Album: Seeing SoundsArtist: N*E*R*D
Label: Star Trak
At number 24 is an album that I feel people have sort of forgotten about with all the hype surrounding some other hip hop/pop records. N*E*R*D's Seeing Sounds, which came out in July, for those who weren't aware, is yet another triumph in the long list of Pharrell Williams' accomplishments. With the third album of the virtual side project, N*E*R*D, Pharrell, along with associates Chad Hugo and Shay, have once again provided us with a sound that fits neither the pop or hip hop labels, blending genres and effects for what proves to be a very enjoyable experience, good for relaxing and partying.
What amazes me most about this album is probably the constant energy, as well as how much it tends to remind me of a rock album. Has Pharrell bridged the gap like no one else has? Well, not really- as readers will see later in the countdown- since other artists took a shot at combining rock and hip hop this year, and to some degree, saw a good deal of success with it too. Seeing Sounds, however, can stand without those as its own interesting piece of art. And, since art rarely gets radio play, I guess this one would qualify as such. For comparisons, consult Pharrell's solo gig, Outkast, and Lupe Fiasco. I'm giving some real props to Pharrell and his boys for this recording, and if you haven't heard it yet, I'd suggest finding yourself a copy.
Best Track: "Happy"