It was a relatively slow week for new hip-hop releases, with Lil Nas X stealing the spotlight with his debut studio album MONTERO. While he's proven that he's not comfortable being boxed in as a rapper, the new album sees the 22-year-old music superstar exploring themes in pop-punk, alternative, rock, and other genres. Of course, there are some straight-up rap songs on the album too, as well as more hits, including "INDUSTRY BABY" and "MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)".

With a little bit of a lull for other artists this week, we also had a chance to dive even deeper into some of our favorite albums of the last few weeks, including Baby Keem's The Melodic Blue and Kanye West's DONDA. Both albums have multiple tracks representing them on this week's update of the Staff Picks playlist.

In the first half of the playlist, we're also shining a light on new singles from Lakeyah ahead of her upcoming mixtape release, Mozzy, D Smoke, and Majid Jordan. Of course, we couldn't miss an opportunity to unpack Mac Miller's Faces mixtape again, which was recently added to streaming services, adding "Colors and Shapes" to the playlist.

Check out what each writer chose for the playlist this week and be sure to follow us on SoundCloud and TIDAL.

Alex Zidel (Editorial)

Lil Nas X - SCOOP (feat. Doja Cat)
Baby Keem - scars
Kanye West - God Breathed
Kanye West - Jail

Rose Lilah (Editorial)

Majid Jordan - Summer Rain
Tems - Found (feat. Brent Faiyaz)
D Smoke & Sir - Common Sense
Tems - Replay

Erika Marie (Editorial)

Lakeyah, Tee Grizzley, & DJ Drama - 313-414
Lil Nas X - SCOOP (feat. Doja Cat)
D Smoke & Sir - Common Sense
Remy Ma - GodMother

Taylor McCloud (Editorial)

Drake - Yebba’s Heartbreak
Josh Forehead - Stars Fall Down
Baby Keem - issues
DijahSB - New Balance

Alex Cole (Editorial)

Kanye West - Heaven And Hell
Kanye West - Off The Grid
Baby Keem & Kendrick Lamar - range brothers

Cole Blake (Editorial)

Moor Mother - Mangrove (feat. elucid & Antonia Gabriela)
Moor Mother - Shekere (feat. Iojii & Saydah Ruz)
Baby Keem & Kendrick Lamar - range brothers
Wiki - Promised (feat. MIKE)
Lil Nas X - SCOOP (feat. Doja Cat)

Aron A (Editorial)

Mozzy - Beat The Case (feat. EST Gee & Babyface Ray)
TwoTiime - Juice
Mozzy - Step Brothers (feat. Celly Ru)
Curren$y & Kino Beats - Barbed Wire Fence (feat. Valee)
BlueBucksClan - Come Again

Joshua Robinson (Editorial)

Baby Keem - trademark usa 
Baby Keem - 16
Yebba - How Many Years
Injury Reserve - Top Picks For You
Mac Miller - Colors and Shapes