It’s all about trusting the journey because sometimes following your gut can take you into unexpected territory. Just ask Queens (New York) rapper Koncept — one-time Fat Beats employee and former member of the Brown Bag All Stars. He’d built a bankable brand as a solo act, blazing from the onset of his debut LP back at the top of 2012. Having worked his J57 collaborative project The Fuel and having just about wrapped his next LP (which would become 14 Hours Ahead), he set off on a short tour in Seoul, the capital of South Korea. That was almost two years ago, and Kon has finally made his return to New York City after what became an unexpected odyssey of overseas fame.
Though a debut album is usually the first introduction a mainstream listener has to a new artist, it in no way means an artist is new. This is especially true in the case of Toronto rapper Jazz Cartier. His presence on the Canadian scene — whether you’re familiar with his music or not — has been inescapable. Though he’s remained one hit away from the mainstream frenzy he’s destined for, his major label debut, Fleurever, the followup to 2016’s Juno Award-winning Hotel Paranoia, is poised to change everything.
So far, 2018 has been another wild year for new music and Hip Hop happenings, and with summer here, it’s only going to get more fuego. It’s also been a great year for creative music video treatments from some of the game’s best and brightest.
Jazz Cartier is a name that has been ringing bells since 2015’s Marauding in Paradise. Poised for success like a lot of other homegrown acts who have crept through the door that Drake kicked wide open, Cartier has remained in a one-hit-away position from bursting the mainstream bubble, despite taking home an award for best rap recording with his 2016 sophomore mixtape, Hotel Paranoia. His major label debut, Fleurever, could prove to be the bubble-popping pin he’d been searching for.
Drake’s highly anticipated Scorpion solidified a few things, including his admirably firm stranglehold on streaming platforms and Billboard charts. However, it also low-key proved that without a shadow of a doubt, LA superstar Ty Dolla $ign had become Hip Hop’s (not-so) secret weapon who arguably gives the best features money can buy.