It feels like every artist in the world dropped something last week. There was so much new music to listen to, I almost couldn’t work this list down to just 5 songs. But, as usual, I never disappoint. Here are the 5 best songs I heard last week.
5. UNO THE ACTIVIST – YAMAHA FT LIL DUKE
Uno the Activist dropped his long awaited project, Live.Shyne.Die, last week, and this was one of the standout tracks for me. I’m a big fan of Lil Duke, and during the past year, it has been good to see him branching out of YSL and upping his value, for example, by linking up on tracks with artists like Wiz Khalifa. Uno the Activist has consolidated his own fan base in the past year or two, and stands firmly as one of the top products of what I like to call, the ‘Soundcloud generation’.
Why this track is so good is how smooth the beat was, and how well the artists rode the beat. They flowed with each other on the track so well, that you would think they had rapped together before; the level of chemistry on the track truly surprised me. A special shout out should go to the hook of the song too; simple, but effective. The song’s short length (it’s only 2 mins and 52 seconds) left me wanting more, and I do sincerely hope for more Uno the Activist ft Lil Duke tracks in the future.
Check out Yamaha here: https://soundcloud.com/678uno/yamaha
4. ALINA BARAZ – LAVENDER & VELVET
If you don’t know who Alina Baraz is, then you are honestly missing out. Listen to this song, and then I’m 90% sure you’ll find yourself clicking onto her Soundcloud profile, and listening to more of her songs. She is truly a talented individual with a great voice, and I only had to listen to this song once to know that it was going into my top 5 for the week.
Her work with Galimatias is what made me notice her; I hadn’t heard those sort of melodies before, and her music really blew me away. And then I read in an interview that when they made their first EP together, they hadn’t even met, and I don’t know why, but this made me appreciate her talent even more. But this song here shows that I was not wrong in doing so. This soft song will have you swaying and bopping your head slowly; in fact, pretty much all her music will. It’s just so calming and euphoric; I definitely recommend you listen to this one.
You can check it out here: https://soundcloud.com/alinabaraz/lavender-and-velvet
3. SMOKEPURPP – FINGERS BLUE FT TRAVIS SCOTT
Can’t lie, the artwork for this mixtape kinda creeped me out. It’s the demon tattoo on his rib cage that really did it for me; what’s this new trend of satanism within hip hop please? Anyway, I’ll save that for another article. Smokepurpp finally released his awaited song with Travis Scott, and it’s a banger.
Most people probably saw the title to the track and were like, ‘huh?’, but when you listen to the song, you’ll understand; ‘I be countin hunnids til my fingers blue’. And yes, I literally just heard you say ‘ohhhh’. The beat to this song is just gruesome, and Smokepurpp’s flow on the beat is equally as nasty. This is another ‘mean mugging’ song, because the beat will really have your head rocking. What I like is that Smokepurpp made sure that he made the song his; one thing I have noticed that upcoming artists do when they get a big feature, is that they almost ‘purposely’ provide a wack verse and let the established artist just spin them backwards, just so that they can say, ‘yeah, well I made a song with ….’. Travis came in with his traditional adlib-filled, autotonic vocals and did not disappoint. Travis has this ability of being able to harmonise on any sort of beat, and he kept this up on this track. Smokepurpp and Travis Scott turned out to be a very good collaboration, and it is good to see established mainstream artists trying to help big up upcoming artists.
The wait for this one was definitely worth it.
Check out Fingers Blue here: https://soundcloud.com/smokepurpp/fingers-blue-ft-travis-scott
2. LOLO ZOUAI – HIGH HIGHS TO LOW LOWS
Here we have a more sensible and family-friendly artwork than my last entry on the list, but that’s not what I am here for. I’m here to talk about great music, and this song falls directly into that category. I did not know a lot about Lolo Zouai before this song; I had heard one of her songs (it’s called Options) before, and I really liked it, but I hadn’t made enough effort to go and listen to more of her songs after. Wow, was I wrong in doing so. Her music, and this song in particular, is amazing.
This song is an R&B/Soul song but when was the last time you heard songs of that genre over this kind of beat? I actually won’t be surprised if this song gets a remix with a feature from a hip hop artist. She even tagged it as ‘trap’ on Soundcloud, so clearly, I’m not crazy in thinking this. I think in the past 3 days, I’ve played this song about 30 times. Why did I not listen to her music properly the first time? If she’s capable of producing tracks like this, then she deserves a play everyday. She even started speaking French on the track; yeah, just listen to this song please.
Check it out here: https://soundcloud.com/lolozouai/highslows
1. GUNNA – MIND ON A MILLI FT HOODRICH PABLO JUAN
Ok, first of all, I want you to look at who produced this song. Wheezy, Metro Boomin AND Pierre Bourne. That’s three of the best producers in the game right now, on one beat. And then, look at the artists. I’ve covered Hoodrich Pablo numerous times, but we’ve also got my favourite rapper in the world right now, in Gunna. I heard the snippet to this song back in August, and if I’m being perfectly honest, I don’t think I’ve been wanting a song to drop this badly for a long time.
Why is Gunna my favourite rapper, you ask? Firstly, he has about 10 different flows, and secondly, he can ride a beat better than anyone else I listen to. Honestly, if you go listen to his latest mixtape, Drip Season 2, you’ll notice it. It’s like his voice just dances on the beat. But this song was probably the best example of him doing so; I actually never wanted his verse to end. His verse, the hook; what a fantastic feature on the song.
Then Hoodrich Pablo comes in with his usual swagger, somehow managing to fit 1000 words into one bar, and still managing to stay on beat. Him and Gunna always produce quality songs, but this tops the lot definitely. The video for the song is image too. Listening to it made me even more excited for both artists’ new projects to drop, and I know they will continue to release more songs of this calibre in the future.
Check Mind on a Milli here: https://soundcloud.com/jojomargielaa/gunna-mind-on-a-milli
Thanks for reading!