The Best New Hip-Hop This Week

The best new hip-hop this week includes albums, videos, and songs from Channel Tres, Kendrick Lamar, Rapsody, and more.

Alright, let’s get the elephant in the room out of the way right now. Kendrick Lamar is whoopin’ Drake’s feet, just as he promised in the first of his two (TWO!) diss records this week, “Euphoria.” And hey, say what you want to about the “Euphoria” matchup with “Push Ups,” but once K. Dot followed up with “6:16 AM In LA,” he pretty much put the stake through the Canadian’s heart — like, the old-school fence post-style stakes Bram Stoker really meant when he wrote Dracula, not those dinky tent spikes from Buffy. With any luck, this is the last I’ll have to write about this “beef” (it’s a yawner for me, dawg, sorry, not sorry) and both rappers go back into respective hiding so some of the acts I write about EVERY WEEK can finally get some air.

Black Thought also teamed up with Madlib for “REEKYOD,” a prime example of the lyrics y’all claim y’all want so bad.

By the way, there’s another rapper from Compton who released new music this week, and it’s truly innovative and interesting and charismatic and futuristic. Channel Tres deserves some love for “Berghain.”

And in terms of songs that hip-hop fans have been waiting for a long time: Here’s Kevin Abstract, finally teaming up with Lil Nas X for “Tennessee.”

Meanwhile, Rapsody offered the perfect antidote to all the aggressive, toxic masculine energy (let’s be real… A lot of misogyny in those diss records) with “3:AM” featuring Erykah Badu.

Look, I promise I’m not trying to be salty. But there’s SO MUCH good music to listen to in hip-hop without feeding purely negative energy (although I will admit it’s a little thin on the albums front).

Here is the best of hip-hop this week ending May 3, 2024.


Slum Village — F.U.N.

Slum Village

The Detroit indie-rap pioneers have gone through several lineup changes over the years, but since 2012, have settled into a duo consisting of original member T3 and frequent producer Young RJ. On F.U.N., they once again expand and evolve their sonic palette, evoking the broad span of their 2005 self-titled album (when the lineup was T3 and Elzhi). Employing styles ranging from jazz to spacey funk to the gritty underground sound the group pioneered with their beloved debut, T3 and RJ round out the vocal facets of the album with guest spots from both frequent collaborators like Karriem Riggins and Phat Kat and interesting additions to the Slum Vil universe like Cordae and Larry June.


Courtney Bell — “Issues” Feat. Mishon & Katt Rockell

Detroiter Courtney Bell unabashedly demurs from producing the type of music his hometown’s best known for, proudly putting himself in the “conscious” category many rappers run screaming from. But if offering a counterpart to descriptions of self-destruction is considered corny, Courtney refuses to back down, deftly detailing his world view with witty wordplay and a polished, laid-back delivery.

Ghostface Killah — “Scar Tissue” Feat. Nas

Look, if I have to sell you on this one, I don’t know why you’re reading a weekly column about the best new hip-hop. “Scar Tissue” comes from Ghost’s new album Set The Tone, which drops next Friday, May 10, and features a who’s-who of the greatest to ever pick up a mic, including Busta Rhymes, Fat Joe, Ja Rule, Jim Jones, and of course, Raekwon.

Maiya The Don — “Expensive” Feat. Flo Milli

I’ve been agitating for an Atlanta Bass revival on social media for the past several months. Here’s another brick in the wall. The “Telfy” rapper has some fun with it, bringing in another viral fave in Flo Milli — a perfect vocal foil — to celebrate her upscale taste over an upbeat track evoking summertime in the ’90s.

Mutant Academy — “Soda”

Did you know Fly Anakin has a larger crew (a la Beast Coast, Pro Era, etc.)? Mutant Academy isn’t a household name, but for fans of rap fraternities that burrow down in the studio and put the focus squarely on the music and their friendship, songs like “Soda” are just as refreshing as a glass of cold water. The song is the first from the group’s upcoming EP, Talk Soon, which drops on May 17.

Samara Cyn — “Moving Day”

This one wasn’t on my radar but popped up on my YouTube homepage while I was writing, and I found it charming. Storytelling in rap is slowly becoming something of a lost art, and the combination of the narrative lyrical approach, mellow beat, and Doja Cat reference piqued my interest and rewarded my curiosity. I’ve got my eye out for Samara Cyn.

$not — “Bully”

The Florida native has been laying low since releasing his last album, Ethereal, in 2022. “Bully” brings him back with a belligerent stance, returning to the antisocial themes of his early work as he rebuilds his buzz.