Vince Staples Sheds Light, Sexyy Red Goes Federal, Cash Cobain Links With J. Cole And More New Hip-Hop

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.

Vince StaplesDark Times

2024 Def Jam Recordings, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

With his stock and profile rising an echelon following the release of a critically-acclaimed album and successful Netflix original, Vince Staples delivers his latest offering, Dark Times. The rapper’s eigth studio album, Dark Times arrives a full two years after its predecessor, Ramona Park Broke My Heart, giving Staples ample amount of time to delve deep into new experiences, which are nuanced and revealed throughout the project’s 13 tracks.

On “Black&Blue,” the Cali native touches on the long-term impact of Reaganomics while also attributing consumerism within his community to its own socioeconomic circumstance. “My people product of poverty, I don’t know why they would play with us/ Choppers in luxury vehicles, livin’ like Saudi Arabians,” Vince raps atop production by Alex Goose, Michael Uzowuru, RⱯHM and LeKen Taylor. Nods to loved ones lost to the cage and grave are present on “Government Cheese,” as he reminisces on conversations with his incarcerated friend before acknowledging the impact his late brother’s passing had on his life.

“Shame On The Devil,” the album’s lead single, and “Etoufee” are both midpoint standouts, however, Dark Times hits its stride during the latter half of its tracklist. Highlighted by the seamless sonic transition from the heartfelt “Nothin Matters” into “Lil Homies,” a cut that capture’s Vince adopting the role of elder statesman to the youth, and bookended by the addictive thumper “Freeman,” on which he boasts of the princely Netflix deal he recently nabbed, Dark Times closes out in strong fashion. – Preezy Brown

Sexyy RedIn Sexyy We Trust

Sexyy Red 'In Sexyy We Trust' Album Cover

2024 Rebel/gamma.

Sexyy Red proves that she is more than just a trend with her latest project In Sexyy We Trust. Her knack for songwriting and lovable vulgarity is displayed over high-energy tracks, slowed-down love songs, and everything in between. The obvious standout record is “U My Everything” featuring Drake, where she gets the 6 God back into the lover boy bag that people grew to love him for. The Toronto superstar also raps over the viral “BBL Drizzy” beat because, of course, he can’t let his beef go, but he is always willing to steer into the skid. Lil Baby and Mike Will Made-It also appear on the project, but Sexyy Red more than proves that she can stand on her own. – Armon Sadler

Cash Cobain Feat. J. Cole – “Grippy”

Cash Cobain ft. J. Cole “Grippy” cover art

2024 Giant Music

J. Cole provides his spin on Cash Cobain’s “Dunk Contest” with “Grippy.” He departs from the braggadocious raps of the last few years and gets into a lighthearted sex bag. Impressively, he maintains the same ending syllable rhyme throughout the entire verse and meshes to the sexy drill production with ease. The lyricism feels a bit nursery rhyme-like throughout the verse, but that’s par for the course when Cole gets into his lusty iteration. Nonetheless, it’s an okay verse and a major look for the rising Bronx talent. And it’s never a bad thing to hear Cash run through his list of conquests from “Dunk Contest” after J. Cole finishes up his verse. – AS

Coi LerayLemon Cars

Coi Leray 'Lemon Cars' Album Cover

2024 Island Records, a division of UMG Recordings, Inc.

Coi Leray has become one of the more intriguing artists in rap today. She possesses many of the traits that are indicative of a superstar, from hit-making ability to marketability, but has yet to fully hone in on a particular sound and style, instead shape-shifting to the emotion or creative vibe felt in the moment.

While that approach can prove tricky and often backfire, Leray has shown the ability to traverse that terrain capably, as she expands her sound even further on Lemon Cars, the East Coaster’s new EP.

Led by its titular single, the project offers additional sublime grooves in “We Time” and “Poster Girl,” while more amped up fare such as the Mike WiLL Made-It produced “Wanna Come Thru” and Skilla Baby-assisted “Coke Bottle Body” cater to the dancefloor or the whip. – PB

Lil Baby & Central Cee –  “BAND4BAND”

Central Cee ft. Lil Baby “BAND4BAND” cover art

2024 Columbia Records, a Division of Sony Music Entertainment, under exclusive license from CC4L Limited

Central Cee and Lil Baby flex their bars and bankroll on “BAND4BAND.” Cee is in a comfortable pocket on this UK drill beat, but it is a new venture for the Atlanta rapper and he holds his own on one of his best performances in years. They use a fun back-and-forth format on the chorus and have surprisingly good chemistry. Impressively, Baby molds his signature flow to the beat where we have seen other rappers struggle. Another enjoyable aspect of the track is the difference in their voices; Central Cee’s is brooding while Lil Baby’s is higher pitched. The sound variation provides a listening experience that guarantees one doesn’t get bored – AS

Russ Feat. Melii – “Best Friend”

Russ Feat. Melii


As he preps to embark on his upcoming North American tour, Russ links up with Melii for “Best Friend,” a bouncy, feel-good duet that samples Baby Bash and Akon’s 2005 single, “Baby, I’m Back.” The multihyphenate, whose second book, it was you all along, is set to arrive in June, gave insight into the creation and inspiration behind his latest collaboration.

