A leading figure in UK hip hop, Verb T has been a staple in the scene since the days of Low Life Records, “I just started making music, and around that era is when Harry Love produced ‘Murda’ by Klashnekoff and ‘Alcoholic Author’ by Jehst” he recalls when we speak on the phone, “I was getting my foot in, travelling to other cities to perform, getting my shows right – it really put me on the map to be fair. I know there’s a lot of, kind of, shade been thrown on that whole situation but I have very good memories of it – I can’t really hate on it looking back because, it kinda helped build me up as an artist. Taught me a lot about making music and the whole process of putting music out. I was making songs just to make songs, but I had no idea of how to go about putting them out.”
Verb T has gone from strength to strength since the early days of Low Life and later releasing music on YNR in 2009. Respected for his raw takes and vivid imagery not only as a soloist but as a valued part of the Four Owls and High Focus family. Verb T is set to release a new LP in collaboration with Manchester’s Pitch 92 titled, ‘Good Evening’. “We’ve probably crossed paths so many times over the years, it’s funny,” he says when I ask how they met. “He was living in Leeds back when me and Kashmere were touring in the Low Life days, and I think he was like 14 at the time or something. We did a show and he came to watch it, funnily enough the guy that done the artwork for this album – Nearski – done that flyer so it’s kind of mad the way it’s just all come round.”
Pitch 92 has been at the heart of a hip hop resurgence in Manchester in recent times, a mastermind of the Mouse Outfit sound, Pitch has been touring the world since he was 17 sharing the stage with Mos Def, De La Soul, Pharcyde & Black Sheep along the way – refining his talent as a producer and cultivating his own style of funk and soul infused hip hop instrumentals.
Three years in the making ‘Good Evening’ promises to be a hard hitter, “It’s done on an epic scale. The reason I took so long is because I only wanted to do the stuff that felt strong and powerful to me.” their latest release from the LP ‘Get Away Car’ is a hint of what’s to come. Always one to flex his storytelling talent, Verb T talks about battling fears over a typically soul filled and intricate Pitch ‘92 production. He breaks down the concept of the new track: “if you listen to ‘Getaway Car’ the first verse is kinda abstract, it’s about me being lonely, solitary. You can obsess completely about what you’re worried about and that, it affects you more than if it actually happened. If you keep your head in that state, you’re going to be fearful of everything, it’s about not letting fear ruin your life.”
Released on High Focus records, October 6 ‘Good Evening’ is a welcome to the next chapter for a pair of artists that have grown their names from the ground up, ‘Good Evening’ boasts a swathe of features from the best known names – Ocean Wisdom, Jehst, DRS, Fliptrix, BVA, King
Kashmere of Strange U, Sparkz, Black Josh, Rye Shabby, Confucious MC and Moreone. “the music I make is quite raw and I kept the raw element in there because that’s the type of hip hop I love and grew up on; but I wanted something sonically that would adapt, so I could ride a range of sounds.”
Watch ‘Getaway car’ below: