The hip-hop streets are in great hands, and one team is leading the charge in an unmatched authentic way. It’s GXFR aka Griselda, and they do a great job of “restoring the feeling” yet being fresh, new and exciting to the most significant number of rap music creators and consumers to date.
Who is Griselda? Westside Gunn, Benny The Butcher and Conway The Machine. We can’t forget about Daringer, who is the lead sound for this trio. Names you may have heard before over the last eight years or so, but names you need to get familiar with if you are looking for your grimy hip-hop fix. They also have a right amount of work with the legendary Alchemist and have collaborated with some of our icons in legends like Raekwon, The L.O.X and the late Great Prodigy of Mobb Deep.
If you were a fan of Mobb Deep, Duck Down and Wu-Tang in the ’90s than this music is definitely worth your ears. That classic 90’s grit and lyrical savagery have been repackaged in Gunn, Benny, and Conway but it feels brand new and timeless. The X-factor is they are from Buffalo, NY, so the street content is similar, but it’s not the same sights, lingo and perspective of the 5 Burroughs and Staten Island. The streets of Buffalo are not safe, not even for the Griselda team and they make that clear in detail every song and every project.
The most significant part of all this is these guys can rhyme! The storytelling is detailed and visible, and it’s enough fly talk to keep a surface fan interested. Westside Gunn is the Fly God. He talks his slick shit and gives you realness and humor. Benny The Butcher is the storyteller. He paints masterpieces, and his metaphors of the street in sports analogy are entertaining and thought-provoking. Conway The Machine is the hardcore lyricist. He delivers the slick bars that are battle worthy. He also is an actual street survivor. A gunshot to the neck and bells palsy couldn’t stop his mission to be the greatest rapper alive, and he may be one project away from everyone agreeing on his stance.
Let’s say, authentic street music isn’t your thing. Maybe the wrestling ties will hook you into the GXFR team. Gunn and Conway call themselves Hall & Nash. Some of their skits include sound bytes from Arn Anderson, Bret Hart, Randy Savage, and Bobby Heenan among others. They have songs called ”Elizabeth” “Dean Malenko” “WrestleMania 20” “Fin Balor” and “Bullet Klub.” Westside Gunn carries around “The NWO Title” and has used Chris Benoit with three eyes for an album cover. It’s honestly a very cool layer to very aggressive, lyrically savvy music.
I was glad to see they finally have more music on streaming services. For the last couple of years, the majority of their product was exclusively on Sound cloud and direct to consumer CDs. To see the Hitler Wears Hermes series, Butcher on Steroids and Blakk Tape on TIDAL was a sign that they are genuinely cutting through, the demand is, and the business is only getting bigger and better.
My next hope is they bring back some of the merchandise that I was late to the party on. Their artwork and merch are much like their music. Grimy, creative but too cold to ignore and not support. They are collector’s items that go for at least three times the original price on eBay right now. Their following is loyal and they have a unique, high-quality product that you want to buy into.
Don’t look for these men to take over Billboard pop charts and have a hit record spun hourly on Top 40 stations. Look for the cult following of young men and women who want to hear some hard shit from guys that lived it and did it. Look for infectious beats, high caliber rhyming, and authenticity that is understood through the feeling of every track. GXFR is by far the Hardest Team in America!
Projects CamQuotes Recommend:
Benny The Butcher - Butcher on Steroids, My First Brick, A Friend of Ours and Tana Talk 3
Conway The Machine - Reject 2, Machine on Steroids, G.O.A.T (Grimiest Of All Time) and Blakk Tape
Westside Gunn - Hitler Wears Hermes 1 through 6, FLYGOD is Good…All The Time and Supreme Blientele
Also check out their Cyphers on Sway in The Morning and collaborations with Meyhem Lauren, MF Doom, and Roc Marciano.
Salute to Griselda! In GXFR we trust!