Right now, your friendly neighborhood khal is going to hip you to some romantic christmas gift ideas from this website I recently got hipped to. You know the old saying, diamonds are a girl's best friend, right? Well, at Danforth Diamond you can get a great selection of pieces, from engagement rings and wedding bands to pieces that you know will make your shorty melt. The hot thing about Danforth is that you can knock off 30-40% when you cop their items online. See, it's all about saving that almighty dollar these days. And you know the calender days are dropping, so you better hop on it quick, or you will be left at the Christmas gathering looking dumb and feeling dumber. Think it over, and then check out Danforth.
Archive for 10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006
(Editor's note: this shuffle is for the week ending 11-18-2006; some of this news might be considered "old news", but it needed to be covered no matter what... deal wit da matta!)
What a week, what a week. Stress, stress and more stress... do any of you guys NOT have a job? How do you cope? How the hell do you SURVIVE with little to no money? I'll be happy when my accounts are not in the red... but, a change gon' come, I can feel it...
This has been a crazy week, headline wise... no mistaking it, let's get right down to it.
01/For those who report the news, Jay-Z's leaked album did not come to the headlines until the 13th of November. This of course after the seedy underground had rocked with it since that Friday. Surprisingly, Def Jam said that there would be no pulling back the album, or trying to switch up the flow. This is surprising because the last time one of Jay's albums got leaked in a major way, a nigga got stabbed. Maybe it's because in this day and Internets-age, Jay had no fucking idea WHO leaked it... I bet anything if word comes out that Just(in) Blaze gave out Kingdom Come, Jay better be kept away from the Ginsu.
02/Speaking of November 13th, did any of you realize it had been two years since ODB passed? RIP to one of Hip-Hop's most beloved individuals... he is truly missed. Now Dame, where the FUCK is that LP?
03/Dipset capo Jim Jones has had his name all over the 'Net for various things... to start things off, Jay-Z finally attacked Jim over the "We Fly High" beat. "Brookyln High" has a very hot first verse, but is not the low-down "Takeover" Jay we were looking for. Not to be outdone, Jim Jones then came back at Jay with the help of Juelz, calling out his "30 something" lines... very interesting. Jim capitalized early on that shit, and Jay should have kept well alone if he wasn't going to seriously go at him. Oh, and to top it all off, it's going to be a Dipset Christmas this year! Shoot me already...
04/Now, folks, here is a bit of album news from the Rap World... Lord helps us. Timbaland is prepping his Timbaland Presents Shock Value album for a March '07 release. He is having everyone from Dr. Dre and Lil' Wayne to Elton John, Bjork and Fall Out Boy features on the album. I hope this comes out better than Diddy's "everyone but Michael Jackson" featured atrocity. The real beef was over Justin Timberlake's "subliminal" disses at SOMEBODY in that "Give It To Me" track... some say it was against Janet, I also heard he might have been spitting at Prince, even though he bit Prince heavily for that sophmore album of his... who fucking knows, who cares really. ...Big Boi is set to put out his 1st (well, 2nd) solo LP due in 2007. He is reported to have said that you can expect something from every genre, every type of sound, on this album... that will sound just like Speakerboxxx. OK so we are gonna encompass many different styles to sound just like the same shit I put out 3 years ago? OutKast fans will probably eat it up, and it might have a decent groove behind it, but after this Idlewild nonsense, will anyone care? ...Fat Joe and The Game both had LPs dropping on the 14th, and decided to link up and buy 10 copies of each other's albums... now only if Joe could have helped The Game from being arrested for police officer impersonation. Now I can't trust a cabbie for shit, but why would he just come out and be like "yo, dude said he was a cop"? What does he gain out of that? Game wants to keep the buzz flowing, so he told neph to speed through the lights. Simple. ...on the interview from, Ghostface speaks out on why he did not attend the VH1 Hip-Hop Honors this year, Raekwon breaks bread with Format Mag and Katt Wiliams breaks down his Hip-Hop jones for XXL. XXL also reported that Jacob the drug-dealing Jewler is suing Scarface for some unpaid jewelry. Now, what the fuck... your legal fees are less that $37K? Get your priorities straight, dumbass. ...And do you guys really give a fuck about an Irv Gotti reality show? I thought they'd start trying to highlight niggas that actually meant something... not the fucker behind Ja Rule's success.
05/You have to admire the fucking BALLS OJ Simpson has. This nigga is honestly going to come out with a book entitled ... wait for it... If I Did It!?!?! And the fucking publisher is like "I think this is his confession?!" AND FOX IS GOING TO AIR TWO SPECIALS ABOUT IT?! What the hell is this world coming to... OJ, word to the wise: 1) you got off. You, well J.C., duped the legal system out in LA and you are a free man - that double jeopardy law is NOT going away anytime soon, so just go somewhere and lay low. You are living off your NFL pension, and you have your lil cake. Shit, just be quiet. 2) Speaking of that money, you need to keep your name out of the limelight --- one of these days, Ron Goldman's pops is going to go buck on you something ugly. I mean, you haven't paid what you owe by the civil suit, so the more you talk shit, the more they gonna find your ass bloodied in whatever spot you stay now. Dumb nigga.
06/Now a guy like me, who is a sort-of artist, can't make a dime off the 2 blogs he runs, but dead-ass Andy Warhol's paintings are still going for $17.4 million?!?!
07/Sony's Playstation 3 system has dropped , and non-working momma's boys stayed up all night to cop it. Their asses are some smart-dumb asses, though, just check the eBay auctions that are popping up; if my cash was that disposable, I probably would have copped 3 and tripled my money. The craziest thing about this is people getting shot at while waiting in line -- with BBs, but still, that's insane. Not as bad as the crazy white boys who are smashing the new Wii right in front of people. That's just pure comedy.
08/Did anyone else notice (or give a fuck) about kris ex leaving his blogging post over at XXL? I mean, hell, he's a dope print writer --- I don't think he got the whole blogging thing, but so be it, I loved his swagger, and enjoy his article immensely. My question is, with the additions of a music video review blog and a mixtape review blog, when is ya boy khal going to get his own XXL blog? Hook it up, YN, I'm open to any ideas.
