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The 50 Best Albums of 2012 (So Far)

37. Dom Kennedy, The Yellow Album

Label: Other People's Money
Released: June 21st

Dom Kennedy's From The Westside, With Love II was his moment to blaze the mainstream as an underground artist, but he didn't receive the huge response he expected from his first major release. This fueled the motivation to prove that his laid-back Cali flow belongs with the best of West Coast music. Dom's latest free release, Yellow Album, delivers 13 cuts that stay true to the streets of Leimert Park.

Yellow Album is packed with chilled-out tracks, mostly crafted by up-and-coming producers. You get the sense that Dom felt the pressure to succeed, shining with his style of minimalist bars about money, cars and women. “I talk to girls that talk to girls/I think I ran across your girl/I think your man just lost his girl,” he raps on “So Elastic.”

He gets into the lifestyle of sun-soaked L.A. in the lead single, “My Type Of Party,” and “Gold Alpinas” featuring Rick Ross. With fellow Cali natives Kendrick Lamar and Too $hort adding their own color, Yellow Album offers a perfect glimpse of Cali living just in time for summer.

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