To close out the year, Crossfade is picking out its favorite albums by 305 artists. Read the full list of Miami's Best Albums of 2010 here.
Stimulus Package (Self-Released)
J. Nics has risen tremendously since releasing his first collection of tracks in December 2009. His very first release came in the form of his mixtape Dirty Sneakers, which was full of raw hip-hop lyrics over a nice mix of beats and mainstream instrumentals.
After polishing his craft on various other releases after the mixtape, J. Nics graduated to the big leagues in late 2010 with his first official release of all-original material. He called it The Stimulus Package. From opener to very last beat, J. Nics's trademark Southern drawl and intricately composed rhyme schemes make the listener hopeful he's Miami's next big thing.
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The Stimulus Package is very sample driven on the production side of things. And lyrically, J. Nics stamped himself on par with the likes of Goodie Mob and Outkast. From the self-awareness of "No Love Lost" to the commercial appeal of "Show Me The Way," J. Nics has raised the bar high. And while the music was definitely the focus, Nics also released various viral videos for some extra marketing appeal.
And even though this 10-track EP was both produced and released independently by Nics and team, it still sounds better than most of the year's cash-fat, major-label rap releases.