Most artists set out with the goal of staking out a claim to a style that's uniquely theirs, but few do so quite as adamantly as Tree, the Chicago rapper who's been gathering accolades over the past two years with the signature musical blend he calls “soul trap.” It's pretty much exactly what it sounds like: Production that offers the steady comfort of old classics, chopping up familiar soul samples or incorporating orchestral stabs, and warm, sympathetic lyrical takes on the struggles and successes that characterize life in his home city.

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