15. Kodak Black, 'Lil B.I.G. Pac'
Early on in his career, South Florida rapper Kodak Black was compared to the bluesy expressiveness of Lil Boosie, but on breakthrough mixtape Lil B.I.G. Pac, his verses took on casually slick flourishes, evidence that he was a writer's writer, pursuing his own original, artful vision. Sonically, Lil B.I.G. Pac explored a diverse range of sounds, from the cabana-funk of "Today," to the heartfelt ballad "Too Many Years" with PNB Rock, to the coiled, menacing energy of "Vibin in this Bih" with a newly-freed Gucci Mane. A promise of a serious musical future were his own future not in jeopardy: Kodak's currently been accused of rape and will soon face a protracted legal battle. D.D.