Another often overlooked newer artist in the world of hip hop is the 23-year-old North Carolina native rapper and songwriter Mavi. With the release of his sophomore studio album in October 2022 Laughing so Hard, it Hurts, Mavi gained even more traction in the industry.
Laughing so Hard, it Hurts, was met with widespread acclaim from outlets such as Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, and Brooklyn Vegan. Rolling Stone and Brooklyn Vegan ranked the album as one of the 15 best in hip-hop in 2022.
Mavi's sophomore studio album continued to set him apart with his unique and relaxed flow and some fantastic production choices.
The east coast rapper, that also goes by the nickname "Mayor" isn't actually all that new to generating some buzz with some of the more dedicated underground and abstract hip-hop fans. Mavi first started to generate some buzz in hip hop's underground and with some fans of the more experimental and abstract fans of the genre in 2019, with the release of his debut studio album Let the Sun Talk.
Mavi's debut studio album was met with a very positive reception from critics and fans as being one of the best in the abstract hip-hop subgenre that dropped in 2019. Maybe the fact that Mavi was around as a quality artist in the abstract and east coast hip hop for multiple years now as the reason why he was overlooked in the XXL Freshman Class.
Although, it is more likely that Mavi fits into some niche subgenres as why he didn't get the nod in this Freshman Class.
All in all, Mavi has a very convincing argument that none of the 12 artists that were picked for the 2023 XXL Freshman Class have released as unique and as well-produced as Laughing so Hard, it Hurts in the last year or so.