Nas, Offset, Rod Wave, And More New Music Friday Releases To Add To YourRotation

Today is Friday, which means there are a ton of new releases to look forward to from some of your favorite Hip-Hop artists. To help you unwind and enjoy the weekend, check out VIBE’s picks of songs and albums you should hear and add to your soundtrack of weekend festivities.

Nas – Magic 3

Nas 'Magic 3' Album Cover

Mass Appeal

Nas and Hit-Boy have announced the end of their run of collaborative albums with Magic 3their sixth studio album release in just over three years. Arriving on the rap legend’s 50th birthday, the project finds the pair putting a close to this chapter of their respective careers on a high note, as each contributor’s highs far outweigh their slight missteps.

Opening with “Fever,” Esco glides across an opulent soundscape while describing a festive occasion in light of his latest lap around the sun. “Wolf out of NYC, this is prophecy/ Know this was meant to be/ Evolve constantly, half a century,” he raps on the hook, alluding to reaching the half-century mark. No masks or gadgets is his protocol on “Superhero Status,” yet the special effects are present as he puts forth an explosive showing. Harkening to recollections of the past on “Based On True Events” Pt. 1 and Pt. 2, as well as the contemplative “Sitting With My Thoughts,” Nas and Hit go on a winning streak on the latter half of the album, turning in energized thumpers such as “Blue Bentley” and “Jodeci Member.”

Seldom reliant on features, the Queens, N.Y. griot links with Hollygrove connect Lil Wayne on “Never Die,” an epic meeting of the minds that adds to Nas’ list of collaborations with fellow G.O.A.T.s. Joints like “Speechless “Pt. 2,” Japanese Soul Bar,” and “1-800-Nas&Hit” only add to the firepower on Magic 3which is a reminder that all good things surely do come to an end. – Preezy Brown

Offset – “FAN”

Offset “FAN” cover art

2023 UMG Recordings, Inc

On “FAN,” Offset has a simple message: F**k everybody. The Atlanta rapper opens the track crooning in autotune about kicking all the “f**k ni**as” out of his circle before the beat drops. He goes on to spit with fervor about being emotionless, telling a woman that they are just having sex and their relations are far from love at first sight. He pays homage to Project Pat at one point in the record, elongating the final syllable of certain words before beginning his next line. This is a high-energy, dismissive record and further proves how well Offset can carry a song on his own. “FAN” ought to make him some more fans. –Armon Sadler

Rod Wave – Nostalgia

Rod Wave 'Nostalgia' Album Cover

Alamo Records, LLC/Sony Music Entertainment

Picking up where he left off with his previous release Beautiful MindRod Wave delivers more gut-wrenching testimonials on his new album Nostalgiadocumenting the pain accrued from past tragedies and hardship. At eighteen songs in length, the album begins with its title track, where he laments the cost of fame and fortune while attempting to find balance amid the trappings of his career and lifestyle.

“Long Journey” is a twangy tune that finds the Floridian putting his faith in a higher power, while “Fight The Feeling” warns against the dangers of self-medicating and emotional withdrawal through reliance on outward vices. Nostalgia is short on guest contributors, with 21 Savage’s appearance on “Turks & Caicos accounting for the lone blockbuster feature on the long player. Rounded out by standout fare like “Love Story/Interlude” and the aggressive “Rap Beef,” Nostalgia is a solid collection of compositions that earns our nod of approval. – PB

Sexyy Red & Lil Durk – “Hellcats SRTs 2”

Sexyy Red & Lil Durk “Hellcats SRTs 2” cover art

2023 Open Shift Distribution / gamma.

Sexyy Red’s “Hellcats SRTs” has become a cultural favorite over the last few months, and Lil Durk jumped on the remix this week to give it a boost. “The Voice” opted to use his real vocals as opposed to autotune melodies and delivers nimble bars throughout his verse. “Suck it while I’m driving/ Wig fall, I just hold it back,” he spits. Durkio matches the energy of the beat and the St. Louis lady’s sexual bars seamlessly. For the astrology followers, he even shouts out the fact he is a Libra. Durk knows what to say to get the men and women going, which makes this the ideal collaboration to extend the shelf life of “Hellcats SRTs.” –AS

ScarLip – “No Statements”

ScarLip

Broken Child Productions/Epic

After becoming one of New York’s latest rap sensations with her hit single “This is New York,” ScarLip looks to build on that success with her new single “No Statements.” Taking cooperative witnesses to task atop production by Pluto Spazzin, ScarLip scoffs at the offense, rhyming, “I’m from a place where we don’t do no ratting/ Ni**a, just tell me what happened” amid warnings to not break the code. Accompanied by a music video directed by Sarah Mccolgan, “No Statements” serves as a strong follow-up record that presents a contrast in sounds while displaying the Bronx native’s versatility. – PB

Vic Mensa – Victor

Vic Mensa 'VICTOR' Album Cover

Roc Nation Records LLC

In 2017, Vic Mensa made good on his potential through his mixtape and EP offerings and acclaimed debut album The Autobiography. Now, nearly several years later, the Chicago native returns with its long-awaited follow-up, Victorwhich finds him drawing from the tumult experienced following his meteoric rise. On “Sunday Morning Intro,” actor and poet Omari Hardwick sets the stage while acknowledging “the incredible highs and lows” endured by Mensa, who admits to his bout with alcoholism and search for inner peace on the album’s opening stanza.

