Man, it has been a while since I have done one of these lists of new songs that I love. In fact, I believe that is has been almost exactly a month. Don’t get me wrong, I do love the holiday season, but the music nerd in me gets a bit restless at the end of one year and the beginning of the next. Like I have said before, it is not an ideal time to be a music blogger because there is not any new music coming out to blog about! It seems like the industry is kicking into gear now, though, and I have a new crop of tracks that I would love for you guys to check out (I would also love if you guys read my reviews of Mac Miller’s Circles and Poppy’s I Disagree after reading this because those are two awesome albums that came out at the beginning of 2020 that I did write about). With the exception of a couple Y2K tinted futuristic pop bops and Rosalia’s new flamenco jam, the theme of this list is hip hop. Y’all can get used to that being the theme of this list for the next couple of months, as I always seem to gravitate towards listening to hype rap music during the colder months. So sit back, relax, and enjoy this new list of bangers I created for y’all to listen to. Let me know which of these songs are your favorites in the comments below, please!
HIGH RIGHT NOW – TYLA YAWEH FEAT. WIZ KHALIFA
The first track on my first list of the year is this chill tune by Tyla Yaweh and Wiz Khalifa called ‘High Right Now.’ Tyla Yaweh is an artist that I wrote about a couple times near the end of last year; he is an up and coming auto-crooner that blends the line between R&B and hip hop in a very nice way. He sort of reminds me of another young star, YNW Melly, who also has an ability to make music that seems to really tow the line between pop, R&B, and trap music perfectly. ‘High Right Now’ has a bit of an emo trap vibe, which is obviously very popular these days; the melody of the song created by the synthesized guitar riff sounds a lot like the pop-punk music of the mid-2000s. I actually wonder if this riff is considered a sample of Green Day’s ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams,’ because it sounds very similar to that song. In fact, when Wiz starts his verse, he actually sings four lines to the tune of the refrain of ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams,’ which is pretty unexpected and cool. Lyrically, this song is about exactly what the title indicates; it obviously is not very sophisticated, but the melody and tone of the song go with lyrical content perfectly. If you are looking for a good new track to listen to during your sessions, this song is perfect.
H.O.E. (HEAVEN ON EARTH) – YO GOTTI
It seems like it is literally impossible for us to go more than 6 months without another street-style banger from Yo Gotti. Yo Gotti has easily become one of the most consistently great underground rappers from the last 10 years; he even has enough pop sensibility to have had a few tracks go viral. ‘H.O.E.’ is another track that I could see taking over the airwaves; it has a very similar energy to the song ‘Down in the DM’ in the best way. The old school horn-tinted bass on this song is so great and makes me want to dance, and Yo Gotti’s tongue-in-cheek bars and killer flow make ‘H.O.E.’ go so hard. I would not be surprised if we see Rihanna bumping this one on her Instagram stories soon and cause it to go crazily viral. Whatever it takes for this track to take off and go viral, I can not wait for that moment. It will definitely be a fun time to yell about how we all know that we are Hoes in the club when they start playing it there in a month.
TREESHIN’ – RAH SWISH
‘Treeshin’’ is a new banger from the rising New York rapper Rah Swish, who is the newest member of the rising rap collective NeverBrokeAgain. I am sure that you have heard other songs by members of this group, like YoungBoy for instance; Rah Swish fits the hard-ass demeanor of the group in general, and I honestly think that he might blow up bigger than YoungBoy pretty soon. ‘Treeshin’’ has a sound that is so unique yet so familiar; the beat and melody remind me of new Memphis horrorcore-style rappers like Yo Gotti and Young Dolph, yet his flow and voice and overall sound reminds me of another New York rising star, Pop Smoke. This song is hard and ghetto and scary as shit and it is awesome. If you like hard ass gangsta-trap music, you gotta listen to ‘Treeshin’’ because you will love it.
JURO QUE – ROSALÌA
La Rosalia is back from her foray into Latin American and Reggaeton music, as ‘Juro Que’ is as traditional flamenco as any of her music in the past has been. After she ended up getting a Grammy for her flamenco-pop masterpiece El Mal Querer, I would say that it makes sense that she seems to be going back to her roots this year. As all of her flamenco tunes(and most flamenco music in general), ‘Juro Que’ tells a beautiful and elaborate story of love. In this case, the song is about a lover who has gone to prison for 400 days; As Rosalia mourns her temporary loss of the man she loves, she assures him and the world that she will wait for him no matter what. Rosalia’s vocals are as wild and beautiful as ever on this track, and there are even some cool vocal effects and auto-tuning that makes it sound weird and futuristic in away. If you like music that is not in English or are just looking to hear something that is completely out of your element, listen to ‘Juro Que’ below and let me know if you like it!
