Top 25 Rap Albums Of 2018

2018 was a great year for a hip-hop artist. We saw streaming numbers on the rise, some great tours from The Carters, Drake, and Migos. We had a few artists that had beef this year. 6ix9ine verse everybody, Nicki and Cardi had a few shots against each other. We even had a few beefs come to an end. Drake and Meek, Drake and Chris Brown, just to name a few. In 2018 we even had a brief but very entertaining battle between Drake and Pusha T, oh and Kanye and the Maga hat.

All in all, it was a great year musically, these albums that were selected to this list were albums that were in heavy rotation on my iPhone. They are also albums that I either grew to like or albums that are my faves and was going to make my list anyway. As far as the albums that didn’t make my list, just note not everything is for everybody, therefore I more than likely didn’t listen to it. Not to say it wasn’t good, but it probably was something that wasn’t my cup of tea.

50. YG. “Stay Dangerous”

Stay Dangerous marks the follow-up to 2016’s Still Brazy, which debuted at No. 6 on the Billboard 200. With lead singles “Handgun” Feat A$AP Rocky, and the follow up “Big Bank” Feat 2 Chainz, Nicki Minaj and Big Sean, Stay Dangerous served as a solid sophomore album.

24. Starjay. “ForeverYoung 2”

“Forevryoung 2” served as the follow-up album to Brooklyn, Coney Island repping Mc discology and his ForeverYoung series. What brings this album onto this list is the honesty that Star brings in his songs. The wanting to see folks win even while you trying to win yourself, it takes a real person. Starjay FY2 may not have ended up on any of the big names lists, but it definitely made my cut.

23. Dave East & Styles P “Beloved”

Now, this came at a surprise to me, giving that I wasn’t expecting a project from these two gentelman. At the time of this release, both Dave and Styles had already dropped projects earlier this year. So have a joint project, I was intrigued to listen. Knowing that I wasn’t going to get any of that cookie cutter type stuff that’s been flowing the streams lately, I was in the mood for some bars, and they deliver just that. Now I must admit that I don’t go checking their music on a daily, but when I want to hear some real bars spitting, this was one of my go-to albums.

22. Buddy “Harlan & Alondra”

Hailing from LA, Buddy took me by surprise this year. I usually go on a hunt on my streaming services and look for something/someone I haven’t heard yet, and inserts Buddy. Upon doing a bit of research on him, Buddy has been around for a bit, maybe not on my radar, but he had tracks that were produced by the Neptunes. Not to mention when I looked at his features on his album, I was like oh he had been doing something right to get Snoop, Ty Dolla $ign and A$AP Freg on his album. Turned out to be pretty good.

21. Lil Baby “Harder Than Ever”

I must admit that I was a little bit late to the party when it came to Lil Baby and Gunna. Friends of mine spoke of these 2 as if they were the second coming of something holier in our group chat. Although my judging of music is just the stuff that I like. I wasn’t forced to listen to Lil Baby, but I figured since I was late on his music I figured I’ll start at his recent project, thus that’s why Harder Than Ever is at this position. At 23, and a Drake feature/co-sign, Lil Baby had a very good year musically. The 17 track project boosted a sound that I may not relate to but it got me intrigued.

20. T.I. “Dime Trap”

Whats a year wrap up list without a legend on it, salute to all the new rappers that made this list, but as long as T.I. is still making music, he would always land a spot on my list. Even though he has some politically charged tracks, T.I. Dime trap was in my rotation for some time. With features from Meek Mill, Jeezy, Teyana Taylor, Anderson .Paak, YFN Lucci, Watch the Duck, and Dave Chappelle, who plays the voice in Tip’s head. The album was solid from start to finish.

19. J.Cole. “KOD”

For me J.Cole is a hit or miss, I listen to some but not all, not taking away from his talents, just some of his music doesn’t sit with me. This album here tho, I really gave it a listen and I dug it alot. It brought me back to that Friday Night Lights Cole. KOD helped me bounce back from my disconnect with J.Cole after he released 4 Your Eyez Only (my least liked project) KOD has allowed me to appreciate Cole now as he is being featured on a track with people I may not have thought of him doing collaberation with.

18. Future & Juice WRLD “WRLD on Drugs”

Now, this album surprised the heck out of me. Just when I was thinking Future was going to slow down this year musically, he teamed up with Juice WRLD who in his own right was having a very successful year, their project “WRLD on Drugs” is hitting on all fronts. The production was on point, and Juice WRLD lyrical game was totally on point. This album is still in my current rotation.

17. 21 Savage “I am >I Was”

This album took the place of something else that was on this list (won’t say unless asked) but 21 came out the gate firing with his sophomore effort. The lead track features one of them collabs I mention earlier in this article, with none other J Cole. 21 who himself say he matured alot since his first album Issa has been quiet for most of the year with only a few appearences here n there. But he finished the year off strong. I can say 21 made of the most perfect albums of the year.

16. Tory Lanez “Love Me Now”

Even tho Tory Lanez dropped Memories Don’t Die also in 2018, Love Me Now is my favorite of the two. The star-studded 15 track album features an A-list cast including Meek Mill, Trippie Redd, NAV, Bryson Tiller, 2 Chainz, Lil Baby, A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, PnB Rock, Rich the Kid, and Chris Brown, who pops up twice on “DucK my Ex” and “FlEXiBle.” Tory Lanez delivered a impressive project and was worth my weekly rotation.