09/Did you guys think Kevin Federline was going to just lounge out while Brit divorced him? Nah, ya boy K-Federoni is out there partying! 4 kids, and he's got the balls to be out chillin in South Beach. I have a 2 month old son -- there's no WAY I can go out partying like that. If I go out, I am in by 2. Shit, then I wake up with the lil' man around 7am. Does Kev do that? No his scruffy ass is up smoking dutches. *SIGH* ... and he has a sex tape now? $20 says this thing is going to hit YouTube in a week or so... or she will either a) put out a protective order or b) leak the shit herself, make all of the money. Does anyone really want to see him fucking Brit though? I mean, I guess she's a dirty ass bird in the sack... I can only imagine. Do you really want to see K-Fed's fuck face though?
OK that's all I got right now... its a Hard Knock Life. Be prepared, I might have something special for you niggas next week. For right now, peep out my boy DJ Nappy's Extended RMX of Ghostface Killah's "Daytona 500". And I'm out.
I've been wanting to make an ignorant/commercial Hip-Hop mixtape for some time... enter "Ill-bred". The idea behind this mixtape is just shit that makes you move. This is drinking music, and if you smoke, smoking music. No frills, no declarations of "Hip-Hop needs a change"... just some ridin' music. They are some of my favorites from 2006 (with some other things thrown in there), including some pretty new shit. I also had to throw in some shit from my boy DJ Nappy and his various project: the "Izzo" RMX is from the Wired Weird project featuring Beat Bully, Definate, Big Jerms and Nappy, and the "Allure" RMX is from Definate & Nappy's The Green Album mixtape, which was Jay's Black Album acapellas over original beats. That version features MC Tony Ccino (RIP). Had to do it.
In any case, here is the tracklisting. Be forewarned: if you were fans of the other mixes I have done, this is not on that steeze at all. This is feel good music, with grooves you can vibe with. Don't try to dig too deep into a lot of the rhymes on these, they are pretty much just there to supplement the beats. In any case, check it out:
You gotta love it. If you don't s'all good. This is where my head is at when I need to unwind in the 2006. Save the backpacks for your gats and stolen goods. We going to the bar on this one.
01/Lil' Scrappy ft. Young Buck "Money In The Bank"
02/Three 6 Mafia "Poppin' My Collar"
03/DJ Khaled ft. Slim Thug, Trina & Chamillionaire "Candy Paint"
04/Trick Daddy "I Pop"
05/Trae ft. Lil' Keke "Screw Done Already Warned Me"
06/Chino XL ft. Snoop Dogg "Don't Run From Me (Remix)"
07/Ludacris ft. Field Mob "Ultimate Satisfaction"
08/Cory Gunz ft. Lil' Wayne "I Gotcha"
09/Ghostface Killah "The Champ (unreleased version)"
10/Sean Price ft. Buckshot "Cardiac"
11/Jadakiss ft. Swizz Beatz "It Can Get Ugly"
12/Mobb Deep "Capital P, Capital H"
13/Busta Rhymes ft. Raekwon "Goldmine"
14/Clipse "Momma I'm Sorry"
15/Nas ft. Jay-Z "Black Republicans"
16/Jay-Z "Kingdom Come"
17/Jay-Z "Izzo (Wired Weird Mashup)"
18/Jay-Z ft. Tony Ccino "Allure ('Green Album' Remix)"
SendSpace link :: Megaupload link :: MORE LINKS TO COME!
If anyone wants to be nice and host this or upload it to another file-sharing site, let me know!
This is vol. 6 of the Dub Sessions. I don't think anyone has heard vol. 2, which I might redo, and I know for a fact no one has heard vol. 3, because 3 got deleted! Coming soon, though.
Just letting you faithful readers know that my Nov. 18th edition of the shuffle might be delayed a day or so... my peoples are getting the Pacquiao-Morales III fight, and I might be trekking up there to catch it. I apologize if any of you are dying to catch up on this weeks news from a rock the dub perspective, but I need a mental health night... OK, carry on.
Damn job search has ya boy going mental... but at least I'm getting to listen to music at the spot. Loads of new material came in this week, and this list does not even cap off the Hip-Hop & DnB I peeped this week, but some of that shit is on the low to protect the unprotected. More on that if/when it comes out. Peep game:
01/Clipse "Ride Around Shining" [leaks galore this week... is this CD the album of the year? my review in a couple of weeks will let you know the skinny on it...]
02/Jay-Z "Brooklyn High" [Jay finally disses Jim Jones, over the "We Fly High" beat. Gotta love that 1st verse.]
03/Snoop Dogg ft. R Kelly "That's That Shit" [that beat is so nice, I can't help it.]
04/Birdman & Lil' Wayne ft. Fat Joe "About All That" [you can't deny that southern gospel feel in the organs and shit. One of Wayne's best verses on that LP. shouts to Hav for the heads up.]
05/The Game "I'm Chillin'" [UK-only bonus track to his "Doctor's Advocate" CD. Diggin' that shit forreal.]
06/Martyn "Believe It" [he keeps getting better. first one for Bassbin, and it's a keeper.]
07/Clipz "Download" [001 for Clipz' Audio Zoo imprint... funny as hell! that intro is crack.]
08/Twisted Indiviudal "Boob Job" [his grooves are so fine, so unorthodox, so not the norm, I can't help but get into them.]
09/kapsil "Numb" [double J doing the damn thing on the DnB tip.]
10/Fracture & Neptune "Ventura" [no real need to explain. Sleep if you want, this one is the jam!]
if you peeps are looking for mixes, check out my latest "FYLP" post on dubplate digest.
I'm about to eat and get back on this job search grind, but here is a YouTube final thought:
As I listen to my son hum in the background, I sit here, applying to work-at-home jobs and these "pay to blog" ones as well... trying to be the perfect father and a freelance writer is not easy.
I just have dreams that seem impossible. Is my writing that horrid that I cannot get paid to do what moves me? Is this world really so insane that people can fake a degree and fabricate their entire careers, or make up chunks of their lives and become best sellers, yet a nigga who writes what he feels ends up penniless? I mean, I do my writing... not to brag, but my writing has appeared for not only Dogs On Acid, one of the largest electronic dance music websites out there, but I have done pieces for the now defunct e-zine, The Flow, as well as had my pieces land on press releases for the Horizons Music Group of labels in the UK. I have done interviews and reviews (check the right panel if you doubt me) for this site, and continue to plug away when needed or drove to. My output might not be in the numbers of someone like Bol, but I still puts in my work. I just don't get what I need to do... should I go on an attack, ranking on fellow bloggers and the hands that feed me? Should I start some ridiculous plot to get Dubya to notice my posts? Do I need to get cancer or something, and devote long posts to chemo?
