Some of the biggest artists in music history have come from the UK. From The Beatles to Radiohead. From Elton John to Adele. From David Bowie to Led Zeppelin. The UK has been at the forefront of forward thinking and inventive music throughout the 20th century and into the 21st century.
A lot of popular discourse around music would have you believe that most of the greatest music coming out today is only coming out of America. That’s simply not true. Sometimes artists simply fly under the radar of the media behemoth that the US is, but make no mistake, UK artists are pushing the envelope more than ever now.
UK Hip Hop and Pop is thriving like it never has before, popular artists are finding success all over the world and experimentation and innovation is at an all time high in smaller sub genres.
These next 10 albums are the very best that the UK had to offer in 2019.
10. AJ Tracey - AJ Tracey
It may seem that AJ Tracey seemingly came out of nowhere in 2019, but he has been slowly cultivating his sound for years now. 2016 was probably the year he truly broke out. His collaborative effort with fellow London rapper Dave entitled Thiago Silva exposed him to a whole new audience, with the video hitting over 25 million views on YouTube.
This was soon followed by his Lil Tracey EP later in 2016, with singles like Luke Cage, Pasta and Buster Cannon becoming hits in their own right.
Naturally the release of his debut album was highly anticipated, especially after his prolific 2017 and 2018 with a string of successful singles and another EP.
His self titled debut arrived in early 2019 and he couldn't have made a stronger first impression on the popular music crowd. Perfectly towing the line between confidence and arrogance, his raps about his lavish lifestyle and his rise to fame remained consistently witty and somehow relatable for most of the album.
The success of the UK garage throwback track Ladbroke Grove cannot be understated. It’s been a radio station lineup staple up and down the country since it was released, peaking at number 3 in the UK Singles Chart. All of this without signing a record label.
AJ Tracey’s debut effort is all we could have asked for from him.