The 19-year-old rapper Lil Xelly, hails from Rockville, Maryland and began making music as early as 9 years old, writing raps in a journal. While most new rappers do the normal thing and launch themselves into the hip-hop arena with a single release, towards the end of 2017, Xelly dropped a mammoth 105-song mixtape entitled “More Xelly”. Having now laid down his blueprint from which to evolve and expand, Lil Xelly went on to release two projects a month, starting in early 2018, and then surpassing that benchmark as the year went on, continuing into 2019. A couple of weeks ago Xelly dropped his 9 track mixtape, entitled “Rxelly”, which features the centerpiece single, and melodic banger – “Step N The Name Of XRR” (SparkHeem). Opting to be more multifaceted than flashy, Lil Xelly demonstrates the kind of versatility and maturity that should comfort anyone that might be worried about the career longevity of this nineteen year old. It doesn’t hurt that most of his tracks bang.
Perhaps even more than traditional hip hop, modern new age stylistic tendencies shows which rappers have a certain feeling for musicality, and an idea of what pop appeal is all about. The ultra-modern school of rappers rely on a melodious flow that’s on point with the music, and often have really catchy choruses.
Next to the flow, it’s most essential that artists of this style credibly convey emotions, which is often done by a lo-fi approach, adding some honesty to the sound. Notoriously most of these rappers are not exactly known for their lyrical ability. This is where Lil Xelly mashes up the legacies – both new and old.
During the course of its duration “Rxelly” works very hard to be all things it possibly can, and manages to so, at a qualitatively excellent level. Moreover it succeeds at delivering the very elements that grant successful mixtapes and albums of the genre to have either an entertaining or an intense outcome, depending on the premise.
From the opening track “SpaceShip” (k30beats), Lil Xelly raps and sings, forging all his skills in both harmony and rhythm. Add to that his smooth flow, clever wordplay, and impacting storytelling, and you know pretty quickly that it’s ‘game over’ for many of his contemporaries.
Running through “Enhancer” (SparkHeem), “Suicide”, and “Iso” (blkyth), Lil Xelly and gives listeners something stronger, with well-balanced energy that delivers a sense of sincerity and emotion. The tape takes another melodic turn on “MY MIND” (xangangbeats), as Lil Xelly sings and soars his way across the track.
Almost as if to show off the contrast, Xelly switches back to his extensive rapping toolkit on “FLY GUY” (SparkHeem), and rolls out some focused wordplay. All of which brings us to the banging groove of “Step N The Name Of XRR” (SparkHeem).
This, and the mixtape closer, “Ignition” *Rxelly* (Sparkheem), will put you in a feel-good mood, as the forthcoming chemistry will induce you to crank up the volume and ride.
Either way you look at this tape, whether you dig the music or not, you cannot take away the basic elements associated with Lil Xelly – he oozes confidence and star quality, and definitely knows how to turn a tune into something addicting. These are crucial elements in the search for the throne.