Hip hop

Kids See Ghosts – Cudi Montage

These last couple of weeks, I’ve been busy listening to all kinds of different music, that I completely forgot to share it with the people!

Kanye West has been on fire these last couple of Fridays – and I’m not thinking about whatever “scandals” he stirred up with his Donald Trump and MAGA comments – It’s all about the music.

3 albums in a row: Pusha T’s Daytona, his own Ye, and lastly Kids See Ghosts, his collaboration with Kid Cudi. All these albums are only 7 songs long, but I hope that this trend catches on. We need less filler and more quality! Way to go Kanye for showing that it’s possible in this streaming era.

I’m not going talk about every album individually, the only comment I’m gonna give is: IF YOU HAVEN’T HEARD THEM YET, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? (That did come out a bit aggressive, but you should really check it out). It’s some of Kanye’s best production and that says a lot considering his earlier work.

Every single song is something special, but the reason I chose this particular one is very simple. It’s the best one!

Kid Cudi and Kanye have a great chemistry here, and Kanye’s verse is some of the most heartfelt I’ve heard from him in a while. Kid Cudi’s moans are something of a meme at this point, but there is a reason for this. Just like clichés are a thing because there’s a universal truth to them, Cudi’s moans are perhaps the most truthful thing you will ever hear this year (This comparison somehow sounded better in my head – the point being that Kid Cudi is back, better than ever).

The guitar is sampled from Nirvana and gives the song a gloomy sound – not very surprising given that it was produced by Kid Cudi, his long time collaborate, Dot Da Genius and another genius among them, Mike Dean. In the last part of the song, Mr. Hudson joins in on the chorus and from there on, I was already in heaven. The song really left me feeling a certain way after the first listen and now I can’t stop listening!

Other streaming services:
Google Play Music
YouTube
Apple Music

 

 

A$AP Rocky – Tony Tone

TESTING 123 – TESTING 123 – TESTING 123

A$AP Rocky has finally released his album, Testing, after several delays throughout last year. So the big question; Was it worth the wait?

I have to admit that I actually wasn’t very hype for the release. I only really liked the single A$AP Forever as Above, Bad Company, and 5IVE $TAR$ weren’t really up to whatever standard I had for Rocky songs. As it turns out, A$AP Forever is actually the only single from the album as the other songs were just Rocky testing out different sounds.

I have to say though, that based on this song alone, It’s definitely worth the wait! Rocky is back with what he does best – flow, delivery, and bravado. I am convinced he can take any beat and make his flow work with it. That make all the songs on the album very enjoyable, even the ones where he is experimenting with his sound as he did on At. Long. Last. A$AP.

Even though I only chose one song from the album, I recommend listening to the whole thing from start to back. There are a lot of great tracks on here that has already been added to my playlist.

Childish Gambino – This Is America

Everything this man does right now becomes gold!

I have to admit that I’m perhaps a bit biased when it comes to Childish Gambino/Donald Glover. I was sold on him from the first moment I heard and saw the music video for Freaks and Geeks As soon as I finished it, I had to find out who this guy was. Soon after, I discovered the tv-show Community where he plays one of the characters, his standup comedy special Weirdo, 30 Rock where he was a writer. Everything Donald Glover chose to put his heart into, he did succesfully.

Or did he?

Even though I was absolutely loved his earlier music, he had a hard time getting respect from some fans of hiphop. Being nerdy and coming from comedy doesn’t mesh well with the usual rap-image. He wasn’t rapping about lambo’s and champagne. He wasn’t rapping about growing up in the trap. He wasn’t rapping about how he had to sell drugs to get by. He was simply telling a different story – his story! And I loved that. Authenticity has always been a major theme in Childish Gambino’s music, and I feel like him staying true to himself and his work has finally paid off in every way possible – I like to believe he is one of the most respected artists alive right now. Who else can say they are on top of their music career, star in the next Star Wars movie Solo (pun intended), and be the voice of Simba in the upcoming remake of Disney’s Lion King, all while you have created one of the most succesful tv-shows in Atlanta (You have to watch Atlanta if you haven’t yet!).

I know this became more about Childish Gambino or Donald Glover as a person than the song, but he is truly one of my greatest inspirations. This song shows why he is the best doing it right now. The social commentary can’t be escaped with everything happening in the US right – talks about Donald Trump, gun control, racism, identity and patrionism. The music video itself is a piece of art and fits the song perfectly as it helps expand on some of these topics I mentioned earlier.

I aspire to one day be half as talented as Donald Glover. Stop whatever you are doing right now and watch the video – you won’t regret it! (I’m already working on learning the dance moves right now).

Spotify link: Childish Gambino – This Is America

J. Cole – Kevin’s Heart

I’ve had some time to digest J. Cole’s (almost) surprise release KOD. His previous project, 4 Your Eyez Only, wasn’t close to being my favorite, but I think people are being way too harsh on it. This could be because 2014 Forest Hills Drive was such a good album that people expected 4YEO to be as good or better, but I believe 4YEO has some really great moments. This time, J. Cole came back with a new sound though, and it sounds like a mixture of the melodic beats from 2014 FHD and the more simple beats from 4YEO. 

The first song that really grabbed my attention was Kevin’s Heart. I liked the songs up until then, but I believe that Cole shines in songs like this. The message is easily understood as Cole builds up the perfect story of how temptation is always lurking. I think J. Cole’s storytelling is one of his main strengths – just how easy it is for him to paint a picture of a situation using metaphors and word plays.

