"Night Call" by Steve Aoki ft. Lil Yachty & Migos
Rap and EDM crossovers tend to be strange but exciting musical affairs. For his latest song, "Night Call," Steve Aoki recruited Migos and Lil Yachty for an unhinged party anthem full of auto-tune that makes the Atlanta natives sound like a rocket about to escape orbit. Aoki's entire brand is built on that kind of high-energy performance, but it's fun seeing Migos and Yachty seamlessly weave into that style themselves.
"Bestie" by Yungen ft. Yxng Bane
The British singer Yungen exudes an inescapable charm on his latest single. Even if the song borrows heavily from afrobeats, there are definitely transatlantic influences that pop up when Yungen interpolates not only 50 Cent's "Many Men," but also Juelz Santana's guest verse on Cam'ron's classic "Hey Ma." It's a subtle hint of nostalgia that recontextualizes old moments for a new generation.
"Signs" by Drake
Drake never stays still. He used to sing R&B and occasionally rap, then he left singing behind so he could be seen as the world's best rapper, and now he's expanding even further to become a full-fledged global pop star. "Signs" picks up where More Life left off, and while it'll sound lovely on your headphones, you should be running out to parties so you can hit the dance floor the moment this one comes on.
"No Complaints" by Metro Boomin ft. Offset & DrakeSigns" by Drake
It speaks to the strength of Metro Boomin's brand that that he can not only put out a solo single, a rare feat for a producer, but he can do it with one of the world's biggest rappers. "No Complaints" puts Drake alongside Offset, everyone's second-favorite member of Migos, and hits all the checkboxes one might expect: trap drums, tough talk, and the type of hypnotic production you just know will keep people playing this track all summer long.
"Homage" by Vince Staples
Vince Staples's latest album, Big Fish Theory, finds him pivoting away from his last few projects, which were shepherded by renowned producer No I.D. Staples doesn't tone down any of his lyrical depth, but the electronic sound of the album is reminiscent of standing at the center of a music festival, when the sounds from all the various stages collide, resulting in a sonic pile-up. "Homage" is a perfect example of that, with Staples adding a touch of A$AP Ferg and a sprinkling of Rick Ross to come up with a special brew of his own.
"Naughty Ride" by Wizkid ft. Major Lazer
Even after the massive success of Drake's "One Dance" last year, the Nigerian singer Wizkid is still trying to find the right American crossover hit. "Naughty Ride" is another valiant effort and this time he isn't weighed down by Drake's name potentially overshadowing his. Instead, he partnered with Major Lazer for a clever afrobeats pop song that proves why the African star should be ready to cross over into the U.S., and showcases exactly why he's a star in Africa in the first place.
"First Day Out" by Kodak Black
On "First Day Out," Kodak Black shows why he's one of rap's most beloved stars, despite still only being a teenager. Over an ominous beat, he weaves a story about what the first day out of jail is like for a just-released prisoner, and all the things on the to-do list for a young man ready to celebrate his newfound freedom.
"D Rose" by Lil Pump
Lil Pump isn't even 18 and the internet provocateur already knows how to make waves, as he's well-known for his outlandish behavior and increasingly extra Instagram posts (earlier this year he posted a photo of his crashed Porsche, much to the glee of his fans). That kind of outlandishness carries through in his music, and while a title like "D Rose" might have you thinking he's comparing himself to the New York Knicks point guard, he's really just working to build up his own myth.
"Don't Quit" by DJ Khaled ft. Calvin Harris, Travis Scott, Jeremih
What exactly does DJ Khaled do? That's a question that remains hard to answer even more than a decade into his career. He's got memorable catchphrases (e.g., "major key," "we the best"), and a mile-long rolodex filled with the names of nearly anyone who's anyone in the music industry. On "Don't Quit" he shows just how deep he can go, by not only getting Travis Scott and Jeremih, but even tapping superstar producer Calvin Harris for this soon-to-be summer hit.
"Say It Again" by H.E.R.
The world of R&B is increasingly fragmented. The post-Weeknd world of Bryson Tiller, PartyNextDoor, and 6lack is currently thriving, while Daniel Caesar and Khalid are attempting to give a little bit of soul to the genre; and then there's the adventurous streak explored by Solange and SZA. H.E.R. mines that terrain with her song "Say It Again," which has a slinky groove that might be too slow for radio—but if the last couple of years are any indication, fans are more ready than ever to meet singers on their turf instead of just shifting with the ever-changing musical trends.
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