Today is Friday, which means there’s a ton of new releases to look forward to from some of your favorite Hip-Hop and R&B artists to help you unwind and enjoy the weekend. Check out VIBE’s picks for the songs you should close out your work week with.
Rick Ross – Richer Than I’ve Ever Been
Two years have passed since Rick Ross dropped Port of Miami 2, the sequel to his acclaimed 2006 debut that continued his streak of strong releases. Now, Rozay returns with Richer Than I’ve Ever Been, his eleventh studio album. The record finds the MMG honcho enjoying the fruits of his labor alongside a varied mix of costars. While MMG signee Meek Mill, who has been rumored to be disgruntled with Rozay as of late, is noticeably absent, fellow Maybach Music lyricist Wale makes an appearance on the standout “Warm Words in a Cold World.” Other guests include Future, DreamDoll, Yungeen Ace, Major Nine, Blxst, The-Dream, and Wiz Khalifa.
While falling short of previous efforts, Richer Than I’ve Ever Been has its moments, such as the 21 Savage and Jazmine Sullivan-assisted lead single, “Outlawz,” or the grisly Benny the Butcher collab, “Rapper Estates.” Most importantly, the album shows The Bawse has a bit left in the tank, occasional sputters aside.
Juice WRLD – Fighting Demons
Breaking sales records last year with Legends Never Die, his first posthumous release, Juice WRLD has remained as omnipresent as ever despite tragically passing away in 2019. As the world continues to mourn the loss of one of the most promising and prolific young talents we’ve witnessed in recent memory, the rapper’s estate continues to keep his name and voice alive with the release of Fighting Demons, his second posthumous release and fourth solo album in total.
Consisting of eighteen tracks and running short on guest appearances, the lyrical content on Fighting Demons is largely based around Juice’s affinity for the very vices that led to his early demise. This results in a body of work that’s sonically rich yet ultimately bittersweet given the struggles that inspired it. Nevertheless, Fighting Demons is another showcase of Juice WRLD’s knack for combining melodic vocals with riveting rhymes, a trait that set him apart during his successful yet tragically short-lived career.
Russ – CHOMP 2
Confidence is a trait Russ has never lacked since entering the game in 2017 as an irreverent D-I-Y soloist with his breakthrough project, There’s Really A Wolf. Since then, he’s proven himself correct, racking up a succession of gold and platinum plaques and maturing into one of rap’s youngest veterans. However, while hit-making is at the forefront of Russ’ arsenal, his hunger to test his mettle against the best who have ever done it has also been displayed on numerous occasions. That ambition is most notable on his 2020 project, CHOMP, which saw him going toe-to-toe with a murders row of spitters and performing admirably.
Looking to build on his growing reputation as a wordsmith and curator, Russ doubles back with CHOMP 2, which finds him kicking flows alongside another all-star cast of lyricists over production from a slate of hall of fame beatsmiths. Upping the ante and turning in what is arguably his most ambitious project to date, Russ comes through with a late-year entry in CHOMP 2 that is already being praised as one of the best of the fourth quarter. The project is a quality listen for rhyme junkies and boombap enthusiasts alike.
Check out some other notable releases from this week’s New Music Friday below:
PnB Rock feat. Lil Baby And Young Thug – “Eyes Open”
Doe Boy & Rowdy Rebel feat. 42 Dugg – “Ain’t My Fault”
Jim Jones, Migos – “We Set The Trends”
Wiz Khalifa, Cardo, Sledgren feat. Chevy Woods – “The Kid Frankie Pt. 2”
Tierra Whack – “Body Of Water”
A Boogie Wit da Hoodie – “Man in the Mirror”
Preme & Swae Lee – “Hopscotch”
Tory Lanez – “’87 Stingray”
RZA, Flatbush Zombies – “Plug Addicts”
Bobby Fishscale feat. Quavo – “Huncho Fishscale”
OT The Real – “4 Wheeler”
Madeintyo & UnoTheActivist – “Jealousy”
FRE$H, Mike Zombie, Squalla – “Party Don’t End”
TM88 & Pi’erre Bourne feat. Wiz Khalifa – “Chit Chat”