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.
This week’s batch of new projects include the debut studio album of one of the more heralded prospects out of the west coast, a long player from one of this past decade’s most unlikely success stories, and a collaborative album from one of the most tenured east coast artists in the game with one of the most underrated double threats. Riding high off of the three Grammy nominations he received this past month, Roddy Ricch looks to cap off a monumental year with his debut album, Please Excuse me for Being Anti-Social, which includes features from an array of rap’s current brightest stars. With his evolution from underground stalwart to mainstream darling complete, French Montana looks to extend his winning streak with MONTANA, the Coke Boy’s latest long player and his first double-album of his career. And last, but not least, Fat Joe teams up with longtime collaborator Dre of Cool & Dre for Family Ties, a joint album that finds the rapping producer tag-teaming with the Terror Squad general with assistance from a star-studded group of contributors.
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.
Roddy Ricch: Please Excuse Me For Being Anti-Social
“Start With Me”
Thunderous 808s rain down on this bouncy salvo from Ricch’s latest collection. Featuring Gunna, with production courtesy of Jasper Harris & JetsonMade, this thumper doubles as the album’s lead-single and is a safe bet to keep the artist afloat on the airwaves well into the new year.
Ricch touches on the harsh realities of his life before rap and the newfound trappings of his success on this solemn number. Driven by classical piano keys and rolling 808s, this deep cut captures the raw essence of the Cali native and is one of the project’s standout gems.
Looking to duplicate the success of their Grammy-nominated single “Ballin’,” Roddy and Mustard team up for this mellow offering, which captures Atlantic Records’ prized prospect catering to the ladies. This tune is an instant winner and thrives on the rising star’s penchant for melodic rhyme spills.
French Montana: MONTANA
Exotic whips are the topic of conversation on this hypnotic selection from French, who enlists Gunna to ride shotgun. Produced by Harry Fraud, who powers the track with synths, horns, and pulsating drums; this heater helps kick the first portion of the album off in grand fashion.
“Writing on the Wall”
International vibes are felt on this dance-friendly jam, which features guest spots from Rvssian, Cardi B and Post Malone. Produced by Azul, Cashio, Louis Bell & Rvssian; this jam connects French to the world of afro-beats and has the appeal to resonate with fans of various genres, across multiple demographics.
“Push The Feeling On (The Dub Of Doom)” by Nightcrawlers gets flipped into a strip club anthem, which pairs French with the City Girls for one of JT’s first appearances post-prison. Produced by Ben Billions and French himself, this cut finds the Bronx bomber hooking up with Miami’s finest.
Fat Joe & Dre: Family Ties
“Hands on You”
Hitmaka provides the sonics for this composition that captures Joey Crack and Dre whispering sweet nothings to the ladies, while flexing their bankrolls. Featuring guest vocals from Bryson Tiller and Jeremih, this selection finds the two veterans putting their best foot forward.
Derrieres are in the air on this Latin-tinged number, which is built around a sample of “Aguanile” by Willy Colón and Héctor Lavoe. Featuring appearances from Anuel AA and Cardi B, this salvo adds another lively anthem to Fat Joe’s collection.
Left coast crooner Ty Dolla $ign takes center stage on this plush groove. Produced by Cardiak and Hitmaka, with additional vocals from Jeremih, this sublime tune is as serene as any cut on the tracklist.