That transparency continues throughout, as the 30-year-old shares glimpses into his psyche on rollicking efforts like “LVLN Up” and the album’s titular track, the latter of which finds Mensa running roughshod over a frenetic backdrop. Victor also includes features from Jay Electronica (“The Weeping Poets”), G-Eazy and Chance The Rapper (“$wish”), Common (“Southside Story”), Ant Clemons and D Smoke (“Ble$$ings”), and more. – PB

Doja Cat – “Balut”

Doja Cat “Balut” cover art

2023 Kemosabe Records/RCA Records

Doja Cat continues to display how well she can rap and the variety of production she can take on with “Balut.” Sonically, it sounds like something The Alchemist would give to Griselda but this was actually courtesy of Rogét Chanayad, Kurtis McKenzie, and Yeti Beats. She gets into a backpack rap flow loaded with wordplay, metaphors, and complex rhyme structure. It may not have the energy of “Paint The Town Red,” but it’s not supposed to. Doja doesn’t want her mettle as a rapper to be boxed in, especially when her last few tracks have had some pop-like elements. This is a pure, gritty, ’90s type of flow and she excels. –AS

Cash Cobain – Pretty Girls Love Slizzy

Cash Cobain ‘Pretty Girls Love Slizzy’ cover art

2023 Giant Music

Cash Cobain has emerged as one of the most talented rappers and producers who utilize samples over the years. It would be impossible to ignore his brand of sexy drill which is, simply put, incredibly horny. His new album,Pretty Girls Love Slizzycrystallizes that authentic disposition but also shows he can tap into new sounds and concepts. The most glaring example is “Clocking U,” where the Bronx talent croons about a woman not pulling up on him in a more downtempo cadence than usual. Scattered through the project are flips of Konshens’ “I’m Coming” (“Send The Addy”), Drake’s “Shut It Down” (“Slizzy Dialogue”), and Lloyd and Ashanti’s “Southside” (“Not No Xanax 2” featuring Chow Lee).

The two standout records are “In The Morning” featuring FLEE, where he raps about being “top five horny” and being able to ask Pitchfork to verify his hedonistic nature. On “Messy,” the most uptempo record on the project, he has a back and forth with a woman about who is nastier. Cash Cobain’s music is fun. It’s true to who he is and he has no shame. It takes talent and courage to describe the most innate human desires the way he does. –AS

Tyga – “Bops Goin Brazy”

Tyga “Bops Goin Brazy” cover art

2023 Last Kings Music / EMPIRE

Tyga describes his career to the nines on “Bops Goin Brazy” which samples “Under Pressure” by David Bowie and Queen, the track famously flipped in Vanilla Ice’s “Ice Ice Baby.” He interpolates the chorus’s cadence before spitting aggressively over the electric synths. As a result, this record sounds par for the course when it comes to his catalog of West Coast bops. It will be interesting to see how this is received outside. One can imagine a DJ is already queueing up the transition between the original records and Tyga’s modern take. Either way, it’s fun, which is really all you can ask for from Tyga in 2023. –AS

Rasheed Chappell – Sugar Bills

Rasheed Chappell 'Sugar Bills' Album Cover

Rasheed Chappell / Perfect Time Music Group

Veteran lyricist Rasheed Chappell drops off his latest project Sugar Billsinspired by the local bar that introduced him to a whole new world as a youth. After working with the likes of Buckwild, Xp The Marxman, Little Vic on previous albums, the New Jersey native carries on his tradition of working with a different producer for each full-length release. This time, he locked in with The Arcitype for what very well may be one of his finest offerings to date.

A traditionalist when it comes to the art of emceeing, Chappell navigates the boardsman’s refined soundscapes with precision, as highlights like “Mascots,” “Dope Dealer,” “Chappell Show,” and “Lucifer In The Candlelight” speak to his verbal wizardry. Paying homage to “birthplace” of Hip-Hop on “1520” and getting biographical on the closing number “Make It Out,” Rasheed Chappell dazzles on Sugar Billsa no-frills body of work that’s primed for continuous playbacks. – PB

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