New Music Out This Week: Drake, Tyler, Kanye, Acacia Strain, Nick Cave & more
Hope everyone's been having a great holiday! Though a lot of the music industry shuts down this time of year, there's still been some new music coming out, and now that Christmas is behind us, here's a roundup of some music that dropped this week that you may have missed.
DRAKE - "WAR"
Drake's love of UK grime continues on his third official single of 2019, "War," which also appears to make passing reference to Drake's reportedly rocky relationship with The Weeknd. Drake also did a rare, two-plus hour tell-all interview with Rap Radar where he discussed his feud with Pusha T, his also-rocky relationship with Kanye West, his 2019 Chris Brown collaboration, getting booed off stage at Camp Flog Gnaw, and more. You can watch that full interview below the video for Drake's new song.
KANYE WEST'S SUNDAY SERVICE CHOIR - JESUS IS BORN
Kanye actually met an album release date on time?! After releasing this year's Jesus Is King, he said he'd be releasing a "Sunday Service album" called Jesus Is Born on Christmas Day, and that happened exactly as planned. Kanye executive produced the album but he doesn't rap on it, and it features gospel versions of some of Kanye's own songs (like "Ultralight Beam" and "Father Stretch"), traditional gospel music, and more.
TYLER, THE CREATOR - "BEST INTEREST" & "GROUP B"
Tyler, the Creator has dropped two outtakes from the sessions for IGOR, which we named the fifth best album of 2019, the best rap album of 2019, and the 16th best rap album of the decade. "Best Interest" is cut from a very similar experimental soul cloth as IGOR, while "Group B" sees Tyler returning to his straight-up rapping days, and both are pretty great.
Tyler also celebrated the 10th anniversary of his classic debut Bastard on Christmas (which is also on our list of the best rap and R&B albums of the decade) by writing a lengthy reflection of the album on Instagram. You can read that in full below the two new songs.
YOUR OLD DROOG - JEWELRY
Your Old Droog got in the Chanukah spirit with his third album of 2019, Jewelry, which features references to Jewish prayers and songs, a song called "Jew Tang" featuring Matisyahu, and other Chanukah-friendly elements, but it's also a hard-hitting rap album that will still sound great after the holiday season passes. Mach-Hommy executive produced it and rapped on a few songs, and it also features verses from MF DOOM and Tha God Fahim, and beats from Tha God Fahim, Quelle Chris, Edan, Preservation, and Cohen Beats.
Droog writes, "I'm no longer going to diminish my heritage for your comfort, some people hate simply for the sake of hating, let them crumble under the weight of that burden...we will celebrate light and life...I'm a Jew in America. This is my story. Shalom." You can read more here.
BURNA BOY - "MONEY PLAY"
It's been a huge year for Afro-pop singer Burna Boy, which has included the release of his new album African Giant and his contribution to Beyonce's Lion King album (both of which we included on our list of the 30 best rap and R&B albums of 2019), and he's closing the year out with one more great song, "Money Play."
THE ACACIA STRAIN - IT COMES IN WAVES
The Acacia Strain are gearing up for a 2020 tour with killer support from Rotting Out, Creeping Death, Chamber, and Fuming Mouth, and as rumored, they surprise-released a new album today. It Comes In Waves is doomier and more atmospheric than The Acacia Strain's usual deathcore stuff, and it's out on the trusty hardcore label Closed Casket Activities rather than the band's usual bigger label, Rise. It Comes In Waves features seven songs that are meant to be heard start to finish as one long song, and even if deathcore isn't your thing or you checked out from this band a while ago, this unexpected curveball is worth checking out. You can also learn more about it from vocalist Vincent Bennett's new interview with Decibel.
NICK CAVE AND THE BAD SEEDS - DISTANT SKY LIVE IN COPENHAGEN
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds' awesome 2018 concert film Distant Sky Live in Copenhagen -- which previously screened worldwide for one night only -- is now available in full for free on YouTube. Nick also put out a four-song EP from the concert and you can check out both right here:
SAD13 - "121212"
It's an annual tradition for Sad13 (Sadie Dupuis of Speedy Ortiz) to release a new holiday song each year, and that continued this year with "121212," a festive-sounding bedroom pop song that's equal parts cheerful and whimsical.
MAC DEMARCO - "SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN"
Another indie artist who always releases a Christmas song is Mac DeMarco, though he usually prefers to do classic covers and this year he did a mostly-faithful-sounding but aesthetically indie pop take on "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town."
SMINO - "SLEIGH" & "KUSHMAS
Midwest rapper/singer Smino dropped two new holiday songs that are thematically seasonal but sonically appropriate for any time of year.
KEHLANI - "ALL ME" (ft. KEYSHIA COLE)
Oakland R&B singers Kehlani and Keyshia Cole teamed up for this moody new jam.
ARIANA GRANDE - K BYE FOR NOW (LIVE ALBUM)
Ariana Grande caps off her second consecutive year as a megastar with her new live album, k bye for now.
TRAVIS SCOTT - JACKBOYS
Update (12/27): Travis Scott has released a new compilation, JACKBOYS, on his Cactus Jack label, which features a new remix of his October single "Highest in the Room" with new contributions from Rosalía and Lil Baby, plus songs featuring Quavo, Offset, Sheck Wes, Young Thug, and rising rappers Don Toliver (who previously collaborated with Scott on Astroworld and released the viral "No Idea" this year) and Pop Smoke (of recent "Welcome to the Party" fame).
J HUS - "NO DENYING"
Genre-defying UK rapper J Hus follows his recent single "Must Be" with the ominous bounce of "No Denying," and he says more new music to come in 2020.
NOSEBLEED - OUTSIDE LOOKING IN EP
Richmond hardcore rippers Nosebleed recently shared two songs from their new Outside Looking In EP on Triple B Records, and today they dropped the whole whiplash-inducing thing.
Looking for even more new songs? Browse the ‘New Songs’ archive.