LIL PEEP – COME OVER WHEN YOU’RE SOBER
Blending 00’s emo and trap beats is an incredibly bold statement, one that could only be pulled off by the crazed genius that is Lil Peep. Awful Things is pretty much the year’s catchiest track and literally sounds like Fall Out Boy through a SoundCloud rap filter. Sound like your worst nightmare? Don’t deny yourself the pleasure…
BROCKHAMPTON – SATURATION II
Following up Saturation, easily one of the years best releases was never going to be an easy feet. The Kevin Abstract led crew mix hard-hitting beats, soulful RnB and quirky lyricism that deals with vulnerability in a way quite largely untapped by hip hop, following up their debut with a sophomore effort that’ll see them catapulted to the top of the game in no time.
A$AP MOB – COZY TAPES VOL. 2
With a feature roster that includes Lil Uzi Vert, Frank Ocean, Quavo, Lil Yatchy and Schoolboy Q, Cozy Tapes 2 can’t help but feel a bit like that cool group who you were never invited to sit with in high school – but hey, that’s pretty much what the Mob are. Building on the foundations laid by Cozy Tapes Vol: 1, Vol 2 is the most fun you’ll have all year.
MANU CROOK$ – MOOD FOREVER
The Australian rapper is making waves and for good reason – he hits a sweet spot between trap-inspired beats, rolling 808 bass lines and glittering synths that subdue the, at times, mysterious and dark lyrical delivery. Check out how his listening party went down here.
A$AP FERG – STILL STRIVING
Ferg continues going strength to strength and Still Striving is a welcomed addition to his already iconic discogprahy. Tango sees him at his most vulnerable whilst the rest of tape exudes nothing but pure confidence and skill.
KODAK BLACK – PROJECT BABY 2
We don’t want to hear Kodak Black attempt love songs, or try to elicit any emotion in that matter. He should take his Lisa Simpson haircut and ever so gently place it exactly where this mixtape deserves to go.
LIL UZI VERT – LUV IS RAGE 2
The album isn’t without it’s bangers – For Real & Unfazed (feat. The Weeknd) will be soundtracking every party you’re for the next year but, it’s fair to say we were expecting something a little more interesting from the guy who says Marilyn Manson is his biggest inspiration and allegedly ‘hates rap’. It is a fun trap album, but, there have been plenty of those this year – maybe his upcoming ‘rock’ album will prove to be move exciting…..
XXXTENTACION – 17
Clearly capitalising on his peak hype (after a few ridiculous marketing tactics on Instagram), 17 is extremely rushed and unfocused. Dull acoustic drawls and whining overtake the album in favour of intensity and actual emotion. From a personality as turbulent as X’s we were expecting an album that followed suit and frankly, we’re just bored.
UGLY GOD – THE BOOTY TAPE
Rushed and unfinished seems to be a recurring theme amongst this year’s XXL Freshmen. After ~insightful~ bangers like Fuck Ugly God and I Beat My Meat, The Booty Tape fails to reach such heights. Come back when you’ve finished your assignment, Ugly God.