This June, just as Chance The Rapper’s star was beginning to become blinding off the strength of his off-the-wall Acid Rap mixtape, another young kid from Chicago released his own project that existed outside of what had become the new normal of Chicago drill music. Alex Wiley, who went to elementary school with Chance and hung with the likes of Kembe X and Vic Mensa, released Club Wiley, a wild, occasionally schizophrenic mixtape with massive production that veered all over the map, combining hip-hop with distorted guitars, rapping with half-singing and features from the likes of Chance, Kembe, Vic, Freddie Gibbs, Action Bronson, Monster Mike and the Hood Internet. And then there was “Spaceship II,” a re-interpretation of Kanye’s College Dropout hit “Spaceship,” which brought in Chance as well as GLC, who was also on Kanye’s original. The track caught a lot of attention, and Wiley’s come up was officially under way.
Now, Wiley’s grabbing national attention, with a big show tonight headlining New York City’s Santos Party House alongside Dyme-A-Duzin, Pro Era’s A La $ole, Jean Deaux and Cam Meekins. Find out more about him in The Come Up. —As told to Dan Rys, (@danrys)