Sprechen Sie Deutsch? New German musicians with an international vibe
German-speaking rap was very clearly the winning genre this year. Just recently we introduced you to Capital Bra, who landed six number ones in the charts in 2018. But trap fans don’t have to look to the USA anymore either: Frankfurt rapper Reezy has mastered the balancing act between atmospheric beats and the right amount of autotune just as well as US greats like Travis Scott. But he has yet to make his mark on the charts: newer songs like ‘Frankfurt City Blues’ and ‘PMW’ only have around 200,000 clicks on YouTube. But we’re pretty sure that it’s just a matter of time until he makes his breakthrough. Until them, we’ll carry on pumping out his music in insider circles – and then after his first big hit we’ll be able to say: “Wir haben’s euch doch gesagt!” (We told you so!)
Soul from Berlin! BRKN from Kreuzberg cleverly mixes a current sound aesthetic with a soulful voice and rap elements in his music – basically creating his very own genre. As a multi-instrumentalist he’s simply one of the most radical German-speaking musicians of our time and doesn’t need to fit in to prove his credentials. He has demonstrated that on YouTube, especially with the uploads of his acoustic session ‘Dicker! – Die Show’, for which he invited various German rap artists like Bausa, Sido and Marteria for a seemingly spontaneous jam in front of an audience. This resulted in, for example, a completely unexpected piano version of Sido’s ‘Mein Block’. But the Berlin artist is also achieving great success with a number of other projects. For British music platform ‘Colors’ he did a live recording of his song ‘Bordeaux’, reaching around 1.7 million international fans. And another unexpected connection: BRKN is even making an appearance on the latest Herbert Grönemeyer album ‘Tumult’, on the German-Turkish track ‘Doppelherz / Iki Gönlüm’. So if you like artists that don’t stick to just one narrow category, you’ll love the international sound of BRKN.
And another artist from Frankfurt has made it onto our list. Rola makes the finest German-speaking R’n’B with a modern 90s sound and – just like Reezy and BRKN – oscillates somewhere between singing and rapping, which is currently very much on-trend. And, because of the Frankfurt connection, she of course also brought out the song ‘Chilln’ together with Reezy, which reels you in with its absolute summer vibes and 90s BBQ party music video. Plus she’s also a great live performer. Around two months ago, two acoustic versions of her tracks ‘Himmel und Talfahrt’ and ‘Akku leer’ were released – and although they both only generated under 50k clicks, Rola is definitely a real insider tip with a very bright future ahead of her. So if you’re still missing the days of Aaliyah and Co., you no longer have to look further afield for a similar sound!
Text: Renée Diehl