5 Best Rap Albums of January 2024

So much rap music comes out all the time, and especially with frequent surprise releases, it can be hard to keep track of it all. So, as a way to help keep up with all of it, here’s a roundup of the 5 rap albums from January 2024 that stood out to us most. We also probably still missed or haven’t spent enough time with some great January rap albums that aren’t on this list. What were some of your favorites of last month? Let us know in the comments, and read on for the list (unranked, in no particular order).

In case you missed it, check out our list of the 25 best rap albums of 2023.

Benny the Butcher – Everybody Can’t Go
Def Jam

Benny the Butcher’s been on a ‘one for the streets, one for the radio’ timeline. Following years of gritty boom bap revival projects, Benny cleaned up nice for 2020’s Hit-Boy-produced Burden of Proof and then dirties things up again for 2022’s Tana Talk 4. His first proper solo full-length since then, Everybody Can’t Go, sounds like a spiritual sequel to the former. It sounds like those early 2000s records by rappers like Jadakiss and Cam’ron that were lush and polished enough for the radio with bars that still went as hard as their underground tracks. By 2024’s standards, Everybody Can’t Go still sounds like an anti-commercial throwback, but there’s something to be said for hearing Benny weave his way through the kinds of gorgeous beats and immediate hooks that did once have a place at the top of the charts. Production on the album is split between Hit-Boy and The Alchemist, and some of the guests were around in the era that these songs tap into, including Jadakiss, Snoop Dogg, and Lil Wayne. He’s also got usual Griselda and Black Soprano Family suspects like Westside Gunn, Conway the Machine, Stove God Cooks, Armani Caesar, and Rick Hyde; two Detroit rappers (Babyface Ray and Peezy); and young LA rapper Kyle Banks. Everybody Can’t Go is Benny’s Def Jam debut, and it seems like he figured throwing in a little mass appeal wouldn’t hurt given the massive label’s reach. If you want his old shit, buy his old albums–or just wait for his next BSF or Griselda Records mixtape–but I think the punchiness of Everybody Can’t Go is only adding even more fuel to his usual fire.

Rap Ferreira First Fist

R.A.P. Ferreira & Fumitake Tamura – the First Fist to Make Contact When We Dap
Ruby Yacht / Alpha Pup

R.A.P. Ferreira is back with a new album, and this one was made entirely with Japanese producer Fumitake Tamura. Ferreira says that Tamura’s “compositions pushed me like nothing yet has, his conception of what my sound could be left me needing to actualize it,” and adds, “this album more than any other i’ve made encapsulates my vision of rap music. it is free. it is international. it is beloved. it is sharp and silly. it presents one way and participates another. it flexes and is flexible. there is study and there is the mystical. slices and crumbs.” It does sound like all of those things, and it’s as abstract as Ferreira’s description of it is. the First Fist to Make Contact When We Dap feels like one of R.A.P. Ferreira’s biggest head-trips yet, with both the production and the lyricism weaving in and out of various heightened mental states. This is rap music to lose yourself in, rap music that takes you to a different world, and even throughout all the haze, Ferreira and his guests (Hprizm, sha ray, Self Jupiter, ELDON) drop cutting one-liners that snap you right out of it.


Bruiser Wolf – My Story Got Stories
Fake Shore Drive / Bruiser Brigade

Bruiser Wolf put out his debut LP Dope Game Stupid in 2021 as part of the onslaught of new projects from Danny Brown’s label Bruiser Brigade that came out that year, and now–fresh off appearing on Danny’s Quaranta (not to mention Blockheads’s great The Aux)–he releases a followup. Wolf’s eccentric delivery has gained comparisons to rappers like E-40 and Suga Free, and it’s definitely cut from that cloth but Wolf brings so much personality and individuality that he stands out from those rappers and just about everyone else. He has no trouble commanding and holding your attention for the entirety of this 14-song LP, and he’s got some well-picked guests helping out along the way too, including Chris Crack, Trinidad James, Stretch Money, and fellow Bruiser Brigader Fat Ray. The clear early highlight, though, is “2 Bad” with Danny Brown and Zelooperz (which also has a video out today). I’m pretty sure it’s the same sample as “1 Train,” so it probably goes without saying that it’s a treat to hear Danny rap a new verse over that 11 years later, but it also has an addictive hook of its own.


Nicholas Craven & Boldy James – Penalty of Leadership

Detroit rapper Boldy James releases more projects than most people can probably keep up with, but his 2022 album Fair Exchange No Robbery with Montreal producer Nicholas Craven stood out as one of his most addictive, so it’s great news that these two have teamed up once again. It’s cut from the same cloth as its predecessor, with Nicholas providing gorgeous, sample-based soundscapes and Boldy sounding effortlessly hard over every one. It’s a formula that’s far from broke.

Angry Blackmen Legend of ABM

Angry Blackmen – The Legend of ABM
Deathbomb ARc

Chicago experimental rap duo Angry Blackmen have just released their new album The Legend of ABM, on Deathbomb Arc. The entire album was produced by Formants, and if you’re into noisy, out-there rap music like Death Grips, Injury Reserve, or Shabazz Palaces, it’s very worth giving this album a listen too. Fatboi Sharif, Nordra, Skech185, and Abbie from Mars all appear on it.

For a better idea of what was inspiring the duo to make these dark, abstract rap songs, members Quentin Branch and Brian Warren made us a list of the music, movies, and books that influenced The Legend of ABM, including Danny Brown, Nine Inch Nails, Earl Sweatshirt, Public Enemy, clipping., Philip K. Dick, and more. Read what they had to say here.

Honorable Mentions
21 Savage – American Dream
Arrested Development – Bullets In The Chamber
Evilgiane – #HEAVENSGATE
Hus Kingpin & 9th Wonder – The Supergoat
Kid Cudi – INSANO
Masta Ace & Marco Polo – Richmond Hill
The Musalini & 9th Wonder – Uptown Bandits 2
They Hate Change – Wish You Were Here… EP
Xaviersobased – Keep It Goin Xav

Browse our Best Rap Albums archive for more.

Top photo of Benny the Butcher at Terminal 5 by Stephen Han. More here.