The year will be coming to an end shortly but not before the holiday season gets under way. For the music industry, the holiday season means opportunities to capitalize on record sales. So, what upcoming LPs does the music industry/artist have hitting the shelves? Well, let’s take a look at some of 2006’s most anticipated hip-hop albums.
Nas: “Hip-Hop is Dead?The N” (Nov. 7)
Nas fans, gear up for a variety of soundscapes on this LP. The 33-year old rapper has tapped several big league boardsmen like Scott Storch, will.i.am, and Dr. Dre for his eagerly awaited Def Jam debut. The first single off his eighth album will be “Where Y’all At.”
“The Doctor’s Advocate” (Nov. 7)
Kicked out of G-Unit in 2005, Compton-born rapper Game vows a bigger rebound on his sophomore LP. Surrounded by the avant garde of hip hop including Lauryn Hill, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and Nas, The Game is anything but over. The production should prove to be speaker bumping with Hi-Tek, Kanye West, Just Blaze and Dr. Dre. You can catch the first single “It’s Okay (One Blood)” on the radio dial right now.
“Food ‘ Liquor”
Lyrics? No doubt. Beats? No doubt. Endorsements? No doubt. On his debut album, already Lupe Fiasco has the hip-hop and skateboard culture in his corner. Straight out of Chicago, the MC snatches hiphop from the studio gangstas and delivers it safely to the hands of real hip-hop heads. The first single from “Food ‘ Liquor” is the skateboard anthem “Kick, Push.”
The rapper/actor’s last album, “The New Danger,” wasn’t received well by critics and fans alike. After the rock-rap venture, Mos Def definitely needs to bring the ruckus on this forthcoming LP. The first single from his third album, “Boogie Man,” shows definite potential. Some of the beat-masters handling the album’s production will be Q-Tip, RjD2, Pharrell Williams, and Kayne West.
“Release Therapy” (Now Available)
The multi-platinum rapper already has four albums under his belt. His fifth, “Release Therapy,” will fulfill the rapper/actor’s five-album contract with Def Jam. On this LP, Luda is promising to unleash a more serious persona. Those helping Ludacris alter his persona will be, Timbaland, Organized Noise, Scott Storch, and the Neptunes. The first single, “Money Maker” was produced by Pharell Williams and its video can be seen on your local music channel.
“The Blue Carpet Treatment”
What can one say about one of the busiest men in hip hop. On his eighth solo disc, Snoop Dogg rolls out the blue carpet and strolls back to his hardcore MC roots. On the first single, “Vato,” Snoop D-O-Double G tells gangsta tales over the Neptunes’ booming baseline, with B-Real riding shotgun. This one is being hailed as one of his best releases to date.
This MC holds the dubious honor of being the most traveled performer in the game. Talib Kweli, another busy man in rap, is on the road more than 250 days out of the year. Where does he find the time to record? Well, he found time for another. His fourth solo album, “Ear Drum,” boasts some eye-popping guest features including UGK, Norah Jones, and Strong Arm Steady. Catch the first single “Listen” on your local MTV channel.
“Hi-Teknology 2” (Oct. 17)
With a new deal on the table, rapper/producer “Hi-Tek” is ready to drop the long-awaited sequel to his critically acclaimed Hi-Teknology debut. The album will feature such MCs as Busta Rhymes, Common, Nas, The Game, Slim Thug, Bun B., Snoop Dogg, The Doggpound, Mos Def and many more.
Before we go, can’t forget about those select few. You know the type. Those individuals or groups who keep holding out on us. Legal red tape, creative slumps, internal beefs, retirement, you name it; there are tons of reasons for album delays. Here are a few albums the streets have been waiting on:
DR. DRE: We’ve been waiting for Andre Young’s on-again, off-again album “Detox.” But after three straight years of no-shows, we’ll believe it when we see it. Dr. Dre has been lacing everyone else with hot beats; hope he has some left over for that LP.
THE FUGEES: After an eight-year break-up, Wyclef, Lauryn, and Pras announced that they had finally buried the hatchet and were working on a reunion album. In fact, the crew did a string of performances during the early part of this year; one occurred on the streets of Hollywood. But given L-Boogie’s growing penchant for disappearing and Clef’s ego, this project might end up being just another lost one.
JAY-Z: Since when does retirement mean dropping guest verses on particularly every project that comes out? Sorry, President Carter we don’t believe you. In fact, Jigga recently announced in a magazine interview he would be releasing an album of new material in early 2007. The album is tentatively tilted “Kingdom Come.”