The debates about SoundCloud rap have been boring for most of the past year. The discussions have begun to all sound the same: “Does SoundCloud have enough money to survive?,” “Is Lil Peep rap?,” “Should we take Lil Pump seriously?,” “Why is Kodie Shane not popping?" (OK, I might be the only asking that last one). Finally, though, the current class of rappers (Smokepurrp, XXXTentacion, Ski Mask the Slumpgod, etc.) are ready to graduate from the loose associations that make up SoundCloud Rap, and make their bids for mainstream success—some have already made that jump. Which leads us to the exciting part.
The next SoundCloud class is already here and, similar to their immediate predecessors, these rising (potential) stars have been building fan bases while they wait for the spotlight to pan in their direction. They’re talented, more polished, and less polarizing than the class that has been dominating Rap Twitter conversations for the past year, a result of the record labels digging deeper through the platform after the post-Yachty and -Uzi boom.
The scene still has its problems, but let’s hope that this new generation gets a chance to unlock their eccentricities and we don’t end up following the television and film blueprint of, “remember that thing people moderately liked? Let’s bring it back with a new face” (although I am admittedly in for Donnis 2.0).
With some artists in this generation already making waves such as Trippie Redd, Rico Nasty and Tay-K, we took a look at the buzzing rappers on the platform ready for their chance to become the next topic of conversation.