If Common were to have a lovechild with Asher Roth, the product would be Prime Example. And that child’s been playing around the city block for some time. Over the past five years, Steve0bvious, MarcMostro, JoeLocus, and IronMic, collectively known as Prime Example, have been honing their skills, performing wherever they can—Broadway Joes, Mohawk Place, Krudmart, free styling with friends, and just soaking up the local hip hop scene. In doing so, they’ve garnered a pretty large local following.
Last year, the fellas from Hertel Ave in North Buffalo decided it was time to get serious about their craft and have begun producing tracks for listeners online. Their first EP, Modern Marvels, is set to drop in mid-October. They currently also have projects in the works with renowned Buffalo DJ Optimus Prime.
Something all four guys can agree on: Hip hop. It’s in the blood.
“[Group member JoeLocus’] brother is a local hip hop veteran, Third Son, and we grew up with his influence of making beats and writing and composing songs and lyrics right before our eyes. We've always had an appreciation for hip hop and a love for the culture and the music,” said Steve0bvious (Steve Syracuse).
Their laid-back, clean beats, and soulful rhyming make a city sound that’s memorable. It’s groove music at it’s best: playful and light on the ears. The guys are clever lyricists and utilize metaphorical language in different ways. The Jazz/blues influences in tracks such as “Bringin’ it Back” and “You” make their sound nostalgic. That’s always been their goal, Steve said: to bring back old school hip hop, but to put their spin on it.
“The beautiful thing about Prime Example is that we're a four-man power house. We do songs solo. We do songs together. Songs with 2 of us, or 3 of us, or the whole crew. But we're all prime example. We're brothers, and we all have the same goal. And that's to change the face of music.”
Far-sounding from a jazz sax is the heart beat behind “Soul Cybernetics,” a funk infused track about the importance of soul. The rhythm and sounds in “Simple, Repeat” take me back to the age of Pong and Super Mario, an age where video games were simple, fun and relaxing, and non-consuming. And when people died in them, you didn’t feel so bad. That’s kind of how I feel listening to it.
The guys are excited for their freshman release, which Steve says will contain engaging material and deeper subject matter.
“You can expect conscious lyrics, thought-provoking beats…and hip hop in its true, raw form. No gimmicks, no fronts. This album is going to show people who we really are and what we're here to do, it's a statement of our personalities and character,” Steve said. “If we can make people bob their head, throw their hands up, and sing the hooks with us, we did our job. This project at the end of the day is fun for us, and we have no doubt that the listeners will have a good time listening to it as well.”
Prime Example is working on launching their official website this month, which will include all of the tracks they have produced thus far. For now, check them out at here.