Listen to the following songs and more via TOO FRESH, the freshest monthly playlist there is here.
ALBUM OF THE MONTH | Curren$y – Collection Agency
Curren$y is often hard to keep up with. His output is usually tremendous, putting out three projects in 2020 and now one into the new year. Even with so much content, Curren$y’s report card never ceases to slow down, and Collection Agency holds some of his best content since 2018’s Fetti with Freddie Gibbs. If you’ve been missing 2000’s era weed rap that just runs on vibes, Collection Agency is for you.
VERSE OF THE MONTH | Noname – “Rainforest”
Released in anticipation of her third solo record, Factory Baby, “Rainforest” follows Noname’s anti-capitalist activism and pleads to both protect the environment and “f**k billionaires.” “These are ten Black commandments, a property loan/’Cause every bladed grass of earth, we don’t actually own,” she raps.
10 SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR…
1. Cardi B – “Up”
Cardi was originally hesitant to release “Up,” since she was worried about putting out her first solo single since 2019’s “Press.” She has had amazing success, however, including her collaboration with Megan Thee Stallion on the viral “WAP,” and “Up” shows no signs of the rapper slowing down the hits anytime soon.
2. JID – “Cludder”
It’s JID album mode season, and the first single here is a total tour de force. “Don’t talk about style ’cause I’ll violate/Shut the fuck up when you talk to me ‘fore I annihilate,” he raps. “Let the gun sound, drum sound, then sirens play/How many caskets can niggas buy today?”
3. Julian Baker – “Hardline”
Thelsecond single off the excellent Little Oblivions, her third studio album, “Hardline” is about Baker staples such as. substance abuse and depression, though sung through a very haunting and poetic lens. The accompanying video is full of claymation, cut out magazine dioramas, and anthropomorphic dogs.
4. Lil Muk – “Living Life” with Lil Baby and YXNG K.A
Part of the youngest generation of Philly rappers who followed artists like Lil Uzi Vert and PnB Rock, Lil Muk is out to prove that the sound of Philly is still as ambitious as ever. Linking with Lil Baby on “Living Life,” he told DJBooth that once he’s respect for his art, he plans on removing the “Lil” from his name. “That’s why I move the way I’m moving,” he said.
5. Lil Tjay – “Calling My Phone” with 6LACK
Another “Lil” on the list, this time from Brooklyn, Lil Tjay has been prepping the release of Destined 2 Win by featuring on tracks with the late Pop Smoke, Polo G, and Fivio Foreign. “Calling My Phone” with 6LACK, however, may just be his best track yet. Smooth and catchy, “Calling My Phone” shows Lil Tjay at his sleekest.
6. Nipsey Hussle – “What It Feels Like” with Jay-Z
Legends connect to honor the late Nispey Hussle and promote the film Judas and the Black Messiah, a controversial film about the Black Panthers and the F.B.I. starring Lakeith Stanfield and Daniel Kaluuya. While paying homage to Nipsey, Jay-Z also mentions that he was born on the same day, December 4, 1969, that Fred Hampton was assassinated.
7. Pop Smoke – “AP”
Not to get too down about all the tracks from recently late rappers that came out this month, but February also saw the release of Boogie, an Eddie Huang film starring Pop Smoke that boasted the fantastic Brooklyn drill track “AP.” Rest in peace.
8. Shy Glizzy – “White Lie” with RMR
When will they give my man RMR some respect out here? After the absolutely killer Drug Dealing is a Lost Art debut, featuring co-signs from heavy hitters like Westside Gunn, Lil Baby, and Young Thug, RMR is back with “White Lie,” an exceptional collaboration with D.C.’s Shy Glizzy that showcases both of their skills as emerging artists.
9. Syd – “Missing Out”
We. have all truly been missing out on more Syd, and I’m so glad to have just a taste of more music from the Internet vocalist with “Missing Out,” a nice, chill, rainy day single.
10. Tee Grizzley – “Late Night Calls”
On “Late Night Calls,” the usually more playful Detroit rapper took time to speak from the heart, detailing that awful feeling of receiving a late night call and knowing that it must be bad news, such as a friend of family member getting locked up or shot. The song, reminiscent of early Meek Mill, is both cleanly executed and a very moving depiction.
What do you think? Drop your thoughts in the comments below.