Ones to Watch at Outlook Festival 2018

by Oscar Berkhout, Feb 08, 2018

They've done it again. Outlook preview their line-up for 2018; from rap, to grime, to bassline, to dubstep, you're covered.

Full lineup and tickets this way

With Outlook and Dimensions both announcing their 2018 line ups this week, we thought we ought to break down some of the acts that will be passing through the island of Pula this summer. Both festivals, whilst different in tone, are well known, revered even, for their consistently exceptional and innovative line ups.

Here are some of the artists we think you'd be daft to miss at Outlook 2018:

J Hus


One of East London's most talented artists needs no introduction. J Hus has been one of the best breakthrough artists of the past few years; from punchline-heavy freestyles a few years ago, to chart-topping singles, it has been a quick and momentous journey. His latest album, Common Sense, boasted versatility throughout - from 'Did You See' solidifying his crown in the UK's afrobeat scene; 'Clartin' which is reminiscent of his earlier content, being full of energy and confidence over a trap-influenced instrumental; the likes of 'Bouff Daddy' and 'Common Sense' then showcase his musicality through catchy hooks and feel-good melodies. Being listed at the top of the bill, you'd be silly to miss J Hus at Outlook; if you've never seen him perform, live or through your mates' Snapchat, be sure to expect lots and lots of energy.

Mist


If you're talking British rap, you've got to mention Mist. He owns his own sector, his own sound and it's working wonders for him; memorable one-liners, effective punchlines, more often matched with wondrous Steel Banglez production sets him apart from any competition. After the success of his M I S to the T EP which featured tracks like 'Karla's Back' and 'Smokey,' to the infamous 'Ain't the Same,' there was a lot of momentum behind him. Since that EP, Mist ran with 'Madness' and 'Hot Property' through 2017 which offered the same Mist energy. His upcoming album, Diamond in the Dirt is soon to come and for now, fans have 'Game Changer' to keep them going. "Yeah I changed, but I changed for the better" - the only change we're seeing is that the music is getting better and better. Again, don't be silly, make sure you catch his performance at Outlook this summer.

Jaykae


Energy and passion are two ways to describe Jaykae. The Small Heath, Birmingham native saw huge success in 2017, from 'Toothache' being played on Power, to 'Moscow' becoming an anthem in its own right, to all of these festival bookings... As a side note, 'Toothache' has been hard since the day it was released, but the attention that Power brought to it again, reignited the popularity. Aside from songs turning to anthems, Jaykae is one of the best grime MCs when it comes to clashing and high-energy bars - if you haven't seen his clash against Discarda on Lord of the Mics 4, you're missing out. 

Grandmixxer


If you're talking technicians on decks, Grandmixxer is up there with one of the best. Some people are afraid to call DJs artists as they're 'just mixing' - not Grandmixxer, he's a real artist with what he does, utilising every space and noise in each riddim that he mixes and using the mixer to full effect. Renowned for his sets within the grime scene, along some of the best and most promising MCs, such as Novelist, Mez and YGG, his selection and love for chops are second to none. One of the best DJs in grime and throughout any genre, Grandmixxer is a force not to be reckoned with. Listening to a Grandmixxer set is filled with as much gas, as fascination.

YGG


The most exciting group in grime is made up of three of the best, young MCs in the scene - PK, Saint P and Lyrical Strally. YGG started to get their name out during the radio set resurgance, where the new generation of MCs would go to the dojos of Mode, Reprezent or Radar and put their bars to practice. PK, Saint and Strally all offer their own talents: PK is the skanker, well-versed in catchy 8-bars and reload bars; Saint comes with something special - as said in one of his bars "I only spit when the riddim is proper," he may not be the first person you see reaching for the mic, but best believe that when he does, his skippy flows and clever wordplay make him a standout MC; Strally is one of the most technically-gifted MCs of the new generation - he's the sort of MC that has you working out the double meanings behind each bar, or maybe not even catching the intelligence of the bar until the third listen. With the release of their first project, World Domination a few months ago, YGG fans were given a taste of what they can do outside of sets and it didn't let any hopes down. At Outlook, you can expect a lot of energy and a very, very shelly grime set - bars upon bars - YGG know what the fans want. 

Kamakaze


The lyrical heavyweight hailing from the East Midlands has hit big numbers on the likes of JDZMedia and SB.TV and last year, led Leicester to the final of Red Bull's Grime-A-Side. The Leicester MC boasts musical talents from grime to hip-hop and exemplified this on his Royal Blud EP that came out last January. Kamakaze is due more attention - the guy is too talented to go unnoticed. Be sure to catch him in Croatia this summer.

D.O.K


One of the early grime producers who has stayed relevant and who's instrumentals are still legendary and game changing to this day. From a D.O.K set, you can expect to hear dubs that you will never be able to get your hands on and will want to relisten to immediately. More recently, he had a set on Big Zuu's Joints Show on Radar Radio which showed just that. Dubs, dubs and more dubs. If you're a grime fan, go and watch D.O.K at Outlook.

Trends and Boylan


Trends and Boylan are heavy producers individually, but together, they build a sound that can only be met with a screwface. From their infamous 'Norman Bates' that has been shelling down sets for the past year or so, to Trends' own take on Biggie Smalls' 'Hypnotize' that has been doing the same and even more so since its general release, these two bring very grimey, bass-heavy riddims and if you're going to Outlook, you must go and see them.

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