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My Cliche Top 10 Albums of 2008 Post.

So I was talking to Marcus, who stayed with me this past weekend, about what a year it was for music and how if needed be, it would be hard to create a top 10 album list for 2008. I think I did a good job for the albums that got the most play on my itunes this year. But it left out some of my favorite such as Janet Jackson, as well as later releases such as Britney Spears and Beyonce. But what complied my list, 11 in total, 10 in actual, 9 featuring grammy nominated works, 8 of them either male or groups of males, 7 of them featured songs that made it to number 1 on 106 and park, 6 of the people involved are 30 years old, 5 of the works are hip hop, 4 twenty year olds are represented, 3 nearly flawless albums, 2 teenagers, 1 legend of sorts... And yes, it's cliche, but sue me, so what..

And of course to begin: A cliche: honorable mention:

11.) Karina “First Love”
While no where near the caliber of perhaps the rest of the albums included on the list. Karina makes the list because I think this is perhaps the most underrated sixteen year old ever. Even I slept it on, until recently. What I love most about this album is that it stays away from the cutesy “I’m 16 so I’m going to be cute and teen-booperish,” and instead headed for the “I’m 16 and I’m at War” with everything, myself included and it was great. 16 at War garned a lot of respect with black audiences and failed to really chart, dooming the album, and perhaps poor little Karina, but this album is great. With a polished sound that will put some people 10 years her senior to rest; Karina really showed out as a gem amongst the gimmicky young teenage acts and earned herself a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary R&B album. Highlight songs: “Winner”, “Can’t Find the Words,” “Slow Motion,” “First Love”

10.) Snoop Dogg Ego Trippin
Proclaimed by Rolling Stone Magazine as the best Snoop disc in years, I couldn’t agree more. And with Vibe describing the first single “Sexual Eruption,” two time Grammy nominated single, as an undeniable masterpiece of throwback funk, this album was great. This album featured the undeniable club anthem, “Life of the Party” and showcases, what I think is the best Snoop Dogg album I’ve ever heard—not that I’m a big fan of Snoop, but this album is just that good; that it made the list. S-N-double O-P D-O-Double G! Highlight songs: “SD is Out” “Set’s Up,” “Press Play,” “Deez Hollywood Nights”, “Those Gurlz”

9.) Lloyd “Lessons In Love”
I forgave him for the tired, “Lil Wayne featured first single approach” that he did again, after the huge success of “You” from his last album, to get into this album. A follow up from a much slept-on album, Lessons In Love was even more slept on, as one of the most solid offerings of R&B this year. The only thing better—the songs that didn’t make the album such as “Love Spaceship” and “Electric Eye.” Lloyd, like Lykke Li, is not nominated for any Grammy’s either. Highlight Songs: “Year Of the Lover,” “Sex Education,” “Party All Over Your Body,” “I Can Change Your Life”

8.) Lykke Li “Youth Novels”
So for a large part of 2008, I was obsessed with Lykke Li and her debut album Youth Novels. I love her quirkiness and I love her self stylized videos. I grew to consume everything Lykke Li, and this album is a great first offereing. Her voice is light and enjoyable and her artistry is unparalleled. This is another album that I could really personally relate to, much like Adele’s 19. Unlike any of the aforementioned artist, she is the first to not be nominated for a Grammy. Highlight songs: “Tonight,” “I’m Good, I’m Gone,” “Little Bit,” “Dance, dance, Dance,”

7.) Kanye West “808s & Heartbreaks”
Perhaps a controversial picking of sorts. Like is this dude trying to sing now or what is he doing? I commend Kanye for putting out his art. From the imagery associated with the album, to the incredible production, this one got constant play from me since its release last month. The album features guest appearances by two aforementioned artist, Lil Wayne and Young Jeezy, but also features some more upstart artist such as Mr. Hudson, and Kid Cudi. This album had me keeping my Love Lockdown! Highlight Songs: “Street Lights,” “Paranoid”, “Robocop,” “See You In My Nightmares,” “Amazing”

