The decade’s first haul features smoked-out seasonals, seductive slow-burners, and signals of a promising and potent new year.
Welcome back, good people. And a happy first Friday of the decade to you. Twenty-twenty is off to a crawl, but that just means there’s a little more time to get caught up on what you may have missed during the holiday blitz. So let’s dive in before the year heats up.
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Christmas week was a predictably quiet stretch, but there were a few drops worth noting. Namely, a live and, frankly, stellar Kanye West-less Jesus is King follow-up from the convenient convert’s backing Sunday Service band and choir. There’s also Mad Space, a heady collaborative tape from NYC’s iblss and Akai Solo. And rounding out the roster, there’s Your Old Droog‘s gritty new project, Jewelry, featuring guest spots from Mach-Hommy, MF DOOM, Tha God Fahim, and more.
The singles, of course, carried the weight of a week short on studio albums. Antwon returned a batch of brooding bars and heavy hooks. Terrace Martin linked with Arin Ray and Elena Pinderhughes for a sleek and seductive slow-burner. Mick Jenkins put his next outing in the book with a sharp and spacious suite. Burna Boy snuck out an icy one-off. Smino dropped a kush-kissed two-pack. And that’s just half the script.
Hear it all in the year’s first installment of The Round-Up below. Hit the link to follow us on Spotify for a trove or true notes, past and present.