I am not going to sell out, nor sell myself for something I do not believe is geniuine... yet it seems like that's what I have to do.
This isn't a cry for help, this is just a rant. Journal-taktics, bitch. Soak it up.
Martsman: I guess most people would probably call it “Leftfield Drum & Bass”. I can’t really name a particular style nor do I aim to go into a certain direction though. It’s Drum & Bass in a way I would like it to sound like.
khal: The way you produce reminds many of producers like Squarepusher or Alpha Omega: edited breaks with an attitude of pretty much “anything goes” for the rest of the track. How do you approach producing?
Martsman: When I started listening to Drum & Bass, it wasn’t mainly the typical mid- to end-nineties sound most of the DJs played (Jump Up, Techstep etc.), but more the musical and experimental stuff from the Reinforced camp. The sounds of Alpha Omega and Sonar Circle were basically what I got to know as “Drum & Bass” in the first row, followed by artists like Squarepusher, Aphex Twin or Plug. For me, Drum & Bass is the name for a particular framework. Within this framework, basically “anything goes”. I love to play around with expectations, breaks and breakdowns out of the blue, stop-and-goes, glitches and the like. I would like people to start reflecting about the music they listen to again. It’s not about getting too intellectual, so that the audience can’t enjoy it anymore, but more in a way of creating awareness of the fact that there is music to listen to and not only some sound to fidget to like mad.
khal: For the gear-heads out there, can you describe what your studio setup is like? Is there one piece of equipment that you couldn’t work without? If so, why?
Martsman: Simply put: I don’t have hardware equipment besides two small Genelec 8020A monitors, which I bought this year. All I do is software-only. I use a freeware modular tracker called “Jeskola Buzz” running on a laptop PC. I chose Buzz back then because it was freeware, and now I simply can’t imagine working with anything else.
khal: What inspires you to produce? Are you trying to evoke a certain message or feeling with your tunes, or are they more exploration and experimentation or what?
Martsman: I often have precise ideas on what I want to do soundwise – especially when it comes to drumpatterns and basslines. It is like I have like 4 bars of a track in my head and try to work this idea out. Interestingly, I think I haven’t ever really finished a track based on such an idea. It is more like the ideas are a basis for me to start and most of the time trying to work an idea out like this leads to results I don’t expect at all. Sometimes there is an intention or a program behind certain tracks though. Take “Antifunk” on Counter Intelligence for example – the main point about the tune is the break which is not used in a typical breakbeat fashion but in a quite steady and “antifunky” way. In “Jump Funk” the patterns change on the formula “every 8 bars, put in another bassdrum after the last one”. I kinda like concepts with simple mathematics. Most of the inspiration comes from other music, no matter what genre. However, I always take something with me to write ideas down as they often vanish as quick as they come.
khal: I know you are from Germany, but one of your first releases was for Offshore, with “Ago”, which is where I first heard your production. How did you get involved with Offshore, which is primarily based in New York, USA?
Martsman: I got in contact with Brett (DJ Clever – OSR mastermind) via Sileni, another Offshore artist. He put out a track called “Twitchy Droid Leg” back in 2004, which was like an enlightenment for me. I hadn’t heard anything like that before, and all of a sudden, Drum & Bass was making sense to me again. I found out Sileni was posting on “subvertcentral.com”, so I just sent him a message, which he replied to about half a year later. Then everything happened pretty fast – I sent him a couple of tracks and he was quite into them. So he pushed them into Brett’s direction. Brett signed two tracks: “Ago” – which was released in November 2005 as a split release with Commercial Suicide, and “Marksman” – which will be coming on the “Buried Treasures” CD compilation very soon.
khal: Is the DnB scene in Germany large? Do you have any dealings with producers like Amaning or Deep Inc or any of the newer German producers out there?
Martsman: First of all, I have to say that I am not part of the Drum & Bass scene here for as long as several other German producers are. The first contacts with the scene were around 2000 I’d say, and it took another 3-4 years until I started playing out and got into producing properly. So, basically, as things are just starting up for me at the moment I am also just getting involved in the German Drum & Bass scene gradually. However, I was pretty hard to find like-minded people over here. That’s why I’d say I am now in contact with more people outside of Germany than within the country. Nevertheless, there is a growing amount of leftfield producers and DJs here I am in contact with. Cycom from Hamburg, who has releases out on Santorin Records and Alphacut as well as forthcoming bits on Counter Intelligence, Breakin and Transmute and is also active member of Plainaudio, DJ Con.Struct, a promoter from Leipzig and artist of Outsider Recordings, LXC, the Alphacut labelhead, Bad Matter from Berlin (Intransigent Records, Alphacut), the NSF crew from Mannheim (Soothsayer, Exegene), of course all the guys from Plainaudio and quite a bunch of other DJs and promoters. Apparently, when you’re doing leftfield Drum & Bass, you can’t survive music-wise without networking outside of Germany. However, there’s a noticable movement going on here at the moment. And it also depends on where you live. When I moved to Berlin in April, I experienced a much larger audience and also a wider spectrum of musical styles in Drum & Bass, than in Karlsruhe, where I lived before and where people were mostly into one particular style of Drum & Bass which I couldn’t force myself to neither produce nor spin.
khal: In speaking with you previously, I hear you do A&R for Plainaudio. How did that opportunity come about?
Martsman: Plainaudio was founded by Iaka in 2001. After two vinyl releases (Cycom, Barth) the label took a break and relaunched again in 2005 as a netlabel for Drum & Bass as well as Electronica and Experimental. First I was asked to do a release for them and by that time I got involved with the organization as well. Plainaudio is currently run by Iaka and Cycom from Hamburg, Buzz from Dortmund and Flowpro and myself from Berlin.
khal: Speaking of Plainaudio, not only have you put out *free* releases for them, but you have two releases under your belt for the Exegene net label. How do you feel about giving your music away for free? Do you think releases like these will help ease up the p2p trading of mp3s?
