Just Banco

Selected by: James Keith

Name: Just Banco

Where He’s From: Manchester

When He Started: 2016

Genre: “Trapanese”

File Next To: Yxng Bane, MoStack, Tizzy X Brandz

Sounds Like: Smooth, Afro-influenced rap

The Music That Raised Him: “Lots of rap music, mostly American. I had a lot of rappers’ albums—the list would go on forever: 50 Cent, Snoop, The Game, Dre, Mobb Deep, Missy Elliot. I listened to bare shit.”

The architect of a sound he calls “Trapanese”, the drops that Just Banco already has under his belt—capped off by career-high “Lad” (which has clocked up a not too shabby 190,000 views on YouTube)—blend together the smoother ends of rap, trap, R&B and even a hint of grime. Though the result has a somewhat transatlantic vibe that could easily find him a large Stateside audience, Just Banco is thoroughly UK. From the frequent shout-outs to the 0161 that birthed him to the flattened vowels and British reference points, there’s no mistaking where he’s from.

The rapper’s musical heritage runs even deeper than his own work. In fact, one of his cousins was in Manc rap crew Raw-T who were at one time managed by another Mancunian legend, the late Tony Wilson (of Factory Records and the Haçienda fame). Growing up in such a musical family, his passion for creating music was sparked and nurtured almost as soon as he was born.

Banco burst onto the scene in 2017 with “Can’t Stay”, but this wasn’t his first musical outing. That began with 2016’s “Overdose (Drink Or Smoke)”, an eerily minimal trap cut that set the tone for what was to come in an impressive opening move. Of all of the achievements he’s already packed into his nascent career, Banco says it’s performing at Parklife that he’s most proud of. “I’m from Manny so Parklife is the biggest festival we got,” he told TRENCH. “I remember the times when I was just gassed to be going Parklife—nevermind being a person people are coming to see.”

As for his future as an artist, he hopes “to spread my sound around the world. I feel like my music has a global appeal so I want to see the sound spread and connect with people everywhere.”

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Posted on February 21, 2019