D.R.O
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D.R.O

San Antonio, Texas, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2015 | INDIE

San Antonio, Texas, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2015
Solo Hip Hop Instrumental

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"15 fresh tracks you need in your life"

The debut release from an Austin artist destined for underground cred, released on the new Sydney label, Fifty Records. - RedBull


"Talkin’ Turkey with D.R.O"

There’s an air of mystery to this 22-year-old American rapper, but we like it. D.R.O. hails from San Antonio, Texas and has signed with independent Aussie label Fifty Records. He is about to release his debut, self-produced EP entitled D.R.O. EP next week and no pressure on him, but it is going to be the first ever release for Fifty Records. Woohoo! What has turned out to be more like an LP is a creative contradiction of D.R.O.’s work. He is eager to get to Australia and stay here for at least a year, play some shows and see what can happen. So, without further ado, D.R.O. welcome to Australia. You’re future fans await you.

Vulture Magazine: You’re from Austin, Texas but you’ve signed to independent Aussie label Fifty Records. How did this come about? Did you find them or did they find you?

D.R.O.: I’m a very frequent user of SoundCloud and about two years ago I started posting tracks on there. The Jazz Diaries first found me, and Casey [van Reyk] from Fifty Records was working with them. Things didn’t work out with them but Casey decided to make her own record label and release my stuff on it. She just really liked the direction I was going in.



VM: Normally Aussie artists are trying to get signed in the US but you’re doing the complete opposite. Was that a hard decision for you to make?

D.R.O.: No, not at all. I was just happy that someone was looking at my music. I don’t know if this is common among other American artists but I like the idea of starting more international. I feel it’s more accepted to be different. I feel like it’s more palatable in different places especially being an American artist. Fifty Records were just very welcoming and into the style that I had and was down to release a vinyl record, so there was no way I could turn that down. It worked out perfectly.



VM: Why are you releasing your EP as a vinyl and not just making it available online?

D.R.O.: I just want to get my music out there and a vinyl sounds amazing. At least in the US, vinyls are getting way more popular. I’ve always wanted to put something on wax and vinyls are so warm. Analogue sounds fantastic and that’s another thing I couldn’t deny doing. It just sounded beautiful. The artwork is also something you can hang up; it’s not just a decal on a screen, it’s a physical copy. I’ve got the first edition framed. It becomes an interactive piece of work.



VM: Your soundscape is not your traditional hip-hop sound. Where do you draw your musical influences from, and what can we expect from this EP?

D.R.O.: Each song is different cause over the years I have gone through many different phases as far as hip-hop and other genres go. I’ve been listening to artists like Arthur Russell, Bradley Nowell, Ariel Pink, MF Doom, AZ who ran with Nas, a lot of Joey Badass and Earl Sweatshirt. I just listen to so many different genres. I get inspired by hip-hop artists who really try to make meaningful music and really try to push the boundaries. One person that’s really influenced me recently is Kendrick Lamar. It’s all I could ever hope for; to make something meaningful and close to me and push the envelope and to have this form of expression that causes other people to push it as well.



VM: For those who aren’t all that familiar with the Austin music scene, can you give us an insider’s perspective?

D.R.O.: You know, you really can find everything here. I’ve been to house shows and SXSW events, but really the best thing in Austin is being able to find those personal sets, for me especially. I was into going to the big amphitheatres and checking out the mainstream artists or bigger underground artists, but in Austin on any given night you can go to a pub, a house, hear about things by word of mouth, look at your favourite artists on Twitter see what they’re doing and go see them. There’s a cool hip-hop scene here too.



VM: Your EP is the first ever release for Fifty Records. Do you feel some kind of pressure being the first?

D.R.O.: No, it’s just been so smooth you know. There’s just genuine vibes everywhere. It’s been a great experience all around and if Casey’s feeling it, then I’m feeling it. There’s really no pressure for me because I mean it’s been pretty popular so far; people have been vibing it and I believe in myself and I believe I’ve made a solid hip-hop record, even though it’s different to what a lot of other people may have heard. I think it’s more conceptualised than a lot of stuff coming out of America at least.



