7 Chicago Artists to Lookout For in 2018
Every year has the potential to be an exciting one on the Chicago hip hop scene and 2018 is looking like another electrifying one. There are a few artists in particular who I’ll be paying close attention to next year and while this list isn’t the end-all-be-all, it does feature 7 artists who I think deserve some extra love thanks to how their 2018s are shaping up. There’s a few names on here anyone well versed on the Chicago scene should recognize but there are some newcomers too who I think will make their presence felt in the coming months. Check out all 7 artists below and let me know what you think!
If you’re looking for unique music that is still consistently dope, Phoelix is the artist for you. He always pushes the boundaries of hip hop and nearly every track he drops sounds like nothing you’ve ever heard before. Interesting beats and flows are hallmarks for Phoelix’s sound and his focus on musical expansion is refreshing and has kept me interested in his music for years. It’s looking like 2018 could be a big year for Phoelix as he looks to follow up his project GSPL which was met with critical acclaim in 2017.
Sundé is an artist who I can tell is about to bow up on the Chicago scene not only because of her interesting, refreshing sound but also because she’s been linking up with people like Squeak Pivot who nearly serves as a litmus test for talent in the Windy City. Songs like Good Water and Crash Nebula are great examples of her skill and vibrant music and why I think you’ll be hearing more about Sundé in 2018.
One of my favorite up and coming artists in the city is Young Jasper. His consistency is second to none and it’s rare he drops a song that isn’t up to par. It’s clear his ear for production is also on point because every beat he hops on is straight fire and he never disappoints with his verses either. Jasper puts out great music for a little blunt session with songs like Heart Break, My Name Is Uno, and Daylight Snow in particular standing out.
Kiraly is one of those artists whose talent is apparent within seconds of hearing him rap. Armed with incredibly smooth flows and well timed melodies, Kiraly’s skill set is second to none among upcoming artists in the city and songs like Get Left and Fake show he’s been putting it to good use. B.O.M.B. is another impressive cut from him and I wouldn’t be surprised if he dropped some serious hits next year.
I’ve been listening to Tobi Lou for a few months now and even featured him on the 50 Best New Chicago Artists list, but I still don’t think he gets the love he deserves. His music is unbelievably catchy and I haven’t heard a song from him yet that misses the mark. His melodies are always on point and songs like Your Kind Of Love and Game Ova prove he can both write and help produce hits.
After dropping Aside Of Love it became clear Luke Titus was a musical force set to make a name for himself in Chicago. His unique vocals combined with thoughtful compositions help him stand out among the crowded scene and he’s also caught the ear of some of my favorite artists such as Ravyn Lenae and theMIND. I wouldn’t be surprised to see more and more of him in 2018 as the city begins to wake up to his talent.
Formerly known as Tripp Heavy, Amir Tripp seems focused and ready to have a big year. He recently dropped Slide On Ya, a track with Saba and Trapo, showing that he’s been making some serious moves behind the scenes over the past few months and it looks like they’re starting to become apparent. Every song he’s dropped over the course of the past year has been dope and I’m excited to see more from him in 2018.
Thanks for checking out the list! I hope you keep these artists in mind going into 2018 & beyond.