6.) Usher “Here I Stand”
Another controversial picking, the follow up of the highly critical and commercially acclaimed Confessions album, was the highly anticipated Here I Stand some four years later. And while fans from around the world panned the album as a disappointment, and with sales not even half of the former’s debut—the album still sold over 400,000 copies in it’s first week, and dare I say it, is better than Confessions! Yes, I said it! Blasphemy right? Not really, while Confessions was filled with a lot of commercial jargon, Here I Stand is heartfelt and biographically touching which is what everyone loved about Confessions. Usher proves to be growing up like he’s supposed to be. The album pictures him very much in love and proud of it. I think the album could’ve been bigger, but bad promotion and too much spacing in between singles was disappointing. Highlight songs: “Appetite,” “Before I Met You,” “Trading Places,” “Love You Gently,” “What’s Your Name,” “This Ain’t Sex”


5.) T.I. “Paper Trail”
Admist legal troubles, T.I. managed to release a more than solid album. A great album, infact. Yet another example of the banner year in hip hop, and another Grammy nominated artist—in fact four times over. Two for his song, “Swagger Like Us” and one for Rap album of the Year, for this offering. Paper Trail earned T.I. his best selling debut numbers of his career, and was the fourth best opening of 2008 with 568,000 copies sold. The album is a perfect blend of street anthems, party hits, and crossover songs to compile a great album. Everyone absolutely loved Live Your Life with the 2008 It girl, Rihanna, as well as the addicting, “Whatever You Like”. The album bangs and has perfects songs for every occasion. Highlight songs: “No Matter What,” “Porn Star,” “My Life Your Entertainment,” “Let My Beat Pound”

4.) Young Jeezy “The Recession”
Another album to feature Grammy nominated material, Young Jeezy’s aptly titled “The Recession” is a gold-mine in hip hop music; in what I think is a banner year for hip hop. The album is an accurate portray of moods in the inner city that not only relates but motivates. Now albeit, Young Jeezy isn’t for everyone, I think this album really elevated Jeezy in the rap game, moreso than his other two albums. This is an album that is exactly the soundtrack of an urban dweller during a recession. But aside from the lyrical geniuses that is evident on just about every track on the album, Young Jeezy was able to produce two gems in specific—“Put On” featuring the infectious Kanye West was an anthem, and is at hot now as it was this summer, and “My President is Black” featuring Nas, which became an anthem, especially in Atlanta, once Barack Obama was elected President of the United States. Highlight Songs: “Circulate,” “Hustlaz Ambition,” “Crazy World,” “Taking It There,” “What They Want”

3.) Gnarls Barkley “The Odd Couple”
Following the critically acclaimed debut album, St. Elsewhere, the boys of Gnarls Barkley once again delivered with The Odd Couple. The album was deliciously dark in a time when the country was going through a recession. While a lot more depressing then their first offering which featured the crazed hit “Crazy”, the album is a step up from an already high altitude. Another album with not a bad song on the album. The album was accompanied with stylized videos including the great videos for Going On, and the stellar video for Who’s Gonna Save My Soul. It has me anticipating their third offering which Cee-Lo has confirmed the group will work on. Highlight songs: “Open Book” “Going On” “Who’s Gonna Save My Soul,” “Run”

2.) Adele “19”
Adele is another one of those British imports that I just love. [See: Amy Winehouse, Estelle, Craig David amongst others] She was 19 at the time of the release of this album, and for me, this album is biographical of my life, particularly the song “Daydreamer.” There aren’t too many flawless albums, but I feel as though, this is a flawless album, or pretty close to it. Not a bad song on this album, and it has gotten me through a whirlwind romance year. Validated enough, the album has also garnered Adele, 4 Grammy nominations which include Record of the Year, Song of the Year, New Artist of the Year, and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Highlight songs: “Chasing Pavements”, “Daydreamer” “Melt My Heart to Stone”, “Best for Last”

1.) Lil Wayne “The Carter III”
For multiple reasons, let’s name a few. With opening day sales of well over 400,000 copies, the only album in 2008 to sell over a million copies in one week. That hasn’t been done since 50’s The Massacre. Because it produced perhaps, the number one single of the year, Lollipop which spent five weeks at the charts; a top ten hit, with “A Milli” which every rapper and r&b star sampled and was named rap song of the year by MTV; the top ten hit “Got Money”; a top 20 hit with “Mrs. Officer”; and four other songs that charted. Or it may be because it is one of the few highly anticipated albums that didn’t disappoint. Or that you can you listen to it from start to finish. Or that white people are finally giving Lil Wayne his just due. Or just because he’s the bomb, like tick tick. Highlight songs: “Got Money,” “A Milli,” “Lollipop” “Phone Home” “Mr. Carter”

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