15. Raury – TBD
Release Date: TBD
Let’s face it: a year ago, we didn’t know who the hell this Raury guy was. Now though, he has plenty of people fevering with anticipation towards his next project after touching the world with his debut project last summer, Indigo Child. Starting his impression on the world with the grandiose, anthemic ‘God’s Whisper’, to his latest offering being a response-record to the killing of Eric Garner, ‘Fly‘, Raury’s sound continues to change and progress. Even though Indigo Child was a solid first impression, first impressions are worthless without an even better second act. Here’s hoping that Raury can continue to establish new standards and new sounds with his next LP.
14. Lil Wayne – The Carter V
Release Date: Q1 2015
Not even Lil Wayne himself knows when fans will hear Tha Carter V (which was originally scheduled for a 2014 release), as things aren’t too sunny under the Cash Money umbrella. After Weezy recently spoke up about his displeasure with Birdman and Cash Money, it is difficult to tell where tensions are at with conflicting accounts of whether things are all good. The good news is that this new delay is leading to Wayne’s second installment of his Sorry 4 The Wait mixtapes, which comes out tomorrow. So far we already have a few tracks from the last album of Tha Carter series (‘Krazy’, ‘Believe Me’, ‘Start a Fire’ and ‘Grindin’) but since this will be the last Carter recorded, expect great things.
13. Mac Miller – TBD
Release Date: TBD
One of the best projects to come out of 2014 was Mac Miller’s mixtape, Faces. Dark, personal and revealing into the true character and mind of Mac, Faces served as a turning point for Mac’s career fully pushing him into being one of the most creative young minds in the game. Handling all of his own production and finding a pocket of collaborators, Mac Miller is just settling into his prime and after just now signing to the major label of Warner Bros for a whopping $10 Million. Good god. With all of that at his disposal, it’s worth noting Mac could make genius projects with indie-label money have a huge impact, meaning his next album could be as big as it gets.
12. Kid Cudi – Man on the Moon III
Release Date: TBD
Cudi is the master of ups and downs, and through so much happening in his life, he still remains as a consistently great artist. Sure, Indicud wasn’t what everyone wanted it to be, and maybe he should’ve perfected his production skills a little bit before producing the entirety of the album, but his latest release, Satellite Flight: Journey to the Mother Moon not only shows progression but is one of the most excellent and slept on releases of 2014. The Man on the Moon series though, is not only some of the greatest concept-projects in recent memory, but they are when Cudi is obviously able to function best as a creative. With Man on the Moon III slated for a 2015 release and also to be the final installment, here’s hoping that Cudi can go 3 for 3 and deliver what could be one of the greatest rap-trilogies of all time.
11. Pusha T – King Push
Release Date: Spirng 2015
Pusha T is the only one of his kind. Anyone with his credibility is probably a recluse, has done jail time, or is currently in jail and definitely not flaunting the ins-and-outs of his lifestyle on the mic. His debut release My Name is My Name was quietly one of the best albums of 2013, but might’ve been a few radio-records away from being the gritty, raw rap album everyone wanted it to be. Now, Pusha T is apparently finishing up his sophomore album King Push, which will feature lots of help from label-boss Kanye West and old friends, The Neptunes. Kanye and Push collaborated on the amazingly abstract single for the project, ‘Lunch Money’ which landed on our best tracks of the year list. If that’s the first foot forward, we’re here for the ride.