J. Cole's third album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, easily debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard though there are plenty of people who are confused by this release. Historically, Cole has done well with singles in the US while his singles can't hold a candle to the success of his albums in the UK.
So why is it that the US reviewers are loving this album while the critics in the UK aren't pleased? Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that there are plenty of songs by themselves that have nice feel. The beats throughout this entire album are great (the lyrics and overall effect is another story) I can already tell you which songs are going to be hit singles.
That being said, looking at this album as a whole, as one artistic project rather than several separated tracks, the overall feeling comes off a bit weak.
With the age of playlists and individual song downloads, I can see artists like this becoming more and more successful, but I would like to see one strong, fluid hip hop record in 2015 (Frank Ocean where you at?)
Here is a sample of 5 songs that I think capture the feeling of the entire album and are sure to be singles:
No Role Modelz
A Tale of 2 Cities
I attached the full album as well for your listening pleasure.