Hell of a week.
Bey and Jay. Nas and Ye. XXXTentacion. Jimmy Wopo. Child internment camps.
Dodging hot takes and Twitter idiocy has become a full-time job over the last seven days, while the tragic realities of our existence have become the forefront of conversation.
In the wise words of our senior writer, Donna-Claire Chesman: "You don't have to have a take."
When sanity becomes a luxury, music remains a comfort zone. Fortunately, we were blessed with some truly excellent music this week, and so like we always do at this time, here are the 10 New Songs You Need This Week. We've filtered through the noise to bring you the best of the best. (And here's a Spotify playlist of this week's picks.)
The Carters (Beyoncé & JAY-Z) — “APESHIT”
It’s not Future’s Ape Shit, but it’ll do. I’m not one of those people to tell you that Beyoncé is out-rapping your favorite rapper, but it’s tough to deny two icons stunting on us plebeians who can’t afford to rent out The Louvre.￼ All hail Migos flows and the real royal family.
Jay Rock — “Redemption” ft. SZA
Rivaled only by the paranoid force of “ES Tales,” the title track from Jay Rock’s third, most polished studio album emerges as the standout track; warming reminiscence from a Jay Rock on the surviving end of a lifetime of pain, wins, and losses. SZA doesn’t hurt either.
Rico Nasty — “Rage”
Nas — “Adam and Eve” ft. The-Dream
NASIR might be a technically sound but ultimately hollow and uninspired album from a rapper facing some awful allegations and in desperate need of some good PR, but for those tuning in, “Adam and Eve” finds the Queens native in peak form over a disgustingly satisfying Persian piano flip.
Garren Sean — “The Jam”
This is probably what it sounds like when you get to heaven.
Quando Rondo — “Kiccin Shit”
Name aside, you’d be forgiven for mistaking Givenchy-footed 19-year-old Savannah native Quando Rondo for a raspier Rich Homie Quan, and “Kiccin Shit” is just the type of gritty, melodic single that’s primed to blow up.
Mura Masa & Octavian — “Move Me”
One of the UK’s most promising new rappers sounds right at home over an intoxicating dancehall groove from one of the UK’s most talented producers.
GoldLink — “Got Friends” ft. Miguel
Still riding high off post-“Crew” goodwill, GoldLink taps Miguel for an elegant-sounding potential smash.
2 Chainz — “Bigger Than You” ft. Drake & Quavo
Tity Boi, Huncho, and Adonis’ Papi secure another one for their collaborative histories.
Brasstracks — "Stay There" ft. Xavier Omär
Brasstracks and Xavier Omär link up for some nourishment for the soul, on this vibrant summer jam.