Manchester hip-hop/grime/bass trio Raw Calibre — MCs Guillotine Mack, Mic Beef and Christov — live by the credo that you can only rhyme about what you know. This authenticity informs every word and beat on their upcoming debut EP, Hierarchy.
We’re pleased to world premiere the EP’s lead track “Madman,” a hard-hitting, in-your-face, bass-driven tune inspired by the wrongful conviction of the triumvirate’s frontman Guillotine Mack. Produced by legendary dubstep/bass producer MRK1, the song touches on socio-economic issues and pulls no punches.
Listen to “Madman,” and get to know these rising talents in our exclusive interview below.
Raw Calibre’s Hierarchy EP is out mid-July on Waxman Music.
How long did it take for the debut to come together?
Raw Calibre: Since the early days of Guillotine Mack’s release [from prison] we became clear on the concept of the debut. Since then we have signed to Waxman Music and have been spending a lot of time both in and out of the studio looking to grow the sound and EP concept. Once we began to collaborate with Mark1, who produced the entire EP, we knew that his sound would compliment the direction we were looking to head in.
Manchester has such a rich musical history. What role if any has it played in Raw Calibre’s evolution?
The rich musical history of Manchester has benefitted the three of us from our early years. Taking different musical influences from both commercial and underground artists, this is where our love for music began.
There were some heavy circumstances that led to writing “Madman.” What exactly happened?
The main part of the story is that Guillotine Mack was convicted and sentenced to a stint in prison. We met with Guillotine Mack regularly as soon as he was released. He shared with us his stories from his time inside and what he had come to realize.
By mixing with inmates from all backgrounds and walks of life, he had created his own interpretation of the way things work in the world today. Our feelings were mutual and it was at this point that Raw Calibre was born.
Who would be on your grime Mount Rushmore?
Ooh, tough one. It would be a big mountain if we named them all. We have many grime musical influences from across the UK. To name just a few we would say Dizzie Rascal, Wiley, Kano, Skepta, Ghetts and Virus Syndicate.
What’s next for Raw Calibre? Any summer gigs?
Well, the debut single “Madman” is due for release in June with the EP being released in early July. We have some gigs planned towards the end of summer and later in the year. Watch this space.