NICKI MINAJ – “YASSS BISH!!” (FEAT SOULJA BOY)
At the top of April, Nicki Minaj snatched wigs with the track “Chi-Raq” and it’s since been rap game fodder with everyone rocking over the beat. Nicki came back with “Yasss Bish!!!” featuring Soulja Boy, and it’s just as high powered as you’d expect from the recently revamped Minaj. “Bitches is bitter, my titties is bigger/ You bitches my sons, I need a babysitter.” Yow.
DREEZY – “CHI-RAQ”
Chicago rap maven Dreezy slaps around Nicki Minaj’s “Chi-Raq” with bars like she owns a liquor franchise. The 20-year-old tips her hat to Queen Barbz on the cut, but makes sure to call out those who namecheck Chi-Raq for thug cred. “Soon as you step a foot in Chi-Raq, you will feel uneasy” she says. With her tough-talking, you'd find it hard to disagree.
KATIE GOT BANDZ – “CHI-RAQ REMIX”
"This MY city", raps Chicago native Katie Got Bandz, who challenges both Nicki and Dreezy in bringing her raspy vocals to the party. With purple hair and in front of a spiral backdrop, the South Side rapper talks threats and reminds everyone that Drill's OG female is still a force to be reckoned with.
IGGY AZALEA – “MILLION DOLLAR DREAM” (FEAT SUKHWINDER SINGH)
Doesn’t it feel like we all woke up one morning and Iggy Azalea became a superstar? Well that’s pretty much exactly what happened. Iggy rose up the ranks quickly, and now she has a sweet spot on the Disney soundtrack for Million Dollar Arm. The track boasts the creativity of composer A.R. Rahman plus singer Sukhwinder Singh as Iggy drops off some slick bars over a chirpy Bollywood beat. Rap’s got a new favourite blonde bombshell (sorry Eminem).
BOYFRIEND – “LIKE MY HAND DID”
Comedy Tumblr-rap or the sound of 2015? Bespectacled rapper Boyfriend brings a whole song about how a man couldn’t make her cum like her hand did. That’s a harsh reality to face, but she takes it a step further and suggests he needs to be punished for his lackluster stick game. A press release about the track says "With these lyrics, I can imagine Boyfriend's hand makes her cum pixels and glitter." Wow.
RAPSODY – “BETTY SHABAZZ”
When XXL Magazine omitted rising rapper Rapsody from its Class of 2014, she bit back by immediately dropping the visuals for “Betty Shabazz.” Rap brings poignant bars with a backdrop set to the dichotomy of Islam – from women in hijabs to post-Nation of Islam Malcolm X followers. All the while, 9th Wonder provides a woozy soundscape that switches up toward the end. It’s Jamla if you forgot.
SZA – “WARM WINDS” (FEAT ISAIAH RASHAD)
The first lady of Kendrick Lamar's label TDE, R&B artist SZA rush-released her debut album last month. The lead single to come from the release sees her her warm coos are layered by fellow Top Dawg affiliate Isaiah Rashad, with a video that pleasantly looks like it’s been shot through an Instagram filter. Don’t get too hypnotized watching this one; SZA's purpose and nerve is a mark that she's here to stay.
GANGSTA BOO & LA CHAT F. MIA X – “BITCHY”
Have you ever seen so much female camaraderie under one roof? It's rare, but leave it to Gangsta Boo to make it happen. The Three 6 Mafia graduate has a project with La Chat titled Witch arriving end of month, and the two grabbed No Limit femme fatale Mia X to assist on the lead single “Bitchy,” produced by DJ Paul. The trifecta namecheck the less endowed men who live with their moms and can’t sell them any dreams – a perfect combination of emasculation and empowerment.
DA BRAT – “FANCY REMIX”
Yes, you read that correctly: The Brat-tat-tat-tat-tat is back on that ass. She jumps on Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy,” transforming the track with her badass lines and sped-up flow. Is this a comeback for Da Brat? Perhaps. The funniest thing about this one is that at first listen it kind of sounds like Iggy. Says something about where Ms. Azalea got some of her swag from, no?
Bonus: LYKKE LI – “NO REST FOR THE WICKED REMIX” (FEAT A$AP ROCKY)
Okay, we're bending the rules here for Lykke – but we couldn't sleep on the A$AP Rocky remix of her current single. Pretty Flacko slips syllables over the enchanting beat, and the result is heartfelt yet hard as hell. Revisit our recent longread feature on Lykke here.
Follow Kathy Iandoli on Twitter here @kath3000