Dopize – (UN)BALANCED [Interview]

  • Describe your sound in three words

Authentic, versatile, energetic. 

  • Tell us a few things about your new project “Unbalanced”

We all looking for a sort of balance between things to find happiness in life and that’s the exact same with music. I’m in love With us rap, i fell in love with the language and the culture, but I’m french and I wanted to find a balance between these two languages so I’ve tried to blend them to create a new vibe.

  • Which song of the EP represents you the most?

There’s a little bit of me in all of the tracks. Each tracks has it’s own mood. Like  everyone else I go through tons of different moods everyday, so I’d say all of them.

  • How many beats do you listen to before you end up using one? Who is your favorite producer?

I make all of my beats. Sometimes it takes me 5 min to make  a beat that I love, sometimes it takes a week to find the right vibe. I’m very picky with the beat that I use I keep a very very tiny portions of whatIi create. I don’t really have a favorite producer though.

  • What does the future hold for Trap specifically and Hip-Hop in general?

I have no clue but I hope a lot of new sounds and creativity and hopfully a little bit of success for Dopize ahah!

  • What would you change in the music industry?

Money is the only thing that matters in the industry that’s the problem, I would put the art first

  • Any future plans?

A lot of new music, new concepts, just wait and see !

  • Thank you!

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Laz – Want from Me [Interview]

Describe your sound in three words

healing, spongey, detailed

Where is the place where you get more inspired to write the lyrics for your songs? Tell us a few things about your creative process.

Places where I know that I will be left alone. Outside in the streets where I don’t know anyone is a good one, but it ends up being my room and in the bathroom most of the time. Most accessible isolation areas.

You rap in both English and French. Is language a barrier in music?

For me, I grew up bilingually so to speak: always talk to my dad in French, was in French schools until high school, and my mom in English. So how I live with the languages transpires in the music. I also feel this Kanye West quote: “words can get in the way of what you want to say”. I see and feel this being the case for family, friends and myself. Some words exist in some languages and not in others, and so it really becomes a different way of thinking.

Favourite rapper, lyricist and producer?

This is always unfair… but I’m a huge TDE fan so my favorite rapper is Isaiah Rashad, my favorite lyricist is Kendrick Lamar, and it’s a tie between J Dilla and Travis Scott (very different) for my favorite producer(s).

What does the future hold for Hip-Hop?

More and more creative fields and doors opening up! Between French Afro-influenced hip hop, Drill in the UK and trap in the US, lofi instrumental beats, and fusions of all of these and more, Hip Hop is just taken to so many places, and I think it’s amazing.
My first EP was about a four leaf clover island, a metaphor for a land of the rich, the privileged. I am one of them, I grew up on that island. Hip Hop educated me, partly to convey my own life experience in my art form. Hip Hop is not something that was made for people like me. Yet, as a mode of expression, it can be used to convey different types of stories. However, the core of hip hop remains the beauty of giving a voice to the voiceless, to non-white “minorities” and it needs to (and will) stay that way.

Do you have an artist that you would describe as a hidden gem that we should know about?

Mamadou. I opened for him last year. He is an amazing lyricist, poet, and his personality and true beliefs come out through beautiful sounds.

One last thing we should know about you?

I just got back to Paris after four years of college in the United States, and I am going all in with music. Any music people who feel inclined to listen to my music and like it, hit me up for collabs, a talk, anything.

Thank you!

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LN-VR – Bastos sous les Voûtes (Prod. Vorace)

  • Describe your sound in three words

Unconventional, dreamlike and rational

  • What is the main topic of your lyrics? Tell us a few things about your creative process

Bastos sous les Voûtes was written as a freestyle : in one hand chill and phlegmatic but quickly twist into a violent and lethal universe. In the shadows of the vaults: smuggled shots or punchlines stray bullets.

In general, I’m aiming to turn common life subjects into absurd dreamy situations or positive hallucinations.

I like to tell in this world, spoons are knives, frequencies mess your heartbeat up and everything you’ll do there will end up in pure sweat.