Martsman: The main point about netlabels in my opinion is, that, when they are led well, they can reach a much wider audience than vinyl-only labels could ever do – due to podcasts and distribution via blogs, e.g. Plainaudio tracks are distributed via Starfrosch, Europe’s biggest podcast for electronic music. Thanks to that fact we have download rates up to over 20,000 with certain releases at present, steadily growing. As most of the stuff we provide is more musical than the usual DJ-tools, it is not the kind of music that would easily sell on bigger vinyl labels anyway. Therefore, putting tunes out on a netlabel in the context of a release seems to be an adequate way to avoid real gems being lost over time. Don’t get me wrong, there are more and more vinyl-labels out there, that sign and put out this kind of Drum & Bass, but compared to the output of the producers, there are still too few labels to cope with the amount of tracks being done, which are worth to see a release. You often see talented producers give away some of their tracks for free on internet boards nowadays – so why not do it more officially plus promote the tracks in a way they deserve?! Additionally, I consider Netlabels an appropriate way to support artists that aren’t signed to a bigger label yet – they can work like a promotional platform. As far as the p2p problem is concerned – I might be taking it too easy in this concern, but putting out music on vinyl only means putting out music for the DJs only. I suppose most of the people downloading MP3s via p2p networks are music lovers who don’t have the chance to get the tunes else than on vinyl – which doesn’t make sense, when you’re not a DJ, especially when you have to pay the same amount of money for a 12” as for a full CD album. I can’t believe that DJs seriously play out pirated MP3s, at least not if it is still possible to get a copy on wax. And if they do so, shame on them! There are ways to ease the whole problem though. Offshore’s complete back catalogue can be bought on Warp’s BLEEP.com e.g. Other labels provide their tunes on Beatport for just a few bucks. I think that’s a good solution – it doesn’t really solve the problem with p2p, but at least it is an alternative for the non-DJ-audience to get the music they like legally.
khal: I’ve seen a few flicks of you DJing on your MySpace page. What types of tracks to you spin?
Martsman: I personally love every kind of breaks and bouncy stuff and I have a preference for everything that sounds electronic and sterile – tracks that don’t hide the fact that they are made with a computer, “Robot breaks”. I play lots of older stuff from the mid to the end of the nineties as well. I came to Drum & Bass rather late, which allows me to discover the sounds from back then with quite an excitement.
khal: Not to stereotype, but in the style(s) of DnB you produce, there seem to be a number of producers who tend to stick to wanting to promote and preserve the older sounds of DnB. They feel as though a lot of the newer stuff that gets released can be considered rubbish. Do you subscribe to those thoughts? Why or why not?
Martsman: Let me put it this way: It appears to me, that there aren’t too many things still to be done in Drum & Bass. I don’t say this in a pessimistic way, but it’s just a fact that most of the sounds and styles that appear “new” today, were there before. (Although it may sound a bit like a commercial by now, but in my opinion the only piece of Drum & Bass from the last couple of years that really came up with something totally new, was Sileni’s “Twitchy Droid Leg”). The only point is, that they are not as worn out yet as most of the mainstream Drum & Bass appears to be. E.g. I experienced that when I got a chance to go through the old Partisan catalogue recently and listened to some of Deep Blue’s old stuff. Interestingly, he did all this techno-influenced and halftime stuff that’s so en vogue now years ago! (And I think he’s not the only one who did.) Just it appears like no one was really interested. Today Amit’s the name when it comes to halftime stuff, and Martyn’s on his way to become the Detroit & Bass Don – and two yet existing ways to interpret Drum & Bass come to their right not only because their main protagonists do their thing very well but because a wider audience seems willing to accept it. However, I consider most of the recent mainstream Drum & Bass hardly exciting and therefore I guess I am in the same situation as most of the other guys who dig out older styles and sounds. But what makes the difference is probably the majority of them having been part of the scene from the early days on, which I was not. As I said, I came to Drum & Bass rather late and therefore, I don’t make a difference between the original “old stuff” and the “renaissance stuff” from today – it still sounds all fresh and playable to me.
khal: What producer or producers would you say are really making consistently dope tracks, inside and outside the DnB scene?
Martsman: There are quite a bunch of people I would like to name in this regard. Sileni’s the man when it comes to weirdo-robot-freakouts. Apart from “Twitchy Droid Leg” on Offshore there are other tracks out on Planet Mu, Thermal, Subtle Audio and Outsider and some lined up for Subvert Central Recordings as well. They are all more than worth checking out. Martyn’s doing his thing extremely well. From “Nxt 2 U” on play:musik to his remix of Graphic’s “I am metal” on Offshore, he’s consistingly following his path of a straight and yet out-of-the-box dancefloor oriented style. Alpha Omega – a legend back then, a legend now – nuff said. There are Macc, Fanu, Fracture & Neptune, Cycom and lots more from Subvert Central and beyond, who all are very strong when it comes to terms of next generation Drumfunk. In my opinion, there’s quite a lot going on at the moment!
khal: We’ve spoken on your past releases, but what do you have dropping in the near future? Any plans for an EP or LP releases?
Martsman: Sure there are plans, but nothing is settled yet, so I’d rather not talk about it at this point.
khal: Do you have any shout-outs or words of advice you’d like to drop before we wrap this up?
Martsman: I’ve been talking to a lot of DJs who emphasized, that they really would like to play more “out of the box” stuff but are too anxious that the audience would not like it and leave the dancefloor. In my experience, if you are consequent with what you play (and that doesn’t mean only to play for yourself!), most of the people come back after the first confusion. And besides, some more free room ain’t that bad if you really want to dance and not only nod your head, right?
Coming this December, Offshore Recordings is releasing "Twitchy Droid Leg Remixes Part 2", which features a Martsman RMX of Sileni's "Twitchy Droid Leg" on the A side (followed up by a Vex'd RMX on the flip). We also have word that Martsman's "Antifunk", which is forthcoming on Counter Intelligence, is about to hit the testpress stage. Keep your eyes peeled, ears to the ground, and some cash tucked away for these releases.
Martsman on MySpace
Sometimes, there are producers who stay in one lane, never trying to explore or expand their sound. Hochi is not one of those guys. Last December, with his boy Infiltrata at his side, he introduced HEAT VOLUME 1, which showcased what many would call the future of DnB, mainly from one of the hottest new collectives in the game right now, the TEKDBZ Army. Headed by Photek, Hochi, Infiltrata, Mental Sharp and DJ Craze are putting a new spin on the genre of DnB, infusing a more musical sound to the dancefloor.. Outside of the DnB world, though, Hochi is still getting it done with various Hip-Hop projects, from more underground shit with Killah Priest to working with the G-Unit, as well as having his hand in the first volume of XXL's DVD Magazine.
khal: Your track record is ever growing: one minute you’re dropping beats for TEKDBZ, while the next you are doing things with Killah Priest. How long have you been producing tracks?
