Last week continued the trend of standout releases in May with new heat from Gunna, Lucki, The 1975, Kota the Friend, Migos, Rod Wave, Young M.A, Key Glock, Skooly, and more.
Let's talk some music:
#5 - “And I Still” by Rod Wave
Unique Florida rapper Rod Wave has had a huge year, finding success through TikTok and even securing a Lyrical Lemonade video for “Thief In The Night”. Now, he’s back with “And I Still”.
Produced by TnTXD, Rod dismantled the beat and made another bold statement with this single. “And I Still” was released alongside a music video directed by Brett Arndt.
Fan Rating: 4/5
Burbs Rating: 3.25/5
#4 - WUNNA by Gunna
Just in time for summer, Gunna released his sophomore studio album after a year of recuperating from Drip or Drown 2.
WUNNA is a step up from last year’s Drip or Drown 2, but far from the greatness of Drip Season 2 or 3. While I admittedly enjoy many of Gunna’s songs and features, he unfortunately appears to be yet another artist who has fallen complacent with his sound and style after finding success. However, the detail and rollout behind WUNNA prove that Gunna has some creative juice in the tank. I just found out that “WUNNA” is even an acronym: “Wealthy Unapologetic N*gga Naturally Authentic”.
Standout tracks are “DOLLAZ ON MY HEAD” (ft. Young Thug), “BLINDFOLD” (ft. Lil Baby), “COOLER THAN A BITCH” (ft. Roddy Ricch), “TOP FLOOR” (ft. Travis Scott), “NASTY GIRL / ON CAMERA”, and “WUNNA”. Production comes from Wheezy, Mike WiLL Made-It, Tay Keith, Bobby Raps, Turbo, and more.
This record has some summer-ready bangers and a few tracks that could potentially thrive past then, but that’s about it. If you go in without expectations and don’t take it too seriously, it’s a fun listen as well as a marginal comeback for Gunna Wunna.
Fan Rating: 3/5
Burbs Rating: 3.5/5
#3 - “Tune & Scotty” by Lucki
Before his forthcoming project Almost There drops on May 30, Lucki gave fans one last preview with the release of the anticipated “Tune & Scotty”.
Produced by Plu2o Nash and Adio and mixed by the legendary Alex Tumay, “Tune & Scotty” is another hard-hitting trap gem under Lucki’s belt. Lines like, “I’m geeked up like Thugger,” and, “In the D, tryna be D. Rose,” encapsulate Lucki’s charismatic excellence.
Although I personally enjoyed last month’s “Faith” more than this track, both singles indicate that Almost There will be another classic. Then again, does Lucki ever miss?
Trick question. He never has, and likely never will at this rate.
Fan Rating: 4.5/5
Burbs Rating: 3.5/5
#2 - Notes on a Conditional Form by The 1975
One of the UK’s most iconic pop and alternative groups took some bold risks that paid off on their latest studio album.
Notes on a Conditional Form is The 1975’s fourth studio album and serves as a solid showcase of the group’s evolution. It is the second part of their “Music for Cars” era, following up 2018’s A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships. The new record heavily incorporates electronic, pop rock, and industrial elements and is arguably the group’s most daring project to-date.
The 1975 frontman Matty Healy claims the album was inpsired by “nighttime in the UK” and described it as “very homely, it’s a lot about home, it’s a lot about mental health, it’s a lot about domesticity.”
Fan Rating: 4/5
Burbs Rating: 4/5
#1 - Everything by Kota the Friend
Rising New York talent Kota the Friend released his sophomore studio album, chock full of raw potential and impressive highlights.
Everything has some of the waviest production I’ve heard this year. It’s even more impressive when you realize Kota produced nearly all of it. I can’t tell if he’s more talented as a producer or rapper, but he’s effortlessly excelling in both positions.
Features came from Joey Bada$$, Bas, tobi lou, KYLE, Braxton Cook, Kaiit, Alex Banin, and Hello Oshay. Kota even secured interludes from Lakeith Stanfield and Lupita Nyong’o, two of the most beloved actors in the world at the moment.
I didn’t know much about Kota the Friend before this album, but I now know that he’s only getting started. Get in tune with Kota before he’s one of New York’s finest; this album indicates that he’s on the right track.