It’s a great day for underground rap…which is a nice segue into the #8 reason why 2010 is the best year ever in hip-hop: The Return of the Underground.

This one is a bit of a contradiction.  The incredible underground releases this year certainly contributed to the musical strength of the year overall, but underground rap is consistently pretty strong.  It’s the hits that are more unpredictable.  That’s confirmed just by looking at Soundscan sales info.  This year will have several platinum rap albums (Drake, Nicki, Kanye, Eminem, B.o.B. and probably Rick Ross), but that kind of volume hasn’t happened in many years.  Even though great underground releases are more predictable, something still felt a little different about them this year.  A big part of it has to do with technology.  Gone are the days when you need hundreds of thousands of dollars, a professional studio and a big major label backing you to make great music.  These days, all you need is a laptop and a drive…to make it happen for yourself.  That has narrowed the divide between the sonic quality of mainstream and underground music considerably.  More than that, however was just the sense that the underground artists of 2010 had a great shot at being the breakthrough artists of the future.  Enough talk though.  The music speaks for itself.  Here are just a few that killed it in 2010 (and if you missed the previous reasons why 2010 is the best year ever in hip-hop, click here):

1.  Big K.R.I.T. – Somedayz

2.  Nottz – My Neighbor ft Asher Roth

3. 1982 – You Should Go Home ft Masspike Miles and Bun B

4. Curren$y – Michael Knight

5. Diggy Simmons – As I Am

6. Black Milk – Deadly Medley

7. CyHi The Prynce – Shade 45 Freestyle

8. Jay Electronica (he gets 2 joints) – The Announcement

Shiny Suit Theory ft Jay-Z


Redman’s mixtape dropped earlier in the week. Lite 1 Witcha Boy ft Method Man and Bun B is from his upcoming album and it’s got that flame on it. Check it out.

Redman’s album Reggie drops on 12/7.

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Click here to download Lite 1 Witcha Boy. If you missed Redman’s mixtape Pancake & Syrup click here.

Remember The Outlawz? Yeah. 2Pac’s homies. They have a new song called 100 MPH ft Bun B and Lloyd…and it’s actually pretty dope. Check it out.

Click here to download.

This was my favorite joint they did with 2Pac back in the day:


In case you forgot how dope Bun B’s album was check out the visual for Put It Down ft Drake.

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Big Boi just dropped his remix to Tangerine and he added Bun B, TI (11 more months homie…) and Rick Ross. Check it out.

Click here to download.

Statik Selektah and Termanology drop another hot one. This one is called Still Waiting.

Statik Selektah and Termanology have come together to form a group called 1982.  By the sounds of the singles their new album sounds like a must have.  Check ’em out:

And previously

It’s a new day and Omar Akil is bringing a New World Order to Ambrosia for Heads. Check out his remix of Bun B’s classic Trill O.G.

New World Order:  Bun B – Trill O.G.

Have you ever played an album to death?  Or have you ever questioned why your favorite artist put that bomb ass song at the end of their CD as the third hidden track (and its untitled at that)?  If you’ve ever skipped to track number five cause that’s your ish, then rock with me on this column cause, NEW WORLD ORDER is for YOU!

Here’s the theory.  I will serve up a newly arranged tracklisting for some of your favorite albums.  My goal is to breathe new life into an album that you’ve either run into the ground, or can’t seem to let play all the way through.

I developed this quirky little talent as a youth, way back when skipping tracks took longer than the milliseconds it now takes to navigate an MP3 player.

This column is like pouring Henny over rocks.  It’s the reason why uncles in the hood had the smirnoff in the freezer. “It makes that ish go down smoother”.

The first NEW WORLD ORDER that I am serving up is that BUN B – TRILL OG album.  It must be said that this album is pretty much “classic” status on its own, but if you’ve been letting that “tape rock” until your um…..MP3 player “pops,” then try playing this album in my suggested order.

BUN B – Trill O.G
Lights Camera Action – Perfect open to this album.  Sets the stage for Bun.
I Git Down 4 Mine – this comes after LCA on the album already, but it would be disrespectful to interrupt the integration of these two tracks.  Get the mean face head bop going early in the album, and keep the listener anxious for more.
Listen (Interlude) – Cedrick the Entertainner sets up the legend of UGK with his commentary.  Works well as a lead in to the next track which will feature Pimp and Bun on the same track.
Right Now ft. 2Pac, Pimp C, Trey Songz – Too many times when posthumous verses are placed on albums, the content does not always match.  In this instance, all three MC’s spit about the same topic – MACKING WOMEN.  Great time to drop your first feature track on an album – after Bun has shown on the first two tracks that he could hold this thing down solo if he needed to…
Trillionaire ft. T-Pain – At this point you should be feelin me on this arrangement ish, real talk (no cocky ish either)!!!
Just Like That ft. Young Jeezy – Let that south sound do what it do here.  As big as the Trillionaire track is, this feature from Jeezy will continue that bounce.
Speakeasy ft. Twista, Bluesman Ceddy, St. Louis – When doesn’t Twista drop a monster guest appearance???
Thats a song (Interlude)
Let ‘Em Know – Seven songs in, its the perfect time to remind you people that Bun can spit.  Dj Premier’s track is so hynotic that it navigates you toward full attention to Bun’s lyrics.
Countin Money ft. Yo Gotti, Gucci Mane – Still with me?
Put It Down ft. Drake – Perfect track to follow COUNTIN MONEY.  Bun’s first line goes “Now when it comes to makin money I’m a printin press…” *self explanatory*  Plus its the perfect reward for the fans that listened all the way through, waiting on that Drake verse.
All A Dream ft. Letoya
Ridin Slow ft. Slim Thug, Play N Skillz – This album is full of versatility.  Right now, is the perfect time for Bun to rep home base with that music to lean to (what Houston, arguably, does best).
Chuuuch ft. J Prince – We’er in the home stretch now.  As the album comes to a close, this will fight that listener fatigue.
It’s Been A Pleasure ft. Drake – This is the perfect thank you song for this album, so I gotta let this one rock exactly where it was originally on the album.
Snow Money (BONUS/HIDDEN TRACK) – I’m actually ending the album 1 track early.  I would list Snow Money as a Bonus Track.

Click here to download Trill O.G. Support hip-hop!

–Omar Akil (@omarakil3)

“Slightly better than a DJ with a broken fader and no doubles”