In my artistic universe we could find the atypical Yelle’s poetry, the disturbing Philippe Katerine’s gentleness, the dreamlike Shygirl’s atmospheres or the improvised Marc Rebillet’s characters.

  • Is language a barrier in music?

In one hand, I don’t think language could be a barrier in music because anyone can feel the vibe without understanding the lyrics. For example, I love Azar Strato’s songs. He is a russian beatmaker and producer. As an example the track : Нарушители пустоты that I enjoy a lot even if I’m unable to pronounce its name.

He is really good because his video-clips tell enough of his universe.

In the other hand, in my recent creation, I’ve put some effort into my lyrics, but it’s in french and I know that not everyone can understand it. During a show, everyone can feel the energy of the moment, but at home it can be a rather different experiment.

For example some of my subjects are : is air really free ? You’re an artist, but what do you do for a living ? That is one of the reasons that I like interviews because I can explain some of those topics.

  • Do you have an artist that you would describe as a hidden gem that we should know about?

Vorace of course. He cooked the beat of Bastos sous les Voûtes !
He’s a real genius in bass productions. He released 2 E.P. on 20/20 LDN, Ivy Lab’s label.

He fuses raw hip hop vibes with synthesizers and club music. He takes inspirations from any-era dance music genres as the mood strikes him, and from his musical roots grown from video game soundtracks and US hip hop.

We did a 2-week tour together by train in 2019 in France called “TGV Max Tour” (a name of a transport card in France under 28, I was close to 28 so it was a huge way to finish it).

  • What would you change in the music industry?

Definitely the facts that Twitch won’t pay a percent for music that creators used. Instead of that they prefer to delete those videos. That such a pity.

Some deals have begun to arrive with some big labels, but I hope that we will not recreate a quasi-monopoly situation only for major music labels. We want that underground music to be used by creators without any trouble, and generate money the same way it does with other media.

  • Tell is a recent French Film we should definitely need to watch.

Jacky au Royaume des Filles

It’s a dystopic story in Bubunne (or Bubunia). It’s a matriarchal totalitarian country led by the ruthless La Générale (Generaless). In Bubun, the roles of men and women are reversed, up to the point where the male population is deprived of any civil rights, including work, education, military service, freedom of marriage etc.

It’s really funny and make us wonder of our society. It’s exactly the kind of smart humour that I love.

  • One last thing we should know about you?

This year, I’ve decided to focus on my solo project LN-VR, after many years working with others bands. It was pretty cool working with them, but here is my advice : don’t forget to work for yourself!

I’m now determined to released a videoclip every 2 months with many talented directors and producers, so keep in touch on my socials @lnvrrrr (there is 4 x R)

Hope you’ll enjoy the rise.

  • Thank you!

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Rissa Boo – Aliens In New York (feat. @Bazil) [Interview]

Please introduce yourself :

Well, I’m Rissa Boo, a multipotential artist. I started my Hip-Hop activism with Graffiti and Breakdance when I was a teenager, then following my passion to Rap music. I’m also an experimented backpacker and a photographer so I’m crossing all my experiences and my background into my art in several forms.

Describe your sound in three words :

Rad, Energetic & Deep !

Now describe NYC in three words :

Madness, Busy & Jungle, 

What comes first? The beat or the lyrics? Tell us a few things about your creative process.

First of all comes the subject, what I want to talk about. Then come some abstract ideas, both for the beat and the lyrics that I share with Alex Bruggeman who has made all the instrumentals of this Scientifik EP. Once I have a musical base, I write all the lyrics and then we adjust by sending back exports and ideas. But usually, I already know what I want like the structure or the FXs so it can be super fast !

Best Hip Hop album ever?

This is a very difficult question but if I had to choose one, I would say “Ill Communication” from the Beastie Boys because it brings a lot of different styles from the Jazz samples of “Sure Shot” to the guitar riffs of “Sabotage”, passing by tracks like “Shambala” or “Bodhisattva Vow” with tibetan sounds.
Sometimes you only have instrumental tracks like “Sabrosa” or “Transitions” and a great collab’ with Q-Tip. Well it’s a perfect mix for me and I never get bored listening to it !