BROKE BITCH – TINY MEAT GANG
It has been pretty awesome and amazing to watch the Tiny Meat Gang make their meteoric rise of the last couple of years. If you do not know who they are, TMG consists of former Vine Stars and current Youtube Stars Cody Ko and Noel Miller. Cody and Noel, who are mainly known for their funny skits and funny commentary videos, have always been interested in doing music; in fact, Noel Miller actually used to rap a lot in high school and had aspirations of making it big. When they first started making songs as TMG, they were “parody” music, and although their lyrics are still tongue-in-cheek and hilarious, their overall sound has vastly matured over the last couple of years. ‘Broke Bitch’ is definitely one of their best songs yet; I could legitimately imagine just hearing this come on non ironically or with no context on 100.7(our local Milwaukee hip hop station). The instrumental on this song is just so damn smooth and Noel’s and Cody’s collective flows bounce so perfectly off of each other. This track is a damn banger, so please do not sleep on it.
BORING PEOPLE – L DEVINE
I did not know who L Devine was before hearing this song, and I have to say that ‘Boring People’ has already turned me into a fan of hers. I found this song in a way that I seem to find a ton of music by not as famous artists these days; from another not very popular artist suggesting them on twitter. ‘Boring People’ fits into the new style of pop music that takes popular sounds from either the early 80s or early 2000s and tries to make them super futuristic, or even post-modern. Other artists that I love who are doing something similar are Rina Sawayama, LiZ, Charli XCX, and Kim Petras. So if you are into either of those four artists, I think you would really be into L Devine as well. ‘Boring People’ has a retro element to it that is very reminiscent of late 80s post-punk/new wave and early grunge music. I love how the riff immediately devolves into those bass-heavy and distorted synths as soon as the chorus is over and verses arrive. This song has so much texture and flavor and it makes me very excited to see what L Devine does in the future because if she keeps doing this she will be a star.
WHAT’S POPPIN’? – JACK HARLOW
Jack Harlow is an artist that has totally just missed my radar over the last year or so. I guess when you try to listen to as much new music and many new artists as possible every day that you can, it is inevitable that some good ones are going to accidentally slip by. I have seen the name Jack Harlow pop up regularly on various twitter hip hop pages and hip hop blogs that I personally follow, but I literally kept forgetting to look him up. I am glad that ‘What’s Poppin?” recently showed up in my suggested videos tab on Youtube, though, because this guy is going to be a star. He just has that “it” factor; his swagger and confidence just ooze out of this track, and his flow is so nasty in the best way. The anxious little trap piano riff is perfect for his rapping style on this track. I love how his flow contains run-on sentences and I love all of the metaphors he uses as well. ‘What’s Poppin?” is just so fresh and it goes so hard, and I am sure it is only a taste of an artist that about to blow up very soon and be around for a long time.
COMME DES GARCONS (LIKE THE BOYS) – RINA SAWAYAMA
I know that it is only January, but I think I have already found one of my favorite songs of 2020(or at least the first half of 2020). Ever since I heard her debut EP a couple of years ago, Rina has been one of my favorite artists. The way that she is able to blend genres so easily and impeccably and make them pop is comparable really only to Grimes and Charli XCX. ‘Commes Des Garcons’ is the second single from Rina’s upcoming debut album, Rina. I love the industrial and grungey feeling that this song has. Her new album is supposed to have a darker element to it and that it will have a bit more attitude, which makes sense because this track is not nearly and glitzy and glamorous as a lot of her music has been in the past. Rina typically loves to blend late 90s and early 2000s sounds with futuristic-sounding techno-pop, and this track definitely fits that bill. I love the confidence of the lyricism from this song. One of the best things about Rina’s music is the lyrics she writes because she is so great at portraying very particular feelings that are not sung about very much. After listening to ‘Commes Des Garcons’ with the link below, ya’ll should go read the full piece I wrote about Rina a few months ago to read more about her awesome lyricism.
CHRISTOPHER WALKING – POP SMOKE
I have not even been listening to him for very long, but I have to say that Pop Smoke has already become one of my new favorite rappers. This dude has one of the most unique sounds and addicting flows that we have gotten from gangbanger New York rappers in a while. In an era where New York rap has kind of shifted more towards auto-crooning(like A Boogie or Lil Tjay) or psychedelic and introspective rapping(like Young MA or Joey Bada$$), Pop Smoke is keeping it old school, bringing back the sound of early 2000s NY gangsta rap. His sound, style, and flow remind me of a lot of 50 Cent and G-Unit or Jim Jones and Dipset. ‘Christopher Walking’ has that UK grime feeling that I have come to love from him. The grungey and buzzing nature of the bass is not very common in American trap music, and it just gives this sort of punk energy that I love. Pop Smoke’s sound is a breath of fresh air from the clean-cut sound of a lot of trap music these days, and I can not wait to see where he goes from here.