After several weeks of buildup and the quick rise of last week’s single “Wu-Tang Forever,” Drake’s Nothing Was The Same album will finally be released Tuesday (September 24) despite an early leak this past week. While any leak has the potential to be commercially destructive, the oft-discussed early release of Drake’s album seems to be a strong indicator of the album’s commercial viability ahead of its official release date. At the same time, Pusha T continues the lead-up to his own solo debut, My Name Is My Name, with a feature from Compton rapper Kendrick Lamar on “Nosetalgia.” Ja Rule corners the third spot on the list with his first publicly released post-jail recording in “Fresh Out Da Pen.” The list is rounded out by the HipHopDX premier of a Nelly and T.I. song, J. Cole’s “Crooked Smile” video and the latest single from Justin Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience 2 Of 2.
Drake's Jay Z-Assisted “Pound Cake” Holds The Crown
Drake’s Nothing Was The Same has finally succumbed to a leak ahead of next Tuesday’s release date. After a long commercial buildup, the Toronto emcee’s third album quickly became a trending topic on Twitter as a result of it’s non-sanctioned release. Out of respect for the artist and the album’s established release date, HipHopDX removed the track “Pound Cake” after we first posted it Sunday (September 15) evening. Nonetheless, despite being pulled down, the song quickly rose to the top of this week’s top 10 thanks to a much talked about feature from Jay Z. The song, which features an introductory vocal sample from Jazz musician Jimmy Smith as well as a consistent sample of Ellie Goulding throughout the beat, finds Jay and Drake waxing on their respective wealth. At the end of his first verse, Jay makes mention of Roc La Familia before looping back for explicit mention of the wealth generated by his affiliated artists and friends Kanye West, Just Blaze, Dame Dash and more in his second verse. “Yes, still Roc La Familia / Says a lot about you if you not feeling us / The homie said ‘Hov, there ain’t many of us’ / I told him less is more, nigga, it’s plenty of us.”
“Nosetalgia” Builds Up To Pusha T’s My Name Is My Name Release
Now just weeks removed from next month’s release date, Pusha T continues his campaign for My Name Is My Name with the long awaited Kendrick Lamar feature on “Nosetalgia.” The song, which will be sequenced tenth on the 12 track album, is built on a wide-open and simplistic loop and offers up both rappers waxing nostalgic on different sides of the cocaine market. Not surprisingly, Pusha raps about his relationship with the drug through the lens of “beepers,” “Pyrex” and “Gem Star razors” while Kendrick’s verse offers his own childhood perspective of family drug use before flipping the verse into a common boast analogizing his lyricism with product in an imagined conversation with his father. “Go figure, motherfucker, every verse is a brick / Your son dope, nigga / Now reap what you sowed, nigga / Please reap what you sowed, nigga / I was born in ‘87 / My Granddaddy a legend / Now the same shit that y’all was smoking is my profession.”
Ja Rule Reminds Fans He’s “Fresh Out Da Pen”
After serving almost two years in both Federal and State prison, Ja Rule has been noticeably quiet in the months following his release from an upstate New York prison. After a series of interviews, the 37 year old rapper has finally released his first single in nearly two years with an explanation of his time and release. On “Fresh Out Da Pen,” Ja Rule makes reference to several buzz-worthy cultural events that took place while he was away from the public eye and reminds listeners (and the FBI, it seems) of his no-nonsense positioning. “I'ma see you twerk it like Miley / You the bad girl like Ri-Ri that's gone off that Molly / But I don't pop that Molly / And I don't rock Tom Ford / I ain't wake up in a Bugatti / I'm just tryin' to avoid the law / Nigga ain't tryin' to get locked up no more / I'm iced up real rocky / Keep a kilo of that hard white...around my neck / Like that's not me / Nigga ain't 'bout that life, if y'all listenin' / I'm innocent / Real shit / But I'll be fresh as hell if y'all watchin'."
This Week’s Top Ten
7. J. Cole f. TLC - "Crooked Smile" [Video]