Keep an ear to the ground because today we're talking about the Vietnamese underground music scene!
This Superbrothers x Karik x Orange song is by far the least underground of all the songs on this list. With over 75+ million YouTube views in under a month, Người Lạ Ơi is shaping up to be a mainstream hit. I would, however, argue that Người Lạ Ơi, with its rap and EDM elements, has more in common with the underground music scene than your usual Vietnamese mainstream pop song. Although I love giving Karik shit for going mainstream, I can't hate. He's just doing what's needed to make rap music appealing to the mainstream Vietnamese audience. From making lovey-dovey teenage pop songs to now going full emo with his turtleneck and all, Karik may have stumbled upon a new style/form of rap here. Mumble rap is popular in the US these days; but perhaps, cry rap will be the new hot thing.
Speaking of going from the underground to the mainstream, producer Masew seems to be well on his way to make the jump from underground to mainstream just like Karik did. In Buồn Của Anh, Masew teams up with fellow upcoming underground artists K-ICM and Đạt G. Buồn Của Anh is the first "nhạc buồn" style of a ballad song that I know of that Masew has released. In a little more than a month's time, Buồn Của Anh has gained over 70+ million YouTube views. Did I not tell y'all that Vietnamese people love their slow ballads?
With all this mainstream success, will Masew continue down the nhạc buồn road? In this other Masew song released in December, we see Masew again experimenting with mixing traditional elements of Vietnamese nhạc buồn ballads into his songs. If you were a fan of Buồn Của Anh, then there's a good chance that you will like Xin too. Although not as popular as Buồn Của Anh, this Masew song still has a healthy number of YouTube views (nearly 3 million).
Enough with all this emo stuff. Time to put the G back into gangster rap with some 95G. VIỆT NAM is the latest 95G rap cypher featuring Viet rap veterans Wowy, Suboi, and BRed. Wowy and Suboi need no introduction since they are two of the biggest names in the Viet rap scene; however, ya boi BRed may be an unfamiliar name for those who don't follow Viet rap closely. BRed is an underground rapper from the ATL. As a fellow ATLien, you know I gotta rep the boi BRed. Like him, I'm all about repping the V I E T N A M!
95G is currently my favorite Vietnamese rap group. I'm really into hard-hitting rap songs. For example, I enjoy listening to artists like Three 6 Mafia and Lil' Jon. It's not that I'm an angry person IRL. I just find it fun to listen to songs that make you want to punch someone in the face. Perhaps, it's just unchecked masculinity at work. Whatever it is, songs like C O N M E by SMO help me fill that void in my life.
D.CROWNFLY is kind of like the Vietnamese equivalent of Rich Chigga. D.CROWNFLY started off as some nerdy Vlogger and now he's entering the field of being a YouTube rapper. I'll admit that Hỏi Trời is not half bad, but these kids in this MV couldn't look any less intimidating. They're out there trying to look like hard gangsters when in reality they are probably nothing more than a bunch of spoiled rich kids. Did you get your money from mommy and daddy? Because I don't believe these kids have the slightness idea of what gang banging entails. I am more inclined to believe that D.CROWNFLY and his boy O.G got rich dealing the cryptocurrency Augur than anything else. Gangsters? No. Computer nerds? Maybe.
Để Ca Này Anh Xử by SilverC and Bueno is a terrible MV in my opinion. The hook for Để Ca Này Anh Xử, however, is so catchy that I can't help liking this song. I don't even know what "anh xử" means, but it sounds badass. And the way they say "ca này" is oddly satisfying to hear repeated. I don't know. Sometimes I just like listening to "bad" rap songs, and this seems to be one of those times.
The beat for this Touliver produced song is pretty badass; however, I'm not a fan of rapper Binz in this SpaceSpeakers MV titled They Said. His rapping style here is too monotonous for my liking. There's practically no emotion behind his delivery. I want to see some anger, some raw emotions. Give me some of that Terrence Howard level of rage from Hustle & Flow. Give me something. I'll even take some Karik cry rap at this point.
I like trap music. Mumble rap? Not so much. You could describe Khi Nào Tụi Mày Mới Có Tiền as a mumble trap song. Therefore, I'm not sure what to make of this song by Sydney-based Viet rappers Cang Cang and Ken 10/10. Speak up will ya. What is this? Whisper rap? Please...please use your words. Shy Ronnie, use your outside voice!
Hey Girl by Big Boss ft. Pudding Vũ & DaFame is my jam! I would describe it as a hip-pop song. Hey Girl has a style that is very similar to one of my favorite Japanese hip-hop groups known as Cream. It's a style that combines hip-hop, pop, and EDM together to create some mighty fine dance tunes. Hey Girl is easily my favorite song off of this list, and it's coming from an unknown record company called 69KLUB. Yeah, you read that right. The people of 69KLUB must be fans of having dinner for two.
If you're a fan of old school rap, then Không Ai Bỏ Được HIPHOP by Da LAB x KraziNoyze x Thỉm Small is for you. Any true hip-hop fan should be able to appreciate this simple MV. Sometimes it's nice to get away from today's mumble rap and trap music that dominates the rap music scene and go back to what started it all. ♫ I said a hip hop, the hippie, the hippie to the hip hip hop, and you don't stop. ♫
Next up: Vpop Remix Edition