This article can also be found over at Chi-Town's Finest.
Without a doubt, 2012 has been a great year for Chicago's Hip-Hop scene. Not only did the rest of the world start checking out what all the buzz was about, but the whole city unified with co-signs, collabs and support to put quality music out and show that the hype was real.
Below you can check out my favorite 10 projects (in no particular order) of Chicago that dropped in the first six months this year, plus some honorable mentions that are worth a download and my most anticipated projects for the rest of the year.
This incredible piece of work is the perfect soundtrack for the summer. The production, which was handled by Owen Hill, inspires me to feel good and brightens my day immediately, while Jamila Woods captivates the listener with her beautiful voice and potent lyrics. Milo & Otis are also accompanied by Chance The Rapper & Enrico X as guest-features, which gives the project some diversity and makes the listener enter a smooth path to relaxation.
This has to be arguably one of the best PR ideas ever. Streetwear brand City of Win linked up with a bunch of talented dudes from the Chi and released this 'tape alongside their debut line. Stefan Clark did an outstanding job producing all the 20 beats and making it easy for rappers with different styles to get together and be able to make a cohesive project.
The beautiful thing about 'Chicago Style' is that it's perfect for any occasion. It can make you smile even though is that type of day when you feel blue and the Sun just won't show up, or it can be the soundtrack to that incredible weekend you and your homies have while you chill in the city. The 'tape takes you into a smooth journey through different topics and issues that surround the lives of young people
Based on a 10 day suspension from school, this is my favorite project this year and not just from Chicago. Chance’s raw emotion, eccentric flow and meticulous rhymes really make the 'tape come to life. The beats were audacious but mashed perfectly with the young emcee and featured guests, whom all brought their A-game. Overall '10 Day' is an extremely enjoyable listen from start to finish and is --in my eyes--a true classic.
Tree is one of the most original artists in Hip Hop, his patented Soul Trap sound has never been heard before and the Cabrini-Green representative adds an emotional depth to his songs with his ad-libs.
The project features Razi’s signature heavy on kick drums beat-style with a soul sample in the background, while Sey completely rips the instrumentals in two with his awesome flow and authentic rhymes. SOOD also meant a lot to me since I worked closely with the homies & the 'tape.
The Toothpick Clique member's deep voice catches your attention immediately. He has a lot of connections with talented people (including Cardo, Lex Luger, DJ Thunder, Thelonious Martin, Cardo, Mikey Rocks, Tenille and others), that helped him make one of the most entertaining mixtapes of the year.
There's no better way for Gangsta L Crisis to spread the #Ism aside from spitting over a Blended Babies instrumental, and that's exactly what happens in 'Cathedral'. Tales from a pimp perspective talking about struggles, issues, women and life is what the veteran does best and this 'tape showcases that talent more than ever before.
Even though Nico Segal is one of the most recognizable members of Kids These Days, the trumpet player's 'Illasoul' still managed to pass through most people under the radar. Inspired by J. Dilla, Denizen Kane, Miles Davis and others, this 'tape takes you in a journey inside his mind with a combination of blues, jazz, hip hop and poetry.
Check the honorable mentions and anticipated projects after the jump!
Alex Wiley '?'
The Boy Illinois 'The Memoirs of Gilbert Gaston'
Caleb James 'Ground Up'
Doc Da Mindbenda x Fatboi Fresh 'Escape From Fat Camp 2'
Femdot 'Chapter Sixteen'
Kembe X & Alex Wiley 'Welcome To The Village'
Kami de Chukwu 'Light'
Kids These Days 'TrapHouseRock'
King Louie 'Dope & Shrimp'
Lil Reese 'Don’t Like'
Lili K '?'
Martin $ky 'MEMBER$ ONLY'
Preston San 'Community Service'
ShowYouSuck 'Rest In Pizza'
Stay Humble 'It's Us'
Sulaiman 'Still Disappointed'
Tre Styles 'Dark Days Bright Nights'
Tree 'Featuring The City'
Vic Spencer 'Walk Away Music'
© 2012 GOWHERE — All Rights Reserved
"Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing."
~1 Thessalonians 5:11