Label: Victor Victor Worldwide/Republic Records
Released: July 3

Pop Smoke’s Shoot For The Stars, Aim For The Moon album was only partially finished at the time of his tragic death, but it still managed to show a full scope of the Brooklyn giant’s skillset. 50 Cent served as a co-executive producer on the project, which is fitting because Pop was frequently compared to him as a mesh of New York bravado and melody. And Pop’s performance on the project showed why he was set to rival 50 culturally, if not commercially. He’s talking to the ladies on standouts like “For The Night,” “Mood Swings,” and “The Woo,” but shows his brute force on tracks like “44 Bulldog,” “Snitchin,” and “Got It On Me.” He came up through drill, but he was primed to transcend the subgenre, while entrenching himself as a quintessential rap star: an inimitable figure that people of every identity can relate to. —Andre Gee