VM: You’re only 22 and already creating such great music. Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

D.R.O.: It’s really hard to answer something like that. It’s not that I don’t have goals or certain things I want to accomplish, it’s just that I live by the fluidity of life and move day-by-day or second by second and I could be anywhere. But no matter where it is, it’ll be a positive place because I am positive right now. But if I had to pinpoint 10 years, wow 32, I’d love to be in a country home making beats, making beautiful music with family, friends and have my own land and just be creating amazing art that influences people. Nothing sounds better. I guess that’s my ultimate. I don’t know exactly where I’ll be but I know it’ll be a good place. - Vulture Magazine


"Fifty Records Launches With D.R.O.'s DRO EP; Stream it Now"

Today, just-launched Australian label Fifty Records released Austin-based hip-hop artist D.R.O.'s debut full length, DRO EP.

Although it's titled DRO EP, the release is a full length album, with 10 raw and atmospheric hip-hop tracks written, produced, and mastered by D.R.O. himself. The young Texas artist weaves a deep tapestry of smoky sound design, melancholic samples, and rickety beats, forming a bed on top of which he spits his rolling vocal lines. With full creative control courtesy of Fifty Records, D.R.O. also choose the brilliant artwork, further honing in on his artistic vision.

DRO EP is available now over at the Fifty Records Bandcamp page, with the album also streaming below. - XLR8R


"Austin rapper & producer D.R.O joins Fifty Records"

New label Fifty Records is launching into the scene with Austin, Texas based D.R.O the first artist to join its roster. The debut release is named the ‘DRO EP’ but is satisfyingly closer to a full-length record featuring 10 tracks available as a digital download and limited vinyl release via bandcamp.

D.R.O – a combination of his initials – says, “I recently graduated from college where I studied psychology, and I really wanted to explore Type A and Type B behaviors and represent them on separate sides of the record.” This fortunately doesn’t hinder the mixtape flow of the EP but there is a tension to the A-side whilst the flip offers up a more hopeful world. Featuring original raps and beats by the 22 year old artist, this record is alive with the crackle and flutter of sample culture and illbient atmospheres. D.R.O’s kicks and snares bounce and roll, high-hats tick and splash; drumming up the hours spent tuning beats, and curious samples found digging for gold.



D.R.O’s rap delivery is diverse and moves between the screwed grooves of ASAP Rocky and the straight-up flows of Eminem. Top-notch production and effects takes them to the next level yet unsurprisingly D.R.O says “the instrumentals are probably my favourite tracks on there. You can just feel them and interpret them however you want. At first, I thought it was risky to have an instrumental as the first track, but I decided to do it.” That track is called ‘Freestyle To This’, and D.R.O adds, “I like the idea of people really freestyling to it, and getting what they want out of it.

Another standout track is ’40 0z. to Freedom’ feat. MARS: a slow burning beat joint blending soft jazz guitar with a lush synth pad, and the two rappers playing out an introspective stream of consciousness. Also of note is ‘Ubergrappes’ feat. A Giraffe and a Half, a soaring instrumental refrain of illbient breaks carrying the listener onwards to the blissful ending of ‘To: You’.



Sydney based label boss Casey van Reyk has secured the debut vinyl release with artwork by Ricardo Tomita limited to 200 copies. In late 2013, she joined forces with Jitwam Sinha and Nigel Mphisa to start independent record label The Jazz Diaries. Since then, van Reyk explains “I just knew his [D.R.O's] music had to be heard, and I really wanted to release it, so I decided to start my own label.” A champion in the Sydney EDM scene, van Reyk says Fifty Records has a manifesto that allows each artist to have full creative control. As van Reyk explains, “We don’t want to lock artists into doing something they don’t want to do. We really want to nurture them.”. Budding producers can find Fifty Records on facebook and Soundcloud. - FFF Radio


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

Born and raised in San Antonio, TX, D.R.O is a rapper, musician, producer, and MC with a quick change-up and an even faster tongue. Known best for his versatile, energetic flow, his style combines Slim Shady’s early irreverence and the lyrical musings of MF Doom and Earl Sweatshirt. He produces all of his own beats and is quick to mention artists like Arthur Russell, Bradley Knowell, and Frank Ocean as important creative influences. With two full length LP’s under his belt and another one on the way, his sense of self-sufficient auteurism helps to explain why he names his single biggest influence as fellow Southern underground rapper/producer Big KRIT. D.R.O is currently signed with the Australian record label Fifty Records out of Sydney, and he’ll be the first one to tell you that he doesn’t smoke weed; his name means whatever you want it to mean. You can listen to him on Spotify, Apple Music, and Bandcamp, or you can buy his self-titled breakthrough album on vinyl here: https://theofficialdro.bandcamp.com