.I. - Paperwork
T.I.'s "Paperwork" plays out as an uneven effort that isn't so much inherently flawed as it is unentertaining through long stretches.
Cozz - Cozz & Effect
There's bourgeoning imagination in every stanza. "Cozz & Effect" brims with promise.
Childish Gambino - Kauai (EP)
Childish Gambino's "Kauai" does an admirable job putting raw feelings before agendas or aesthetics, and it is easy to enjoy as a result.
Game - Blood Moon: The Year Of The Wolf
"Blood Moon: Year Of The Wolf" starts strong and is at times well crafted, but loses it's focus through features enough to detract from the project's cohesion.
Keyshia Cole - Point Of No Return
Keyshia Cole successfully expresses fervent, unfettered emotion on "Point Of No Return", but finds it challenging to deliver a stand out single.
Diamond District - March On Washington
With "March On Washington," Diamond District provide a concise, diverse package that showcases their skills while providing entertainment and social commentary.
Rapsody - Beauty And The Beast (EP)
Rapsody's "Beauty and The Beast" is a stellar take on her strengths, but doesn't experiment enough with her delivery to truly carry Jamla's searing production.
Flying Lotus - You're Dead!
FlyLo's fifth LP is intimate and ethereal, and though its title embraces the macabre, the project favors liberation over lamentation.
Vince Staples - Hell Can Wait
Concise, jarring, and ominous, "Hell Can Wait" succeeds at conveying the apocalypse of some realities, turning a local lament in to a universal one.
The Black Opera - The Great Year
On "The Great Year," The Black Opera use their distinct sound to take a stance, but there are moments when that stance could use some nuance.
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