Here are 35 South African hip-hop releases that caught our attention this year.
The diversity in South African hip-hop is what makes it one of the most unique in the whole world.
In a country that has 11 official languages and multiple iterations of slang, it's always interesting hearing how South African wordsmiths express themselves, bending language and stretching its limitations. The stories vary from popping bottles to dealing with the repercussions of apartheid, the country's current political climate, and intrapersonal issues like mental illness and the existential anxiety many of us suffer from every now and then.
For our list of the best SA hip-hop albums of 2018, we considered all kinds of rap from the most visible to the most niche of artists, from boom bap to trap, and everything in between. The only criteria we used was fire flame emojis, charts, sales and all that doesn't matter. Three of our contributors, Sipho Fako, Mayuyuka Kaunda and Sabelo Mkhabela, who have covered hip-hop extensively for OkayAfrica compiled a list of 35 albums, mixtapes and EPs that dropped this year that they feel excelled musically and lyrically.