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					Diddy,      currently going by P.       50 Cent      has signed on to re-
Twitty, is working on material for      place actor Forest Whitaker in the
his upcoming album titled Last          upcoming film The Expendables.
Train to Paris. He recently let fans    Sylvester Stallone is writing and
get a taste of the buzz single Diddy    directing the action picture, which
Bop. The album is slated to drop        also stars Mickey Rourke, Jet Li,
on September 22nd, 2009.                Eric Roberts and Sly himself.

Eminem will be the presenter for        On June 16th, Downtown Records
Run-DMC’s induction into the            will release Guns Don’t Kill People,
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at a         Lazers Do, the debut album
ceremony on April 4th in Cleve-         from Diplo & Switch as Major
land, Ohio.                             Lazer. This concept project
                                        features dancehall vocalists Vybz
                                        Cartel, Ward 21, Fambo, and Busy
                                        Signal. Diplo & Switch recorded
                                        the album at Tuff Gong and other
                                        studios in Jamaica.

1492 Entertainment has optioned         Having established their success
the motion picture rights to Ben        with individual careers, Hi-Tek and
Templesmith’s graphic novel             Talib Kweli recently announced
Welcome To Hoxford from IDW             that they are busy working on their
Publishing. Templesmith is the co-      long-awaited follow-up to their
creator of 30 Days of Night comic       Reflection Eternal album due out
series, upon which the hit horror       later this year.
film was based. His credits include
the    critically-acclaimed  serial
Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse
and Singularity 7.

Nature Sounds will release a new        Big Pooh’s          latest project is
J-Dilla album on June 2nd,              titled, Delightful Bars, and there
2009. The project is titled Jay Stay    will be four different flavours of the
Paid and it consists of 25 unre-        album made available, including a
leased Dilla beats mixed and ar-        special iTunes only version (Candy
ranged by Pete Rock. While mostly       Apple Version), which will be
instrumental, J$P also offers a few     released on March 24th, 2009 and
guests vocals from artists that Dilla   the North American retail version
worked with or admired including        (North American Pie Version) will
Black Thought of The Roots, MF          be released on April 21st, 2009.
DOOM, and M.O.P.                        No details about the other two
                                        versions have been released yet
                                        except for the cover of the Belgian
                                        Chocolate Version.
Quantum of Solace                                   Chrysalis                                             Slumdog Millionaire
20th Century Fox                                    Anchor Bay                                            20th Century Fox

When I hear the name James Bond I automati-         I love foreign film and I especially enjoy action      You think you got it rough? Imagine coming up in
cally think of a young Sean Connery. But the        movies from Asia. Namely from Japan, Hong             the slums of Mumbai, India. Slumdog Millionaire
world has changed drastically since the 1960s.      Kong, Korea or Thailand. European countries           is from director Danny Boyle (Trainspotting) and
Connery’s style, class and countless gadgets        like Spain, Italy and the UK are all fertile breed-   is so utterly unconventional, that it works bril-
have been replaced by Daniel Craig’s ruthless,      ing grounds for a less kinetic and more cere-         liantly. The back story centers on two brothers
cold-blooded killing sprees. This new actor play-   bral actioner, which I can also appreciate. But       who, after escaping a ruthless businessman’s
ing Bond seems more like a villain than a hero.     when I think of France’s cinema I think of cult       “orphanage”, hustle and grind to make it on the
What was the casting director smoking when he       classics like The Fifth Element and the films of       daily. One goes onto a life of crime and the other
picked this dude? He lacks that signature James     Jeunet and Caro, or amazing animated features         is our central figure, Jamal (played by Dev Pa-
Bond charm. He comes off more like a ex-con-        like The Savage Planet, The Triplets of Bel-          tel), who by chance is selected to compete in
vict that would be better suited to play Croco-     leville, and Renaissance. Other than Luc Bes-         India’s version of Who Wants To Be A Million-
dile Dundee. Who knows maybe they wanted a          son, I can’t recall a French director well known      aire? To everyone’s disbelief, including local au-
rough around the edges, Vin Diesel-type of ac-      for action films. Enter Chrysalis, a sci-fi action      thorities, Jamal makes it to the final question for
tion star. I guess he’s better than Timothy Dal-    flick that caught me off guard. I wasn’t expect-       20 million rupees. The tale revolves around his
ton but that’s not saying much. Even the name       ing much and I got one of my favorite movies          interrogation where the powers that be cannot
Quantum of Solace doesn’t sound like the name       of 2009 so far. With a clever plot, brutal fight       figure out how this kid advanced to the finals.
of a James Bond movie. Sure they had the car        scenes, a clean look, and simple but well ex-         With each question Jamal breaks down how he
chase scenes and a few hotties for Bond to get      ecuted effects, this movie achieves a quality         came up with the correct answer and the stories
with but back in the day Bond got laid twice as     that not many sci-fi movies realize these days.        painted are immensely captivating and take you
much. They show you tons of violence but no         The acting was not great but the story was en-        on a journey through the underbelly of one of the
skin! There was even this knife fight just for the   gaging enough to overlook it. Albert Dupontel,        poorest nations on the planet. It’s truly remark-
sake of having a knife fight. Where’s the classic    who stars as officer David Hoffmann, should be         able once pieced together. From human rights
James Bond villain? At times I didn’t know if I     singled out as his solid performance cannot be        violations to heart-pounding chases, through to
was watching Transporter 3 or a James Bond          grouped with that of the rest of the cast. The        bittersweet vindication, Slumdog Millionaire is a
movie? The only good things about this movie        story here borrows ideas from Brazil, City of the     must-see. Anil Kapoor almost steals the show
were the dimepiece actresses Olga Kurylenko         Lost Children, and Blade Runner, yet does not         as the smarmy game show host. You just wanna
and Gemma Arterton. As I’m typing this I just       come off as a bite of any of them. What do a top      slap him silly. If you missed this multiple Oscar
saw a commercial on TV say this is the best         secret technology that digitizes memories, ex-        winner in the theater, you’re gonna wanna rush
James Bond movie ever made. Cough, cough...         perimental remote surgery, and human trafficing        to the video store before their whole wall of
bullshit. Casino Royale was definitely better        in Paris have in common? You’re gonna have to         Slumdog Millionaire is rented out.
than this follow-up. At the end of the day this     get with hard-nose cop Hoffmann to investigate
movie is missing way too many main ingredients      further.
to even resemble a James Bond movie.
A lot of urban lifestyle magazines have film sections and
video game sections, maybe even a book section, but in
this day and age what is really needed is a section in which
intellectual properties are the focus, regardless of the me-
dium. So, here it is, a section that covers the newest toys,
movies, video games, comics, and more.
                                                                   Comic Images have released a fresh line of Marvel super-
                                                                   deformed plush; Iron Man and Spider-Man are pictured.
Amazing Spider-Man: Brand New Day Vol. 3
TPB review

Good old fashion fun and adventure continue as Marvel’s answer to DC’s weekly series like 52 and Countdown continue
in the form of weekly Spidey comics! The trade paperbacks are coming out almost as fast as a monthly series puts out
single issues and the wild thing is there is no loss of quality. No compromise in the art or story. These book are a harken-
ing back to hey day of the title and it’s great to see!

