Story by E.J. Ogle
The Fifth Annual Atlanta Indie Fest is this weekend, packing all the independent hip-hop (plus some soul and electro-pop) folks could possibly want into one insane line-up over two days. And no, it's not all backpacking boom-bap. Seriously, the 2012 roster provides an excellent capsule of the various strands/sounds of the underground in the internet 2.0 era. From syrupy trap music to twerking club bangers aimed squarely at crossing over, it's all here and its swag is weird. Make a point of catching these key artists:
Mach Five Turn Up Juice (ft. Gangsta Boo) Yes, we owe the existence of the Atlanta Indie Fest in the first place to this local duo, but this home-grown banger is undeniably hot. Minimalist Diplo-inspired production with a chorus made for the club and a guest verse from fellow Indie Fest performer Gangsta Boo.
Chippy Nonstop Kicked Out Da Club A Bay Area-based Kreayshawn acolyte spitting over your basic hyphy/Rack City beat. Resist the easy urge to hate, look past the image and admit this would be fun as hell to hear at the club. Catch her set so you can tell your people you saw her before she went viral.
Tuki Carter Green Backs The tattoo artist for Wiz Khalifa's Taylor Gang crew makes quality smoker's rap as his other job. With verses this strong no wonder he got the co-sign.
Dell Harris Monopoly A local MC who favors the bassy, electro-tinged beats foreign producers have been making and sending back to the states for years; party tracks by and for the MJQ set.
SpaceGhostPurrp Osiris Of the East The Miami rapper-producer is headlining Sunday for a reason: his style is harder, darker, and spacier than everybody else. Not wildly adolescent like Tyler the Creator or cultivating his fashionista cred like A$AP Rocky, SGP has carved an ominous, weird niche for himself drawing equally on Houston screwed music, lo-fi noise and afro-futurism, if you'll believe it. No wonder he's signed to the high-brow British label 4AD. Be ready for a real rowdy, sweaty crowd during his set.