Hochi: I have been making beats for about 10 years in various forms.
khal: These days, many different producers create their sounds using all types of gear and programs. What does Hochi’s studio consist of? Is there any piece of equipment or software that you cannot produce without?
Hochi: I use Macs and PCs in my studio along with various outboard gear. It’s a hybrid setup. I need to have a lot of different tools because I work on all sorts of projects from films to music. There's nothing I couldn’t live without but I have my preferences.
khal: In terms of your DnB production, you seem to came into the scene runnin’, with your first release side by side with Stakka. How did you get into the DnB scene, and where did you start to link up with heavy hitters like Stakka, Photek, and others?
Hochi: I was working on Hip-Hop projects and I became a fan of DnB; it just sort of interested me. Ironically, I read an article about Photek in Jazz Times when I was about 17 and that’s what got me checking for DnB. I met these guys just by networking they were just cool people and we had a lot in common.
khal: With your Killahertz crew, you drop Hip-Hop production primarily, right? You’ve been linked to many heads, most recently the G-Unit crew and most recently the XXL DVD Magazine Vol. 1. How did you get into the Hip-Hop game, and where did you start to get notice from some of the larger entities? Also, where else might we have heard your beats?
Hochi: I got into doing beats for people the basic way, just networking and connecting the dots. I knew a cat at G-Unit (shouts to Dan The Man) and I sent him some beats and he got me involved in some of his projects. I also work a lot with the dudes in Killahertz (DJ 730 and Dan One); 730 works at hiphopgame.com and he helps a lot with getting us connected with various artists. You can hear me on a lot of the G-Unit DVDs (Tony Yayo's Thoughts Of A Predicate Felon, 50 Cent's The Massacre DVD, G-Unit City, etc..). I also work a lot doing mixtape joints in the Hip-Hop arena. I’ve done tracks for tons of people. I just recently did a track called "125 grams Pt. 2" and a couple of other tracks for an artist named Joell Ortiz who just signed to Dr Dre’s Aftermath.
khal: Now for those out there who keep their eyes and ears on the “hood DVD” craze, they might have noticed you name was all over the XXL DVD Magazine Vol. 1 that was just recently released. The credits say you not only contributed beats, but also handed some post production to the sound on the disc. How did they come at you to handle this task? Do you handle things like this for other companies and discs?
Hochi: Yeah I have done post-production for a lot of the G-Unit/Interscope DVDs. I worked with the same director on all these projects - once again shouts to Dan the Man! I am also working on the music for a documentary called ‘Glue Boys’ which is about homeless children in Kenya addicted to glue and the companies who are profiting from it. Check Glueboys.com for more info.
khal: Since you dabble with both DnB & Hip-Hop, I always wonder, does one style of music influence the other? Do you approach producing a DnB track differently than a Hip-Hop track? Also, do you find it easier to write a track for one style of music, as opposed to the other?
Hochi: I really don’t approach them any differently I think that why my stuff sounds the way it does. I don’t think one style is any more difficult the core ideas take the same amount of time to create but DnB has a lot of frilly detail and arrangement work. I actually find that stuff kind of boring which is why I like to work with people who are into that part of it.
khal: Now, you’ve been selected by Mr. Photek himself to be a representative of the new breed of producers in the DnB scene. How does it feel to carry a weight like that on your back? What do you think you bring to the TEKDBZ camp that no one else can bring?
Hochi: Its not really a weight at all I don’t really look at music as life or death its supposed to be fun an interesting and I do work on that basis. I think I am the idea man within the TEKDBZ circle and being the label manager I try to make sure I keep everyone communicating and updated with revelant information. I guess if you wanted to define my position I am kind of like the ‘consigliere’ to the boss man.
khal: Speaking of TEKDBZ, you recently had a few large shows in California, right? How does it feel dropping DnB in places like the House of Blues, where that sound is not normally known to be played? Do you feel as though DnB can achieve a louder voice in the United States, to where it can be getting at least more album sales or radio play?
Hochi: I don’t think DnB in its current form will ever leave the ‘underground’ my guess is it will become even more obscure. I think this is because most people involved in the ‘scene’ have there identity tied up in a simple notion of what this music is and they will do anything to keep it from being accessible because they would have less control over it. I can’t speak for anyone else but with TEKDBZ our aim is to take the best MUSICAL aspects of DnB and combine them with the best aspects of all the other music we are influenced by and see what happens. Our position is “if you build it they will come” HOB is great because it allows us to what we do and put it on a stage where it can be appreciated by a wider audienence. Having a venue with as many capabilities as HOB lets us take our stage performances to another level. It's also just great to have a place on Sunset Strip in Hollywood. You never know who could wander in.
khal: Word is you recently on XM if I am not mistaken. Can you tell us more about this? Is it an ongoing gig, and if so, what can we expect from future shows?
Hochi: It's going to be every other Thursday on XM Radio Channel 80 The Move 3AM EST and 12AM PST. The hosts are Photek, Craze, and myself and you can expect the unexpected.
khal: What would you say is your greatest creation sonically, and why?
Hochi: I am really not sentimental about that kind of stuff. I really like "Hit Em’ Hard" because it was a proof of concept that worked out great.
khal: For someone of your caliber, who seems to already be making loads of waves in many areas, you are still a new name and face in the larger scheme of things. Where do you hope to see yourself and your crews/brands/etc. in the next, say, 5 years?
Hochi: I hope we can really start a new genre of music that is as accessible and appreciated by as many people as jungle/DnB once was. That would be a worthwhile accomplishment.
khal: In the more immediate future, what releases are planned for you in the immediate future? There was word of a TEKDBZ album, as well as a Mental Sharp album coming to the light soon. Can you shed any light on the schedules on those things?
Hochi: First comes the TEKDBZ:AMMO album which is a compilation featuring everyone from the crew and some vocalists from other genres. There will be a DVD of the live shows released as well. After that we are focused on Mental Sharp’s Epiphany album which in my opinion is a sure shot classic. Look for Ammo later this year and Epiphany a few months later.
khal: Aside from the large TEKDBZ shows, do you perform live anywhere else? If so, where can people catch you?