The stories fly by quickly and fill pages with zippy Spidey dialogue that you expect from the Wall Crawler. The art is split
between three artists in this volume. The two more noteworthy are Phil Jiminez whose Spidey is a tip of the hat to the
old McFarlane days, while Chris Bachalo brings his own thick and chunky, pseudo anime style to Spidey and it can’t be
denied that it’s a welcome addition and a breath of fresh air. Good things are still brewing in the house of ideas and this
title is definitely one of them.

                  The Invincible Iron Man: The Five Nightmares
                  TPB review

                  Iron Man faces his greatest challenge yet! With one of the largest grossing blockbuster movies ever,
                  his agents at Marvel scramble to launch a new ongoing series for him. The timing is crucial. They need
                  to capitalize. To lose the momentum would be foolish. But can old Tinhead entertain on the page the
                  way he had on the screen? There’s no way he could do it alone. But wait, how about a team-up? Rising
                  talent Matt Fraction seems like a good fit with our favorite Avenger, right? After all, those are pretty big
                  shoes to fill since Warren Ellis’ Extremis miniseries.

                  So, let’s peak into the kitchen and see what we’re cooking with; we’re bringing back Pepper Potts,
                  good call, and Obadiah Stane’s kid is the new villain, another nice tie-in to the movie for people just
                  jumping on. What about the tech? Well, Ellis should be proud. No one has used his new suit yet, but
                  this is how it should be. The title The Five Nightmares refers to Tony Stark’s worst fears which start
                  to come true in this story. People are getting hurt by technology he created, someone has stolen his
                  designs, and he has lost control. Has Obadiah designed a better system than the Iron Man suit? And
                  if so, how will Tony defeat him?

                  Collecting issues #1-7 of the new Invincible Iron Man, this book comes busting down doors. Salvador
                  Larroca’s art is a perfect fit and follow-up to Adi Granov. Both old fans of the comics and new fans of
                  the movie should enjoy this book.

                  Afro Samurai
                  Xbox 360 game review

                  Most anime is ideal to be adapted to the video game format. That’s most definitely the case with Afro
                  Samurai. The movies are like Wu-Tang meets Ninja Scroll. RZA’s scores are incredible and the voice
                  work by Samuel Jackson is priceless. So take those ingredients and turn that into a video game. What
                  you get is a gift from the video game gods. Who didn’t wanna be Afro? The baddest muthafucka with
                  the #1 head band! Now you can be the one slicing ninjas in half and cutting off demonic robots’ heads.
                  This game takes you through the whole story. Obviously RZA laced another impressive backdrop of
                  fight music here. Hollywood is sleeping on him right now. He needs to be scoring more movies...and
                  video games for that matter. Sam Jackson is genius with his wise-ass comments. “Body part poker” is
                  hilarious. You get different cards for different body parts you gotta chop off foes! Three heads, that’s
                  trip kings! Watch out for the dude with the flame thrower. I was stuck fighting him for hours because I
                  didn’t know about the run button. A homie made it further than me already. Damn! He told me that he’s
                  fighting the Seven Monks. Damn! Take my advice people, this is more than rentable, this is a must-own

                  If you’re a fan of the Afro franchise, you’re gonna need the new movie, Afro Samurai: Resurrection (2 Disc
                  Special Edition Director’s Cut), and the RZA presents Afro Samurai: Resurrection Soundtrack on CD.
Freak Angels Vol. 1
Avatar Comics

Like most any Warren Ellis project, Freak Angels smacks of a competent hand and unbridled creativity. Of course,
we’re always faced with the same problem afterwards, we all have to sit and wait to see whether we’ll get any

In a post-apocalyptic world, twelve children protect England with their bizarre mental powers. While the series has
the great perspective of existing in the aftermath and constantly referring to events we haven’t seen, the first vol-
ume should have revealed more to the reader. While you gotta love Road Warrior style stories, this book only has
a taste of what you want. It is a great taste, but it will only leave you hungry for more.

The Punisher: Girls In White Dresses
Marvel Comics

Following the most epic run in the Punisher’s history is going to be difficult. To follow messiah of debauchery Garth
Ennis on any project would be daunting to say the least. But combing the two would seem to be complete madness.
Luckily that is exactly what new writer Greg Hurwitz brings to the table. That and a big pair of brass balls.

Hurwitz retells a classic movie story from Seven Samurai or the Magnificent Seven when a lowly farmer comes
over the border to enlist the aid of the Punisher to stop some butchers from horribly mutilating their women. The
story is made personal by Hurwitz as he constantly fuses these horrors with the tragedies that befell Frank’s family
in the past. Of course the entire story ends in a horrid bloodbath as one would want in this situation. Both fast and
dirty, Hurwitz has proven himself as a worthy successor to Ennis’ run.

Batman: The Man Who Laughs
DC Comics

One of the most celebrated comics of all time now has a sequel! Unlike the mostly abysmal Dark Knight Strikes
Again, this continuation of a Batman classic is actually good! While some may say a sequel to the Killing Joke is
blasphemous, it might be better put to such sensitive ears that this isn’t so much a sequel as it is a follow-up of
events by a master of making the unbelievably epic seems like it could never have been otherwise. Ed Brubaker’s
writing seems as though he’s documented these events rather than making them up. The first half of this book is
The Man Who Laughs, a tale told of the first Joker story ever. This takes place immediately after the Killing Joke
and the Red Hood scenario. While this story could be enjoyed purely on its own merits, having read Alan Moore’s
classic gives so much context for the Joker’s actions and back story that this becomes chocolate sauce on the ice

The second story, also by Brubaker, is a collection of Detective Comics that team Batman up with the original Green
Lantern. No, not Hal Jordan, the Golden Age guy with the cape. The story is entitled Made of Wood and is a nod
to Golden Age Green Lantern’s weakness: wood. Even more lame than yellow, right? Well this is a cool story and
teams up two characters that you’d never think of putting together. While the plot is pretty cool, it’s the sentiment
between the two capes and their generation gap that really sweetens the deal.

Definitely worth picking up. Whether for a great concept, a great writer, a good Batman story or all of the above,
this is one more to add to the library.
                                               Well, it was a long time coming but Thick finally has a video game section, Level Up. Like always,
                                               our reviews express the everyday Hip-Hop head’s opinion. Where a video game magazine might
                                               break down the mechanics of a game, we try to focus on entertainment value. While we only in-
                                               cluded Xbox 360 and Wii reviews in this installment, we will be bringing you PS3 and Nintendo DS
                                               coverage as well.

