Rap Song of the Week handpicks all the new hip-hop tracks you need to hear every Friday. Check out the full playlist here. Today, A$AP Rocky’s Swedish House Mafia collab “Frankenstein” has finally been officially released.
At this point, it’s possible even A$AP Rocky doesn’t know if he’ll ever drop a follow-up to 2018’s Testing. Between older material like “Lost and Found Freestyle 2019” with Tyler, the Creator and features on songs by $not, Nigo, and Fivio Foreign, however, he’s kept fans fed this year. This week brings another new release with his long-awaited Swedish House Mafia collaboration “Frankenstein,” which appears on the dance supergroup’s new album Paradise Again.
As A$AP Mob diehards might remember, “Frankenstein” has actually been floating around since the late Virgil Abloh played it during his DJ set at Melt Festival 2019. At the time, Rocky was still in Swedish prison (coincidence?) on assault charges, and the fashion trailblazer dedicated the track to the Harlem rapper’s safe return home.
The Gothic production of “Frankenstein” gives Rocky the opportunity to channel the evil doctor. After shouting out his good friend Tyler (“Igor by my side/ That’s right, I made you slime/ Tyler, create you guys”), Rocky disdainfully talks down to rappers who don’t measure up. “That’s death to everybody,” he raps. “In my class, no Columbine.” Perhaps he could have left the school shooting reference out of the second line., though.
Continuing the theme, the beat fades out during an interlude in which Rocky uses one of his distorted voices to call out the “ungrateful” rappers who don’t respect his contributions to hip-hop. “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you,” he snarls, before speeding up his flow to adapt to the beat. The second verse is actually less ferocious than the first, though Pretty Flacko manages to drop in a Bobby Boucher reference for good measure.
Though Rocky isn’t scheduled to play Coachella this year, there’s a good chance he could appear on stage during Swedish House Mafia’s co-headlining set with The Weeknd — just like he did during Tame Impala’s set in 2019.