Album Review: Joey Badass is 1999 To Infinity

By The Unconquerable VZA (@UNQVZA)

The bar-spitting and deal-declining Joey Bada$$ proves why he is of one of Brooklyn’s best.

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1999 is Joey Badass’ debut mixtape released in June 2012. It is an independently released project reminiscent of early 90s rap music. The New York emcee features a myriad of producers and artists, including beats from the late, J Dilla. Only 17 at the time of release, Joey Badass delivers a mixtape any hip hop head can respect and relate to. Notable tracks on the mixtape include debut single “Waves” and “Suspect” which features members of his Pro Era crew.

I thoroughly enjoy listening to this mixtape. I believe that the word, ‘mixtape’ becomes misleading for this particular project, as a rough and uncut record is what would be expected. In this case 1999 is a gem of production that transports the listener back to an era where rap was new and exciting. The ability to captivate a listener for the duration of an entire record is what defines its success to me. This one may as well have been released as a studio album because of how well it was all put together. Joey Badass is an amazing storyteller and this mixtape will have your ears glued to the sound of a new New Yorker.

Joey’s other projects include Summer Knights and the recently released Pro Era mixtape, The Shift EP. Pro Era fans can look forward to Joey’s debut album, B4.Da.A$$, set for release later this year.


After this mixtape’s success Joey Badass even declined a deal with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation label, instead deciding that independence would be the correct course of action for him. He recently released the trailer for his new short film, No Regrets, in collaboration with Green Label Sound. The short film was directed by Rik Cordero and scored by Statik Selektah. If you like 1999, you might also like Chance the Rapper’s album Acid Rap.

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