15. Lil Baby & Gunna “Drip Harder”

As I stated early on, I was late to the party with these guys here. My lack of ears for them early on should be ashamed. Drip Harder is a case of what a collaboration album should sound like. Both Baby & Gunna has been working their behinds off this year, so to deliver a project that was highly anticipation from their fans, the duo did not fail.

14. Quavo “Quavo Huncho”

Quavo was 4-5 songs too many from it being a top 10 album. Not taking anything away from the frontman of the trio Migos, but this project was a good follow up to what the Migos started in 2018 with Culture II.

13. Migos “Culture II”

Upon the release of Culture II, the Migos has a rep for work extra hard in the studio. It showed with this album. Even tho it didn’t live up to the potential of Culture I, but it was a solid project. I was a long project, 22 songs worth an hour long I was still able to pick what I like from the bunch and make a cool playlist.

12. Nicki Minaj “Queen”

Queen is a very solid project, the only flaw was the drama that surrounded Nicki at the time of the release. If you put that to the side and focus on the album on its own, you would have heard some dope bars, some classic beats, even some good features. Again it was one of them long albums that had some tracks that could have been left off this project.

11. Lil Wayne “The Carter V”

It was long too long overdue, but did it live up to the hype? For me, it was a good way to reintroduce Wayne to the masses. Not that he needed one but The Carter V came and went for me but while it was there, my rotation at that time was all Wayne. Out of respect, I couldn’t have Wayne any lower or any higher for that matter.

10. The Carters “Everything Is Love”

This surprise album took the summer by storm. The rumor of the joint album from America favorite entertainment couple actually happen. Jay Z and Beyonce even took the act on the road and headlined one of the summer best tours. Expressing love and black excellence all on this album, it was a sweet way of reminding fans that no matter what the Carters will always remain in tact.

9. Meek Mill “Championships”

Meek Mill overcame a lot and made use of his freedom and delivered a clear-cut fan favorite album. Some may argue that Wins and Loses was better than Championships but it’s the overall obstacles that made this album one of my faves. Not to mention the music overall was great on this project. Since dropping in November, Championships has been in my rotation.

8. Kanye West & Kid Cudi ” Kids See Ghost”

Mr.West was all over the headlines this year, mostly for his antics and questions of his mental health, but let us not forget that the man is a musical genius. From a fan perspective, I liked the Kids See Ghost project, even more than his own album that he dropped (Ye). I got the vintage Cudi that I liked from early years. I got honesty and raw feelings on this project. While most were saying “Kanye Canceled” I’m just here for the music, and this album did not disappoint.

7.Cardi B “Invasion Of Privacy”

He debut effort was a good one, the former reality star really took the game by storm and had a very impactful 2018. For me, the album was good for the moment when it dropped. Hosting a few radio cuts after that it was so-so for me. But those radio songs did make a difference and it help postition her album to becoming one of the best selling albums of the year, and for that my hat is off to Cardi.

6.Nipsey Hussle “Victory Lap”

Being a fan of Nipsey it was delighted to see him release something on a major this go around. Back in Feb when Victory Lap was released, have was moving kind of slow, so this album was a much need to kick the year off. With not much radio air play Nipsey was still able to maintain success. Even though Victory Lap fell out of my daily rotation it was still a very solid project.

5. Pusha T. “Daytona”

To be honest I didn’t want to give Pusha this honor, mainly because of his beef with my guy Drake and the way he tried to reignite the fire. I’m a fan of Pusha musically, so the antics he pulled on his album I was taken aback. Not to mention that the album was a little too short for my liking, but it was them beats and lyrics that got me. I have to give credit when its due and Dayton was a fire album, too short I wanted more since it was a while since we heard from Push, but all in all Daytona was and still is in my rotation.

4. Post Malone “Beerbong & Bentleys”

This by far was one of my fav projects early in the year. I wasn’t an outright fan of Post when he first came out but as time went on he grew on me. Then boom he dropped this album. It flowed so when thru my earphones, it was like a mix of rock and rap, but not so much rock that would make you hate it. The balance was perfect. It was around the time when I was tired of the mumble rap and this album helped out to seperate us from that.

3. Metro Boomin “Not All Heros Wear Capes”

This album shocked me, not only did it drop out of nowhere, but the production and song quality was just pure genius. The combination of Metro, Travis Scott, 21 Savage was insane in its own right, but adding Drake to the mix, for me that took this album over the top. Since dropping in Nov, I listen to NAHWC at least once a week.

2. Travis Scott “Astroworld”

It was a toss up for me when deciding between Travis and Drake for the number 1 spot. Even with the song of the year (Sicko Mode) I still put Travis at #2, the only reason why is because….. I’m a lot more of a Drake fan then Travis. But in all serious, Astroworld is one of my fav Travis Scott album and its still in my rotation to this day.

1.Drake “Scorpion”

Well it was pretty obvious by now that I was going to place Drake with the top spot in this year list. In hearing a few others speak on why they weren’t putting Drake at number one, then listening to it over and over again, I just ask why not? It was such a solid project from the hip-hop side to the R&B side, Drake took listeners on a journey. Not to mention the live show that accompanied the album was one of the best tours of the summer.


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