Selected by: Yemi Abiade

Name: Ezro

Where He’s From: Lewisham, South London

When He Started: “2015 was the year I consciously took music seriously. Me and the rest of Vision Crew would link up in the studio at my college, which eventually led to forming the collective and pursuing music.”

Genre: Grime

File Next To: Jammz, Capo Lee, Tuckz

Sounds Like: “The orchestral score to a grime motion picture.”

First Music That Inspired Him: “I wouldn’t say I’ve got one track, but there are few: Ab-Soul’s ‘Terrorist Threats’, Joey Badass and Capital Steez’s ‘Survival Tactics’ and A$AP Rocky’s ‘Peso’.”

Lewisham, South London, has proven to be a breeding ground for all things grime in the second half of this decade, keeping the raw flame of the genre alive in various forms. Moving in a silent but potent manner, Ezro is a musician whose style in steeped in the ways of the golden generation, channelling its raw, pure energy and fast forwarding it to the present day. The emcee/producer and member of London group Vision Crew is still young but has already delivered in a short time, his criminally underrated 2017 Ghost In The Blue project a key starting point. Developing a lyrical style part pensive, part incisive, fully grimey, Ezro likens his music to the essence of soul itself, with “the influences of hip-hop, R&B and Afrobeats,” he says.

Growing up on a rap-heavy diet, consuming the likes of Black Hippy, A$AP Mob, Flatbush Zombies, The Underachievers, Pro Era and countless others, Ezro’s Lewisham home served as ground zero for his musical and personal maturation. “[Lewisham] made me resilient to a lot of things that will come into my life due to my experiences,” Ezro tells TRENCH. “A lot were positive and a lot were negative, and I’m still trying to find a balance.” Initial exposure was achieved whilst crafting AJ Tracey’s 2016 hood anthem, “Spirit Bomb”, and using the platform he and Vision Crew made for themselves—through a variety of singles, live shows and radio sets—Ezro has established himself not only as a producer’s producer, but a deft and nimble emcee. Time waited for no man, and he dropped his debut project a year later.

What makes Ezro stand out is his versatility. Over self-procured production, with an air of the cinematic, he spits about the harsher side of life, of seeking personal and financial improvement in a part of town that can get murky. You sense this hunger in amongst the darkness in his music, on tracks like “These Days” where the quest for more jumps out like a shark out of the sea for its next meal. It isn’t glamorous, but it is real, reflective of Ezro’s drive to continually test his skills in new ways. Remaining fairly insular, his output has sharpened as his career progresses. His humility is also clear as day; even when describing to his proudest moment, Ezro describes a feeling that is probably more precious than any tangible sign of success, better than chart-topping and award winning: “It’s every time I make a new track that connects to me personally and the people around me.”

It is this endearing drive that will take Ezro far and wide. With a new EP in Young Ez On Nimbus on the way, and his ‘Powers Worldwide’ brand soon landing, things are speeding up fast for this future South London great.

TRENCH Highlight...

Posted on August 01, 2019