Don’t panic, but 2021 is about to take a bow in three months!

Whether this year flew you by like a jet plane or slugged you by like a sloth, one thing is for sure: we had lit hip hop albums to keep us vibing to the soundtrack of our lives. 

The hip hop albums of 2021 were all pretty amazing, but only a few (so far) were 100% dank swag, and it’s only right that we give them the props that they deserve. 

Don’t count the days in hours, count ‘em in music that makes your soul come alive, just like these top hip hop albums of 2021. There’s still time for the others to drop an epic album that will shatter the charts, but so far, these albums reign on our playlists. 

2021 hip hop music? So far, so good.  

A concert

Certified Lover Boy | Drake

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧💧

From Thank Me Later all the way to Nothing Was The Same, Drake is famous for dropping lit albums left and right, but nothing is quite as monumental as Certified Lover Boy. 

Drake’s signature style runs deeper than your average hip hop artist who raps about our booze-laced society, because this Canadian superstar spits truths that hit people in their feelings. Deviating a bit from his regular medium, this sixth studio album is a compilation of all the feels. It’s a rollercoaster of music that traverses a multitude of topics. 

The most notable tracks include the chart-topping “Knife Talk”, “Fair Trade”, and “Champagne Poetry”. No cap, these songs are mainstream kings, but you gotta give the entire album a listen to see how this truly is one of the best hip hop albums of 2021. #CEOofHipHop

Donda | Kanye West  

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧

Donda is specifically made for loyal Kanye West stans who have been waiting for this hip hop icon to make a huge comeback. It’s safe to say that he did not disappoint when he dropped Donda.

While critics pointed out that the album might have too many songs, there are actually a bunch of bops in the mix. Kanye West’s 10th studio album pushes the envelope in a span of 108.49 minutes, and reminds Hollywood about his infamous essence. 

Music To Be Murdered By: Side B | Eminem

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧💧

Haters gonna hate, but Eminem is the CEO of rap, and you know it, fam!

As somewhat of a sequel to Music To Be Murdered By, the master rapper released a deluxe version titled Side B. In true Slim Shady style, the album was launched without a single warning and was highlighted by collaborations with Dr. Dre, Ty Dolla $ign, and Skylar Grey. The hard-hitting collection of killer beats even skyrocketed to the third spot on the Billboard 20 chart.

The Real Slim Shady really stood up, ya’ll. 

Sound Ancestors | Madlib

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧💧

It appears that Madlib likes to keep it lowkey, so it’s one heck of a treat whenever this world-class hip hop producer shares new music with his fans. There’s no cap when people say that he’s undoubtedly one of the G.O.A.T.s, and that reflects even more in his newest album, Sound Ancestors

Melding retro hip hop with his signature style, the hip hop maven has produced yet another hit album that stood at the forefront of 2021’s music industry. 

Beam Me Up Scotty | Nicki Minaj   

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧💧 

We don’t need to tell you Barbies that Nicki Minaj slays all day, right? Because that’s already common knowledge in the hip hop industry, periodt

Topping the weekly Billboard music poll is her remake of her 2009 mixtape, Beam Me Up Scotty. The reissue debuted at second place on the Billboard 200, solidifying her status as a sure-fire hitmaker. Featuring bops like “I Get Crazy” and “Mind On my Money”, the Barbz is an unstoppable force of nature. 

That’s What They All Say | Jack Harlow  

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧💧 

When you hear the tracks on Jack Harlow’s debut album, you’re gonna wanna stop, drop, and roll, because those bops are fire

Hype can be overrated, but that doesn’t apply to Jack Harlow, who completely crushed the game with his first studio album, That’s What They All Say. Our compilation of the best hip hop albums of 2021 wouldn’t be complete without this talented prodigy’s work. 

Following his Billboard Hot 100 reign with the song, “What’s Poppin’” featuring DaBaby, Tory Lanez, and Lil Wayne, the rapper struck again with a checkmate of an album. We just know that you’ll be playing “Rendezvous”, “Way Out”, and “Funny Seeing you Here” on loop.

All The Brilliant Things | Skyzoo

Drippy Rating: 💧💧💧💧 

Keeping his fingers on the pulse of hip hop, Skyzoo never fails to release brilliant music, and we’re totally here for it. What can we say? His 2021 album, All The Brilliant Things, couldn’t be more perfectly named.

Every track takes listeners on a journey throughout Brooklyn and pays homage to iconic landmarks throughout the city. Infused with subtle hints of jazz, this album is a novelty that offers something new in every song. The subtle sounds are cooler than iced tea and more refreshing than a dip in the pool. Desert Drip approves. 

The Best Hip Hop Albums of 2021 X Desert Drip

Now that you know which albums you need to add to your collection, there’s another thing that you should know – music is best experienced live! 

You can see and hear all your favorite hip hop acts bring the vibes to the hottest clubs in Las Vegas when you secure an all-access ticket from Desert Drip. Following the success in 2021, the party continues in 2022. Stay tuned, fam! 

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