88rising has yet to notice us, but believe us when we say Malaysian hip hop is prospering and we are here for it! No matter if they’ve been in the underground hip hop scene for a while or newcomers bursting to spit on the mic, the talent has always been there and you definitely need to give them a look.
To make it easier for you guys, here are 10 up-and-coming hip hop acts that we personally feel you need to check out.
Upcoming duo Touché is formed by Aye Darko & Miinke. They are stepping in the scene with boss bars, gangsta beats, and attitude. Hailing from Melawati and Wangsa Maju, the boys rep their hood in every track. Their latest song ‘Yikes!’ from their forthcoming LP is the perfect introduction of what they are all about. With dope professional visuals, production, and style, these boys are far from just being “SoundCloud” rappers.
Speaking of SoundCloud rappers, check out the newest Klang-raised sadboi on the block — Attune. His singing-rap style is just so easy on the ears that you’ll have him on repeat. With mostly mellow yet catchy type of beats, his vocals and sadboi lyrics graze over them perfectly. FYI, he lowkey looks like Matt Healy from The 1975.
Now, if you’re looking for some top-tier lyricism from the new generation of rappers, hit up Tulangkata, the poet-turned-rapper is making waves with his latest track ‘EKA’. His comedic word play and metaphors will leave you amazed and also confused if you’re not that good in Bahasa. So brush up your BM, check out his music, and count how many words you don’t understand. Maybe you might learn a thing or two.
4. Pele Latif
Pele serves old school beats with modern flows, so if you’re a lover of ’90s hip hop, then this one is for you. His content is mainly about living the KL life, so y’all know most of us can relate. Kickback, smoke a cig (or you-know-what), and listen to Pele’s music.
Y’all might heard of Danye as he had been in the scene for quite a while now. He’s even collaborated with Karmal and Zet Legacy on ‘Aku Nak Lagi’. The 19-year-old is driven with passion as he spits bars about exactly that; his love for the music. His voice will definitely catch your attention. Not to mention, Danye is in music collective Krayziesoundz (KRZ) that’s brimming with other talent in the scene.
6. Syifa Diana
Finally, a woman in this male-dominated list. Syifa Diana is already known in the industry as she was formerly in the group Tiga Swagger with veteran Cat Farish. Now in a collective called YMYFAM, she’s been releasing tracks with artistes like B-Heart and her fiancé Kmy Kmo. Serving up boss bitch flows, she sure knows how to tell it like it is.
7. Harvinth Skin
Everyone knows Harvinth Skin as the punde-next-door, this Malaysian YouTuber mixes his comedy with music and we are down for it. IYKWIM. Harvinth is coming out with Lil Dicky vibes that will make you laugh and turnt up at the same time. If you wanna check out his latest release ‘#DBAP’ above, make sure to lock your doors and be in incognito mode as the video starts with him jacking off — seriously.
Our fav underground Malaysian trapper. Heavy on autotune and 808-filled beats, he sure knows how to hype us up. Working real close with labelmate Kidd Santhe, they’re coming up with a duo project called API. Expect seven tracks out on that project, y’all better keep a close eye on this one and stay updated.
Another one from the collective KRZ, A-Kid is here to stay. Like Harvinth, his brand of hip hop is geared towards the comedic side of things, so you’d likely either love him or hate him depending on your sense of humour. From his politically satirical lyrics in ‘Apa Lagi Kita Mau’ to his straight-up male pettiness in ‘Ada Awek’, there’s no way to predict his punchlines. A-Kid certainly adds diversity and braveness in putting out whatever tf he wants to the local scene.
If you’re an avid underground hip hop listener, then you must have heard of Ichu, who is one-fifth of Clumsyboys. The barai-ness of his music is what we all need when we’re not sober, or in need to mosh out our 9-to-5 frustrations (shout out to Ichu for bringing the mosh pit to local hip hop). Ichu is experimental as his music can go anywhere from trap, to left-field electronica, to chill hip hop.
Need an international list? Check out 5 rappers that would piss off Joe Budden.