Mello Music Group continues to just pump out consistent music and this year is no difference. L’Orange and Solemn Brigham have known each other for a minute but it wasn’t until now that the two came together to become “Marlowe”. They released their self-titled debut back in July. Today they’re here with a bonus cut called “Vagrant” I had the chance to ask a couple questions about the album and their relationship. You can peep “Vagrant” below and make sure you peep “Marlowe” HERE.
Dead End Hip Hop: Fill me in on how the two of you came together?
We went to college together. My first memory of working with him was driving around campus listening to him rap to these wack beats I made back in the day and being blown away by his style. After I moved away from North Carolina, we stopped working together but stayed friends.
You could call it fate or coincidence. Most MC’s start rapping pretty early in life and it was the same for me up until college. I used to rap with some of my friends- one of them recorded me once and said he knew this mysterious producer. Not long after that I was working on an album with L’Orange. After that I was more than just a dude who could rap.
DEHH: Nowadays a group project seems to be a rarity. How did the name Marlowe come about?
Marlowe is a name I’ve wanted to use for a long time. I wanted to tell a story with this new character involved. Once Solemn and I started brainstorming, it clicked that this was the right way to tell that story.
Group projects are rare which is another reason I was so pumped to make this album. As different as L’Orange and Solemn Brigham are as artists, there are several places we meet in terms of musicality and philosophy. I like the seriousness and sense of mystery that comes with the name Marlowe. It perfectly represents where our worlds collide.
DEHH: Solemn your energy on this record is vibrant and explosive on here. What was it like working with L’Orange? (Also props on the Fred Sanford track he’s one of themy favorite characters of all time).
First off all respect to the O.G. Fred Sanford. Really pleased you felt the energy of the album as well. Working with L’Orange is familiar territory for me so it was more like chillin blazin and hangin with the homie while making dope music. I think that’s why the album has so much life. There were crazy moments and frustrating times but it was exactly how I always pictured making music, pure enjoyment. So to everyone looking for some jewels…. make sure you enjoy yourself.
DEHH: Now L’O on one hand I feel like I can pinpoint a L’Orange beat when I hear it, on the other hand every project you’re involved in has a unique sound. What was the motivation behind the sound on this record?
This was a new take for me. Instead of going to my usual jazz records, I tried to draw on a different era of music. I was looking for a vintage international sound: psych, surf, experimental.
DEHH: When cats are done listening to “Marlowe” what do you want them to walk away with? And I might be pushing it a bit, but will we get a sequel record from you two in the future?
When people finish that last hit of Marlowe, I want you to feel a sense of empowerment. I want you to know that the energy you just felt was us being and feeling alive and doing our best to seize control. You too can have power, just peep game. As for a sequel well, neither of us got killed off in Marlowe so we may return. All I know is if there is a sequel cant nobody play me but me.
DEHH: Can you talk about this bonus cut “Vagrant” you have for us?
Vagrant was a song we worked on together in Seattle. It was one of our favorites but got cut for being a bit different from the rest of the songs musically. It’s a great song, centering around a time in Seattle where Solemn was denied a lyft.
Are you tired of being misjudged? Sick of everyone’s perceptions weighing on you? Do you find yourself playing the villain? Do you have responsibilities you couldn’t give less of a damn about? Do you or have you ever had an afro? If so then Vagrant is for you. Vagrant is to remind you that no matter what you do, we don’t define ourselves. People see what they want to see.