Big Sean, 'Dark Sky Paradise'

On Big Sean's third album under Def Jam Records, Dark Sky Paradise, he had a lot to prove. Coming off a lackluster sophomore LP, Hall of Fame (2013), the G.O.O.D. Music golden boy struggled with lukewarm reviews, family shifts and a very public split from ex-fiancee Naya Rivera. He knew he had to come back with a vengeance and he did. Fueled by the infectious lead single, “I Don’t Fuck with You” featuring E-40, Sean rode the "break-up anthem" wave for nearly five months before dropping the album. And it was well worth the wait. Not only did he provide bangers like "IDFWU" and “Blessings” featuring Drake and Kanye West, but also deep, introspective cuts like "Skyscrapers" and “One Man Can Change the World” featuring ‘Ye and John Legend. Not to mention he keeps up with 'Ye bar for bar on "All Your Fault." The build up, pacing and momentum of Dark Sky Paradise has an appeal unmatched by many LPs this year because it gives you a sense of Sean's highs and lows as if they're your own while still providing a potent lyrical escape. Bless.