Hochi: I’ve been just getting back into djing and I have been doing a lot in cali lately. I would like to hit the road with one of the TEKDBZ MCs soon.
khal: Do you have any advice for the novice producer out there, trying to get their work heard by the major figures of the various industries?
Hochi: Don’t start making music until you have some new ideas. New Ideas are everything.
khal: Where do you see DnB going in 2007? What is the sound going to be, in your opinion?
Hochi: More self-agrandizement and played out ideas. Theres definitely some fresh producers out there but I personally have a hard time relating to most of the stuff I hear now.
khal: Do you have any last words or shouts to the people?
Hochi: Checkout TEKDBZ:AMMO and Form and Function Vol 2.
TEKDBZ on MySpace
DOA: The Grid Q&A with Hochi
Mental Sharp on MySpace
TEKDBZ Radio Podcast (RSS feed)
What a month... lost a job, got a temp, temp ended. Opened an eBay store, unable to sell shit. Heard a bunch of new Hip-Hop albums, dug not one of them front to back. I guess that's the fall blues for you. It's not like these are the last days, but shit, Election Day came and passed and I feel cheated. Cheated by the system, cheated by the industry, cheated by the fucking man. You feel cheated too, no? Well, I'm going to rape the system; milk those fuckers until the day I die. Only way a nigga like me can truly make ends meet to the point where I'm not drowning, in debt or shopping bags, whichever comes first...
I've been slacking on my blog macking... but since I will be home more raping the system, I'll be able to drop my views a lot quicker. And blunter. Get familiar like Clinton Sparks! Let's ride!
01/This first tidbit is a note to The Game, aka the one who has so much potential, but is not thinking about his career. Taking war to Fiddy was brilliant until you got dumped from Dre's Aftermath. Now, your album comes out on the 14th, and you have proclaimed that you leaked your album... sort of. You told All Hip-Hop that you leaked the clean version. This would be a grand event, especially if you truly leaked The Documentary before it dropped, but the thing is, niggas had the dirty retail version of your album before this "clean album leak" story was online. Which is it? Were you just trying to lessen the blow of your whole album leaking, which isn't half bad (hell, even Oh Word co-signed it's OK-ness)... hell, that track with will.i.am is actually worth listening to! I do have to give you props though, that "It's Okay (One Blood) (Remix)" is like butter on breakfast toast, especially when you got so many of Hip-Hop's nicest to bless that beat. Eleven minutes of fury. Keep up more of that, and less of the 9 minute tracks featuring Nas and a gospel choir. Bad look, duke.
02/It wouldn't be right if I didn't talk about my newest, favoritest celebrity of the moment, Britney Spears. Even though she named her 2nd son Jayden, like my own son, I still have to give it up to her for finally divorcing K-Fed, over Blackberry even. You lot don't know, but I asked dude for an interview like 3 weeks ago, and I heard nothing back from his people, so that's what happens when you diss the rock the dub massive: you get your funds cut from your fly-again wife. Shit, homegirl is even rumored to be working on her new album with Pharrell down in M-I-A-yo! Kevin wants sole custody of his 2 seeds with Brit, which ain't fucking happening -- her dollars are longer than yours, pup. He even enlisted his previous baby moms, Shar Jackson, to do some PR for the fag MC, saying he is paying for his seeds to go to private school, when we all know full well this nigga can't even sell his debut album - how the FUCK is he paying for his kids schooling? Shit, he had a hard enough time clearing a freestyle: peep game: Mobb Deep and the Alchemist made "Got It Twisted", which sampled Thomas Dolby's 80's hit "She Blinded Me With Science". K-Fed rapped over this for a freestyle entitled "America's Most Wanted", and Dolby went and sued dude over this, AND WON! Imagine how many real MCs would be penniless just from jacking beats for freestyles, esp. ones that aren't being sold! He's a bitch made faggot, unable to hold his own in a town full of giants. This is the start of his ending... get ready for the ground, pussy. Unsurprisingly, Brit isn't asking for spousal support, and wants him to take his own jewels back. Like this kid bought them. She paid for their rings, right? 'the fuck outta here!
03/What made will.i.am so fucking called on? Everyone from Nas to The Game is asking this fruitcake for beats, like his shit don't stink. Come on, "lovely lady lumps"? All of the sudden, niggas like Michael Jackson come out of the woodworks, saying that will is doing good shit and wants to work with him. Nigga, please, you want that cake. Don't try to patronize me, acting like this fucker is detrimental to the music scene. Shit don't make sense. Instead of paying dope producers money, we get the "I Love My Bitch" creator to direct the Black Music Brigade. I want a refund.
04/The Borat movie is fucking hilarious, and it's also going to cost the filmmakers. TMZ.com says that there are a few people who fell for the "prankster" and got drunk before going on screen and acting like assholes, and they want to get paid. I haven't seen the film yet, but I can only imagine what they said... take it in stride, bitches. I mean, if you have the balls to even think the shit you say, back it the fuck up. Why be weak and try to get caked off after the fact? Ho ass homos.
05/Katt Williams got arrested this week, served a few days, and got released over a "stolen, concealed weapon" found in his luggage. Now, I love Katt, and he was the one to talk about haters being needed... are people really trying to test him on some real shit? I sure hope not -- that nigga packs the hot rocks! It's all good though, my nigga is out and is out to host the BET Hip-Hop Abortio-- I mean Hip-Hop Awards.
06/I want to take the time out to reflect on some of the lives the world has lost this week: Jack Palance, aka old dude from City Slickers, passed away. I didn't know too many flicks he made, but he was in the first Batman movie, so he gets the uptmost respect. In a real shock to the R&B community, Gerald Levert died from a heart attack at age 40. I don't know if it was the fact that he died from a heart attack or that this nigga was only 40, but mad heads are saddened by his passing. I mean shit, this nigga wrote Barry White's "Practice What You Preach", as well as making it big with the 80s hit "Casanova". My mom hated songs like this, but she still checked for dude, so that meant something. You're be sorely missed, G. Finally, RIP goes out to Ed Bradley, who succombed to lukemia this week at the age of 65. He held it down on 60 Minutes, forever immortalized on Chris Rock's last CD. He will be missed as well. Moment of silence for all 3 of those dons...
