Each week, dozens of singles and a handful of projects are released in the Christian Hip-Hop (CHH) and Urban Soul spaces. Below, we listen to a few highlights and list the rest for your own discovery. As always, follow our New Christian Rap & Hip Hop playlist on Spotify to listen to all the latest.
Don't Shoot the Messenger by Eshon Burgundy NFTRY's own Eshon Burgundy enters his 12th year present in the CHH space releasing his seventh album barely a week into the new year. Burgundy is a CHH purist at heart unashamed to broadcast scripture, God's promises, theology, and hope through every release. The thing with art from Burgundy, multiple listens are required to not only appreciate the content but digest all the gems within. Like KRS-One, he brought back the beauty of boom-bap and authentic lyricism. Solid bars. Burgundy doesn't just release hollow sixteens, as it's all straight heat, truth, and street wrapped into novel-like content. Storytelling wrapped in biblical truths. Some of my favorites include "Angelic" featuring FERN from Social Club Misfits, the opener "Don't Shoot," and "Sins of Omission" featuring Japhia Life. DSTM is truly life music. A Soundtrack for the streets to bring young men home. Don't sleep on this one.
Swoope feat. Aha Gazelle & Miguel Fresco - "24"
Early on in 2021, the CHH community is treated to the return of Swoope - a true renaissance man of a multitude of sounds. He brought with him one of the heavyweights of the genre in Aha Gazelle and an underdog named Miguel Fresco. Aha opened up the track with his usual track prowess and dominance. Also, he blazed the hook with lyrics like, "I follow God, I don't follow your rules."Swoope follows with his usual and iconic contributions of bars and savvy wordplay. The rare third verse on a CHH track makes an appearance introducing Miguel Fresco. The beat and production contained that usual inferno Swoope provides with every track he touches whether as a producer or a rapper. Overall, the track is a hot opener to 2021 and will gain several replays in the minivan.
Phil J. - "SOUTHSIDE"
Surprisingly independent artist Phil J. slammed open the door to 2021 with one of his strongest tracks to date. "SOUTHSIDE" exhibits his comfort in lyrical pockets and blasts a unique sound unmatched to anyone in the CHH or urban spaces currently. There's an unexplainable joy invoked within the listener, speaking of myself, when digesting the art of Phil J. His encouraging vibes, "slaptastic" (yeah, I made a word up) content, and comfort swaying between his production skill set and microphone ownership is beyond impressive. The single gives a brief re-introduction of Phil J's roots and spotlights God's hands on the talent within. Barely a week into 2021 and this single will last as a favorite of mine for months to follow.