Detroit’s music scene has languished for a while in the shadows of major cities like Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles, which have collectively produced the lion’s share of impressive hip hop artists over the past decade. Not to say that Detroit hasn’t had some success — stars like Tee Grizzley, 42 Dugg and Sada Baby have certainly helped put the Motor City on the map but largely it has failed to reach its full potential as a musical hotbed.
All that could change this year thanks to the recent and rapid rise of underground star whiterosemoxie. Moxie, a Detroit native who only recently turned 18, has a preternatural ability to tell stories and deliver impactful messages through his lyricism and flow. On March 27th, Moxie released his debut album, White Ceilings, a 15-track project that includes one feature (K.M.O). The album, released two days before his birthday, takes us deeper into the life of the young star and displays an intriguing arch of growth and maturation. By including 15 songs, each of which is undeniably different in terms of sound and content, Moxie is able to display his versatility and breadth of artistry. Included on the album is one of his breakout singles “Applause,” which is nearing 1 million plays on Soundcloud, as well as a couple of others that explore a more romantic and melodic sound, like “West Side Boys” and “Indigo.”
Most impressive, especially for one so young, is that he appears to seamlessly — and successfully — toe the line between hip-hop and R&B in a way that often eludes others eager to attempt the genre-bending approach. Moxie’s moxie is his nonconformity and unpredictability. White Ceilings plays like a compilation of stories told by an academically bright kid from Detroit who grappled with issues of connections and belonging. Music is clearly his connection and this exciting new artist has got the industry buzzing with his name landing on several notable “young artists to watch” lists.
Nationwide, teens and twentysomethings are storming the music world right now and it’s clear that whiterosemoxie is the Midwest’s front runner of this youthful surge, alongside Kenny Mason in Atlanta and Baby Keem in California. With Moxie’s seemingly grounded personality, impressive smarts and such undiluted emotion in his music, it’s easy to picture him at the top of the product line, from where he will hopefully inspire many more youngsters in the Detroit area. It’s all in the hands of whiterosemoxie now and we’re so ready to see what’s to come.