DAR Roundtable: Leaders Of The New School(Best Rappers Today)

The new era of hip hop is here. The artists of the new school arrived around 2009 to the mainstream and today we wanted to give our list of the top 3 artists of the new school. A true look at the best artists of this era and generation so to speak. Let's go!

I'm not putting Drake, Kendrick or Cole on this list because they are established names. I am indeed a fan and supporter of all 3 of them, but I think many people would have them on their respective lists. For that reason, I don't feel the need to add them. They are the best of the new school, but there are a few cats I find myself bumping the most.

1. A$AP Rocky

-For the record, I was following Rocky since he first came out back in like 2011. I saw the potential in him off that Deep Purple mixtape he had. Purple Swag and Been Around the World were fire joints. He always had the trippy, syrupy bass driven tinge to his music, which I'm drawn too. He dropped the Live Love A$AP joint, which was fire. Personally, I think both his albums are great. His style is versatile as he can give u pure boom bap hip hop like "Home" and "1 Train". He can also give u eclectic shit like "LSD" with a psychedelic trap feel. Lyrically, he is really slept on, as he can compete with the heavy hitters and he can still make ear friendly tracks. He keeps getting better with every project for real.

2. Travis Scott

-I can't lie. I really dig this dude's style. He is a protégé of Kanye, one of my all time favorite artists. You can definitely hear Kanye's influence and vice versa. His debut album is tremendous. His sound is so dark and industrial. Its like dark Castlevania theme music. Antidote and Mamacita are beautiful songs. He's the not the most skilled rapper, but he has a unique style and he has been improving. You can hear it if you heard his early work. A lot of other rappers want to collaborate with him all of a sudden, which boosts his status. He is still very young and I see lots of promise and potential.

3. Future 

-You know I gotta put Hendrix on here. The Wizard, Super Future whatever the hell you want to call him. He is having an impressive run in 2015 and he's not stopping. With the 3 mixtapes(Monster, Beast Mode and 56 Nights), DS2 and 3 more projects on the way, Future still hasn't tapped in his full potential yet.

My choices are simple and so are the reasons why.

1. Big K.R.I.T.

-KRIT is probably one of the best artists out today period and he easily leads the new school. An influence for me.

2. Kendrick Lamar

-A no brainer for me as Kendrick has remained consistent since he arrived on the scene a few years ago.

3. Rapsody

-I pondered on putting a Cole or Drake here, but I had to go with Rapsody for shining without sexualizing herself as a female MC. She's super dope.


1. Vince Staples

-The man has IT when it comes to the rap game. What I'm really a fan of is his gritty yet simple storytelling. Many people were hip to him before his superior album, Summertime 06. I started to notice him after his GREAT verse on Kingdom with Common from the legendary MC's album "Nobody's Smiling". Summertime '06 showed that Vince Staples will be a cornerstone for the future of great Hip-Hop.

2. J. Cole

-From The Warm Up to 2014 FHD, Cole has been quite consistent with his position in the rap game. A Carolina boy with a New York style and state of mind. Once seen as Hov's protege, J Cole was viewed as the chosen one for the new school of rappers. Friday Night Lights would show trust in that theory. With compelling storytelling, soulful production, and a show stealing verse off the posse cut Looking For Trouble, Cole was on his way to becoming one of the best of the new school. He hit a slight roadblock with his debut album, but quickly bounced back with the dark and more focused Born Sinner album. Let Nas Down is a track that had something I never heard before. Nas' remix to that track was seen as a passing of the torch to me. With that, Cole definitely belongs in the category for The Leaders of the New School.

3. Big K.R.I.T.

KRIT is a southern MC that is looked at as the lyrical balance of the heavily influenced trap southern sound. People will say KRIT is underrated, but I'd disagree. He's right where he needs to be. Making noise in the underground and southern scene while also maintaining a decent amount of mainstream success. That will definitely keep him humble and hungry to prove that he's a Leader of The New School.

My list proves to be a bit tough to decide as I felt like I had to put a Cole or Drake on this list since no one else had Drake on their list. He is a definite honorable mention and a force to be reckoned with, as he js seen as the no. 1 rapper in terms of popularity and hits/sales. Musically? I'm not as impressed as others. Cole, despite a great run sales wise so far, has been hit or miss with his first 3 albums. Rae Sremmurd had some hits, Young Thug brings controversy, there's Mick Jenkins, Big Sean, and so many others. Future and Drake would also be on my list if we did a top 5 likely because of consistency. Here is my list.

1. Big KRIT

-KRIT is my favorite artist from the new school period. He has relatable music, aggressive content at times, soulful rhythms, honest lyrics and his whole style is infectious. He has remained consistent with every project as well. Got to show KRIT love for his consistency. He tops my list.

2. Kendrick Lamar

-Honestly, I wasn't too sold on Kendrick at first. I hated his voice and wasn't really expecting to like his music until I heard Section 80 and got intrigued. I missed out on Overly Dedicated, but Section 80, GKMC and TPAB are all great albums.

3. A$AP Rocky

-I was never a fan of Rocky heavily before but I always enjoyed his songs. It was his A.L.L.A. album that instantly made me a fan and I've since gone back and enjoyed most of his previous work. His next project could be a true classic.

What about you guys? Who are your favorite new school rappers? Tell us in the comments below.



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