Age: 27
Last Year's Rank: 4

Tyler, the Creator occupies an oddly sequestered lane. His music—buoyed by bright and optimistic chords—bristles with pop sensibilities, but it's never seen as pop music. And while most don't see him as the same caliber of lyricist as former stablemate Earl Sweatshirt, Tyler has managed to sharpen his pen and his flow with each project. His subject matter has matured, as well. He may have made a name for himself as a reincarnate of a young Slim Shady mixed with a little Big L, but on his most recent full-length project and loosies, he's a young man who still loves a lewd joke but is now more comfortable processing and explaining the multiplicity of his life. But, above all else, dude can spit. There are very few who can meld lines together about designer threads, BMX bike tricks, fantasies, and, of course, Golf Wang. But that's why there are very few in his lane. —Damien Scott