Between the NBA playoffs and the final season of Game of Thrones, we’ve had plenty of entertainment options lately. But we can always find time for new music, too. This week’s album release schedule was relatively light (outside of PnB Rock’s TrapStar Turnt PopStar and Vampire Weekend’s Father of the Bride), leaving plenty of room for artists to drop singles and begin larger rollout campaigns. After initially delaying his next album due to the death of close friend and collaborator Nipsey Hussle, YG unveiled his Tyga and Jon Z-assisted single “Go Loko” on Friday. Meanwhile, Tyler, the Creator has been sharing new music snippets on social media, adding credibility to those rumors that his next album will arrive by July. Looks like it’ll be a busy summer. Until then, these are the best songs of the week.
Young Nudy & Pi'erre Bourne f/ Lil Uzi Vert, "Extendo"
Buried under the lede of all the 21 Savage vs ICE fuckery was the detail that his cohort Young Nudy got popped alongside him. Free the slimeball! Thankfully Nudy is out, and he isn't wasting any time flooding the game with what we've been missing. Under delightfully spooky production from Pi'erre Bourne, Nudy slurs his way through an absolute banger, before Uzi comes in and unleashes his fully-loaded retirement clip. Can't wait to see what the slimes do next. —Frazier Tharpe
Blueface, “Stop Cappin”
Blueface could have internalized the complaints, jokes, and memes about the strange tension between his flow and any given beat. He could have buckled under the pressure. If he had, it would led to music that differed from what endeared us to Blueface in the first place. Thankfully, he doesn't give a fuck about internet jokes. So today, we have "Stop Cappin" another high-energy banger you can hit a bust-down-Thotiana dance to, but with a little more of a mean mug. Never change, Blue. —Frazier Tharpe
YG f/ Tyga and Jon Z, “Go Loko”
One week after dropping his confrontational new song “Stop Snitchin,” which is widely believed to be a diss track aimed at Tekashi 6ix9ine, YG returns with “Go Loko,” a single from his forthcoming album, 4 REAL 4 REAL. As soon as he dropped the instant classic artwork—which portrays a trumpet-playing YG wearing a blood red mariachi suit—you could already imagine “Go Loko” soundtracking every Cindo de Mayo gathering this weekend. And the mariachi-inspired bop doesn’t disappoint, as YG recruits Tyga and Puerto Rican rapper Jon Z for extra flavor. —Brad Callas
Lil Gotit, “Lil Ralph”
The latest in a long line of young Atlanta rappers who have been pigeonholed as Young Thug’s offspring (Lil Baby, Gunna, Lil Duke), Lil Gotit has never shied away from utilizing his big homie’s flow (see: “Drop The Top”). Granted, Lil Gotit can pull it off, and his latest single “Lil Ralph” is a perfect example of that. Backed by a mesmerizing piano loop courtesy of producer Beyondrich YT, the 20-year-old rapper mirrors Thugger with melodic high-pitched vocals. Fresh off the release of his latest project, Crazy But True, in March, “Lil Ralph” is another step toward Lil Gotit having the sort of 2019 come-up that Lil Baby and Gunna had last year. —Brad Callas
Maxo Kream, “Still”
“Signed to RCA, 1.5 mil,” Maxo Kream raps on his new single, “Still.” Regardless of the new record deal (and a presumably heavy wallet), the Houston rapper makes it clear he hasn’t switched things up and abandoned his roots. Maxo is “still Trigga Maxo” and “still dodgin' cops,” he friendly reminds us over rumbling production from ChaseTheMoney. Following the relatively laid-back (and wildly addictive) “Meet Again” single from January, “Still” gives Maxo a chance to roll up his sleeves and get to work. So as it stands now, he’s two for two in 2019 and sounds hungrier than ever. With major label backing and a creative hot streak brewing, could this be a breakout year for Maxo? Stay tuned. —Eric Skelton
PnB Rock f/ Lil Durk, “Deez Streetz”
After flashing his potential on projects like Catch These Vibes and GTTM: Goin Thru the Motions, PnB Rock returns with his new album, Trap Star Turnt Pop Star. By now, PnB has already established himself as a “singing” rapper. He’s good enough at each to make classifications unnecessary, but his ability to blend singing and rapping is his greatest skill, with “Deez Streetz” as a shining example. Arriving three tracks into Trap Star Turnt Pop Star, the track closes with a standout verse from drill rap legend Lil Durk, whose performance carries an energy that fits nicely alongside PnB’s nuanced flow. —Brad Callas
Vampire Weekend, “Bambina”
Has Ezra Koenig been listening to SoundCloud rap? Vampire Weekend’s long-awaited return, Father of the Bride, doesn’t rely on the blown-out bass or aggressive vocals that define the subgenre, but it does seem to draw inspiration from rap’s recent trend of producing sub-two-minute songs. The best example of this is “Bambina,” an upbeat 103-second track that's destined to end up on spring BBQ playlists everywhere. The song flies by in a flash, but Koenig manages to capture the charm of early era Vampire Weekend and channel it through a comparatively mature lens, unafraid of touching religion or politics. It's been six years since the last VW record dropped in 2013, but songs like this were well worth the wait. —Eric Skelton