this post is designed to enlighten the audience on artists that are being slept on. maybe you’ll check out their music, maybe you won’t; music, like art, is subjective
1. HOODRICH PABLO JUAN
Hoodrich Pablo has been making noise in Atlanta for the past 2-3 years, and it’s only a matter of time before he gathers the recognition that his discography deserves.
He first broke onto the scene in 2014, after his verse on the Peewee Longway hit, ‘African Diamonds’. His verse caught my attention definitely; the way he jumped onto the track with so much aggression and vigour, coupled with the fact that I had never heard of him before this, instantly made the verse stick in my head. It was from here I decided to give his music a listen, and I was impressed. His recent mixtape, titled South Dark, has been some of his best work; a mixtape littered with hard-hitting beats, melodic metaphors and fast flows.
It has been great to see Pablo come more into the limelight in the past year. He performed at the annual YAMS Day concert earlier this year, which helped him gain an exposure to a different sort of crowd. This A$AP cosign definitely benefited his career, and birthed fruits such as the banger ‘Servin and Swervin’, feat. Playboi Carti. He also released a pitch for the XXL freshman 2017 list which he unfortunately did not make, but this is a testament to the exposure he has received in the last year. However I still think Pablo deserves a greater audience, as he honestly possesses one of the best flows within the Atlanta trap music scene.
Check out Hoodrich Pablo’s latest mixtape, South Dark, using this link: https://soundcloud.com/hoodrichpablojuan/sets/south-dark
Here lies possibly my personal favourite artist on this list. Hailing from Atlanta, Nessly came up with artists such as Lil Yachty and producer The Good Perry. However, don’t confuse Nessly’s sound with Yachty’s. Nessly has his own unique sound that I haven’t heard before.
I first came across Nessly when I heard his song ‘Season’, and I found myself bopping my head rhythmically to the whole tune. His use of autotune is a common feature within the rap game currently, but his manipulation and usage of the tool is incomparable to most artists. His subtle usage of it ensures that the focus of the song isn’t taken away from his witty bars.
His bars can have a comedic side to them occasionally; ‘this h*e want a Birken, won’t buy her a burger’, made me chuckle.
His first mixtape, Still Finessin, turned heads in the underground rap scene, as his songs gathered thousands of views on Soundcloud. The tracks Season, The Sky and Giddy Up were my favourite tracks on that tape, and made me realise that this was a guy with talent. But his latest mixtape, Solo Boy Band, really consolidated my faith in him. This mixtape showed a different, more matured and more lyrical Nessly, and I was greatly impressed. The track, Lsdskitrip however, was one of the best songs I heard last year. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.
Nessly, like Hoodrich Pablo, also gave a pitch for the 2017 XXL Freshman list, and was unlucky to miss out. But, for future reference, please stop sleeping on Nessly.
Nessly has also dabbled into the UK scene, releasing a song with AJ Tracey, titled Popstar, which is pure fire.
Check out Popstar using this link: https://soundcloud.com/nessly/popstar-feat-aj-tracey
3. PEEWEE LONGWAY
The most underrated trap artist in Atlanta, if not the game. The man who silenced the undercover fed DJ Vlad. Longway could and should have been one of the most prominent members of the growing trap scene within America.
His discography boasts the great Blue M&M 1 and 2, and the much delayed Blue M&M 3, which came out in August. What separates Longway from traditional trap artists, is where the current state of rap allows for someone to chat rubbish over a hard beat and for it to be considered a banger, Longway actually has some of the hardest bars and flows of any rapper I’ve heard in the past 5 years.
(btw I’m not judging lol, I’m guilty of loving a song purely because of the beat)
Longway can switch it up too; his song Juug 4 Me is as romantic of a love song as I have ever heard. I think what makes Longway stick out to me is his versatility and ability to spit fire over any sort of beat.
When he first came on the scene in 2013, he took the trap game by storm. His collabs with his childhood friend, Young Thug, spun me. Their chemistry on songs such as Loaded and Jack Tripper was some of the best rap I had heard for a while. Longway, Thug and Offset also have produced some legendary tracks too.
The only thing that held back Longway was ironically, Longway himself. His inconsistent releases for music in the past couple years have seen him go a bit down in the pecking order of trap music in Atlanta. However, in my opinion, he remains a top tier artist in trap, and after listening to Blue M&M 3, it’s good to hear that Longway hasn’t lost any of his rapping prowess.
He has a unreleased song with Jay Z btw, so you know he’s not a small boy in this rap game.
Check out Blue M&M using this link: https://soundcloud.com/hotnewmusic1/sets/peewee-longway-the-blue-mm-3
Ethereal consistently provides some of the eeriest but hardest beats in the game, period. He is the only person on the list who raps and produces their own beats, whilst also providing beats for others, which is a testament to his talent. Ethereal was the man behind the beats for your favourite Playboi Carti songs, for example, Lost, Yungxanhoe and Beef, featuring Ethereal himself.
I think what sets apart Ethereal from the rest of the artists in this list, besides obviously his production talents, is his work rate. Not saying that the others on this list do not put in their all into the rap game, but when you consider that Ethereal has 7 albums under his belt, and constantly switches from rapping to songwriting and then to producing, then you can understand what I mean.
He is part of Awful Records, a raq clique that originated in Atlanta and includes artists such as Father and Abra. Awful produces music that ranges from ‘psychedelic trap to synthy romantic R&B’, and Ethereal is central to this. His rapping skills are greatly underappreciated in my opinion simply because of how good his beats are, but his bars should not be slept on. Songs like I Can’t Feel and Just Sayin stuck out for me because they showed how he can really flow and ride on a beat effortlessly, without it sounding forced at all. There are many rappers who can produce, but not a lot of producers that can rap, and Ethereal is one of the few who is able to do both at an extremely high level.
His collabs with the Awful Records artist, Alexandria, are really what drew me towards Ethereal. Alexandria is probably my favourite R&B artist in the world lol, so any artist she consistently collabs with must be good. But her and Ethereal’s chemistry on a track is unmatched. I wouldn’t want to stretch it and say they’re the new Ashanti and Ja Rule, but the way they feed off each other on songs is crazy. Songs such as Switch and Games2 show how well these two go together, and remain some of my favourite Ethereal tracks.
Ethereal deserves more praise and recognition, because he is honestly a unique and unmatched talent within Atlanta.
Listen to some tracks off of Ethereal’s latest album, Mankind, using this link: https://soundcloud.com/ethereal/sets/mankind
P.S check out my soundcloud too, got a lotta artists on there: https://soundcloud.com/dimeji_96
thanks for reading.