First up is Vince Staples. While he made his name by popping up on Odd Future releases, Vince is his own man and when it comes to his own work is as far removed from the skater hip-hop that that crew is known for. Vince is a lot more introspective in his rhymes and his worldview is pretty bleak; these are hood tales of the non-celebratory variety. He continues that trend on his new mixtape Shyne Coldchain Vol. 2 What makes Vince a worthy listen is just how gifted he is and how effortlessly he makes it sound, he’s spitting harder then his voice would at first lead you to believe. Hell, even though the track “Hive” was Earl Sweatshirts big comeback single, notice how Vince steals the last verse and makes it his own.
Another rapper known for his street tales is New Orleans own Kevin Gates. Check out his new video below with what looks like to be a blond valley girl helping him cook up crack.
Yeah, that video was pretty awful. But Mr. Gates has something that make him better then the average trap rapper (and he’s not). There’s an urgency in his voice and lyrics, a desperation that calls to mind Young Jeezy; he may be dealing drugs but it’s out of desperation thus there are no G5 Jet references that you would hear in lets say a Pusha T lyric. His latest mixtape is By Any Means, which is a bit less street then his breakout mixtape Stranger Than Fiction, but still a solid piece of street rap work.
Finally we’ve got De La Soul and their new mixtape Smell The D.A.I.S.Y. They’ve been advertising this mixtape since they leaked their entire discography a couple of months back; it’s a collection of them rapping over J Dilla beats, which is pretty awesome since their work was a big influence on his production style. Redman guests on the mixtape, similar to his turn on this awesome De La Soul song from years back.