If industry pioneer Soulja Boy set the tone for how his generation’s rap is distributed, KEY! is the artist who influenced its dominant sound and swagger, serving as an unofficial “A&R” for both Atlanta’s emerging talent and the SoundCloud generation, never resting on his laurels for a second.
In just four years, Lil Baby has attained all the signifiers of modern rap excellence — hyperproductivity, a heavy presence on the charts, and a growing list of successful neophytes — and it only took him about half as long as it did for his predecessors.
Durk’s latest album, The Voice, isn’t celebratory in tone. Much of it is a poignant look into the pain, loss, and tragedy that have surrounded his ascent. “I always found my lane was to be soulful, to speak to my past,” he tells Atoosa Moinzadeh.
“My music is talking about my perspective, but also trying to tap into everybody else's mind, being like, ‘Do you feel this way? Are you sad some days? Do you cry in the shower? I do too. Let's talk about it.’”
ScHoolBoy Q, DJ Mustard, Ty Dolla $ign and the man himself tell the story of YG's instant classic debut album.
Now 21, Loski has reclaimed the narrative of his street legend while deepening the mystery of the life behind it.
“The whole reason that I’m an R&B artist is because people listen to my shit and think ‘R&B’, so I’m like ‘alright, cool – I’ll take whatever category y’all say that I’m in, as long as I can excel whilst I’m doing it’”
There are very few rappers that can paint as vivid a picture of UK street life as Nathaniel Thompson. The Peckham-raised artist, better known as Giggs, began his career selling mixtapes out the boot of his car, gaining a firm reputation for his haunting delivery, dense, trap-influenced productions and strong South London alliances.