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Top 5 TDE Albums RANKED


5. CTRL - SZA

"Ctrl" is the debut studio album by American singer-songwriter SZA, released in 2017. The album is a coming-of-age story that explores themes of love, self-discovery, and empowerment.

One of the standout aspects of "Ctrl" is SZA's unique and emotive vocal style. She has a raw, soulful voice that brings a sense of vulnerability and honesty to her lyrics. Her lyrics are introspective and personal, touching on themes of heartbreak, insecurity, and the search for meaning in life.

The album's production is also excellent, with a mix of R&B, hip-hop, and electronic sounds. The beats are often minimalistic, with a focus on space and atmosphere, but they're also lush and textured, providing a rich sonic backdrop for SZA's vocals.

One of the standout tracks on the album is "Love Galore," which features a guest verse from rapper Travis Scott. The song's production is moody and seductive, and the lyrics touch on themes of love, lust, and betrayal.

Another standout track is "The Weekend," which features a slinky, minimalist beat and lyrics about being the other woman in a relationship. The song's chorus is catchy and memorable, and SZA's vocal delivery is playful and sly.

Overall, "Ctrl" is a stunning debut album that showcases SZA's unique voice and perspective. The album's themes are relatable and heartfelt, and SZA's vocal and lyrical prowess make it a standout in the R&B genre. It's a must-listen for anyone who appreciates great music and wants to delve into the experiences of one of the most important voices in modern R&B.


4. SECTION 80 - KENDRICK LAMAR

"Section.80" is the debut studio album by rapper Kendrick Lamar, released in 2011. The album explores themes of racism, poverty, and social injustice, and showcases Lamar's lyrical skill and storytelling ability.


The album's production is excellent, with a mix of classic and modern hip-hop sounds. The beats are often minimalistic, allowing Lamar's lyrics to shine, but they're also intricate and layered, providing a rich sonic backdrop for his stories.

One of the standout tracks on the album is "A.D.H.D.," which features a hypnotic beat and introspective lyrics about the dangers of drug use and addiction. The song's chorus, which features a sample of a child singing, adds a hauntingly beautiful touch.


Another standout track is "HiiiPower," which serves as the album's closer. The song's production is ethereal and grand, and Lamar's lyrics touch on themes of black empowerment and the search for meaning in a corrupt world.


Overall, "Section.80" is a powerful and thought-provoking album that showcases Lamar's unique voice and perspective. The album's themes are heavy, but Lamar's lyrical prowess and storytelling ability make it an engaging and worthwhile listen. It's a great introduction to one of the most important voices in modern hip-hop.


3. CONTROL SYSTEM - AB-SOUL

"Control System" is the third studio album by American rapper Ab-Soul, released in 2012. The album features guest appearances from artists such as Kendrick Lamar, Danny Brown, and Jhene Aiko, and showcases Ab-Soul's unique lyrical style and thought-provoking themes.


One of the standout aspects of "Control System" is Ab-Soul's intricate wordplay and lyricism. He often tackles heavy topics such as politics, religion, and the human condition, and his rhymes are full of clever wordplay and double entendres. He's unafraid to delve into complex ideas and metaphysical concepts, which sets him apart from many of his contemporaries.


The production on the album is also top-notch, with a range of beats that range from dark and brooding to more upbeat and energetic. The album's sound is diverse and experimental, with plenty of twists and turns that keep the listener engaged.

One of the standout tracks on the album is "Terrorist Threats," which features a guest verse from Danny Brown and a hauntingly beautiful hook from Jhene Aiko. The song's production is sparse and eerie, providing the perfect backdrop for Ab-Soul and Brown's politically charged verses.


Another standout track is "Illuminate," which features a guest verse from Kendrick Lamar. The song's production is dreamy and ethereal, and the lyrics touch on themes of enlightenment and self-discovery.


Overall, "Control System" is a thought-provoking and engaging album that showcases Ab-Soul's unique lyrical style and willingness to tackle complex themes. The album's production is excellent, and the guest appearances from other talented artists only add to its appeal. If you're a fan of intelligent, experimental hip-hop, "Control System" is a must-listen.


2. CILVIA DEMO - ISAIAH RASHAD

Isaiah Rashad's debut project "Cilvia Demo" was released in 2014 and is a standout in the world of modern hip-hop. The project consists of 14 tracks and features a diverse range of production, as well as guest appearances from the likes of SZA, Jean Deaux, and Michael Da Vinci.


From the very beginning of the project, it's clear that Isaiah Rashad is a skilled wordsmith. He raps with a laid-back delivery that belies the depth and complexity of his lyrics. He touches on a variety of topics, including his struggles with addiction, the ups and downs of his come-up, and the challenges of navigating relationships.


One of the standout tracks on the project is "West Savannah," which features a guest appearance from SZA. The song's production is soulful and mellow, providing the perfect backdrop for Rashad's introspective verses. SZA's hook is a highlight as well, adding a layer of vulnerability to the track.


Another standout track is "Soliloquy," which features a hypnotic beat that perfectly complements Rashad's contemplative lyrics. He raps about the pressures of the music industry and the importance of staying true to oneself. The track is a showcase of Rashad's lyrical dexterity and ability to craft intricate, multi-layered verses.


Overall, "Cilvia Demo" is an impressive debut project from Isaiah Rashad. His introspective lyrics and laid-back delivery make for a captivating listen, while the varied production keeps the project fresh and engaging. It's no wonder that Rashad has gone on to become one of the most respected and beloved artists in the hip-hop world today.


1. GOOD KID MAAD CITY - KENDRICK LAMAR

"good kid, m.A.A.d city" is the second studio album by rapper Kendrick Lamar, released in 2012. The album is a coming-of-age story, exploring Lamar's life growing up in Compton, California, and the social issues he faced growing up in the inner city.


The album is a masterpiece both lyrically and musically. Lamar's flow and delivery are impeccable, and his storytelling ability is unparalleled. The album follows a narrative structure, with Lamar's life story told over the course of 12 tracks. The skits and interludes that punctuate the album help to weave a cohesive narrative that draws the listener into Lamar's world.

The production on the album is also excellent, with a mix of classic hip-hop and more experimental sounds. The beats are often minimalistic, allowing Lamar's lyrics to take center stage, but they're also layered and complex, providing a rich sonic backdrop for Lamar's storytelling.


There are many standout tracks on the album, including "Bitch, Don't Kill My Vibe," "Money Trees," and "Swimming Pools (Drank)." The latter is a particular highlight, with a hypnotic beat that perfectly complements Lamar's introspective lyrics about alcoholism and peer pressure.


Overall, "good kid, m.A.A.d city" is a landmark album in the hip-hop world, showcasing Kendrick Lamar's unmatched lyrical ability and storytelling prowess. It's a must-listen for anyone who appreciates great music and wants to delve into the experiences of one of the most important voices in modern hip-hop.

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