The song got a well deserved video that stunned me the first time I saw it. He actually got Kevin Hart to star in it, which is crazy considering Kevin Hart’s recent cheating-situation (look it up on google if you want details). I can honestly respect that Kevin Hart agreed to do the part and it made me realise that the song is touching upon some very human things – ego stroking, temptations, lust, regrets, adultery, love, addiction. But the video showed me a different side to all these things that I wasn’t considering before: Forgiveness. J. Cole wants us to understand that we are only human – not good nor bad, just alive with feelings in whatever way they come.

Give the song a listen (watch the video as well) and get addicted to the song just like I am. I’ve been humming it for the past couple of days and It’s definitely going on my J. Cole playlist!

 

 

XXXTENTACION – Moonlight

XXXTENTACION surprised everyone last friday when he dropped his second album, ? (Question mark) less than a year from his first album, 17.

I listened to 17 back when it released and while I didn’t enjoy it all that much, I don’t think anyone can deny that XXXTENTACION has the raw talent to deliver something great. Now, after listening to ?, I definitely feel like he is improving in all areas of his music, even though I still find some of them lacking – his lyrics are a bit too superficial for me and some of the songs don’t feel fully fleshed out.

With that said though, Moonlight hooked me in right away and didn’t let go until it finished. The beat is a big reason for this as it’s one of the most creative beats I heard in a while. XXXTENTACION utilizes the beat in a great way with his hook and his flow fits the beat perfectly. It’s one of those songs that gets stuck in your head way too easy, all due to the infectious flow and vibe rather than some catchy lyrics.

If you have been following XXXTENTACION at all, you already know some of the things from his past that still haunts him. I have always been very ambivalent about supporting artists that have done things I don’t agree with in their personal life (Why Chris, Why!?), but considering XXXTENTACION’s age, I believe he can turn his wrongdoings around and mainly focus on his music where he, at times at least, is able to deliver something truly unique!

Vince Staples – Get The Fuck Off My Dick

Vince Staples is back with a new song and he announced it in the best way possible: A GoFundMe campaign where he promises that he’ll never be heard from again in media or with songs if he manages to raise 2 million dollars.

Check out the campaign for yourself here!

I really enjoy Vince Staples’ personality and it makes me like his music even more when you can feel that he’s stays true to himself which makes it authentic (or at least it feels authentic) – especially when he’s operating in a world where many artists feel pressured to act a certain way to sell records and sign record deals.

In the song, Vince Staples addresses stuff such as how he feels he was snubbed at the Grammys, how people don’t like the direction of his music and other similar topics – I guess this is his way to get something of his chest, which is very welcomed by me as new Vince Staples never disappoints. Just keep this stuff up Vince and you’ll get a Grammy soon enough!

Oh, and what a cover picture for a single – I love it!

 

 

Denzel Curry – Zeltron 6 Billion (feat. Lil Ugly Mane)

Denzel Curry released a new EP this weekend and it’s really awesome! The project is short, concise and to the point (all meaning the same thing actually) and that makes the project highly enjoyable.

I honestly think Denzel Curry has one of the best flows right now as he can just flow on whatever beat is thrown at him. His wordplay is  entertaining and the way he combines the two things make him standout as one of the most interesting upcoming artists.

Check the EP out as well as his other projects. He is really talented.

Other streaming services:
Google Play Music

Young Thug – Family Don’t Matter (feat. Millie Go Lightly)

Young Thug keeps on surprising me with these releases! When Jeffery came out, I was so excited for the direction he took. Him flowing together with the melodies has always been Young Thug’s strongest too, in my opinion and that’s one of the reasons why Jeffery is so good.

This Friday he released a new mixtape as a follow up to Jeffery called Beautiful Thugger Girls. He continues the singing from Jeffery on this and I can’t believe that he made some kind of mixture between rap and country-singing. Even just mentioning country with Young Thug in the same sentence seems ridiculous, but it just works on every level.

The guitar in the chorus reminded me of Raury’s God’s Whisper and that’s definitely a positive thing cause I loved that song. The feature from Millie Go Lightly has to be mentioned as well cause she just kills it and elevates the song even further!

If you listened to Young Thug before, but didn’t like him, you should give this one a chance. If you never listened to Young Thug before, give this a go and go listen to the whole mixtape if you liked it.

Other streaming services:
Google Play Music
Soundcloud
Youtube

 

DJ Khaled – To the Max (feat. Drake)

This song surprised me! I love how different it sounds – the beat is in my opinion doing everything for this song, but I kinda like that Drake steps a bit back and let the beat work the magic. The UK-inspired sound has really done wonders for Drake as an artist and his next move will be exciting to follow.

I don’t see this getting as big as other ‘Dj Khaled feat. Drake’-songs, but to see DJ Khaled make an experimental song is pretty cool. I hope that his new album Grateful will try out some different sounds (I’m the One is a pretty standard Dj Khaled song), but if there are more songs like To the Max, I could see the album being my go-to for summer anthems (but Calvin Harris’ album will probably be the album for that).

Other streaming services:
Youtube
Google Play Music

Noah Carter – City of Sin

Danish artist, Noah Carter, has released his debut album and I was honestly surprised by the quality of it. I have never listened to any of his music before this album, but I decided to check it out because Google Play Music suggested it and I’m glad I did.

The song that stood out to me was City of Sin. He does sound a bit like Drake, but that’s not a bad thing. The instrumental sets the perfect mood for Noah’s voice and lyrics and it makes the whole song elevate to a different level compared to the other songs on the album.

Give his music a chance and listen down below and make sure to check out his album Couch Dreams as well!

Other streaming services:
Google Play Music