Kendrick Lamar, 'Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City' (10/2)
Forget Detox – the hottest project Dr. Dre is working on right now is his new protégé's major-label debut. "He made me step my game up 10 times from what I thought I had," says Lamar, whose whipsmart rhymes shine on tracks like the Dre-featuring single "The Recipe." For inspiration, Lamar has been spending time in his old neighborhood in Compton: "I'm putting myself back in that space where I was when nobody was going to listen to me. All it was was the streets and desperation."