“Boi1da sent me this beat and I knew it was the one,” Russ said of the track in a statement. “Baby Bash and Akon’s “Baby, I’m Back” was one of my favorite songs as a kid, so when I heard the sample, jumping on this track was a no brainer. Melii has one of the coolest tones and deliveries and I’ve been waiting for the perfect song to send to her. I flew to NYC and we recorded her verse in person. We’re going on tour together this summer and we’re going to perform this every night.” – PB

Quavo – “Clear The Smoke”

Quavo “Clear The Smoke” cover art

2024 Quality Control Music, LLC, under exclusive license to UMG Recordings, Inc.

“Clear The Smoke” is the quintessential solo Quavo song. He uses a repetitive hook that gets annoying pretty fast. His rhymes are simple and predictable, but his delivery makes them work. His conviction and the production are the best parts of this song. It also seems like an admission of him bowing out of his beef with Chris Brown; while he does not specifically reference the pop star, he continually mentions not wanting to beef over women. Quavo has been trying to live peacefully ever since Takeoff’s death so a beef with CB definitely wasn’t on his to-do list, and this song makes that clear. – AS

YG – “Weird”

YG “Weird” cover art

2024 4Hunnid Music Inc. under exclusive license to BMG Rights Management (US) LLC

YG seems to be taking up his issues with Drake on “Weird.” It is an odd diss given their collaborative history and seeming as though they had a relationship, but things change. The Compton rapper repeats how people are weird and shouldn’t speak on Piru business, mention his name, or pillow talk. He also claims that he had sex with someone’s girl, leading one to wonder if he and the 6 God had a falling out over a woman. Content aside, the song isn’t much to write home about. It is YG’s usual upbeat production and his raps are middling. If he is looking to pick up momentum by inserting himself into the side opposing Drake, it may work out. But ultimately the music needs to be better for people to get invested. – AS

Dave East Feat. Shaggy – “Dangerous Riddum”

Dave East, Mike & Keys Feat. Shaggy


Dave East and Mike & Keys keep the stove warm for their forthcoming collaborative project with “Dangerous Riddum,” a reggae-tinged burner costarring legendary rudeboy Shaggy on the hook. “Couple spirits got my back, they ain’t stopping us/ The Rollie presidential, but I ain’t got no time to politic,” East rhymes on the first verse, with Shaggy gliding in with impassioned croons to add to the Rastafarian vibes.

Apt 6E is set to arrive next Friday (May 31) and will continue East’s working relationship with the production duo, who’ve contributed to numerous longplayers by the Harlem native. “Sonically, production from Mike & Keys always pushes me as an artist,” East said of their chemistry in a statement. “We recorded this joint at Mike & Keys joint in LA, and immediately reached out to Shaggy. I’m grateful the collaboration came to life, Shaggy is a legend.” – PB

See More New Hip-Hop Releases Below

Juicy JMental Trillness 2

Juicy J 'Mental Trillness 2' Album Cover

2024 Trippy Music LLC / Stem

1999 Write The Future Feat Shaquille O’Neal, DJ Nitti – “Raw I Know I Got It”

1999 Write The Future

2024 ABG-Shaq Entertainment, LLC, under exclusive license to 88rising Records LLC

Smoke DZAYou’re All Welcome

Smoke DZA 'You're All Welcome' Album Cover

2024 RFC Music Group

Maiya The Don – “Frenzy”

Quanna Q

Quanna 'Q' Album Cover

2024 841434 Records DK

Southside Feat. Lucki – “Elegant”

Southside Feat. Lucki

2024 Southside Productions/Epic Records, a division of Sony Music Entertainment

JackboyTrust The Process

Jackboy 'Trust The Process' Album Cover

2024 1804 Records / EMPIRE

Rah SwishElevator Music

Rah Swish 'Elevator Music' Album Cover

2024 WOO Entertainment / EMPIRE

Loe Shimmy – “All My Love”

Loe Shimmy

Open Shift Distribution