Future Stars: Juice WRLD (Interscope)

Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

19-year-old Chicago rapper Jarad Higgins, aka Juice WRLD, is the latest star of the emo rap scene. Known for their downtempo sound, influenced by emo rock of the 2000s, and lyrics about depression and addiction, I’ve featured several of them here, including Lil Uzi Vert, XXXTentacion and the late Lil Peep. Juice WRLD caught my attention when I noticed he had two simultaneous Spotify hits – debut single Lucid Dreams and the follow-up, All Girls are the Same. The videos for both tracks were directed by Cole Bennett, who has become the go-to for Soundcloud rappers. Cole has worked with Lil Skies, Lil Xan, Lil Pump, and even some people without Lil in their name, with several of his videos topping 100 million views. He uploads them all to his own YouTube channel, which has become a discovery platform for rising artists – you could call it the Rap Caviar of YouTube. Juice WRLD has quickly become one of the biggest names of the emo rap scene in the three months since his Interscope deal was announced, and he definitely has one of the more commercial sounds. His background as a musician, learning piano, drums and guitar in his school days, shows in his melodic, radio-friendly tunes, which could make him a leader in this rising genre of rap.

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