Arts Desk

Could Awthentik’s Popular Misconception Mark a New Direction for Trap Rap?

AwthentikAwthentik isn't a fan of modern, mainstream rap music. That might explain why his beats are edgier than most and soaked with 1990s grit. Listen to his rhymes, and you'll hear occasional swipes at mainstream groupthink and celebrity worship.

And if that wasn't enough, the cover art for Awthentik's new album, Popular Misconception, depicts a rotting Trinidad James, with gold teeth and gold chains in tow. On one hand, it seems like a direct dis to the Georgia rapper, whose Southern-fried trap rap seems to represent everything Awthentik reviles. But on a deeper, more symbolic level, the picture could signal a mainstream shift toward grounded rap with a purpose. Perhaps Trinidad's style, and rappers like him, are slowly melting away?

On Misconception, Awthentik—also a producer and engineer—used the same 808 drum kit that's used to make trap music. "I make a masterpiece, it only took one man to make it," the Silver Spring rapper proclaims on "Blank Canvas." "I say I made it in my mind, it's real redundant when I say it." On a song like "Real Woman," the trap influences are evident, but Awthentik goes against the genre's conventions with a salute to his better half (whose joint-rolling skills are superb, according to the track).

Popular Misconception, out today, is a free download. Stream it below.

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