Watch The Throne: Hip Hop In 2016
All Hail The King: Kanye vs Drake
From high-profile fashion collections to receiving the key to Toronto during NBA All-Star weekend, these two are in a bloody battle for the hip hop crown, and the public’s attention. That they eached released massive new albums within months of each other and have competing sneaker deals only makes the rivalry more intense. On one side, Kanye, the volatile artist and creative genius and on the other, Drake, the people’s champ and prolific superstar. Both are at their creative and productive peaks so it’s anyone’s battle. Make no mistake, the swords are drawn.
Any one of these warriors could be the next king, all it takes is one verse and the right timing.
The Magician: Kendrick Lamar - The 7-time Grammy winner is quickly making his case as the most talented and creative force in hip hop. Welcome (back) to Compton.
The Fashion Killa: A$AP Rocky - Rocky’s hood-meets-couture style has made him a hot ticket in the creative and fashion industries. Mean vibes and tight rhymes give him cred.
The Silent Assassin: Pusha T - The rapper’s rapper, some boast that King Push is the most talented writer and rapper in the game, not to mention actually being the rumored ghostwriter behind some of the game’s biggest hits. One thing's for sure though, you can’t ignore him anymore.
Heir To The Throne: Jay Cole - This Jay Z. protege and Roc Nation superstar is finally living up to his lofty expectations. How big can he get?
The Trap Lord: Future- Welcome to the lean-fueled new sound of Atlanta trap. When you release a massive new mixtape with Drake, you know you’ve arrived.
The Bawse: Rick Ross - Still underground in many respects, Ricky Rozay just keeps on dropping fire, cashing checks, eating wings, and cheating death.
The Battleground: Atlanta
Welcome (back?) to the new center of the hip hop as we know it. Not since OutKast, Ludacris, and Jermaine Dupri brought the Dirty Sound sound to the mainstream in the late 90’s and early 2000’s has Atlanta been so prominent in hip hop. Atlanta’s new trap sound, dark, druggy, and otherworldly, is the most influential in hip hop right now. The rise of “New Atlanta” can be, in part, traced back to a most unlikely (or maybe not) place, the infamous strip club, Magic City. As the dollar bills rained down, the dj’s at this legendary spot became the most important tastemakers in hip hop. Get your track played by DJ Esco during the insane Magic City Mondays and your place as an up-and-coming hip hop star just got cemented. Just ask Young Thug, 2 Chainz, Makonnen, or Future, just a few of the now-massive stars who got their break after landing on Esco’s radar. This is the new sound of the streets.
Weapon of Choice: Twitter
Today’s warriors aren’t using swords, or even rhymes in battle, these days a sharply honed Twitter game is deadly. From late night rants to starting (or settling) beefs to dropping albums to brushing off the haters and interacting with fans, Twitter is ground zero for everything these days. Be careful though, if you don’t act right and Amber Rose might show up and own your entire world.
@kanyewest 's Best Tweets
There’s no more ridiculous or entertaining twitter follow than his majesty Kanye West.
“Sometimes I get emotional over fonts”
“You may be talented, but you're not Kanye West”
“I specifically ordered persian rugs with cherub imagery!! What do I have to do to get a simple persian rug with cherub imagery uuuuugh”
“I just threw some kazoo on this bitch”
“Fur pillows are actually hard to sleep on”
The Young Princes
Young, dangerous, and full of swagger, the next generation of legends has already arrived. With talent like this, it’s no wonder the superstars are looking over their shoulder.
Travis Scott - As recent opener on pop superstar The Weeknd’s world tour, Scott’s time is now. That the slow-drip vibe of “The Antidote” was a massive hit didn’t hurt either.
Young Thug - Mix one part of the new Atlanta sound, one part drugs, one part complete disregard for the English language, and lots of mixtapes and you’ve got Young Thug’s ascendancy.
Chance The Rapper - He’d already been making a name for himself but when Kanye came calling for his new album, the world took notice. His guests on “Life of Pablo” and new mixtape "The Coloring Book" are going to make him a household name.
Vince Staples - Young gun of the alternative rap scene, his 2015 release “Summertime ‘06” anded on many critic's “Best Of” lists.
These are the essential tracks that define today’s hip hop universe.
Kendrick Lamar - Alright
Young Thug - Hercules
Kanye West - Famous
Pusha T - Untouchable
Future - Fuck Up Some Commas
Chance The Rapper - All My Friends
A.$.A.P. Rocky - Electric Body
J. Cole - Tale of Two Cities
ILoveMakonnen - Sellin
Travis Scott ft. The Weeknd - Wonderful
Migos - Look at my Dab
Drake - Summer Sixteen
Yo Gotti - Down In The DM
2 Chainz - Watch Out