Favourite rapper, lyricist and producer?

I think my favorite emcee is K-OS, a canadian rapper from Toronto. For the same reasons as the previous question. His albums are really rich in musical influence and he can rap and sing on all these different vibes.
I don’t have a favorite lyricist and I won’t be original here, but I love guys like Nas or 2Pac for their conscious lyrics and actually that’s why I felt in love with rap music : for its political messages. Even if we can talk about everything, obviously !
And as a producer I would say Madlib. I’m a huge fan of samples (even if there’s no sample in my last EP) and he always makes us discover dope stuff with jazz music or dope brazilian bossa. He has a huge musical culture. This is the second reason I like Rap music, it takes influences from everything.

Do you have an artist that you would describe as a hidden gem that we should know about?

These days I’m listening to Sven Wunder with his album “Eastern Flower”, it’s like psychedelic folk and I particularly like the track called “Daisy”.
Short but great !

Any future plans?

Yaassss of course. I have many projects in my mind like mixtapes and albums so I keep working on it, but for now I’m still creating music videos to defend my Scientifik EP. Everyone can see my work on my Facebook Page, Instagram or Youtube Channel so let’s keep in touch !

Thank you!

Sonikem – Baile De Paris [Interview]

Please introduce yourself

Born in France and of Beninese and Cameroonian origin,, I’m a Producer, DJ, Rapper living in Paris. Playing all around the world in clubs and festivals, i regularly publish instrumental projects but also many titles with artists met during my travels or online notably Japanese, Brazilian or French

Describe your sound in three words

Passionate, Open minded, universal

In your music, there is a clear focus on the groove. Would it be safe to assume that your creative process usually starts with the beat?

In fact, i didn’t have any real process for making a music, i can start from the beat, a sample, a melodie or from a text. I let myself be carried away by the inspiration of the moment.

What is the main topic of your lyrics?

The main topics on this album are the party, the atmosphere in the favela and the stories that happen to the artists.

Is language a barrier in music?

Not at all, I don’t speak Portuguese, but many artists spoke English and otherwise we used translation software. when you’re looking to work with someone and especially in music, language is never a barrier.

Your album is dance oriented. Considering that during the covid area parties almost do not exist, in which state of mind do you imagine people might listen to your music?

It is true that the project came out in the midst of a pandemic. But you should know that in many countries and especially in Brazil it has not stopped people from continuing to party. So I bet on the fact that when the evenings resume my album will be part of the projects to play to the public! 😉

Do you have a favorite song from your album?

Not really because every song is a story to tell. 

Do you have an artist that you would describe as a hidden gem that we should know about?

All of them!! Go listen their songs, follow them on social medias and push them we are all independants so this help a lot! 

Do you cook? If yes, which is your favorite dish?

My favorite meal is Plantain with rice and chicken and yes i cook 😉

Any future plans? 

I’m working on new projects with Brazilian artists  more Hiphop / Trap oriented. So stay tuned 😉

Thank you!

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KZ – KESTA [Interview]

  • Please Introduce yourself

French Artist originally from the North of France a city named HEM. 
But i am Based in Paris for a while now 
I am into music.
I love rap, hip hop, urbain vibes. trying to create my own world through music.

  • Describe your sound in 3 words

Eclectic , Sharing , Good vibes

  • Favourite rapper, lyricist and producer

Asap Rocky, Travis Scott, Kanye West, Rihanna, Mickael Jackson, Kendrick, Bob Marley, Drake

  • Best Hip Hop album ever

50 Cent Get rich or die tryin’

  • Best live gig you have even been

I haven’t done live performance yet. But on his way!

  • Top Hidden Gem Artist

ME :p

  • Future plans

Kesta goes viral internationally so be ready for the launching on the 18 of september and Conquer as much as soul as possible through my music but without loosing who I am.