Summer has officially arrived and the flow of hip-hop bangers continues to pour into the the streets with no sign slowing in sight. While many of this months rap & r&b offerings left a lot to be desired, I am back once again to guide you through the songs that are worth gracing your precious playlists. Again these tracks are in no particular order but my selection process focuses on music that makes you feel some type of way while also holding considerable replay value. Now lets get to the best 15 hip hop tracks of last month.
1. YOTA (Youth of the Apocalypse) - Drop The Bomb (feat. MF Doom)
The super group featuring Jeff Wootton from Gorillaz and Jamie Reynolds of Klaxons went all out with their first official single, which also includes bars from MF Doom & production from Jeff Ford (Simian Mobile Disco). If this first track is a sign of things to come then we are in for a real treat when their complete project drops later this year!
2. Teyana Taylor - Gonna Love Me
One of my favorite things about being a music critic is that I am constantly surprised by the artists I listen to. I remember Teyana's obnoxious episode of "My Super Sweet 16" and I also remember when she was signed to G.O.O.D. Music for basically just having clout. Everything I had really heard from her up until that point really wasn't doing anything for me and I had all but counted her out as far as being an artist worth paying real attention to. Well I was wrong about her and to be honest, Taylor's recently released, Kanye produced album K.T.S.E might be the best project Yeezy has put out in 2018 to date. "Gonna Love Me" is perfect and will soon be stuck in your head in all the best ways.
3. A$AP FERG - Verified
Ferg is by far and away the best talent in the entire A$AP crew. After a lackluster album offering from Rocky, Ferg continues to hold it down with bouncy "Verified." I feel like a lot of people are rapping about Instagram now which is a little lame but I guess you gotta give the kids what they want. Plus this shit bumps, so as long as we keep getting tracks like this from A$AP FERG then I guess he can rap about whatever he wants!
4. Nas - Adam and Eve
Nas is back on the chart for the second consecutive month, this time with "Adam & Eve" from his own recently released Kanye produced project Nasir. This song (and beat) are the best parts of the 7 track album which isn't half bad at all in its entirety. I'm a sucker for Nas' style and this song is easy to get behind.
5. Kid Cudi - Reborn
So did you guys hear about all the albums that Kanye produced and then dropped in June??! Well I'm sure you know all about Cudi's Kids See Ghosts so I'll just tell you why this is the best song on the album. Cudi's somber flow and easy to ride to vibe + Kanye's very basic beat with those vintage drums + Kanye's better than average bars = A song that I will be bumping all summer. Plus it kinda feels motivational with the whole "Keep moving forward" hook. Well done by everyone involved.
6. Peter CottonTale - Forever Always (ft. Chance The Rapper, Rex Orange County, Daniel Caesar)
Peter CottonTale taps his good friend Chance The Rapper along with a few other talented buddies of his on the incredibly soulful "Forever Always." When you have this many people who are this good at music all on one track, the only outcome possible is greatness and even though some of Chance's more recent tracks have been lacking, I actually really enjoyed his verse on this one.
7. Buddy featuring Ty Dolla $ign - Hey Up There
Buddy has a voice and style that is perfectly polished for today's mainstream hip-hop radio and who better to have as your feature than Ty Dolla $ign right now? The beat on this song is hypnotizing, the hook is catchy as hell and while I know this song will be over played to death, right now I just want to jump in the drop top and ride around with this one. Check out the music video below!
8. Roc Marciano - "In Case You Forgot" (Produced by Alchemist)
Roc Marciano and Alchemist are a perfect combo and "In Case You Forgot" is the most New York sounding track on this month's chart. That says a lot considering we have already talked about a Nas record. This track comes from Alchemist's "Craft Singles" series. Only 400 pieces of vinyl will be pressed for this track which you can buy for yourself right here.
9. MUGGS x DOOM - Assassination Day feat. Kool G Rap
When was the last time MF Doom was ever on a chart twice in the same month? This time we get Doom teamed up with DJ Muggs who has just produced a cold blooded killer of a track on "Assassination Day" featuring the infamous Kool G Rap. This one may not get to many spins at back yard parties this summer but if you love raw gritty hip hop full of clever word play, this will be the one for you this month.
10. ShaqIsDope - Cold as Ice
I have been talking about ShaqIsDope for a while now and I was happy to see he dropped 2 new tracks this month. Shaq is a real spitter who tries to jam in as many words as he can into his tracks without over doing anything. His style feels authentic and his energy is always on point which makes "Cold as Ice" worthy of this months chart.
11. Nocando - Every Color feat. Mr. Muthafuckin eXquire
One of the best natural lyricists I have ever heard, Nocando is back with a new album Coyote and it's really tight. I first met this guy back in like 2006 when I was still trying to hit 5 or 6 hip hop shows a week and I have always had a ton of respect for his art and his vision. "Every Color" is the only song on his album with a feature and to be completely honest, I think this whole album should be on the chart this month. You can hear it all & support one of LA's best here.
12. Phat Kat - It Don't Get No Liver Than This (feat. La Peace)
This song sounds like a blast from the past compared the rest of the picks for this month and rightfully so. This Dilla produced offering from Phat Kat was actually recorded in 2007 and it only now is seeing the light of day. I love this song. J Dilla was a huge influence on me and any time I can get something new from JD I will graciously accept it and add it to my collection.
13. Skepta & Wizkid - Bad Energy (Stay Far Away)
While I normally would like to hear a high energy flow from Skepta, I actually really like this song. Wizkid absolutely kills the hook and I could see mainstream hip-hop fans getting in to this one if they would actually give it a chance.
14. Vanderslice Feat. Slug & Evidence - North American Money
Slug and Evidence team up once again but this time over a beat from Vanderslice, who's new project The Best Album Money Can Buy is coming sooner than later. If you were really into underground hip-hop in the early to mid 2000's, you will love this one.
15. Bas ft. A$AP Ferg - Boca Raton (Produced by SANGO)
Bas, Ferg and Sango all on the same song? It's like they made this one just for me or something! These three could probably do a whole project together and with the way "Boca Raton" came out, I'm sure it would bang effortlessly.
The 15 Best Hip-Hop Tracks of June 2018: Spotify Playlist