Best Mixtape/Street Album of 2012

Reader's Pick

Big Sean - Detroit Artwork

Big Sean - Detroit

After finally achieving his goal of becoming famous with the 2011 release of his studio debut, Big Sean wasn't about to forget where he came from. Last September, the G.O.O.D Music signee paid homage to the city that made him the man, and the artist, he is today with Detroit, a mixtape whose polished beats and copious high-profile guest features made it feel more like a studio album that just so happened to be free. Far from phoning it in on the mic, Sean laced the project with some of his highest-quality bars to date, creating a body of work that not only appealed to his devotees, but won over many heads who hadn't previously considered themselves fans.

Staff Pick

Big K.R.I.T. - 4EvaNaDay Artwork

Big K.R.I.T. - 4EvaNaDay

The sun rises in the east, the seasons change, the Earth circles the sun, Big K.R.I.T. delivers the year's best mixtape. It's become a yearly tradition for K.R.I.T. to deliver an extraordinary, and extraordinarily free, project, and 2012 proved to be no different with the arrival of 4EvaNaDay. From Boobie Miles to, of course, the 4EvaNaDay (Theme) and all 15 other songs, after this mixtape the South will never be the same.

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