Pioneered by the late Lil Peep, XXXTentaction, and Juice WRLD, emo rap has always connected with the youth for its grittiness and authenticity. These acts paved the way for smaller artists to go mainstream, such as Convolk, 93FEETOFSMOKE, Savage Ga$P, Lil Dusty G, and many, many more. In the past, we’ve covered some of our favorite emo rap songs and artists to watch. As we close out 2020, we put together a list of the 5 emo rap artists you need to watch for in 2021.
Shrimp has been on our radar for a few years now. His 2018 single, laying in the dirty, caught our eyes after a release on the デーモンAstari YouTube channel. Shrimp’s low, slurred vocals compliment the sad, reflective lyrics, as Shrimp sings “sold my soul but I still feel worthless.” Since then, Shrimp has stayed away from the public light, but over the past few months, has emerged once again. Seen in a number of Instagram stories helping Convolk create his next project, Shrimp has clearly been working hard behind the scenes. In December 2020, Shrimp returned with a music video to his 2019 single, This Body Means Nothing To Me. After hosting the music video on デーモンAstari once again, Shrimp began to see significant traction from blogs and playlist curators, landing the single on Spotify’s idk. playlist.
While a fairly new artist on the scene, Sean Pitaro has already been making a huge impact. In 2019, he released his debut single, Sleepy, which has since generated over 500,000 streams on Spotify alone and over 110,000 on YouTube. Over the past year, Sean has been working hard and honing his craft, releasing a number of impressive singles, including Long Gone, featuring Kaye, and Over You, which received a music video earlier this year. He’s also been spotted with major artists and influencers, including Cole Bennett. Sean’s music falls somewhere between pop, alternative, and hip hop, and is an artist we expect to get big in 2021.
BlackyTom is a producer, rapper, singer, and songwriter who originally gained attention as a producer for Atlanta artists like 6dogs and Tommy Ice. He’s also produced for artists such as Kevin Kazi, Lil Turbo, 909Memphis, Vision4k, Wintertime, and many other emo rap and pop rap acts. Recently, BlackyTom has begun to focus on his solo work, releasing a number of singles in 2020 including Daze, Rain, and Blacky Body.
Spell Jordan hit the spotlight in late 2017 and early 2018 with his viral collaboration with Lil Xan, Models. Since the release of the track, it has hit over 1.5 million streams on Spotify and over 2 million streams across platforms. Spell Jordan followed up the success of this single with a collaboration later in the year with Wavy Jone$, titled Fight! Over the past few years Jordan has also released 8 albums, The Two Of Us, Trap Art House, 22 18, Ketchup!, The Yellow Album, Headshot, 23, and Underworld, since 2016. Slowly building an organic fan base over four years, Spell Jordan is going to make 2021 his year.
For a genre that has only existed over the past 4-5 years, emo rap has always been popular with international audiences, from Eastern Europe to Latin America. Pioneering the Spanish emo rap sound is Costa Rican based recording artist Terricola. Since mid 2019 Terricola has been releasing infectious alternative hip hop, with his most recent single Matame helping expand his international and local following. As Terricola continues to hone his craft as he gears up for his first full length project, we have high hopes for where his career will take him in the next year.
Interested in more recommendations from our editorial team? Check out our Top 5 Emo Rap and Alternative Hip Hop Songs of 2020 or some of the other articles we’ve written about the emo rap genre.