Sounds Like: Classicist Southern hip-hop with a subtly lyrical bent and a bit of a cool-kid edge
For Fans of: Goodie Mob, Curren$y, Madeintyo
Why You Should Pay Attention: In an era dominated by melody and a scant few narrative styles, Richmond, Virginia's $ilkmoney and his crew Divine Council are exploring new avenues of capital-L lyricism. The rapper — who counts Curren$y as his biggest influence — makes rap stylization seem full of surprise and possibility. With Chicago producer Icytwat and his rhyming compatriots Lord Linco and and Cyrax!, $ilk and his crew have created a new and refreshing lane — one which also caught the attention of Andre 3000 and Erykah Badu, both of whom heard of the rappers from their son Seven. $ilkmoney himself has a baritone delivery with the heft of Fat Trel and brings elaborate rhyme schemes to chiming, atmospheric production.
He Says: For $ilkmoney, who spoke from his grandmother's home in Virginia, the most stunning part of the group's rise has been the respect afforded by some of hip-hop and R&B's most respected stars. "I remember when we first met Andre," he says of the legendary Outkast frontman. "That shit blew the fuck out my mind. I didn't know who the fuck this nigga was. I was like, 'This nigga look just like Andre 3000.' And it deadass was Andre 3000. He was like, 'What's up, I'm big fans of y'all.' I was like, 'We big fans of you!' He sat next to us eating tomato soup and shit. That nigga flew from Texas to New York just to see us perform. He was saying how we remind him of Outkast because he ain't never heard anything like us. And I was blown away. I just got on a plane for the first time in my life ever to come to New York. And I'm having the time of my life and this shit is happening."
Hear for Yourself: "Dick in Da Dope" counters its silly title with $ilk's highly technical delivery. David Drake