By Rob Markman
XXL magazine has rolled out their annual Freshman Class issue showcasing the ten most promising young artists in the game, and the 2012 list has already inspired plenty of debate via social media. The 2012 list of ten includes MTV News’ 2011 Hottest Breakthrough MC, Machine Gun Kelly, in addition to French Montana and even newcomer Iggy Azalea.
Machine Gun Kelly stands front and center on the cover alongside his Bad Boy labelmate French Montana. Atlanta hitmaker Future and hook master Roscoe Dash also made the cut along with Detroit’s Danny Brown and Memphis, Tennessee, MC Don Trip.
While most of this year’s freshmen have been fixtures on various blog sites and the mixtape circuit, others like Macklemore, Hopsin and Kid Ink may be lesser known, but they’ve more than earned their keep. Macklemore has already sold out countless shows across the country, while Kid Ink and Hopsin have built quite a digital following.
Australian-born raptress Iggy Azalea makes history as the first female MC to grace the cover of the Freshman issue. The blond-haired Interscope beauty made waves with her 2011 mixtape Ignorant Art and has since hooked up with T.I. to produce her upcoming debut album The New Classic.
Like it does every year, this latest Freshman class has already caused a fuss on the Web, with fans and industry ilk both supporting the list and wondering why their favorite artists didn’t make the cover.