Major League Baseball 2K9                      F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin              Resident Evil 5
2K Sports                                      Warner Interactive                      Capcom

The 2009 Major League Baseball sea-            First-person shooters are a dime        The end of the world is always a solid backdrop for a video
son opener is only a few weeks away.           a dozen these days. Whether its         game storyline, so many lives to be lost, so many ways the
So, to get hyped up I jammed out on the        Halo, Call of Duty, Gears of War        proverbial “shit” could hit the fan. There’s quite a few games
new Major League Baseball 2K9. I have          or Left4Dead, they’re basically all     where you have to find a way to save humanity, some of
to admit, I had to play training mode for      just non-stop killing sprees. One       them feature threats of nuclear winter, alien invaders, or
about half hour before I got the control of    of my favourite titles in the genre     paranormal enemies. With our society becoming more glo-
the batting and fielding down. After that       was 2007’s Bioshock, which this         balized, a popular theory for doomsday predictions is mass
it was all gravy! I created my own player      game definitely bares some re-           pandemics and plagues. Resident Evil 5 is the latest and
and then started my own season. I signed       sembelance to. However, F.E.A.R.        greatest in the realm of apocalyptic avenger RPGs and
Manny Ramirez and Ken Griffey Jr. Then         2 is, without a doubt, the next level   has a plot that sees the player battling an infected zombie
I made some crazy trades for David “Big        in the progression of the shooter       army while investigating Bio Organic weapon runners in the
Poppi” Ortiz and Ichiro. Eventually, I         genre. I can honestly say, it’s scar-   cradle of civilization, Africa. This title from the Resident Evil
traded Griffey and Ichiro to stack up my       ier and crazier than any game I’ve      franchise is actually the 7th game baring the Resident Evil
bullpen. Really, the options are limitless     ever played. Turn the lights out and    name, this time around the Capcom-developed release has
when you’re the GM. I broke the “most          get into the zone. The gruesome         a vastly improved arsenal for the main characters to use.
home runs in a game by a single player”        imagery and built-up tension will       There’s a sidekick female character named Sheva Alomar
record only three games into the season.       have you jumping out your seat.         who aids lead agent Chris Redfield in his assault on the
The pitching is fun too. Most pitchers         Luckily, there is a slow motion but-    infected hordes, and investigates the work of a crooked
have three or four different pitches they      ton, so you can slow everything         corporation likely behind the strange occurrences. Resident
can throw. You gotta pay close attention       down like you’re Neo in the Matrix      Evil 5 picks up about ten years after the last game’s story,
to their stamina and composure meters.         dodging bullets. Whether you’re         and uses the same basic controls and POV for the frighten-
If the pitcher starts to lose his composure    mowing down black-ops soldiers          ing encounters. It had been in the works since around 2005
you gotta send the manager out there to        by the handful or blowing zombies       and has had quite a bit of build-up for it’s release. There’s
calm him down. If he loses his stamina         to little pieces, this game is guar-    even a custom Xbox that you can get in honour of the new
and composure you best already have a          anteed to get your blood pumping.       game. The third big budget Resident Evil movie, with femme
relief pitcher warmed up. Whether you’re       I just got a rocket launcher and I’ve   fatale Mila Jovovich, came out a couple years ago and was
playing versus friends or you got your         gotta destroy this giant robot with     a theatrical success, showing that there’s obviously still a
own season going, this game is hours and       dual gattling guns for hands. If you    huge draw for the most important horror action game series
hours of fun. My only gripe is that MLB        are looking for an adrenaline rush      of all time. RE5 features some enjoyable co-op play, along
2K9 is too time-consuming...but anyone         in the form of a video game, then I     with other online multi-player modes. To top it all off, some
who loves baseball knows just how long         suggest you check out F.E.A.R. 2.       of the people who worked on the original groundbreaking
one game of baseball can be.                   It’ll have the most hardcore horror     Resident Evil game came back to aid on creating this install-
                                               fans shook...on some Poltergeist        ment. This new chapter in the saga will be sure to satisfy not
                                               shit!                                   only the diehard fans, but also newbies to the genre who like
                                                                                       to have nightmares about their virtual adventures. Resident
                                                                                       Evil 5 is a surefire winner, point blank.

                                              Check out for more new video game reviews including:
                                              Street Fighter IV, Skate 2, Halo Wars, Wanted: Weapons of Fate, Retro Game
                                              Challenge and more!
Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop

Zombies just won’t die. Take that how you like, but what I’m saying is that the zombie phenom isn’t going anywhere anytime
soon. From H.P. Lovecraft and all the way back to myths and folklore involving golems and homunculus, bringing dead
flesh to life or giving the inanimate the spark of life is a human obsession. While first-person shooters on the Wii can be
a bit iffy in my opinion, Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop provided some satisfying zombie slaughtering with not too much
intro tutorial play. There is, however, too much loading. I feel like I was waiting for loading every ten steps. The story takes
place in a suburban mall and they start you off fighting run of the mill zombies, but then they start to throw in zombie parrots
and zombie poodles, which might not sound menacing but they will fuck you up. Eventually these rotund undead security
guards with tasers in each hand start showing up everywhere too. You can weild the obvious zombie killing weapons like
chainsaw, baseball bat, and shotgun, but you can also use anything from a park bench to a patio umbrella to eradicate the
undead. This game was developed by Capcom, the same people who do Resident Evil and there is definitely some plot,
graphic, and gameplay similarities. Your job is to unravel the mystery behind the zombie outbreak and save survivors.
Sound familiar? What really added to the fun was the ridiculous level bosses like the clown with twin chainsaws, or the
grocery store manager so intent on protecting his store he’s armed a shopping cart with spikes and blades to run you
down in the aisles. The title gives you a good idea of what you’re in for, but in my case it could have been Chop Till Your
Thumbs Are Numb.
                                                                                          Left to Right:
With visual artists starting to favour DIY toys as their new           Soopa Coin-Up Bros. by ESC-Toy
medium of choice, the selection of blank toys out there has                      Mei Mei by Crazy Label
grown exponentially. Thick introduced many readers to urban                Bizarrgoyl by Monster Bucket
vinyl more than half a decade ago, and we currently feature                         Vimobot by Mimoco
designer toys each issue. So, to continue our faithful coverage
                                                                                   Di Di by Crazy Label
of the movement we now bring you some of the most unique
DIYs on the market.                                               8” Glow-In-The-Dark Bax Bear by OSO
                                                                                                           beer comes in the dark amber ale (my favorite)
Okay, so last we spoke I was preaching about                                                               and the light lager style.
how everybody is quick to jump on a drink trend        Vancouver penthouse. Now Benny is a guy that
before they even know what they are down-              took the advice of my last Drink Different piece,   Next time you’re ordering the same old cocktail
ing. This time around it is we’re gonna go with        he makes wild concoctions that look and taste       at the club, or grabbing your default 6-pack at the
a more hands on approach. Call it adver-torial,        good.                                               cold beer & wine, try something different!
call it shameless promotion of our sponsors, call
it what you will, in the end it is simply an encour-   Another recommendation for you is Organic En-
agement to think before you drink. I recently got      ergyMax, a healthy alternative to Red Bull and
put on to a delicious line of organic sodas called                                                         Pureian Mangorita
                                                       Monster, being that it has no taurine. EnergyMax
Pureian Springs. The eye-catching cans contain         is now the official energy drink of Vancouver        2 oz. 1800 Reposado Tequila
pure spring water, certified organic ingredients        Whitecaps FC.                                       3/4 oz. Grand Marnier
and they’re sweetened with blue agave (a main                                                              2 oz. Pureian Mango
ingredient in Tequilla). Pureian is great mixer and    My last suggestion is yet another organic bever-    1 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
is available in Mango, Cranberry and Natural.          age, this time beer. NatureLand Organic beer is     Muddled Kiwi
                                                       in my opinion one of the top five beers on the
I had my bartender friend Benny G. make us up          market, it is made with extreme care, premium       1 tsp. Simple Syrup
some highend cocktails (pictured above) at his         ingredients and brewed in small batches. The        Blend with ice and serve with a sugared rim
                                                                              Since the first Star Wars movie in 1978 the
                                                                              property has grown to include books, comic
                                                                              books, video games, RPGs, animated se-
                                                                              ries, and much more. Every Star Wars tale
                                                                              told outside the films is referred to as the Ex-
                                                                              panded Universe. Here we use a variety of
                                                                              toys and models to illustrate the expansion of
                                                                              some popular designs and themes from the
                                                                              Classic Trilogy.

               AT-TE by Titanium Series
               AT-ST by Star Wars Miniatures
               AT-RT by Revell Models
               AT-OT by Titanium Series

Imperial Shuttle by Star Wars Minis      Vader’s TIE by Star Wars Minis         V-19 Landspeeder by Micro Machines
Millenium Falcon by Tomy                 Slave 1 by Tomy                        Vulture Droid by Micro Machines
TIE Fighter by Star Wars Minis           TIE Interceptor by Star Wars Minis     TIE Bomber by Star Wars Miniatures
MC80 by Star Wars Miniatures             Rogue Shadow by Titanium Series

                                      Imperial Knights:    Yuuzhan Vong:
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Thick: When did you know this music thing          Jerkins and word travels. When you’re rep pre-      rhythms, or all of a sudden, BOOM, you
was what you were meant to do?                     cedes you, you got your foot in the game. They      guys click and you get down to business
Keri Hilson: I always took comfort in knowing      started to say, she can sing too. Polow was in      and start making the music happen?
I had a passion for music. I’m doing exactly       Atlanta and little did I know he told Timbo about   KH: Tim’s always inspiring. Never a dull mo-
what I’m supposed to be doing.                     me. He told Timbo he saw me write and per-          ment. With Tim you’re gonna laugh, have fun,
                                                   form and told him to check me out. Tim was          it’s all music. Before we start, we usually pop
T: Were you one of those girls listening to        looking for an R&B solo act and he said, let’s      in other people’s stuff. Yeah Yeah Yeahs, MIA,
your favourite artists in your bedroom and         do it!                                              whoever and just listen. He loves to compete,
singing right along thinking, “That’s me                                                               he loves to top himself every time. Luckily,
one day.”                                          T: What’s it like in the studio with Timbo? Is      we’ve been able to do that.
KH: Of course and when I used to watch per-        it hours and hours of testing out beats and
formances I used to imagine myself there and                                                           T: For those who don’t know you’ve writ-
I would tear it up.                                                                                    ten some massive hits for people. What are
                                                                                                       some you’re most proud of?
T: Who are some of your all time favs?                                                                 KH: Gimme More for Britney, Runaway Love
KH: Madonna, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jack-                                                              for Mary J, Wait a Minute for PCD, Usher I did
son...Lauryn Hill later in life and she became a                                                       Red Light, Chris Brown’s Young Love. There
huge part of my inspiration.                                                                           is no blueprint for how music happens. Some-
                                                                                                       times I write on my own and other times I get
T: What happened to Lauryn Hill?                                                                       summoned to work with these artists and we
KH: Man, I don’t know! I hope that I can hap-                                                           just bang it out. The Britney experience was
pen to Lauryn Hill. I wanna write her come-                                                                wild.
back song!
                                                                                                              T: Who is #1 on your list to work with
T: When you get into the game as a writer,                                                                      again?
how do you get your stuff out there?                                                                               KH: Justin Timberlake! He is like
KH: Before the team, I’m with The Clutch now,                                                                      the Jay-Z of R&B. He doesn’t write
I had placements with Usher, Ciara, Chris                                                                          anything down. And Jay-Z doesn’t
Brown and Ruben Studdard. It’s much like                                                                          write anything down. We co-wrote
any other business, you have to grind. Grind it                                                                   for my album, it’s a song called Slow
out and take every blow as it comes. I worked                                                                    Dance and when people hear that
hard. I’m 26 now and I started writing at 12.                                                                    the response will be huge!
I got my deal at 14 in a girl group. I know so
many people I met along the way that gave up.                                                                  T: I’m dying to know who is han-
It’s survival of the fittest.                                                                                   dling beats and who is guesting.
                                                                                                              Fill me in.
T: Is it tough getting in the game as a writer                                                                KH: Timbo and Polow bring the heat.
as opposed to a performer or vice versa?                                                                     We kept it mostly in house. Danja
KH: Songwriting was always my plan B and I                                                                  Hands is incredible. I did reach out to
was complacent as a songwriter. (I was) just                                                                Roy Hamilton and a few others too.
happy that I got my cake and got to eat it
too. I got to write my song and demo the                                                                  T: What’s the overall vibe on the disc?
song, and then “direct traffic” for an artist,                                                            KH: Versatility. Free and fun. You’ll feel what
producing their vocals. That’s how Tim-                                                                  it’s like to be in the studio with us. From
baland discovered me.                                                                                     tears to fun and everything inbetween.

T: You hooked up with Polow first,                                                                          T: Your debut In a Perfect World drops
Timbo second…those are some                                                                                soon and the official second single is
pretty big names in the produc-                                                                             Turning Me on with Weezy!
tion field. How did it all go                                                                               KH: That’s a fun joint! The inspiration be-
down?                                                                                                    hind that is, guys have NO CLUE how to ap-
KH: When you’re working as                                                                              proach a woman. They have no clue. None.
much as I did something                                                                                And women who act like little immature girls,
is bound to pop. Before                                                                                the ones who give it up too easy, they make it
long I was working                                                                                     hard for the rest of us. I really wanted to write a
with Dallas Austin,                                                                                    song as a script on how to talk to a woman.
Jermaine Dupri,
Jazze     Pha,
Thick: You guys went to Harvard and met there. Is the school full of            do the mixtape and do some collabos with P, JD, Diddy, Pusha from The
stuck up chicks?                                                                Clipse, Talib Kweli and a number of others. The record is not a Hip-Hop
DA: (There is a) good number of nerds, and a good number of good, nor-          album but the mixtape is. Max and I spent a week in Boston with Clinton
mal, grounded creative people from all over the world who like to learn. It’s   Sparks and we just made all original beats and then we sent them out to
kind of a hard place to pigeonhole.                                             those who we wanted to be a part of it.

T: Not only do you sing and write your own stuff, you produce the               T: The Chester French remix of Jay-Z’s Excuse Me Miss was bananas.
majority of it too. How did you get into producing?                             Speak on how that happened?
DA: We started the band as a live band. It was us and three of our friends      DA: There’s a DJ in Boston, DJ Moneybags, so we did it for fun and gave
in our freshman year. We’ve been doing this for five years now. We’re            it to him. This is before we got signed. The idea was to do new versions
just now having the chance to expose ourselves to a larger audience. We         of songs that the Neptunes had produced. We did that and Slim Thug’s
got heavily into production our sophomore year when both of us became           I Aint Heard of That. When Pharrell heard that he was like, “What the
engineers at an on campus recording studio which we later ended up run-         fuck? These guys are doing Neptunes remixes? It was all complete coin-
ning. We had this little studio with a modest amount of gear but enough         cidence. He lost his mind and was all about it. We did that for fun in about
to record this album we were gonna put out. Just through trial and error        an hour and a half and there you have it.
we learned how to engineer and how to produce, so our hearts were in
the studio.

T: You guys have some pretty big co-signs in
the industry from the Hip-Hop world from JD to
Kanye, to Pharrell who signed you to Star Trak.
How did that all go down?
DA: We got extremely lucky. We made our entire
album, Love The Future, while we were still in
school. We finished it in our junior year and sent
it everywhere. The music made its way into the
hands of these folks and luckily they loved it. P
got it through his recording engineer, Drew, who
got it from a magazine writer who had written an
article about it for a music engineering magazine.
These people found us through a long chain of
generous folks who were nice enough to pass our
stuff along.

T: What’s it like working with Pharrell?
DA: I just got the first collaboration that we’ve
done together in my email today. It’s a song for a
Clinton Sparks mixtape we’re putting out for free
in the next few weeks so the world can taste our
music before they pay for it. We produced the mix-
tape, it’s all original beats we did and on that song
I sang the hook and Pharrell is rapping on it. We
have not had the chance to work together in studio
but we’ve been around him a lot and he works ef-
ficiently and is always full of amazing ideas.

T: What’s the name of the song and the mix-
DA: Jaques Jams Vol. 1 and it’s us and Clinton
Sparks and the song (with Pharrell) is called Life
in L.A. about our experience living in L.A. after the
year we graduated college. It’s a more melancholy
perspective on life out there.

T: Your CD is called Love The Future. What’s
the vibe like throughout the disc?
DA: During college we were obsessed with artists
who made albums you could listen the whole way
through. We didn’t wanna have any filler. None
of this, two good songs and the rest is garbage.
We’ve got songs that are electrified swing, more
orchestral Beatle-ish stuff, and everything flows
together with a number of interludes. Max, the
other half, scored a lot of it by hand. We did it all
ourselves. No features. That’s why we wanted to
Thick: Where do you fit into the Street              T: So, Street Fighter IV keeps that 2D look              style of 2D fighting game. Marvel’s licenses
Fighter legacy?                                     we all know but also has 3D special moves,               are held by other companies right now but who
Seth Killian: The long version abridged is that     right?                                                   knows what the future holds. In Japan we actu-
I’ve been playing the game since I was a kid.       SK: That’s the new angle for Street Fighter IV.          ally just did a new one called Tatsunoko Vs.
I sorta grew up with it. I got better and better,   We struggled for a long time because every-              Capcom. Tatsunoko is not really well known in
and started winning some Street Fighter Tour-       body here loves Street Fighter but they were             the States. This game only came out in Japan,
naments. Then I played on the first US Nation-       like, do we have to do a 3D game? And if we do           so a lot of people have been importing it over
al Team for Street Fighter. We went over and        a 3D game, will that alienate all the fans of 2D?        here. Tatsunoko is an animation studio in Ja-
played in Tokyo. Since then I kept on running       I think they decided to stick to their guns and          pan. Their characters are like Speed Racer, the
tournaments, which also continued to get big-       be like, we’re gonna make it with fully 3D mod-          guys from Battle of the Planets, the Gatchaman
ger and bigger, and more international. Every       els but the classic gameplay. Ikeno-san, who’s           guys and a bunch of others. They’ve been do-
year we have probably thirty different countries    the art director on the project, did a great job of      ing it since the ‘60s, so they have a huge char-
in attendance, and our total is over 70 different   bringing these great characters that everybody           acter list. They’re sort of like the Marvel Com-
countries that have attended the tournaments.       knows and loves into 3D. So, the characters              ics of Japan in a lot of ways. That game came
And I found my way into Capcom by running           look really fantastic but it keeps that same core        out a few months ago and it’s been one of the
these tournaments. I had a completely unrelat-      2D gameplay, which not only feels really great,          most heavily imported titles over here (US). It’s
ed job teaching college. I would go by Capcom’s     but it’s familiar to all the old fans of the series as   been a big hit. It’s a lot of that same over the
booth at E3 and say: “Hey, we got this tourna-      well. So when you pick up and play it’s not alien        top, zany, crossover world fun. It brings a lot
ment, can we get some posters or something.         at all. You can still throw your fireballs and do         of great Capcom characters together with their
The kids would really love it.” And they would      your electricity and whatever else just as you           (Tatsunoko’s) crew. People who aren’t even fa-
be like: “Buzz off weirdo.” Then, eventually        always did. But now you’ve got these great new           miliar with Tatsunoko characters love playing it
they hired some new people and those people         visuals, as well as some new mechanics like              just because it’s a ton of fun.
offered me a job and I came over to Capcom.         the ultra combos, which are really beautiful and
From there I came on as the Senior Manager of       have a lot of 3D camera angles on them. You’ve           T: Is there plans to bring it to North Amer-
Community, which I’m still doing. I get people      also got what we call the “focus mechanic”, so           ica?
fired up about our games. Obviously, I have          you can do these focus attacks.                          SK: There’s a lot of fan request right now. Ba-
a long history with Street Fighter and know...I                                                              sically the problem with that is, in Japan all
don’t know everything about it, but pretty close.   T: So, we hear the end boss is named after               the rights to Tatsunoko characters are held
So I was able to work closely with the Street       you. Did you push for that?                              by Tatsunoko, but outside of Japan there are
Fighter IV team because they were just kicking      SK: I definitely didn’t push for it. I would never        like sixteen different rights holders. So, to re-
off the project as I arrived. Now I’m the special   have thought of trying to do that myself. When           lease the game in the States we would have
adviser to the Street Fighter IV project.           I started on the project I definitely considered          to get deals with all of them which is very com-
                                                    myself the low man on the totem pole and as a            plicated. But we do still hope to find a way to
T: Somebody was telling me today about a            big Street Fighter fan I felt very lucky to be able      bring that game out in an official fashion here.
well known Street Fighter viral video where         to even talk to these guys and have them listen          There’s a lot of fans that would make very, very
a guy waits until his life bar is almost out,       to some of my ideas. I was a little bit star struck.     happy. It’s been getting a lot of press. Actually
while his opponent hasn’t lost any life bar,        So when the idea came up, it was thrown out              it’s got magazine covers even though it’s not
and pulls one giant combo and wins. Is that         there by the producer, and I had to think about          even released outside of Japan just because
you?                                                it for about a tenth of a second before I was            people are so excited by the Capcom cross-
SK: It is and it isn’t. I’m not the one playing     like, yes, that’s okay with me. Yeah, it was big         over games.
but I shot that video. That’s my tournament,        honour for me to be a little part of Street Fighter
and I’m the one holding the camera and it’s my      history. Something I never would have thought            T: So your character looks a hell of a lot like
voice narrating it. There’s a nerd who gets re-     of as a kid growing up in the arcades.                   Dr. Manhattan from Watchmen.
ally excited and his voice starts cracking and                                                               SK: (Laughs) There are other colours you can
freaking out, that’s me. We calculated it last      T: Does Capcom have plans for any more                   choose for Seth where he doesn’t look as much
year because there’s different versions of the      Vs. games like the classic Street Fighter Vs.            like Dr. Manhattan. And Dr. Manhattan doesn’t
video, and it had 15 million views on Youtube.      X-Men?                                                   have a yin yang on his stomach. The giant bald
Which for a video game tournament clip is pret-     SK: We had great success with the Capcom Vs.             buff guy in a speedo is definitely well-worn ter-
ty impressive. But yeah, those players were a       SNK games. SNK has a great fighting legacy                ritory in the comic book universe. I think with
couple friends of mine, Justin Wong who is          as well. Our biggest crossover success was the           the blue colouring and his serious face he has
from New York, and Daigo Umehara, one of            Marvel series, Marvel Vs. Capcom and various             some similarities to Dr. Manhattan but his style
the greatest players in the history of the game     earlier X-Men Vs. Street Fighter games. Those            is all his own. It would be nice if he was om-
from Tokyo.                                         were really popular and invented a whole new             nipotent but he has to fight like everyone else.
T: Since the first single dropped it was obvi-         GS: Some of ‘em might have missed out on            for us to even dig it. We always seen Piece of
ous Camp Lo were onto something differ-               Let’s Do It Again, which came out 2002. It had      the Action as being high energy, a non-stop
ent. I get that your styles meshed well but           the song Glow on it that a lot of Lo fans would     ride.
how did you decide on the throwback kinda             be familiar with. That was a limited edition al-
flavour?                                               bum right there. So, they might have missed         T: You started with Profile but have been in-
GS: Our parents were pretty involved in music         out on that. That was the second thing we ever      dependent since then. Speak on the indie
and fashion, and they were pretty much strung         put out after Uptown Saturday Night.                route.
out on the Marvins, and the Stevie Wonders,                                                               GS: Profile was the biggest independent at the
and all of that. It trickled down to us and it defi-   T: How did the Japan only release come              time. In that sense, we always been on an in-
nitely hit Chee really hard. When we sat down         about?                                              die label. We’re used to the intimate settings of
at the round table right before we really kicked      GS: I think it was just a matter of somebody        dealing with people on the close up.
everything into full gear and we said, how are        over there had contacted our people over here       SC: When we tried a showtime label, it didn’t
we gonna come into this? ‘Cause we knew we            and expressed an interested, and me and Chi         work out right. They couldn’t really see our
wanted a different approach from what was al-         already had a catalogue ready to go. Our work-      boutique style of music. They wanted to de-
ready out there. So, we started mapping out           ing process is that, we just record a bunch of      partment store our music.
how we would approach it and we decided to            things and then pick the ones that we feel most
throw in influences, and one of the influences          fit that project. So when they hit us, we pretty     T: Who was the label?
was the seventies. So, we started doing heavy         much had all of that stuff in the catalogue al-     SC: Arista, before they switched to J. Records.
research on that, started hitting all of the video    ready. So, it wasn’t really that difficult.          So, we got caught up in waves that we wasn’t
stores. We did our homework, on top of what           SC: It was nothing we made with Japan in            digging. So, we asked for a release and inde-
we were already influenced by. We mapped it            mind. It something we already had and being         pendent has been our route since then.
all out from then. We knew we was gonna come          that they was interested, that’s what we gave
with the slang, the fashion, we knew we were          ‘em. That’s kinda how it panned out with the        T: Where did the name come from?
gonna intertwine the seventies in it. Obviously,      Black Hollywood too.                                SC: We used to roll dice and we had found a
being from the Bronx, all that stuff we grew up                                                           set of dice that had cards on it. Ace of Spades,
on, Bambaataa, Cold Krush, KRS-One, we                T: Tell us a bit about the new mixtape?             King of Hearts and all that stuff. So what we
knew we was gonna intertwine all that stuff into      SC: On Caught On Tape we hit ‘em with a cou-        would do instead of rolling for bread at the time,
it. When we did our first couple of tunes on the       ple songs that they been wanting us to come         ‘cause bread was real...we was about 200 lbs.
demo and the response was good, we just kept          out with for a minute. We hit cats with some        between us at the time. We used to roll for
flowing in that direction. By the time we got to       new energy, so cats who is not familiar with us     push-ups. Suede had me at the time ‘cause he
Coolie High, we pretty much had mastered it           can dig where we’re coming from. We got the         was always losing.
and were completely comfortable with where            laidback recliner type joints. We got the up en-    GS: (Laughs) I wish we could find them dice
we was going. So, that’s pretty much how that         ergy, drummed-out type joints. We make sure         right now.
came about.                                           our music doesn’t sound like anything that’s        SC: Yeah, man, that was the Sugar Street
                                                      poppin’ at the time. We’re sticking to our roots    Dice.
T: Between your debut and now you have                as far as that’s concerned.                         GS: Basically, we was running with Cee-Lo
released quite a bit of material some people                                                              at first ‘cause we was playing so much dice.
might not know about. Give us a run down.             T: And then what we gon’ hear on the album          We had kinda got comfortable with it too and
Sonny Cheeba: Well, they missed out on                that’s following that?                              then somebody had told us that there was this
Short Eyes. That was a Japan thing. They              SC: We try not to duplicate what we already         cat in Atlanta named Cee-Lo. That’s when we
might have missed out on the Black Hollywood          walked over. We like to make the new music,         changed the Cee to Camp and kept the Lo.
mixtape too.                                          new music. It has to be new, it has to feel fresh
                                                                     it was previously.        tioned, we did Snoop Dogg’s Never Have
                                                                     Some people were          To Worry. Then we did four videos off The
                                                                     separating internet       Roots’ Rising Down album. We did the Be
                                                                     videos and music          A Nigger Too video for Nas, which didn’t
                                                                     videos, and it kinda      make it on his untitled album but it was
                                                                     blurred the line a        a viral piece that got out there. We did a
                                                                     little bit after we did   video for Wale, Artistic Integrity. Another
                                                                     that.                     video for Nas, Sly Fox. We did The Truth
                                                                                               which was off the Jake One album fea-
                                                                       T: The buzz about       turing Freeway and Brother Ali. We did
                                                                       your videos has re-     three videos off The Renaissance for Q-
                                                                       ally grown, speak       Tip which was Move, Renaissance Rap,
                                                                       on when the tide        and Man Woman Boogie. Then in ‘09 we
                                                                       turned. I know you      did Arab Money for Busta Rhymes, Part
                                                                       mentioned the Jay-      of Me for Royce the 5’9”, Rotate for CNN,
                                                                       Z trailer was a ma-     and the last video we just shot was In My
                                                                       jor moment.             Sleep for Joe Budden. So, it was a pretty
                                                                       RC: That was in ‘07.    busy year in ‘08.
                                                                       So it was a series
                                                                       of small breaks and     T: Do you write the treatments for the
                                                                       working with a lot of   videos or do artists bring an idea to
                                                                       major label artists.    the table?
                                                                       After Blue Magic we     RC: A little bit of both. I like to get an idea
                                                                       did Snoop Dogg,         of what they want first and then we shape
                                                                       which was our first      the treatment together usually. There’s
                                                                       West Coast artist,      been a few times where I kinda nailed a
                                                                       which was great.        treatment for a song but I like to get their
                                                                       Talking to him, he      feedback first and just build on that. If they
                                                                       really saw what we      have an idea I don’t necessarily just write
                                                                      did we Joell Ortiz’      it verbatim but I usually try to incorporate
                                                                      videos and that’s        their idea and add on to it. (We) make
                                                                      why he wanted to         them see something that they hadn’t ini-
                                                                      use us. What’s kind      tially seen in the song chal-
                                                                      of interesting to me     lenge them, and put them in the situation
                                                                      is that you would        where they’re challenging themselves on
                                                                      think these major        set. It’s not just performing in front of a
                                                                      label guys and the       white wall, we’re giving them things where
                                                                      legends are used         they have to emote and show some acting
                                                                      to a certain way of      skills sometimes.
Thick: Introduce yourself and tell the         shooting videos, like how it was ten years
people where you fit into the music             ago. But really they’re kinda doing a lot       T: Were you behind the idea for Royce’s
world.                                         of research and seeing what’s out there.        recent Part of Me video?
Rik Cordero: My name is Rik Cordero            So guys like Snoop and Jay-Z, Nas, Bus-         RC: Yeah. I mean the song speaks for
and I’m an independent music video di-         ta Rhymes, they pay attention to the stuff      itself obviously. Royce just wanted a
rector specializing in Hip-Hop music vid-      that we do for some of the underground          Twlight Zone theme to it. So, we decided
eos. I think myself and my team, Three/21      cats and they want that look or that spon-      to shoot it in black and white, and I stud-
Films, we specialize in creating a varied      taneity of just going out there and doing a     ied a couple episodes to get a feel of the
landscape of music video for the Hip-Hop       video without having to worry about huge        cinematography. That’s sorta what we ap-
genre using non-traditional techniques         amounts of money to visualize one of their      plied to the video, giving it a very still and
and focusing on the songs that you             songs. The money is not really there and        static frame and making sure that our ac-
wouldn’t usually hear or see a visual to       music industry is definitely going through       tors were able to say the lines to the song
on a mainstream level. That’s kinda what       some changes. We’re adapting to it and          and at the same time act. Also because
I do.                                          it makes sense for everybody involved to        the song has some kind of shock value to
                                               give some options to these artists to do        it, it was important to not go too over the
T: What was the first artist that paid          songs that they want to do. What the la-        top with it. We didn’t want to make it a re-
you to do a video?                             bels will do is release a street single and     ally crazy exploitative video showing full-
RC: The first artist that really got some at-   video, and then the main single and com-        blown nudity or anything like that. It was
tention in the current underground is Joell    mercial video. I think there’s definitely a      important to keep it very subtle, to keep
Ortiz. We did a video for Brooklyn Bullshit    lot more in the catalogue of these artists,     the artistry in it. Once you cross a certain
off his The Brick: Bodega Chronicles al-       not just a street single and mainstream         line the viewer’s will feel like what they
bum. That got a lot of attention. Back then    single to shoot videos for. We focus on the     had in their imagination was more power-
everybody was anticipating his album. So,      stuff that’s right in between. Whether it’s     ful than what you actually executed. So,
we ended up releasing a video for that,        a storytelling single or something a little     I wanted to leave it up to the viewer’s to
which got a great response. That lead to       more personal that isn’t necessarily com-       feel more horrified than what we actually
me doing a video for Consequence from          mercial. Those are the videos that we do.       showed. The response has been pretty
G.O.O.D. Music. We did a video called          The turn around time and being honest to        great. Some people just won’t watch
Uncle Rahiem and once again, that got a        what these artists want is why they keep        it again. I think it was effective. It really
great response. Then we were shooting          coming back.                                    comes from Royce being an incredible
a lot of stuff for Def Jam and that lead to                                                    lyricist, his words are so visual already. It
the Blue Magic trailer for Jay-Z’s Ameri-      T: List off a bunch videos you’ve done.         was very easy to shoot that one.
can Gangster album. That made the in-          RC: In ‘08 we did a lot of videos. As I men-
ternet video a little more accepted than
Thick: Take us back to when you an Agerman were a group even
before 3X Krazy.
Keak Da Sneak: Me and Agerman hooked up in like ‘93 and we
formed a group called Dual Committee. We was doing a lot of shows,
a lot of local talent shows in the Bay Area. We hooked up with AWOL
Records, we signed a five years contract with ‘em with a two year
option. That didn’t work out, so we put Bart in the group and changed
our name to 3X Krazy. By ‘94 or ‘95 we had a deal with Virgin Re-
cords. We dropped an EP called Sick-O and we dropped the major
album called Stackin’ Chips in ‘97. It’s been on ever since. By ‘97
things wasn’t going right with the group, so everybody chose to do
solo albums. That’s where we at now. I’ve been building Keak since

T: I was remembering hearing the group split because someone
went to jail. Is that the reason?
KDS: It was a few things, it got real political.

T: What’s the likelihood of a 3X Krazy reunion album?
KDS: I don’t see it happening right now. ‘Cuz Agerman changed his
life, he don’t curse no more or nothin’, and BA got into to trouble to
where he’s out the scene. It’s just me right now.

T: Yeah, I was gonna ask about Agerman, isn’t he doing Chris-
tian rap now or something?
KDS: He did a couple gospel albums. I talk to him, he’s still rappin’.
Me and him are supposed to do an album this year. But I don’t think
there’s gonna be another 3 X Krazy album. Don’t get me wrong, I
would love to do it. That’s one of my drives, that’s one of the reasons
I’ve been still doing it for so long.

T: Seems like Bart is always into something. Is he gonna be
away for a second?
KDS: Yeah.

T: Since then you’ve done a bunch of solos and a couple colla-
bos. Talk about doing albums with other rappers.
KDS: I hooked up with E-Hustl, that James Rossman is a real good
dude. It’s rare to find a good dude in this business. I’ve been looking
for one for ten years. And me and Quinn, we long over due. We bin
talking about doing an album for a while. I fool with Quinn, the young
baby boy. Right now I just want to stay active, stay working. For me
it’s just all about working, man. Keeping something new out, keep-
ing something hot out. And not just only Keak albums. I’m doing col-
laborations with people who’s doing good music. Me and Quinn just
dropped an album called Welcome to Scokland, and I did the album
with Baby S and QZ called Word Pimpin’. It’s really actually their al-        T: What’s the big slang in the Bay right now?
bum featuring me, it’s really like a Keak Presents thing.                     KDS: Right now it’s Go music. It’s Hyphy but it’s Go music, it’s green
                                                                              light. It’s still sticky. That’s some shit we saying right now, this shit is
T: Speak on the rise and fall of Hyphy and if you think that was              sticky. It’s still dumb-ass hyphy. It’s just stewie-ooee right now. It’s real
just the media portrayal?                                                     stewie. RIP Mac Dre. That was a major loss. That put a lot of weight on
KDS: Hyphy is a ritual, it’s a way of life. It’s what we do, it’s how we      my shoulders. At the same we got a lot of new upcoming dudes, from J.
have fun. So, it will never die. As far as media putting it out there         Stalin, Beeda Weeda, my camp, the Allnthedoe Camp, Bruce Banner,
like a movement, it’s really how we get down. It’s history on repeat.         Philthy Rich...we got a lot of new dudes coming.
It goes back to the Black Panthers, we trend-setters in the Bay. A lot
of our slang, a lot of things we do is out there, everybody uses it in        T: What are you working on right now?
their music. From poppin’ collars to stuntin’ to giggin’ to goin’ stupid,     KDS: Another album called Keak Hendrix. I got a shoe coming out
everybody uses a lil’ bit of that. And they put it out and tried to give it   this year, Keak Sneakers. We working on a couple movies. I got The
another name but it’s still what it is. We trend-setters from facheezy        3X Story, a documentary on 3X Krazy on what happened, how it hap-
to yadaddamean. It’s just what we do, it’s how we have fun. I don’t           pened. I think me and Quinn are gonna do another Scokland album.
think that could die, it’s still active right now. I’m still doin’ shows in   PSD, me and Messy Marv are going to do another Bidness album this
other places where they’re still giggin’ and wearin’ stunner shades,          year. I do an album called the Farm Boyz every other year, I’ma do
they going dumb. I made up the word hyphy. I been saying it since             another Farm Boyz album this year. The Allindadoe Family album is
‘96. So why just now they saying “Hyphy movement” and all that? It’s          coming. I got a lot of different projects I’m working on. It’s non-stop.
like, yall late. We been hyphy.
Squeak E. Clean
Thick: Give us a N.A.S.A. briefing.                                       alive and it didn’t happen and then he passed away while we were
Squeak E. Clean: N.A.S.A. is myself and DJ Zegon from San Paolo,         making the record. It would have been amazing to work with him but
Brazil. We actually met at a party at a studio in L.A. A good friend     unfortunately it didn’t happen.
DVNO from France, from Ed Banger label was finishing up his re-
cord and he had a party. So that’s where we met. We started talking      T: So how long had you been working on this album?
about music and Brazilian music, and just hit it off and the next day    SEC: Five years. We started doing it in April 2003.
we were in the studio making our first tracks together.
                                                                         T: Who does what in the studio? What was the process?
T: With so many artists and a partner in Brazil, did the album           SEC: Ze would bring records from Brazil every couple of months
happen with a lot of file swapping? Or did you actually have all          when he’d come. And we’d have these things called “beat seasons”,
these people in studios?                                                 where we’d sample the records, chop ‘em up, start programming
SEC: Pretty much we were in the room with the people when they           drums, lay ‘em into ProTools, do a lil’ bit of arrangement. We’d do
recorded, with a couple exceptions. And as much as possible we           that with as many tracks as we could in the few weeks he was in
also got the different artists that were collaborating on the songs      town. I would finish the tracks, add live instrumentation, do a lot of
together, in the room together.                                          arrangement, etc. Then we would decide together who we wanted
                                                                         on the songs and then when we actually recorded, we would always
T: Were Kool Keith and Tom Waits in a room together?                     try to be with the people that were recording just to kinda keep a
SEC: We did Keith in New York first and then we did Tom later in this     certain cohesion to the record. So, it didn’t feel disjointed.
crazy log cabin studio in Northern California near where he lives.
That was an example of people that I didn’t want in the same room        T: The song with Tre and Fat Lip seems like halfway to a Phar-
together. I just thought the two of them live in their own worlds so     cyde reunion. Did you consider having them all on there?
much, that they might not really relate to each other in the studio.     SEC: We stepped to the other guys but they weren’t into it. But that’s
And I might be wrong, but that is one that I purposely thought, okay,    cool. Those dudes are both my homeboys, Fat Lip and Tre. We did
let’s record these guys separate because they’re one-of-a-kind           a few songs actually because we were thinking about doing a whole
dudes that might not get each other.                                     record with the two of them...but it just didn’t end up materializing.

T: Any cool session stories?                                             T: On top of all the musical collaborators, you also worked with
SEC: One really cool session was with Charli 2na and Gift of Gab.        some superstar visual artists for your videos, speak on that.
Basically the song is with those two guys and David Byrne, and we        SEC: We’ve been collaborating with all our favourite artists too in
did the parts with David Byrne first. He was talking about Adam and       terms of doing music videos and animated bits with them. That’s
Eve, and what it means to be a man... Me and him came up with            been really cool. Shepard Fairey, Mark Gonzales, Marcel Dzama,
the idea that the song was actually about evolution, and then we         Sage Vaughn, all these crazy people. We also shot the whole mak-
came up with the idea that we should make the song a conversa-           ing of the record, so we’re making a film now that combines a lot
tion between God and man, let’s get two different rappers. Charli        of the animation and the documentary footage in one long feature
2na’s voice is very deep and booming, so we decided to get him to        length film.
be God, and then we decided to get Gift of Gab to be man. When
those two guys were in the studio together they were totally vibing      DJ Zegon
off each other and writing together. There’s one verse where man is      Thick: What were some of the acts on the album that you really
asking God all these questions about the meaning of life and why         wanted to see on there?
we’re here and God always responds with another question back to         DJ Zegon: We had a dream list together. Me and Sam had pretty
man. Every time they would come up with a new question that would        much the same kinda taste musically. George Clinton is for sure like
totally stump each other, like, fuck, you’re asking me, why does hate    a dream having him on the record. I’ve always been a big Wu-Tang
exist? That shit is no joke! That was really interesting and fun just    fan, so Method Man, RZA and ODB on there was crazy. I’m not a
‘cause they were really getting into it and challenging each other. It   super emotional person, but I got happy every time we got someone
felt like more than writing a regular rap song.                          on a track, we’d celebrate. I felt like it really happening after Chuck D
                                                                         recorded. Public Enemy for me is one of my biggest influences ever.
T: We heard that ODB verse was the last one he recorded.                 So having Chuck D there was crazy.
SEC: Before he passed away we went out to New York and linked
up with his manager. It was actually one of the first song we did on      T: Did you want to get any artist that just didn’t happen?
the record. We were lucky enough for him to bless us with one of his     DJZ: Yeah, it almost happened with Rakim. He showed up at the
last living verses.                                                      studio, he listened to the record, he was vibin’. He was a cool guy,
                                                                         so I don’t know. It didn’t happen this time. Also one of my favourite
T: How did you decide the line-ups on the tracks?                        tracks is with Posdnous from De La Soul, it’s unfinished. I know this
SEC: We would just vibe out. We would first do the track and then         track is going to be huge when it’s finished. It’s not on the record. He
be like, this feels like Method Man. Then once we had one person,        made two sixteen bar verses.
we would try to come with somebody else that was completely unex-
pected from that person. We had this big board of people that were       T: Can you list some of the Brazilian records used for, or in-
like our dream list of people for every song, and slowly, one by one     spired, the N.A.S.A. record?
they ended up being on the tracks. That was really crazy. When we        DJZ: Cry Baby, Os Brasoes, Miguel de Deus, Assim Assado, Toni
would write to people, we never expected they were actually gonna        Tornado, Tom Jobim, Toni & Frank, Mao Branca, Zimbo Trio, nove-
do it and then they did.                                                 las soundtracks, and beats from the north of Brazil called Forro
T: Who was #1 on your list that you got and was there anybody
you didn’t get that you really wanted?                                   T: Is there any Brazilian artist on the record?
SEC: I can’t really say who was the #1 person that we got. Every-        DJZ: Seu Jorge is on the record but he’s a close friend. We played
one was really great. It definitely was amazing working with George       together for many years and I did this track for him too. He’s just
Clinton because he’s such a hero of mine, working with David Byrne,      singing backing vocals on Money, and we have an unfinished track
working with RZA, he’s a big hero of mine, Tom Waits was really          where he flipped a verse and a chorus. We have a bunch of songs,
great because he is just so cool. In terms of people we didn’t get,      so we have to choose what we’re gonna finish. There’s also a bunch
the person I really wanted because he’s my favourite musician of all     of (Brazilian) percussionists on the record. The Brazilian side of the
time, James Brown. We tried to reach out to him while he was still       record is really me and all the sample resources.
644 Seymour Street
The Fall started as an artists gallery and tattoo parlour in Halifax around      Mishap is a self-taught practitioner of all things musical, including the
1998. But after a fire gutted the old location in 2003 and they didn’t have       business side. As callous as most try to appear in the Hip-Hop scene,
insurance, owner Paul Tynes decided it was time for a fresh start. That          ethics are extremely important in the underground and bad word of mouth
fresh start was with new partner Josh Melvin and it brought them to the          can quickly sink you. After molding the Erthtonez into an extremely potent
other side of the country, