Gucci Mane- Dirty Cup Feat. 2 Chainz
Gucci is pumping out tracks faster than ever these days, and this new single came with the announcement of his new album, which will find him once again returning to his beloved trap house (did he ever leave?). The first taste of Trap House 3: The Guwop Edition is backdropped by a synthesized string riff and while Gucci Mane turns in a consistent performance, 2 Chainz is actually the one who really shines on this track. The great Tity 2 Necklace spent the entirety of 2012 dropping his highly quotable punchlines on other rappers hits, but this time around opts for a double time flow, which proves to be an interesting twist from a guy whose ever-presence has made him a bit predictable.
Juicy J- One Of Those Nights Feat. The Weeknd
At first glance, this looks like an unlikely team up, but when you really start to think about it, Juicy and The Weeknd are pretty much tackling the exact same subjects on record, it's just their approach that differs. Looking at their lyrics on paper, you'll find the same tales of sex, drugs, and partying, Abel just seems a little more bummed out about it. This track finds its place somewhere between J's party anthems and The Weeknd's despondent romanticism, with the drums banging harder than anything on House of Balloons, and the cloudy synths morphing Juicy's drug-talk into something a little more introspective.
Frank Ocean- Eyes Like Sky
Frank Ocean gives us an outtake from his debut Channel ORANGE. It's a strummy ballad that may have been a bit out of place on the project, but works well as a singular cut. Thematically however, it's definitely in line with what we've heard from Ocean already, as he continues to create new characters and stories, and focus around the concept of love.
Young Buck- I See Why Feat Tha City Paper
Young Buck's southern growl was ahead of its time. Rap is in a place where cadence can play a more important role than lyrical ability in the right setting. As rappers like Waka Flocka Flame have shown, sometimes personality and an interesting delivery are all you need to create appeal. Young Buck is a good example of such a rapper. He has a keen sense of how to use his voice, creating a certain catchy-ness even in his gruff delivery. This track is evidence of such.
Czarface- Savagely Attack Feat. Ghostface
Czarface deliver a track for the boom-bap heads. It's hard to imagine any 36 Chamber-worshipper (and there are many) not being into this track on some level. It contains all the elements we've come to love about the clan, Iron Man samples, RZA-chanelling production, and some very technical raps. It's nice to hear Deck & Ghost on the same track as well.
Young Scooter- Colombia (Remix) Feat. Rick Ross, Birdman, & Gucci Mane
Rick Ross drops off his first verse since the shooting, and the bawse sounds hungrier than ever (cue fat jokes in the comments). Ross sticks to the flow template set by Scooter's hook for his entire 16, and his verse hits a lot harder as a result. It still blows my mind that anyone would include a Birdman feature that consists of anything more than shit-talking at the end of a track, but the verses he sits between make his typically thrown together guest spot tolerable. This beat could easily be riddled with 32nd note high hats, but the minimal drums give the song more space, and end up being the reason the instrumental sounds so gigantic.
Roc Marciano- Bruh Man
Roc Marciano possesses a certain elegance when it comes to his stream of consciousness flows. His non-chalant delivery feels so effortless, that it's easy to overlook the meticulous placement of each internal rhyme he drops. He shares a quality with Ghostface and more recently Action Bronson, in that he is able to paint a picture with a series of unrelated but very clear imagery. It makes room for a lot of replay value.
Chevy Woods- Ordinary
Chevy takes no breaks, pulling out plenty of different flows on this synth-laden beat. He manages to create a lot of dynamics within the track, even though it's rather short and he doesn't really stop flowing at any point. He incorporates melody well into his rhymes, but it doesn't stop him from rapping like a maniac. Overall "Ordinary" showcases his various talents when it come to songcraft, and proves he's anything but.
Staff picks for the week of February 18-24.
This new feature highlights a hand-picked selection of some of the bigger tracks of the week. We have chosen a few of the tracks that landed within our top 25 most played, focusing on those that stood out, and left room for discussion. This edition features Gucci Mane, Rick Ross, Ghostface, Juicy J and more! Take a look at the list in the gallery above, and feel free to let us know your own favorite tracks in the comments.