With so many new rap albums, mixtapes, EPs and songs dropping every week; knowing which ones are worth your time can be a challenge. But no worries, we'll help smooth out the process with "Now N' Laters," a column that highlights the hottest new releases of the week and the songs you'll want to listen to now — and later.
Friday has finally arrived and the work week is all but over. So, that means it's time for Now N' Laters, REVOLT's weekly roundup that highlights the best songs from the hottest new releases that should be added to you playlist.
This week includes a number of high-profile releases with a mix of legends and rising stars all crashing the party with new albums that have captured the full attention of the culture. Meek Mill makes a triumphant return with his first album drop following his release from prison earlier this year. In spite of currently being incarcerated and at the center of a federal investigation, Brooklyn rabble-rouser 6ix9ine comes through with his highly anticipated debut album. This project looks to capitalize on the buzz surrounding his name, and prove once and for all that he's more than just a troll, but a bonafide star capable of delivering cohesive bodies of work. And last, but certainly not least, Dreamville Records spitter J.I.D. looks to further stamp himself as one of the most promising talents in rap today with Dicaprio 2, a project built around the Atlanta native's sinewy flow and off-kilter delivery.
With all three releases getting airplay and dominating the conversation, REVOLT shares our critics' picks for the three songs from each album that stand a cut above the rest and should be in your heavy rotation now -- and later. Be sure to let us know what your favorites are.
1. "What's Free"
Among the firepower on Meek's new release, this selection immediately picked listeners' interest, as it pairs the Philly firebrand with his MMG boss, Rick Ross, as well as JAY-Z. This marks the first time Meek and Hov have appeared on a song together. Produced by Tarik Azzouz and StreetRunner, the track is rife with food for thought and finds each member of the triumvirate at the top of their game, particularly JAY-Z. Hov swoops in with a verse that reminds us that even on the brink of 50 years old, his rhyme skills and wordplay remain otherworldly.
2. "Splash Warning"
Notorious for his amped-up club bangers, Meek delivers in that department again with this collaboration. It includes features from Future, Young Thug, and Compton-bred newcomer Roddy Ricch. With ATL Jacob behind the boards, Meek and company run up a check and get ostentatious on this standout offering from the Dreamchaser's latest collection.
3. "Going Bad"
All is fair in love and war. But, now that the dust has settled, it appears that Meek and Drake have put their differences behind them with the former foes teaming up for the first time since 2015's "R.I.C.O.," the song that initially led to their beef. Produced by Wheezy, this collaboration extends Meek and Drizzy's streak of enticing duets and is primed to dominate the airwaves as we head into the new year.
1. "Tic Toc"
Guitar licks greets listeners on this number from 6ix9ine's debut, which includes a guest appearance from Lil Baby. Produced by Yung Lan and Felipe S, this song displays the rainbow-haired spitter in a celebratory more and serves as a feel-good offering that breaks up the monotony of rage that engulfs Dummy Boy.
Avedon and Scott Storch helm the boards as 6ix9ine turns the party upside down with this 808-driven cut. Featuring a guest appearance from A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, who contributes a verse and tackles the hook, this selection is among the highlights on this vibrant debut.
DJ SpinKing sets the stage for 6ix9ine on this sleeper cut from the Brooklyn native's release. Produced by CuBeatz, Boi-1da, and DJ SpinKing himself, this ditty oozes of replay value and adds to 6ix9ine's collection of hits.
J.I.D. teams up with A$AP Ferg on this raucous ode inspired by Oklahoma Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook. Produced by Christo, this up-tempo selection is the Atlanta native's best attempt at securing radio airplay, albeit without straying from outside his artistic comfort zone, and the first of many highlights on J.I.D.'s latest body of work.
2. "Workin Out"
Life's harsh realities are tackled on this piano-driven tune, which captures J.I.D.'s introspective side and relies less on style and more on substance. Produced by 2thirty5, and littered with slick references and one-liners, this track is a testament to J.I.D.'s range and his ability to speak from the vantage point of the average Joe.
BJ the Chicago Kid lends his vocal prowess to this smoothed out number from J.I.D's latest project. Sharing his affections for the opposite sex, J.I.D. delivers a refined offering with this J. Cole produced standout. It's one of the album's more stellar and memorable moments.
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