By Danae Reid
Obsidian Studios — nestled in a quiet part of South Philadelphia — really lives up to its name, in the sense that the more prominent figures in the business have managed to create something beautifully complex following a string of hardships, hard luck, and immense pressure on all fronts.
Although the newly established recording studio is tucked off on a private and quiet street in South Philadelphia, its founders are nothing of the sort. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to talk with artists, Shep (founder), Kain (sound engineer/producer), Tokxic (sound engineer/producer), and Chase (in-house photographer) recently about the new studio, whose doors officially opened in June of this year, but according to founder Shep, has “been in the works “for life.”
Entering the studio itself was quite the experience, as the dark interior completely contrasts the pristine exterior look and feel of the building. Greeted with a dark room that boldly displayed red accent pieces, including a red neon light with the studio’s name hanging on the wall, I wasn’t initially sure what to expect from the studio or the conversation. However, I was pleased to be greeted by a group of men whose prime objectives are to make sure their guests and artists feel comfortable, and to only create and promote quality music. And while the studio has a more “emo-esque” feel to it, the music created in their studio is not limited to any set genre or sub-genre.
“We really cater to the customer and their vibe,” Shep said. “We figure out people’s energy and make them feel comfortable. Everyone who comes in here, we make them feel good… Sometimes people [contact us] just to come and chill, not even to record.” Obsidian Studios has amazing up to date equipment and technology, a recording booth, multiple instruments for any artists looking to play live music, cameras, as well as a photography and podcast studio that’s still under construction, but looks extremely promising. It seems that together, they’ve created the perfect facility to aid in the success of the many artists they serve, which explains why the atelier has seen such great success and is already on the fast track to expand out West.
Even with the newness of the studio and “word of mouth” being their main source of marketing, Obsidian has already housed several acts, some of which you may have heard of before. Names like WifisFuneral, H20 Hadd, YBN, Divine Jay, Omelly, and Beanie Sigel casually hang on their artists “wall of fame.”
“We have different artists coming in to record every single day… [Artists] can come in to write, record, produce, make beats, shoot videos, whatever… and we help them. We want this to be a one-stop shop” Tokxic said.
When I jokingly asked the question, “Well, when do you guys sleep?”, the general response was that they sleep when they have time because there’s “work to be done”.
Studio space is relatively inexpensive as the “three-headed G.O.A.T.”, (as Tokxic candidly referred to himself, Kain, and Sheep as), all grew up with a certain affinity for music, therefore they all really care about amplifying the artistry of Philly, aiding artists in their journey and wanting their space to be as accessible as possible because of it.
The future of Obsidian looks bright as they plan to expand, host and put on live shows (post COVID-19), offer internships, provide space for photoshoots, talk shows, podcasts, and continue to grow and elevate. For more information on Obsidian Studios, how to book studio space, the services they provide and more, check out their website at: www.obsidianphilly.com.