As you may already know, Undiscovered Gems is our column dedicated to spotlighting low-key talent. We’ve had a pretty successful run so far, and today, we’re aiming to continue this hot streak. With artists of different scales featured, the main commonality between these ‘Undiscovered Gems’ is their raw talent and impending popularization. So without further ado, let’s introduce you to this week’s gems.
To get started, I want to introduce you to a buzzing talent from Austin, TX who is nearing his time to shine. He goes by the name of Yola Ktwo. I first heard of Yola by seeing him working with Roy Lenzo (an NYC producer who we had just recently covered in an earlier Undiscovered Gems). Any artist that Roy brings into No Idle (Take a Daytrip and UMPG’s studio in SoHo) has a high degree of musical ability. All of No Idle’s producers have a habit of keeping talented artists around. After taking a deeper look into Yola Ktwo, it’s safe to say that he is no exception. His top streaming track is a Woodpecker-produced track called “Mhhm”, and it’s not the only one he’s joined forces with Woodpecker on. Another one of my favorite tracks of his, “Shitt’d Again,” is also produced by Woodpecker and it solidifies the notion that these two are meant to be working together. He’s got two videos out right now, one for his track “Toxic” and another for his feature on 3Fortiori‘s song, “Not What You Want”. Yola Ktwo has the right sound, the right look, and the right energy- it’s obvious he’s just being himself. Take a deeper look at this future star below.
Our next act is from Houston, TX and goes by the name of Ashton Travis. There’s hardly any info out on Ashton online, but after watching his interview with 97.9 The Box on YouTube, it’s clear that he grew up making music with Travis Scott and that he’s currently signed to Def Jam. After all, if you remember Def Jam‘s Undisputed project, then you might already be familiar with his record “Death Row”. With so much buzz and so little accessible information, Ashton Travis is a recipe for success. It’s fair to say that his music alone would’ve enabled him for the same success. Although he’s only dropped that one track on the Undisputed project, it’s a very promising sign of a fruitful career. Check out his video for “Death Row” below and tune in!
Hailing from Palm Beach, FL is our next artist Liljitm3n. Right off the bat, his exclusive presence on SoundCloud struck me as a unique strategy. You rarely see that nowadays, since most artists are so bent on cashing out on streams through DSP’s such as Apple Music and Spotify. However, that doesn’t mean he’s behind the curve. Rather, he’s created his own wave and is clearly being as deliberate as possible in how he wants to be perceived. His most notable collab thus far is with fellow Palm Beach native Brickboydior, and the other 10 songs he’s dropped have all garnered a healthy amount of streams as well. His latest drop was three weeks ago, a song called “PAINT!!”, and it’s everything I love to hear from a Florida artist. Florida has a certain trademark energy from any of it’s artists who emerge. And if the music doesn’t have you convinced, maybe the videos of Liljitm3n spraying AK-47’s to his music or dropping a check with Johnny Dang will grab your attention. He’s got a knack for making noise and catching people’s attention, and his music backs it all up. Come take a listen below to one of my favorite up-and-comers from Florida, Liljitm3n.
UK Hip-Hop has been on the come up in recent years, and Michael Phantom is an up-and-comer on the front lines. I first came to know his music by hearing him on Octavian‘s hit record, “Bet”. It would be challenging for any artist to match Octavian and Skepta‘s recording ability, but Michael Phantom proved he could do it with ease. On that particular single, each artist came in with a different, yet complementary flow, and if I’m being honest, Michael Phantom‘s was my favorite. His musical strength alongside such notable acts demanded my attention. The southeast London act is a member of the UK powerhouse group ESSIE GANG, and their debut single “Pattern Chanel” is a fucking heater. Michael Phantom joined forces with Octavian, L3, J Rick, and SQ Diesel to unleash this banger, and I’m sure we’ll be hearing more from the explosive group soon. In light of focusing on Michael Phantom in particular for this piece, let’s take a look at the visuals for his only solo single thus far, “Madeline”. With a unique UK twist on a Houston style, the London native snapped. Check it out below.