It’s a good week if you’re looking for unconventional hip-hop releases, because all the artists with projects coming out definitely love straying from the beaten path. Rap traditionalists might find it a good time to run back some of the standout releases in hip-hop from earlier this year if they haven’t already, as J. Cole’s Dreamville Records, newcomer YBN Cordae, and North Carolina indie rap vet Rapsody have all dropped albums flying the flag for bar-heavy, straightforward hip-hop.
But if you like your rappers more conceptual or just outright weirder in the vein of IDK or Young Thug, odds are, you’ll find something you love this week. While Jpegmafia embraces noisy beats, Lil Gotit builds on the slippery, slimy blueprint of his stylistic predecessor, Young Thug. Supa Bwe stands out from his Chicago cohort even while he flashes all the prerequisite attributes of one of the Windy City’s best. And Sampa The Great incorporates Zambian sounds and spoken word to create a sound unlike any other in hip-hop. These are the best new hip-hop albums coming out this week.
Jpegmafia — All My Friends Are Cornballs
Jpegmafia is known for his dark, noisy beats and chaotic vocal style, often screaming his rhymes as much as he raps them. After dropping a standout project, Veteran, in 2018, he went on tour with Vince Staples, appeared on tracks with Channel Tres, Danny Brown, Denzel Curry, Flume, and Injury Reserve, and released a pair of singles, “Jesus Forgive Me, I Am A Thot” and “Beta Male Strategies” to prepare fans to delve into his next move.
Lil Gotit — The Real GOAT
Lil Gotit may only be six months removed from his last release, March’s Crazy But It’s True, but true to his Atlanta trap roots, he’s already back with another new release. The mixtape landed on Soundcloud September 5 as one long track, which is one of the most unusual release strategies in a climate that has begun to see a lot more innovation on that front, but listening to it on other DSPs is likely to switch up the experience enough to make it worth a second listen.
Sampa The Great — The Return
The Zambian-born, Australian rapper hasn’t released a project since 2017’s Birds And The BEE9 mixtape, but she used the intervening year wisely. Returning to her homeland, she used the immersion in her home culture to fuel the creative energy needed to record her debut album. The Return mines styles like jazz, soul, and spoken word and incorporates them into an album that features her sister Mwanje’s vocals and samples of her mother, Theresa. The song “Final Form” is an apt representation of her musical evolution.