Five Underrated Artists


These underrated artists are deserving of far more widespread fame than they've currently reached.

By Ella Ilg, Staff Writer

In a world where the same five songs play on the radio and the only up-and-coming artists people talk about are two-star Soundcloud rappers, it can be difficult to find new and interesting music to check out. But fear not, this list can be the guide to find the best underrated artists across all genres.

Paul Cherry: He is a weird dude, and I mean weird, but it does not keep his music from being the perfect music to vibe to. It’s the kind of music that sounds weird if you aren’t listening to it via cassette. He’s sort of elusive due to his lack of a Wikipedia page, but it seems he wants to keep it that way. He’s signed to Chicago record company FeelTrip Records, and that’s all the information available about him. His lo-fi sound is relaxing, and it’s the perfect overnight drive or study session music.

AJR: AJR is not as under the radar as the rest of these artists, but there is more music to their discography than their one radio hit. This band has actually been around since 2005. Their first breakout song, “I’m Ready,” was released in 2013 and received intense acclaim with 23 million views on the music video. However, they faded back into obscurity until they came out with “Sober Up” last year. They only have two full albums, but several EPs, to listen to, and their chill rock sound is a great casual listen.

clipping.: If you’re sick of the wave of mumble rap and want something quick with developed lyrics, clipping. is a great new band to check out. They specialize in industrial hip hop, which is a very specific sub-group combining the back tracks of industrial deep bass music with rap lyrics. The rapping is done by Daveed Diggs, who played Lafayette and Jefferson in the original cast of “Hamilton,” so he has mastered the skill of rapping insanely quick and remaining understandable. Being able to understand the lyrics is a miracle in this new era of hip hop and rap, so this experimental group definitely deserves more acclaim and attention.

Adolescents: To move on to an even older sound, this West Coast punk band has been around since 1980, but they never really hit their moment of fame to the same degree as other bands of the type. After several break ups and reunions, Adolescents has released seven albums over the decades and has released one as recently as 2016. I prefer their more recent sound due to the amazing guitar work, but if you’re looking for classic 80s punk or new wave, this band offers both

sampha: Sampha is a London based electronic musician. He’s been a featured artist on several Drake songs, including “Too Much” and on Kanye West’s song “Saint Pablo.” This is easy listening music, bordering the line between vapor-wave and lo-fi. Very few tracks of his even have words, so it’s good to work to. Music with lyrics can be distracting when trying to work or study, so Sampha’s sound is very easy to vibe to during a workout or study session.

All of these artists do not have the fan base they deserve. When far worse musicians are being over-hyped and have crowds of millions at their concerts, it’s a tragedy that these talented artists are still mostly under the radar, so spreading their sound around is the best thing to do.