MUSIC OF 2011 (PART 3B): Artists of the Year

Due to my static internet connection at the moment, I was not able to post this at an earlier time. I apologize for any inconvinience.

Let us continue

Artists of 2011

Honorable Mention


Unlike others before him, SBTRK was able to not fail at delivering a Bass centric album with pop leanings.

15.  Danny Brown

Where do I start with Danny Brown? Is he the future of Detroit’s rap scene? Why is his new release so abrasive? What’s up with his front teeth? Is he aware that he is confusing people with his music when he wears a Tigger costume and rocks the gayest haircut of all time?

14.  Nicholas Jaar

He dropped the most intelligent album this year.

13.  Drake

Don’t even front like u don’t like Aubrey. He is basically the James Blake of Rap. All you backpack and gangsta niggas should thank him for saving the Rap game from itself. He just gave the mainstream the keys to sonics that were only restricted to the underground. This, instead of his debut should have been called Thank Me Later.

12.  Shabazz Palaces

Have you heard Black Up? How can they not be included on this list?

11.  Kendrick Lamar

West Coast rapper that sees Compton through a cosmic lens.

10.  Frank Ocean

Frank Ocean bootlegs his album, and as a reward, helps to redefine mainstream R&B and gets to work with Beyonce, Jay-Z and Kanye all in the same year.

Yes… when keeping it real goes right.

9.  Big K.R.I.T.

Is there any rapper who has more people rooting for them than Big K.R.I.T.? everyone wants to see this guy win, and 2011 was his first step into that limelight.8.  A$AP Rocky

Artists that have nailed the art of style over substance

Brian Eno

Camp Lo

The Strokes (Pre-First Impressions of Earth)

LDC Soundsystem

… You can now add A$AP Rocky to that list.

7.  Andy Stott

Stripping Techno-not-Techno to its primitive essence one EP at a time.

6.  Jamie XX

You want to turn your songs of genius to earth shattering behemoths? Turn to Jamie XX for help

5.  Tyler The Creator

Goblin was a huge letdown, but I do realize the impact it will have for years to come. For a brief moment this year, OFWGKTA could do no wrong and it was all because of Tyler. I mean “Yonkers” is Youtube’s greatest achievement ever.

4.  The Weeknd

He helped reinstate R&B as a credible source of music. Dude can die a legend now.

3.  Clams Casino

Clams Casino is the greatest case as to why Soulja Boy is more progressive than 80% of backpack rappers. While L.W.H. might be seen as the Dr. Dre of Cloud Rap, Clams adds to its mythos as its Pete Rock; using samples to evoke feeling and dress aesthetics. Dude basically pwned every Hip-Hop producer this year. And just like his soft hazy beats, he quietly asked them to step back.

2.  James Blake

How can he not be on this list. He sung softly over the wobble bass and boys and girls alike cried

1.  Machinedrum

In terms of impact this year, there was Machiinedrum, and there was everyone else.  After years of schizoid genre bending projects, Travis Stewart decided to hone his sound and focus on attacking a particular genre (Footwork) in a variety of ways. As a result, he became the poster boy for the footwork scene, carrying anything and anyone that flew its flag on his back. His collaborations were epic as well (See Sepalcure), and so were his mixes (his FACT mag mix puts draws on fire). 12 years and 9 albums later, he is a testament to the mantra “in due time” seeing that he is finally getting the recognition he deserves.


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