Every month, columnist Lorena Cupcake compiles a playlist of the most noteworthy rap releases for The Rap Round-up. This month is stacked: Missy, Drake, Peewee, Young Thug, E-40, Brockhampton, and much more. Plus, Hot Girl Summer reaches its apex.
This summer, new superstars have been anointed as the old guard refuses to step down. Megan Thee Stallion twerked her way into iconography, Popeye’s Chicken sandwich in hand. Drake scored a no. 1 record bundling vintage singles while sending out shots on Instagram. Christian rapper NF dominated multiple charts with his bland and palatable late July album The Search, which combines the slick stylings of bombastic radio pop with melancholy verse.
Pop Smoke and Baby Keem scored the most fan buzz this month, at least until the fiends got their hands on a new Thug record. E-40 and Peewee Longway blessed us with more excellence, while YBN Cordae and and tobi lou released the first albums of what should be long and interesting careers.
With Confetti, Rich Brian subverts the rap tropes he caricatured in his breakout hit, offering self-effacing boasts about his Honda Civic and a “lil’ bad bitch” who “just turned 29”. Fellow 88rising artist August08, who boasts songwriting credit for most of hi labelmates, offers a more concise and compelling vision of pop on the bittersweet Happy Endings with an Asterisk EP.
Elsewhere, brilliant outsiders like JPEGMAFIA and Chris Crack recite absurdist poetry, relative newcomers like Tabby Wakes, Tisakorean, Ambjaay and Killavesi craft catchy hooks, critical darlings like BROCKHAMPTON and Rapsody feed their fanbases and slept-on rappers like Kash Doll, Matt Muse, Cousin Stizz and Ugly God continue to do the best work in their respective lanes.
PS: Do yourself a favor and listen to the whole Bas EP, even if you don’t like J. Cole, and then thank me later.
Missy Elliott – ‘Throw It Back’
Kash Doll – ‘Here I Go’
Memo600 – ‘Wipe Yo Nose’
Pop Smoke – ‘Better Have Your Gun’
E-40 – ‘I Come from the Game’ [Feat. Payroll Giovanni, Peezy & Sada Baby]
Jeezy – ‘MLK BLVD’ [Feat. Meek Mill]
Peewee Longway – ‘Fiji Water’je
Young Thug – ‘What’s the Move’ [Feat. Lil Uzi Vert]
Baby Keem – ‘INVENTED IT’
YBN Cordae – ‘Nightmares Are Real’ [Feat. Pusha T]
Rico Nasty – ‘Time Flies’
Rich Brian – ‘Confetti’
tobi lou – ‘I Was Sad Last Night I’m OK Now’
Father – ‘A lot on ur plate’
Tabby Wakes – ‘Tabby Night’
Drake – ‘How Bout Now’
Rucci – ‘Lowrider’
Eladio Carrión & Bad Bunny – ‘Kemba Walker’
Blueface – ‘Gang’ [Feat. Mozzy]
Young Dolph & Key Glock – ‘Juicy’
Tisakorean – ‘Watermelon Booty’
Bas – ‘Jollof Rice’ [Feat. EARTHGANG]
DJ Snake, J Balvin & Tyga – ‘Loco Contigo’
Megan Thee Stallion – ‘Hot Girl Summer’ [Feat. Nicki Minaj & Ty Dolla $ign]
Anuel AA, Daddy Yankee & Karol G – ‘China’ [Feat. J Balvin & Ozuna]
Ambjaay – ‘Uno’
Killavesi – ‘Hating Bitches’
Ugly God – ‘Bumps & Bruises (Interlude)’
BROCKHAMPTON – ‘IF YOU PRAY RIGHT’
Rapsody – ‘Ibtihaj’ [Feat. D’Angelo & GZA]
Matt Muse – ‘Family, Still [Storge]’
RJMrLA – ‘Bang My Line’ [Feat. O.T. Genasis]
Cousin Stizz – ‘Anonymous’ [Feat. Smino]
Lil Tjay – ‘F.N’
BJ the Chicago Kid – ‘Worryin’ Bout Me’ [Feat. Offset]
JPEGMAFIA – ‘Jesus Forgive Me, I Am a Thot’
Chris Crack – ‘Topo Chico DeBarge’
August 08 – ‘Blood on My Hands’ [Feat. Smino]
Black Milk – ‘Black NASA’ [Feat. Sam Austins]
NF – ‘Time’
Trae tha Truth – ‘Even Tho Its Hard’
Lorena Cupcake writes about every facet of culture. Find their insightful coverage on music, food and more at lorenacupcake.com.