What is widely considered to be among the strongest recent rap albums to come to fruition is Kendrick Lamar’s Damn. The album has been subject to widespread critical acclaim for its intoxicatingly raw nature, largely brought to life via gripping and compelling lyrics. Damn allows listeners to follow a cohesive and artful narrative in which they witness the metamorphosis of a protagonist. In fact, the story told throughout the album is so immersive fans on Reddit have begun debating lyrical content and coming up with theories regarding the track order and overall meaning. Lamar has made Damn a catalyst of intellectual and creative engagement, and the album revels in its ability to intrigue the ear and mind alike.
Another widely celebrated album that is considered to be among the best in rap at the moment is G-Eazy’s The Beautiful & Damned. Its late 2017 release has made its songs join the ranks in terms of the most popular rap songs of 2018 thus far. Among the most popular tracks on the album is “Him & I,” in which G-Eazy collaborates with current girlfriend and pop singer Halsey. The track was incredibly popular to begin with, as it was mutually adored by both artists’ respective fan bases. However, this adoration for “Him & I” only seemed to exponentially multiply after its accompanying music video was subsequently released. Shot in the style of an old home video, the music video for “Him & I” features dreamy, hazy footage of Halsey and G-Eazy gallivanting about New York City with one another. The song and the video alike stand out for being a little sweeter in lyrical content and overall feeling than most other rap songs of 2018.
Less than a month ago, rap duo EarthGang released their latest album, Royalty, via Spillage Village Records. The album is comprised of eight tracks that all hold the potential to later become noted as some of the best rap songs of 2018 due to the fact that they all contain the element of infusion. “Cocktail,” the album’s opening track, creates an intriguing nexus of rap and jazz through the presence of a horns section that perfectly tows the line between subtlety and being robust in nature. “Nothing But the Best,” which features Ari Lennox, is comprised of a nexus of sonic elements. Elements of soul and a touch of jazz are seamlessly blended and streamlined into the duo’s signature traditional rap sound. This spirit of innovation is sonically detectable within each of Royalty’s tracks, and it is this exploratory nature that will make Royalty one of the best rap albums of 2018, and its tracks subsequently regarded as among the best rap songs of 2018.