Future hardly soundcloud
Future – never gon lose (audio)
SoundCloud is where Lil Pump, Lil Xan, 6ix9ine, and a whole bunch of neck tats and rainbow hair got their start. The music streaming service has become associated with a very particular style in recent years, which Vulture affectionately defines as a “very colorful pile of teenagers from Florida who don’t care about Tupac,” which sounds alarmingly appropriate.
To be honest, SoundCloud saw the first of some very strong Top-40 hip hop last year, in addition to Gucci Gangs and STOOPIDs.
BlocBoy JB, Popular Dex, and A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie were all certified SoundCloud Rappers before moving on to mainstream success and collaborations with Drake, A$AP Rocky, and other artists.
Still, on the Billboard Charts, artists like Juice WRLD are doing a good job of retaining the ultra-trendy sadboy image closely linked to SoundCloud.
Although the SoundCloud Rap aesthetic has made its way into the mainstream (and, according to others, died there), a modern, undefined age of SoundCloud hip hop appears to be attempting to break free from the formula.
A kind of Gen Z rap that sounds even more Gen Z than Lil Pump’s post-ironic opulence. Most of it is pro-human rights, body-positive, and rawly real, and it celebrates inclusive gender identity. It’s nerdy-cool, which these days is apparently simply “cool,” as the kids understand it.
Future – hardly (audio)
SoundCloud’s goal has been to have a music platform that is free to use and has little or no ads. Since its inception in 2007, it has established a reputation as a safe haven for up-and-coming artists, such as Skrillex and the EDM crowd, to easily upload, share, and discuss their work. Now, the platform is running into its own philosophy’s market limits.
Today, the company is betting on a new paid streaming service that will be based on a subscription model. It plans to launch the service by the end of the year with both approved and promotional music. However, there is a lot of drama in SoundCloud’s tale, and success may be elusive.
SoundCloud’s value was built on its ability to serve as a digital business card for the job portfolios of mostly independent musicians. Fans, employers, the media, and followers could all be directed to a single place where they could easily distribute their music. SoundCloud has been a staple of the EDM community. It became a valuable promotional tool for top artists like Skrillex and Deadmau5, thanks to features like the ability to build playlists and analyze a song in detail. Later, extra hours of audio upload, metrics on how many plays a song was getting and from where, and an ad-free environment were used to justify paid subscriptions. SoundCloud Pulse, a new app, improved accessibility. All of which combined to create a sizable user base.
Future – mad luv (audio)
I couldn’t help but note how popular it had become among different subcultures to bemoan the ways that so-called “Soundcloud rap” was an insult to their closed worlds in late 2017 and early 2018. Old hip-hop heads and first wave goths were suddenly joined in their dissatisfaction with a new generation of kids who plagiarized visual and auditory stereotypes from both genres. Gen Z, on the other hand, was unconcerned and helped drive many of these artists to commercial success.
So, what exactly is “Soundcloud rap”? Is it a musical genre or a description of the networks by which these artists distributed their music? Is the word still important now that rappers who got their start on Soundcloud are the ones who get played on hip hop radio? Do we now live in a post-Soundcloud rap era? I’m not sure what the point of writing about Soundcloud rap in 2020 is.
I’ve assembled a list of 25 Soundcloud rappers who changed the game in honor of these trailblazing artists. This includes rappers whose sounds helped define the genre, as well as rappers who didn’t fit the mold but rose to fame on Soundcloud anyway — and rappers whose work I believe is propelling what was once known as Soundcloud rap into the future.
Matthias Mayer’s work explores the relationship between music, the visual arts, and culture. “Hardly in Sound” is an exhibition focused on works that interweave image, sound, and narrative from different social phenomena. Simultaneously, the use of analog technologies produces a symbiosis of past, present, and future by challenging and extending existing hearing.
When a large number of different forms of music, noises, and sounds are played and combined at the same time, a cacophonous sound is formed that is interpreted as sickly. Is this prejudice, however, purely the product of decades of listening habits? What part do narratives, pictures, and spatial circumstances play in this, as well as the recipient’s intellect and psyche? Is there a sound tyranny, a sound dogma? Who decides the personality of sounds?