This week, for the first time since last summer, G.O.O.D. Music dominated hip-hop headlines for reasons completely unrelated to Pusha-T’s beef with Drake or Kanye West’s Sunday Service. In addition to a pair of new singles from Push (the Kanye-produced “Sociopath” and Lauryn Hill-assisted “Coming Home”), and an update on the follow-up to last summer’s DAYTONA (Push revealed that he is nine songs deep into the project, which is produced entirely by Kanye so far), the house that ’Ye built revealed that Kanye’s next album, Jesus Is King, is set to drop on September 27. Of course, the G.O.O.D. duo weren’t the only ones making noise this week. On Friday, we were blessed with new albums from Lana Del Rey (Norman Fucking Rockwell!), Common (Let Love), SiR (Chasing Summer), and Lil Tecca (We Love You Tecca), along with singles from ASAP Rocky (“Babushka Boi”), DMX and Rick Ross (the Swizz Beatz-produced “Just In Case”), Post Malone (“Circles”), and Jelani Aryeh (“The Garden”). These are the best new songs this week.

Pusha-T f/ Lauryn Hill, “Coming Home”

As the reigning Best Rapper Alive, Pusha-T is back to defend his title in 2019, submitting two of the best rap verses of the year with his guest spots on Benny the Butcher’s “18 Wheeler” and Freddie Gibb’s “Palmolive.” This week, Push continued his hot streak by releasing a pair of new singles, “Sociopath” and “Coming Home.” Both feature production by Kanye, but “Coming Home” is the clear standout for obvious reasons: Lauryn Hill. Isn’t it fitting that, while Drake sampled Ms. Hill on his No. 1 single “Nice For What,” Push is the one who actually secured a feature from the elusive legend? That’s no easy task! The soulful, breezy track is an antithesis to the sinister coke raps King Push is recognized for, as he speaks on hope and triumph for those looking to find a way out of their struggles. “I'm speakin’ to the soul of my black native bros/Who ain't get to go to school, like a J. Cole.” —Brad Callas

ASAP Rocky, “Babushka Boi”

ASAP Rocky always sounds best when rapping over industrial beats. On “Babushka Boi,” Boys Noize and Hector Delgado’s production is dark, gritty, and thoroughly menacing, a fitting soundscape for Rocky’s first offering since his release from a Swedish jail in July. And yet, despite the song’s overall brilliance, it pales in comparison to the accompanying music video. Directed by Nadia Lee Cohen, the visual tells the satirical story of Rocky and his crew’s escape from police detention. Officers in the video take on the facial features of a pig, which is symbolized by them turning into packaged hot dog meat to close out the flick. It’s perfect. And yet, Rocky’s reps claim that the video was “created months ago.” —Brad Callas

Lil Tecca, “Shots”

Right out of the gate, the odds were stacked against Lil Tecca for his debut project, We Love You Tecca, as his sing-song style drew comparisons to a number of melodic rappers from the SoundCloud generation (A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, Juice WRLD, etc). To make matters worse, his breakout single, “Ransom,” recently broke into the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100, making the 16-year-old Queens native the youngest rapper to earn a top 10 hit on the chart since 2001, when 12-year-old Lil Romeo's “My Baby” peaked at No. 3. Did I mention that We Love You Tecca is 17 tracks long and has no features? That being said, he delivered. Tecca is here to stay. And if the goal was to score even just one more hit, he delivered with “Shots.” —Brad Callas

Post Malone, “Circles”

Remember how many hip-hop heads were caught off guard by the acoustic guitars on Post Malone’s 2016 ballad “I Fall Apart”? Three years later, Posty has completely changed what it means to be a rapper, as he’s mastered the art of blending elements of hip-hop, pop, rock, and folk music like the genre has never seen before. “Circles,” the first single from his upcoming third album, Hollywood’s Bleeding, is an upbeat, acoustic guitar-led breakup song that sees Post grappling with a fleeting relationship. “Seasons change and our love went cold,” he admits, “Feed the flame ’cause we can’t let it go.” —Brad Callas

DMX, Rick Ross, & Swizz Beatz, “Just In Case”

After DMX was released from prison at the top of the year, studio footage of him, Rick Ross, and Swizz Beatz surfaced in March, leaving fans excited at the prospect of a focused comeback from X. Arriving five months later, the song lives up to the hype, as DMX and Rozay trade bars over staccato snares and a regal piano line. Serving as the first single off the soundtrack to the anticipated new series Godfather of Harlem, which stars Forest Whitaker as the infamous Bumpy Johnson, a real-life mafia boss who forever changed Harlem, NY, you can’t find a better rap duo more well-suited to craft the anthem for such a legendary figure. —Brad Callas

SiR f/ Zacari, “Mood”

On Chasing Summer, the follow-up to his 2018 debut studio album, November, SiR proves that there’s a spot for him in today’s crowded R&B climate. The album’s radiant production helps showcase the Inglewood native’s strengths as a singer-songwriter. The project is reminiscent of early Miguel and Frank Ocean’s Nostalgia, Ultra, but SiR shines brightest when he attempts to chart his own path. As such, “Mood” is an early standout, which is hardly surprising given it features soul singer Zacari, who has taken a leap ever since exploding into the mainstream with his guest spot on Kendrick Lamar’s “Love.” Together, they’re able to craft an infectious jam that has the potential to be SiR’s breakout single. —Brad Callas

Lana Del Rey, “California”

Lana Del Rey has always had an obsession for all things California—from the Southern California soft rock influences throughout her catalog to the countless music videos in which the state has been used as a backdrop—so it’s hard to believe that she has waited until her sixth album (and tenth project, if you count EPs), to finally name a song after the Golden State. Despite dropping six singles in the lead-up to Norman Fucking Rockwell!, the eight unreleased songs that round out the tracklist feature a handful of gems, including an early standout “California.” The song sees Lana channeling her signature heaving melodies, as she reaches out to an ex lover: “You don’t ever have to be stronger than you really are when you’re lying in my arms.” As always, it comes off as both tender and callous, which is all you could ever ask from the most anthemic pop star of the decade. —Brad Callas

Jelani Aryeh, “The Garden”

After picking up some buzz for his addictive song “Where We Go,” 19-year-old San Diego artist Jelani Aryeh is back with a new cut called “The Garden,” which he apologizes for “sitting on for so long.” It was worth the wait. With a dreamlike vibe perfect for the final days of summer, this is one of those songs that begs to be played on a warm evening drive home from a day at the lake. Or, as Aryeh recommends, “Please blast this with the people you love.” Save this to all your feel-good comfort playlists, and look out for more music from Aryeh soon. —Eric Skelton

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