Hip-hop is moving as quickly as ever. Luckily, we’re doing the work to compile the best singles of the past week and highlight them in one space for you. This week, there were offerings from Southside, TM88, Valee and Lil Yachty, Rico Nasty, and Vince Staples, who are all looking to close out 2018 in strong fashion. Or maybe they’re just trying to be “Grand” like Currensy, or drop an ode to the winter like 03 Greedo on his latest release. Elsewhere, Nas and Swizz dropped a video for their standout “Echo” collaboration, while Big KRIT dropped another surprise EP and Vic Mensa released his Hooligans album.
TM88 & Southside Feat. Valee & Lil Yachty, “Hmmm”
Valee and Lil Yachty carried over the energy from their “Wombo” collaboration into “Hmm,” a sinister joint track between producers TM88 and Southside. The glitchy synths and thumping drums are the ideal canvas to dish off some scenic brags like Valee’s “I’m somewhere with a famous skyline” and Yachty’s “I’m in the ‘Nola eatin’ beignets.”
Vince Staples, “Home”
Another blockbuster, another strong Vince Staples offering. After contributing an album highlight to the Creed II soundtrack, Vince gets on “Home,” a triumphant track from the soundtrack inspired by the themes of Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse. He begins his spider verse pondering that, “this morning I woke up in a fortress of distortion / I’m at war with my emotions, I’m at war with the enforcement,” before affirming in his second verse that you “can’t take me down now / my feet on the ground now, fight ’til I’m down now.”
Swizz Beats and Nas connected on a video for Echo, a much-heralded track from Swizz’ Poison album. Nas shows love to his native Queens and declares himself “a walkin’ observatory, a murder story since a shorty” while he and Swizz glow amid the nightfall.
Vic Mensa, Feat. Ty Dolla Sign, “In Some Trouble”
Vic Mensa just released his latest EP, Hooligans. It’s only right that one of the standout singles is called “In Some Trouble” featuring Ty Dolla Sign. But the track isn’t about getting into drama, instead it’s a sugary R&B collaboration about getting involved with a woman who’s already involved.
Rico Nasty, “Guap (LaLaLa)”
Rico Nasty is closing a strong 2018 in typically rambunctious fashion on “Guap,” a thumping track where the DMV spitter unleashes her emphatic flow over quaking 808s. The video for “Guap” shows her in what looks to be a mental institution, playing into her ruckus music aesthetic by dancing in a padded room and rhyming with a giant head bandage on. But her rhyme skills — and apparently her bank account — are quite healthy.
Big KRIT, Trifecta EP
America is enjoying the holiday season, but Big KRIT is celebrating foot-on-neck season. The Mississippi rhymer is steadily stirring anticipation for his next full-length project, first with Thrice X, then the Double Down EP, and now his latest EP entitled Trifecta. On “Energy,” KRIT is longing for a connection over a wailing sample. On “Oh Oh,” he narrates a fracturing relationship where love-turned-to-pain and his ex “kept it 100” with him. “4 Tha Three” turns up the energy with a funky synth on an uptempo ode to the city, country, and players, among others.
Currensy is the perfect name for the Jet Life general, cause he just doesn’t stop circulating. The latest offering from the prolific artist is “Grand,” an aptly titled lyrical exercise from his upcoming Weed N Instrumentals project that’s dropping on Christmas Eve. Currensy drops some bars over Grand Puba’s classic “I Like It” beat, including the following hilarious, Jackson Five-inspired couplets: “Can it be he stayed away too long? / is Kanye still ridin’ ‘round with Trump? / Hope if he hear this he don’t get mad / Just give us some vintage sample tracks.”
03 Greedo, “Dear Winter”
There’s a possibility that 03 Greedo could be out on parole from his 20-year-sentence sometime in 2020, which makes every track that’s come out since his incarceration less bittersweet and a tad more anticipatory. That’s the case on the melodic “Dear Winter,” where he shows off his harmonious inclinations over sparse production.
Waka Flocka, “December 6th”
Waka Flocka has been working on his anticipated Flockaveli 2 album for over a while. He initially announced the album for October in April, but two months later, we’re still waiting. Perhaps the delay is due to some of the reasons he dished on “December 6th,” a melancholy track where the Atlanta artist culls through his internal discontent, with bars like “I can’t lie right now / I hit rock bottom, everybody disappeared.” Well, at least Gucci Mane is back in his life.
Father Feat. Zack Fox, “Family Function”
“That’s how my family function, n—a we love dysfunction.” That’s the refrain on “Family Function,” the latest offering from underground king Father. The Atlanta rhymer is joined by fellow artist Zack Fox who competes with Currensy for funniest bar of the week with, “Henny and Patron, b*tch, you know that is a bad look / I’m ’bout to hit the club and do some shit to get my ass whooped.”