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T.RiCH: The Yung Pope of SoundCloud

T.RiCH was ahead of his time. On SoundCloud, he went by Yung Pope but when I knew him he was T.RiCH, founder of the artistic collective "GORG[US]". The “GORG[US]” tag can be found on each of his songs. Similar to Lil Peep, T.RiCH blended alternative rock and rap into his own unique style he coined "melodic goth rap". However, when T.RiCH was first releasing videos on HAUNTXR and VoidTracks the scene was neither saturated nor popular.  

In 2014-2016, during the peak of T.RiCH’s career, his songs produced by †rxpicvl, kryptik, and falls were avant-garde and bold yet generally misunderstood for their ingenuity rather than celebrated. Today, each of the three producers listed above are considered massively successful underground producers, producing for the likes of Lil Peep and Bones, yet when T.RiCH was working with them they were just beginning their career. Songs like “DONT.WONDER.WHY” and “✧SLOW.JAM. ✧ [falls]” are and always have been underground classics. Despite their release date, these works by T.RiCH are timeless treasures of our generation’s youth.

People who are only now discovering T.RiCH today are probably tempted to draw further comparisons between him and Lil Peep. Each of them passed on young, touched the lives of thousands of listeners, and were known for their respective brands of "melodic goth". However, when T.RiCH was alive and gaining a buzz GOTHBOICLIQUE and Lil Peep were not the world superstars they are today. I bet if T.RiCH was alive today he’d be included right alongside them in write-ups and concert tours. In fact, one can even argue it was T.RiCH who pioneered the sub-genre and popularizing the alternative rock movement with his GORG[US] label (perhaps a discussion for another time).

Above is a photo of T.RiCH aka Yung Pope.

Above is a photo of T.RiCH aka Yung Pope.

I think if T.RiCH was alive today he'd be astonished to see how the underground scene was embraced by popular culture in 2017-2018. Before HAUNTXR was popular for hosting underground acts such as XXXTENTACION and Bones T.RiCH was the one getting posted and amassing views. I thought was going to be number 1 on Billboard. Without T.RiCH, none of the artists who are popular today in 2018 could have attained any underground traction - let alone commercial success. In hindsight, when listening to T.RiCH today, it's obvious his sound is just as powerful today as it was in 2015-2016. I think everyone today owes T.RiCH a debt of gratitude.

Dam, I really miss you Thomas. I can feel the pain and vulnerability in your voice. You said everything I couldn't say and spoke for everyone who was struggling to use their voice. Your music was so brilliant the world wasn't fully ready to receive the gifts of music you imparted upon us while you were here. We never met, and I only knew you from the music and the messages we exchanged, but the impact your music had on me and everyone else can never be erased. All it takes is scrolling through the comment section of YouTube to realize how much everyone loved you.