Kyle Mantha is a writer from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. You can find him on Twitter (@popejeans) making fun of your favourite rapper.
How 'lllmatic' Went From a Commercial Flop to a Genre-Defining Classic
The year is 1994. The location Queensbridge, New York City. 20-year-old Nasir Jones is fresh off the release of his debut album Illmatic, which, surprisingly, clocked in at a mere 59,000 copies on the first week. While 59k may seem like a solid first week, in 1994, when you still had to buy albums, it was almost nothing.
Future's "Temptation" is a Perfect Song
Future released a new album a couple weeks ago. It’s a really good album. So good, in fact, that I can’t stop listening to it. I listen to it in the morning, and at night. I listen to it when I’m sad (which is often), I listen to it when I’m happy (which is less often), and I listen to it when I’m feeling absolutely nothing at all.
Eminem, Kid Cudi, and the Art of the Comeback
Every rapper eventually falls off. It’s unfortunate, but it’s true. Even rappers who reach the pantheon of fame and fortune eventually lose their touch. It’s happened to countless MCs, and it’ll continue to happen far into the future. Twenty years from now kids are gonna be calling Smokepurrp old and making fun of him for dropping his 25th album at the ripe old age of 35. That’s just the game.
Long Live Mac Miller, King of the Weirdos
I first heard of Mac Miller in 2010. I was 12 years old and had just started to care about what kind of clothes I wore. I was going into the 8th grade and I knew exactly what I wanted to get for the new school year: snapbacks, crewneck sweaters, and Nikes. I had stumbled across Mac’s “Nikes On My Feet” video that summer, and became enthralled with the youthful rapper’s confident mic skills and unique fashion sense. I related to him. He was a young suburban white kid who loved hip hop more than anything, just like me. He loved skating around with his friends and getting high, just like me. He was hopeful and full of life, just like me. And as the years went on, I still always felt that Mac was just like me.
How Chief Keef Influenced an Entire Generation of Rappers
Chief Keef’s influence should not be understated. Unfortunately, it almost always is. The near-veteran Chicago rapper paved the way for more rappers than you can count on two hands, yet he still isn’t considered anything more than a goofy mixtape rapper who’s fallen past his prime. Sure, there are many writers, fans, and critics who give Keef his fair shake, he still isn’t given his due credit by the public at large. The influence of Chief Keef is far-reaching and has affected an entire lane of rappers who enjoy massive cultural success today. Artists like Lil Pump, Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert, and many more are essentially building their fortune on the back of a sound that Chief Keef created back in 2012. From the disconnected, staccato, flows and production style of Lil Pump and Smokepurrp, to the spacey and melodic auto-tune singing that Carti and Uzi practice, Keef’s influence spans across stylistic borders.