07/SoundSlam let loose a rumor that Foxy Brown might be getting the cold shoulder from Def Jam, mainly due to her lack of output for her next album. I mean, when Jigga says you ain't productive, take notice... but then again, the bitch is deaf. When part of your job involves being able to hear music and YOURSELF, how you gonna scrutinize. Maybe she needs to do some other shit. Go feed the kids or be on Celebrity Paranormal Project shows.
08/Raekwon finally went to an official (read: VH1) outlet to let it be known that his Cuban Linx 2 LP is definitely going to be coming on Aftermath. Slated to drop beats, aside from the RZA, are Dr. Dre, J Dilla and Scram Jones, among others. How this can be seen as a good thing is beyond me... good idea, great press, but will it mean another classic? If it ain't helmed by the '94 RZA, Rae and Ghost, nah IMHO.
09/Since I'm in a situation with this broken oil heater in my rented home, I figured I'd take my wife's advice and let you guys know how to stay warm sans heater. IMO it's all about the under-$20 electric heaters you can find @ Walmart and other quality stores... trust.
10/I've been slacking on my LOST coverage, but I HOPE you guys caught the "Fall Season Finale" this past Wednesday... good ol' Doc @ EW's Popwatch blog provided his theory on what he thinks is going on... deep shit, and I agree with many points he made. I still feel it will be on some totally OTHER shit, but who knows...
11/Don't serve your employees dog food: this black firefighter just won $2.7Mil from LA's courts for being served dog food-laced spaghetti by his apparently racist white employees. More power to him. I mean really, that's some disgusting shit, and I doubt they just gave him damn near $3Mil for this one incident... I imagine he got fucked with plenty of times over the years. I do think it's odd that none of the guys involved were fired... this "on leave with pay" bullshit make a nigga want to take the law into their own hands. Good for black dude.
12/The Fader made an interesting point on a new DJ Premier mixtape... it looks like Primo has a sticker on the mixtape cover saying that this was made 100% with turntables, no CDJs, yadda yadda, basically emphasizing the "real Hip-Hop" aesthetic he lives by. That's all well and good, but the majority of the tracks on there are exclusives, and 9 times out of 10, they aren't cut to vinyl or any other format as of yet commercially. Fader then suggested that he's kind of a hypocrite for this, because hell, if the tunes aren't on vinyl, what'd he mix them with? Abelton? Or did he cut them to CD and use CDJs? My thing is this, though: vinyl cutters are readily available for DJs/producers with bread. It's not that hard to imagine Primo having a dub cutter in his grasp and putting new tunes to wax for his mix. I need to hear the tape though.
Well, that's all folks... aside from the odd Tamia interview for my R&B loving heads. She's fly, and her new CD is out there... wifey didn't ask me to take it off her iPod yet, so it must be half way decent. Peep game. I'll leave you guys with a new promo viddy from the Wired Weird collective... until next time:
Then or Now? I choose then, but I can't help it, you gotta flow, Joe!
Now, as we wait for his LP, here's Styles' biggest solo single (arguably)... this blew the fuck up that summer! Be ez, people.
Well, we all know that I am trying to make some money. With 3 seeds in the house, it's hard to live life off of just my paycheck and my wife's paychecks alone. In comes The Buffet Line, our eBay store. You know why we call it "The Buffet Line"? Simply, we envision it to be a spot where you can load up on various types of items and such, kind of like the Chinese buffet restaurants you see all over the place.
We are unloading a serious amount of stuff in the coming weeks (months/years/etc.), from various computer accesories and things to loads of books, clothes, appliances and (possibly) CDs and such. We need that money to feed our fam, so help us out. If you don't see something you like, pass word to those you know and see if they need something.
Right now, I have a Linksys USB 2.0 Network Adapter up for bid right now. The unit retails at approximately $30, but the starting bid is $10 right now.
If all goes well, this should help ease the blow of these bills... if not, then it's back to the grinding board. Hell, maybe I'll sell mixes? We shall see!
So again, check out The Buffet Line.
"I been crushing the building since Izod socks/so independent, shit, I might buy Koch!" - Jay-Z freestyle swagger.
I wish I had Jigga's steeze sometimes. I mean, he could be me with less $$ than I have, and would still walk tall. I guess actually having money does that to a nigga though... I am just reevaluating life right now, especially with Jay and Nas apparently dropping LPs on the same label about a month apart --- I'll believe it when I see it on my HD. LOL... pardon me, I had to laugh at that.
Anyways, I've been slacking lately. When you figure that I have a gang of interviews to post up (The Enemy from Evol Intent, The Horsemen's FRISKe, TEKDBZ's HoChi), and a few more to work on (Joulz Il Duce, Gridlok, etc), I've been on some slack shit. Thing is, I've been on some LIFE shit. Got a new gig, got a sick kid... got just real life problems. I still haven't seen the latest episode of LOST yet! I do have that news though... follow me!
01/I know you guys see the new iPod shuffle up there. Look at it, shit clips on your lapel and forget about the bitch. And at $80 for a 1GB player, that's a beautiful thing. Almost half the price of the original... sick! PC World reviewed this badboy, and it looks like, as long as you realize you can only do so much, you will be satisfied. Apple also let word out that they are offering an iTunes Latino version for Spanish speaking peeps. They even partnered with Telemundo, so you can check out the ill dance competitions by skimpy-dressed latinas for $1.99. Somebody out there is listening...
02/A word to the wise out there: don't cut line at the falafel joint. This nigga from Short Hills did so, and ended up getting stabbed by some dude with the last name Tayeh. It would have been one thing if dude stabbed him right there at the falafel joint, but nah... both the victim and the stabber drove off and met up later. What kind of shit is that. How do you KNOW you have beef with dude, see him a lil later THAT DAY and not be prepared to get your shit pushed in? I feel sorry for him and his family, but he should have known that crazy Ziad Tayeh was gonna fuck him up over his falafel ordering time.
03/Now this story might get the "HUH!?!" award for 2006. Peep the background: this cop is suing someone he saved. Yes, you read that right. Apparently, this officer got a call to a home where this sheriff's officer was holding a gat, saying he would kill himself. The cop gets there, and has a piece held on him. The suicidal officer was on some "Suicide by cop" shit. After a 45 minute standoff, the cop got the suicidal dude to throw down his weapon and calm. Now, about 1 year later, the cop is suing the suicidal guy for holding a gun on him, the owner of the house for not letting him know what was going on... basically, he can't live on pension alone. My question is this: when I worked at Circuit City, I didn't think about suing them for getting yelled at by customers. I worked customer service, that's a part of the job. How is a cop going to sue someone for endangering their life? I mean, I get it, you had a piece pulled on you. That's some traumatic shit, and if you need $5400 per month for the rest of your life, hey, live well. How you gonna come back and sue the nigga you saved? Your hero status is plummeting...
