As we look ahead into 2020, it is time to predict who will shine this year. Grime & dubstep were outstanding in 2019 with some of the most prolific releases of the decade. We look at the producers, MCs and DJs who have a chance to really make an impact in 2020. This list is not ranked in any particular order.
Jon E Clayface:
I wrote about Jon E Clayface in one of my first ever articles over 3 years ago, I was a fan of his vocal ability back then and I still am now. He's put out a mountain of work over the last few years collaborating on various projects and releases. When he spits, he spits from a raw place and I can fully get on-board with it. With various forthcoming releases on some very well respected record labels this year, I just know 2020 is going to be a big year for this young, powerful emcee.
B:Thorough's music is hard to explain, it's a diverse sound taking inspiration from old, nostalgic grime and emotive, 2 step, wifey grime that we hear on certain radio stations today. He balances both textures perfectly within his music and what you're left with is a dark, unique grime sound. With a number of digital releases and a handful of vinyl releases under his belt, I'm really excited to see what 2020 has in store for my bro Billy. He also has a monthly show on Subtle FM where he explores various sounds within 140. Go check it out.
Over the past three years Kryo has gone from a relatively unknown producer, to securing two solo wax releases on two of my favorite record labels within the 140 scene, Encrypted Audio & White Peach Records. He makes an eclectic mix of sub-heavy 140 music, made specifically for proper sound system's. He also co-runs one of the most exciting, new radio stations in London - Subtle FM. With forthcoming releases set for 2020 and a lot more things in the pipeline with regards to the radio station, I cannot wait to see what 2020 bring for Mr Kryo.
Sativa is a rare breed, he's one of those guys that's talented with his production but doesn't release as much music as he should, which is why he isn't as well known as he could be. He's located in Northeast England and has been producing music for over 10 years. He keeps his music secure, sending it out to a select few artists and solely releasing on vinyl (with one or two free downloads over the years). He is one part of the duo known as BFM and works closely with the don JFO to produce that signature BFM sound. They bridge the gap between grime and dubstep perfectly. He's had vinyl releases via Hooded-Up, Cella Records and Strictly 140, all of which have sold out. With his solo, debut, 4 track digital release forthcoming via Strictly 140 in the next few months, I just know 2020 could be his year, if he takes his music seriously that is.
WZ is quickly becoming one of my favorite producers. Hailing from Czech Republic, I first heard about him when I was told about the label he co-runs with Kuba'93 called "Harmless Youth" about two or three years ago. From then on I've closely followed his musical endeavors from his release on the mighty EatMyBeat label to his debut vinyl release on the esteemed FKOF. His productions are infectious and they always supply the weight. With even more forthcoming releases and the likes of Mala playing out his productions, its quite blatant to see 2020 is going to be a successful year for WZ.
At the moment theres only a few artists in the grime scene carrying the flag for the RnG side of the genre, Grace is one of them. He currently resides in London and has put various releases out via labels such as Italdred, Pear Drops & more. He holds a monthly show on the very well respected Reprezent Radio alongside his partner in crime Raheim. Their show explores the various sides of RnG with a range of eclectic guests and emcee's rolling through the studio. With plenty more music on the way, I can't wait to see what Grace has planned for 2020.
For me, Emcees need to be able to do a few things before I can fully rate them. They need to know when to spit and when to host, they need to know when to let a tune marinate and when to properly ride a production. Emz does all these things effortlessly. Living in Bristol he's had a wicked 2019, collaborating on an array of tracks with Sir Hiss, which were released on both White Peach Records and Sir Hiss's own label No More Mailouts. Emz has spat on the likes of Rinse FM, 1020 Radio and more. He's also been invited to Keep Hush on multiple occasions. With more tunes in the works and many more collaborations forthcoming, I really think we are gonna see a lot more of Emz in 2020.
In my opinion there aren't many DJ's within the 140 scene that have gained recognition without producing their own music. In fact it's very difficult to even get your name out there without producing. Ila Brugal however is someone who has paved her own path and made a name for herself on her own terms. She's a part of the notorious Croydub gang and plays at a number of events around the world for the underground collective. With a very eclectic musical taste and a deep bag of dubs, its no wonder this young woman is killing it wherever she goes. With loads of works in the pipeline for 2020 and a very successful radio show on Subtle FM. You definitely need to keep your eyes on Ila for 2020.
Carty is an artist whose tunes I usually always include in my own sets. He can produce an array of dubstep styles with ease and is clinical in his production. He's part of the CNCPT COLLECTIVE gang and over the last year he's put out some serious music via prominent labels such as Albion Collective, Encrypted Audio, Romulus Records & more. With plenty more music in the pipeline for 2020 I am certain that this year is going to be a very prosperous one for young Cartridge.
Well where do I start with Logan. Over the past two or three years he has been one of the hardest working emcees in the game, and his persistence is paying off in a big way. He can literally spit over any sound, any genre and make it sound legit. He's had countless releases covering various genres such as grime, dubstep, UK bass, garage and more. With the way he hosts a set with such ease, his hugely diverse set of flows, and his work rate, he really does capture the essence of what being an Emcee is all about. With a some serious projects in the works this year and no sign of slowing down - 2020 is going to be a massive year for da big soundboy Logan... "Oh Gawrddddd".
I hope you have enjoyed my 2020 pick of artists to watch out for, more articles up soon, bless up.