Label: Crown Loyalist
Canadian rap star K-OS remains a cult figure in the States, but standout singles such as 2004's "The Love Song" have had an impact, influencing artists like K'naan and Drake. If you're unfamiliar with K-OS' b-boy forays into pop-rock, soul and other musical flavors, then Yes! is a good place to start. On "4 3 2 1" he uses a sample from the Pharcyde's "Soul Flower" to reminisce about hip-hop back in the day. He teams with Saukrates for "I Wish I Knew Natalie Portman" and brings the Dears' Murray Lightburn and Metric's Emily Haines for "Uptown Girl." The sound is melodic and adventurous.