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So Necessary: Megan Thee Stallion Finally Gives Hot Girl Summer an Anthem

Amid a banner week for content, the Houston rapper drops a new collab with Nicki Minaj and Ty Dolla $ign. Plus: Pusha T’s lost Rick Ross verse and new Lil Uzi Vert.

Because he has nothing better to do with his time, each week, Micah Peters riffs on the most awe-inspiring, confounding, addictive, or otherwise hilarious moments from the week in music. This week:

Schrodinger’s* Pusha T verse (*Rick Ross’s)

While doing press for Port of Miami 2, which you can listen to right now, Rick Ross heavily teased the newest iteration of “Maybach Music.” Part VI was going to feature John Legend, Lil Wayne, and Pusha T, which raised the various eyebrows of the internet, for obvious reasons. The retail version doesn’t include Pusha’s verse because, as Rick Ross said in a recent Breakfast Club interview, it wouldn’t edge the G.O.O.D music president and Drake, who’s also featured on the album, any closer to resolution. Pusha’s verse surfaced on the internet early Friday morning, and let’s just say it’s easy to follow Ross’s logic: “Crowns on these clowns, it’s like you colored they nose / We talkin’ skill-set? Or popularity polls / When you speak truth to power ya popularity grows.

Everything about Ari Lennox’s COLORS performance

Like with a biblical hangover, you quietly accept that there’s no real way to escape feeling shitty after a breakup, even as you try to triage yourself. On “I Been” from Ari Lennox’s Shea Butter Baby, she tries smoking to forget a lover, and when that doesn’t do the trick she tries Tinder, which also doesn’t work. Her voice slides down those and I try and I try and I trys and then bounds off of that TindAH, before she remembers that she’s still mad: “Oooh why’d you have to be a big pretender?” In the space of a verse you’re alone in your room too, searching the ceiling for answers, angrily saying all the things you meant to say into the floor mirror. I thought, when watching her perform this song on the COLORS YouTube channel, this is the difference between “singing” and sanging.

Megan Thee Stallion having another banner week of content

Megan Thee Stallion’s week, in order: hanging out on the front steps of a mansion and twerking while Lizzo played “Shake That Monkey” on the flute; a stellar Paper magazine cover where she was styled after the stoic, flame-throwing hero Todoroki from My Hero Academia; and the culminating song of “Hot Girl Summer,” featuring Nicki Minaj and Ty Dolla $ign, which we’ll all probably be hearing until mid-September.

You’ll notice that people on the internet have organized themselves into teams around this, as if Hot Girl Summer were the House Cup, and the uninvited City Boyz could score points by posing shirtless near a body of water, or crafting a playlist comprised of mainly Future songs. In that context, “Hot Girl Summer,” which samples City Girls’ “Act Up,” is an emphatic last word.

Lil Uzi Vert levitating on “Die Today”

The low-quality version leaked almost two years ago, but on Friday Cassius Jay surfaced a new Lil Uzi Vert collaboration, “Die Today,” to tide you over while you wait for the long-delayed Eternal Atake. It’s not the most inspired either of the two artists have ever been, but “Die Today” definitely has the most captivating hook of any of the recently liberated Uzi songs, equal parts inspirational, worrying, and hilarious: “Bitch I’m straight, I could die today / In good shape, run a mile today / Off a pill, but I’m wide awake.”

Cousin Stizz expressing gratitude on “Toast 2 That”

“Perfect” was spare and industrial and hard; “STP” was spare and space-aged and hard; “Toast 2 That,” Cousin Stizz’s newest single featuring Freddie Gibbs, is ornate, yet still somewhat spare, and also hard. Trying to Find My Next Thrill—the entrancingly heavy-eyed Boston rapper’s fourth project proper—is shaping up to be a fun album full of trap records in various textures that sound great in a car, or a club, or a speedboat grotto.

Stizz is best enjoyed in long, mesmerizing stretches. He has a dozy, syrupy voice and a way of crafting slow-motion hooks that stick with you long after you’ve stopped listening. Made it home tonight, so let’s smoke to thaaaaat / God keep blessin’ us, so let’s toast to thaaaaat.Obviously, Freddie Gibbs is a velvety buzz saw, and imagines himself like Steven Seagal, a taller, blacker Seagal that buys “organic dope” from Trader Joe’s.