Getty Image/Ralph Ordaz
The best new hip-hop this week includes albums, videos, and songs from Cardi B, Logic, Pop Smoke, and more.
The big hip-hop story of the week was, unsurprisingly, the XXL Freshman Cyphers, which were broken up into three parts. The first, featuring Coi Leray, DDG, Lakeyah, and Morray, became the standout thanks to Coi’s inexplicably brief verse, which she followed with a twerking session. In the second, Blxst and Toosii delivered a pair of competent verses, and finally, the closer featuring 42 Dugg, Flo Milli, Pooh Shiesty, and Rubi Rose impressed fans thanks to Rubi’s cool delivery and Flo Milli’s exuberance.
Friday saw the releases of new music and videos from 21 Savage and Metro Boomin (“Brand New Draco“), Cardi B (who guested on Normani’s suggestive “Wild Side” after re-writing her verse to make it “nastier”), Logic (“My Way“), Trippie Redd and Lil Uzi Vert (“Holy Smokes”), Blxst and Bino Rideaux (“One Of Them Ones“), Kevin Abstract (“Slugger” with Snot and Slowthai), and Pop Smoke, whose posthumous album Faith features “Tell The Vision” featuring Pusha T along with the releases listed below.
Here is the best of hip-hop this week ending March 19, 2021.
Blxst & Bino Rideaux — Sixtape 2
Bino & Blxst
For the second installment of their star-making series, the two Los Angeles natives offer double the new songs, embracing smooth grooving rhythm&gangsta vibes to detail their lives since we last heard from them. There’s a relatively even distribution of cocky come-ons and subtle flag-waving moments to appease both the Gs and the ladies, and the consistent tempos make it a comforting late-night drive vibe setter.
Drakeo The Ruler — Ain’t That The Truth
Drakeo The Ruler
At this point, you know what you’re getting from Drakeo, whose unapologetically goofy flexes provide levity to the gritty undercurrent of paranoia and loss. It’s his first release since the death of Stinc Team member Ketchy The Great, but his presence is still felt as Drakeo and Ralfy the Plug carry the torch.
OMB Bloodbath — Blood Sample [EP]
The Houston native has built a respectable back catalog of mixtapes, but for her first release for LVRN, she polishes things up considerably. While it’s a short effort at just five tracks, her pen proficiency shines through on a variety of song styles and themes. EST Gee shows up here too, which is a treat for fans of the burgeoning Midwest superstar.
Pop Smoke — Faith
A surprising posthumous release from the late Pop Smoke that folds back into the drill sounds that first made his name, bringing its proliferation of guests into his world instead of the other way around. It’s a little busy with guest stars, but considering how early in his career Pop died, it’s understandable that his team and estate might want to spread his vaulted verses around as much as possible.
Remble — It’s Remble
Listen, when it comes to West Coast rappers making murder sound funny, there are very few who are quite as good at it as Remble. The best part might be the hyper-enunciated, ultra-calm vocal tone with which he delivers his smirking threats. When he gets on “Book Bag” with BlueBucksClan… alchemy.
Dave East & Harry Fraud –“Diamonds”
As a longtime follower — but seldom enjoyer — of Dave East’s music, I find his collaborative project with Harry Fraud frustrating because it’s the sort of thing he should have put out years ago. It’d have at least bought him more goodwill for his salty commentary toward Gen Z, it’s that good.
J.I. — “Morning”
As the self-declared Prince of NY leans more and more into his melodic flow, he creeps closer to a breakthrough moment that will bring him to the vaunted heights of fellow Big Apple rappers like Tjay and A Boogie.
Rexx Life Raj — “Kimbo Slice”
On Rexx’s newest single, the mellow beat belies the aggressive content, which broadens the Berkeley rapper’s overall range, showing he’s not all financial advance and introspection.
Russ — “Cheers”
Russ’s consistency is honestly impressive and refreshing at this point. There are few other rappers who have been able to maintain the balance of quality and quantity of releases as Russ has over the past few months.
Tink — “Selfish” Featuring Yung Bleu
Every time Tink drops something, I get mad all over again at how long it’s been since the Chicago native’s last release. The anger dissipates in the face of my astonishment at her consistent growth.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.