If you thought that the year was over in terms of rap music, you’re wrong. There are a few more releases that pepper this end of the year schedule. While June and July were stuffed with quality releases from some of the biggest artistss, Autumn has already started to yield some similarly high results. ASTROWORLD and Stay Dangerous, from Travis Scott and YG respectively, just recently released and are already getting rave reviews. What else do we have to look forward to this month?
Queen by Nicki Minaj (Aug 10)
Nicki’s been on a crusade to bully journalists as of recent, so the hype for her album, on a personal level, has never been lower. But her last releases “Chun Li,” “Barbie Tingz,” and “Rich $ex” have all been equally magnetic tracks that look to be building a massive amount of hype prior to the release. Her fourth studio album looks to be huge, being delayed one week perhaps to clear a Tracy Chapman sample. We call BS, particularly because of the crowded release week that she’s avoided because of her choice. We’ll see what all of the hype leads up to when it comes out this week.
Life’s A Trip by Trippie Redd (Aug 10)
Trippie Redd’s new project comes fresh off of his tenure as XXL Freshman for the 2018 Class. In fact, he might be the freshman; name a rapper from the cover with more buzz than him. He missed an opportunity to be on Drake’s “God’s Plan,” something I’m sure that he’s still kicking himself for, so this album looks to be his way of making things right with the world. He’s been showing his growth with tracks like “I Kill People” that show a much more grounded approach than the lofty rap that he’d been crafting previously.
Harvard Dropout by Lil Pump (Aug 17)
Say the name “Lil Pump” around anyone over thirty and they’ll have a heart attack. He’s the epitome of a new age rapper – the bright hair, grills, and nonsensical music often frustrate anyone outside of his target demographic. His heavily anticipated upcoming project Harvard Dropout is set to hit shelves in a couple of weeks and the mysterious nature of it has begun to intrigue people. Just what exactly has Pump been up to since he got out of his deal with Warner Bros?
Untitled EP by Lil Yachty (Aug 23)
We thought we were getting something from Lil Yachty last week, only for him to reveal that we’d be getting it a little bit later. That later arrives in a few weeks and we’re desperate for him to redeem himself after the debacle that was Teenage Emotions. His recent release Lil Boat 2 was the start of something great, now we’ll see if it was a fluke or if he’s really corrected his slip-up.
Russ Is Right, Exploiting Drug Addiction For Money Is Wack
Russ has made it clear for over a year now that he’s not for the glamorization of drugs for money. He recently got into a Twitter scuffle with Fat Nick, a known user of lean and narcotics, with the two debating about his fascination with drugs and how the latter makes money off of it. Nick frequently posts his drugs and merchandise that contains drugs online and sees nothing wrong with it. Russ however disagrees. And, after seeing both viewpoints, I daresay I agree with Russ. Glamorizing drugs is wack, point blank.
Rap music was founded in tough times. The best hip-hop to come out of the genre’s Golden Era focused on the hardships that people faced during daily life. Coping with these hardships came natural. Drug use isn’t new. However, the way that drug users are fetishizing these drugs is. Lean, Xanax, and Mollies have become as popular as the music itself. With rappers posting their drugs on social media and dedicating so much of their creative energies to showcasing their fascination with drugs, many kids try them out because the artists they look up to love it.
Nothing good comes out of this besides addiction and death. Xanax pills look fun until you’re trying your best to kick the habit while the withdrawal symptoms kick your ass. Let Mac Miller’s story inform you about the dangers of overdosing. Lil Tracy had a heart attack because of his drug usage. There’s nothing good to come out of using these drugs. Yet, new age rap stars align their aesthetics with drugs because its in and it sells.
This exploitation is no joke and needs to be talked about. Starting a conversation about it will enable the proper action to happen and, hopefully, the way that drugs are exploited for money can be addressed.
Why Ella Mai’s “Trip” Is Better Than “Boo’d Up”
Everyone thought that “Boo’d Up” was the one. Ella Mai’s viral summer single became the talk of the season, a meme due to its widespread popularity across many age, racial, and gender groups. Many thought that Mai lucked up into the DJ Mustard-produced single, attributing much of the song’s success to the producer. But little did they know, “Trip” would come behind it and show that Mai is much more than a one hit wonder.
“Trip” released on August 3 and has been somewhat of a slow burn for the public. It’s a lot darker and moodier than “Boo’d Up”‘s ceiling-less mood. There’s a lingering piano that acts as the song’s lifeblood. When Mai comes in with her surprisingly deep voice, she offsets the equilibrium and swings things in her favor. As it goes on it become a catchy earworm that far outpaces the ceiling of “Boo’d Up”
With all of this said, her debut album, expected to arrive this fall, will be interesting to take in. Has she exhausted all creative avenues in her brilliant two first singles? Or will she continue pushing the culture? “Boo’d Up,” was one thing. “Trip” is another altogether, showcasing that she has a lot still left up her sleeve.
Listen to “Trip” below.
Bay Area Music That You May Have Missed This Week
Here’s our weekly collection of music out of the Bay Area that you may have missed this week. This week’s collection is one of our favorites, with a majority of the tunes being bombastic, lively jams to bolster the energy coursing through your veins. Tune in below: