Philly rapper GrandeMarshall has a style unto himself. In his past few years of activity on the Philly scene, he’s impressed with his laid-back flow – cool, calm, collected and confident – with lyrics that are a little bit braggadocio, a little bit introspective. They don’t go for the throat as much as they put their hand on your shoulder, look you dead in the eye and tell you how things are going to be.
Paired with these rhymes are spectral, textured beats. Midtempo and sparse, they’re adorned by minimal production and ghostly synth melodies, carving out lots of space and creating an ambience that’s as chilling as it is meditative.
Grande’s style impressed the folks at Fool’s Gold Records, who signed him in 2014 and released his album My Brother’s Keeper last year. This month, he’s taking the record down to SXSW – his third trip to the Austin music megaconference – and this week for the Key Studio Sessions, he performed tracks from the record, backed by DJ Bear One.
Listen to it below, grab free downloads at our Soundcloud page, and watch a video of “Make It Count” performed live in the studio. This track is, in a way, the ultimate GrandMarshall cut – it boasts a sublime and atmospheric beat, paired with lyrics that are raunchy at turns but also have a message of overall optimism. Lyrics about caring for your family, for your neighborhood, for the world around you and doing your best on the day to day.