Underground Artists of the Month: November 2020
Over the last six months, my contributions to Burbs have shifted from general music writing to a more specified focus on underground artists and discovery. Throughout this time, I have spent way too much time discovering way too many artists not to share them. Our weekly interviews have been rolling, and with the kickoff of our Season One of interviews, we wanted to create a new way for us to put you on to new music. Each month, we will be publishing a five-person feature to help you find your next favorite artist. We plan to vary the subgenres and geographic locations of the featured artists. Enjoy!
From: Raleigh, North Carolina
Abel Maasho—no, not that Abel—comes from North Carolina, the same state as notable MCs such as J. Cole and DaBaby. Unlike Cole and Baby, Maasho is a promising young voice out of their state. His sound fits under the alternative/pop-rap subgenre. He brings a refreshing bounce to this sound, giving me slight impressions of Amine. Portland's own is one of Abel's bigger inspirations, and he even dropped his own remix of his recent track "Woodlawn."
BBY Kodie (@bbykodie)
From: Houston, Texas
I am not exactly the first person to discover the 20-year-old Houston trap sensation known as BBY Kodie. Kodie, also known as Kodie Kardashian, is a metaphorical bucket when it comes to making consistent trap slappers. Take for example his most popular song to date, "Milkshake," which brings his own speaker-bursting twist to the Pharell-produced Kelis classic of the same name. He associates with the DON'T DIE group of Houston, which features artists like HVN, bigredshooter, YGR, No Friends, and Broadday. Half the music I've been listening to for the month has been that of the cleverly luxurious Kodie. I highly recommend checking out Kodie and those he's been working with. With his 2019 album Vogue, series of tapes with producer No Friends, and phenomenal beat selection, he's been shown mad love from the likes of Lil Yachty and even gotten a feature verse from the infamous Lil B. Check out the video for one of my favorite tracks of Kodie's, "Korleone," below.
From: Portland, Oregon
Coming off of his August EP, Life of a Bloccstar, 3WayHeff has continued to make waves in the Portland rap scene over the last few years, with songs dating back to 2016. The 3Way Entertainment artist can really rap his ass off. Now with these comparisons I’m about to make, you might just write this guy off due to some sort of old-headed beliefs you have. Heff brings a sound that combines quick and catchy flows like Rich The Kid with a harder and darker lyrical content, beat selection, and delivery, a la Tay-K. It’s always #FreeTay-K, but it’s also #FreeHeff, as Portland’s Mr. Yellow Man, Amine, once famously said, “Free my brother Heff, fuck the police.” 3WayHeff is set to be released in 2021.
From: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Reprid hails from a city bursting out the seams with talent. Releasing his first project Who Cares in 2018, he's approached his releases in an unorthodox fashion. He released his second EP Memento Mori as a tribute to the late Mac Miller, followed by his latest project BLOOM, which was released in a season format. Eric's music features interesting and sometimes moody production, clever and catchy writing, and awesome vocals. His latest release, "Cold World," has barely been out for a month and already has 2+ million plays on Soundcloud. You better hop on this wave quickly.
Jay Loud (@jayloud317)
From: Indianapolis to Seattle
Garnering a following through his EMPIRE-released 2019 project Nap Town, Jay looks to keep his momentum going with his upcoming project Playlist, and finding his singles for that project on Instagram has been an absolute blessing. "Narcos II," "Don't Call," and "I Admit" have more than sparked my interest. He has a sound reminiscent of Roddy Rich, another West Coast artist who has his melodies and beats on point. The videos are A1, too.
Bonus: Pyrex Whippa (@pyrexwhippa)
From: Baltimore, MD
Disclaimer: Baltimore's Pyrex is not an underground figure in the music industry. He's a member of Southside's 808 Mafia and has produced a number of songs for your favorites, like Dreamville, Young Thug, DaBaby, Lil Keed, 21 Savage, and Migos.
I felt it would be necessary to include him as a bonus for this month; over this past year, he has transitioned into a rapper-producer. His first project just came out this month and ultimately deserves a shoutout. Blood On The Hills is an excellent project with appearances from G Herbo and Sheck Wes.
Hope you found something new to put in your rotation! If you've been rocking with an underground artist and feel that they'd be perfect for this, shoot their stuff over to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a good November and stay tuned to the interview team as they put out the rest of their first season of Burbs Interviews.