04/There are a load of crazy stories that flood the newswaves each week. I like trying to figure out where the story originated when I hear the headline. Wifey told me that this guy raped his mother to get revenge on his brother, and after the initial shock of her seriousness, I told her this was from the South. Word is I was right... this fucking Alabama teen raped his mother in their trailer. How the fuck you could get on top of your own drunk mother and proceed to have sex with her is one thing... how you can continue doing it after she comes to and is like GET THE FUCK OFF OF ME is another. Now, there's been no real reasoning explained, aside from him getting back at his brother (what the fuck is THAT all about), but if this guy isn't hung for this travesty, I will lose my faith in the US Judicial System.
05/Word to my Illadelphia weed smoking niggas... you need to start copping your Blunts and Dutch Masters by the box. Philly is apparently trying to ban the sale of cigars in packages fewer than six. Funny thing about that is, aside from packs, I didn't know niggas bought like 2 pcks of blunts. Most of my peeps would by single cigars or whatever. You know how that goes, though, Trenton tried to crack down on the sale of those lil bullshit roses in glass stems that crackheads would cop to make pipes and shit. I just don't get it, though. I mean, you have stores dedicated to alcohol, which helps kill more people than a little bit, but you fuck with the niggas who smoke weed, which kills no one. Weed alone does not kill a soul, unless I'm missing someone, and if I had no responsibilities or care in the world, I'd be chiefing right now. Stop the hate on cigars and let niggas puff.
06/For those of you who are still fans of Kanye West after his ridiculous tirade at the MTV Europe Music Awards are full of shit. I mean, dog, you took the Best Hip-Hop award, no? Why do you honestly think that "Touch The Sky" deserved BEST VIDEO?!?! Then the nigga is like "this is the best video I saw all year"... shit, I say my son is the cutest thing on the planet, but I helped make him! You can't spend $1Mil on your video then be like its the best shit out there... once you wrote the check, you took yourself out of that equation, dickhead.
07/Speaking of Hip-Hop, let's round-up a load of the news out there: 50 Cent is set to play his dream role, a fucking pig, in the latest De Niro flick being produced. Fucking snitch ass nigga. The LOX's Styles P had his album pushed back, AGAIN, to later in the month of December. Between him and the Clipse, that real crack shit is getting no love on a commercial level. One of my favorite MCs ever, J-Live, gave The Fader an interview, even though he dissed your's truly for the now-defunct "The Flow" e-zine. I ain't mad at him, lemme get that album though! XXL has also leaked their Jay-Z interview, which should be hitting the shelves on the 7th... something like that. I can't wait, I'm loving Jigga again! Yo, just because you are Busta Rhymes, that does not mean you will be beneath getting a ticket for driving whilst talking on a cell. Shit, you are Busta Rhymes, what the fuck you driving for?! I hope Beanie Sigel gets over this double hernia shit... I wonder if he slims down, will that help him work better? I need a new Beans LP! I also really hope that Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five get into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame... I will protest each and every year if they don't get in. Oh and to end this Hip-Hop news, Saigon finally figured he should try and drop his LP without waiting for Just Blaze to stop buying video games. Smart move... until Papoose comes out.
08/Peace to Bob Barker, who announced he will be retiring from "The Price Is Right" after 50 years deep. Good luck to him. That show won't be the same without him. I predict it being canceled or sent to the CW shit (which is worse?) about 3 yrs after his departure. They don't even know who can hold his hosting jock. I hope it's someone worthwhile. I love Plinko.
09/MySpace pulled down their skirt and got in bed with the Industry this week, proclaiming that anyone with copyrighted material (mainly music) will get their accounts deleted. What's wrong with free promotion? I mean really, are there 16 yr olds out there with copyright material getting deals off of their fav songs being on their profile? Lighten the fuck up!
10/In yet ANOTHER story of priests taking their positons way too far, this evangelical faggot admitted this week that, admist many rumors, he had improper relations with another man. Now, he tried to clean it up, saying he only paid for a massage and copped meth off the dude. Yo, I don't let no dude touch me in that manner at all... shit, a nig is lucky he gets a handshake! Why not just say "I smoked crystal with him and he rubbed my dick"? Stand up and admit it all, or look like a super chump.
11/For my last bit of news, can you lot believe that a Tom Cruise struck a deal with United Artists!? We'll see how far this goes, but UA, this is not the same Tom you got paid with over Rain Man. Consider your dumb asses warned.
Well, that's all my peoples. It's kind of late, and I have to see my bed at some point. I'll scream at you some more in the very near future, but I will leave you with this...
Had to represent some Jadakiss after my nigga Nappy hit me with the new Jada shit... "Thug It On It"... wait for it. New mixtapes from him and me forthcoming. Peep the Wired Weird collective. Watch this space for more info. Be good, peeps.
That damn Loosie Music Promo Monkey hit me on my gmail with this mixtape masterpiece the other day... Word is that Spec Boogie, Von Pea and Elucid gobbled up a shitload of CLASSIC '90s instrumentals ("Can't Stop The Prophet", "Shadowboxin'", "Tried By 12", and one of my personal favorites, Onyx's "Last Dayz") and just spat flame over the whole thing. I mean, for you legions of mid-90s stuck Hip-Hop fans (I'm looking at you, okayplayer), this is a fucking GEM of a treat. Peep the tracklisting, and get an idea of the tunes they murk:
Champion Hoods TracklistingWhoa. Want to get this for free? Well, download from rapidshare or megaupload. Check out the Loosie website or their MySpace page, give them props, dload the mix and put it on a cassette tape and walkman that bitch about. Serious throwback music, nuff respect.
01 Champion Hood Intro
04 Iced Down Medallions
05 Brooklyn Kids
06 Can't Stop the Chopping
08 Diner's Club Era
10 Tried by 12 (feat. Lek)
11 Tonight's Da Night
12 Code of the Streets
13 Loosie or Leave it Alone
16 Last Dayz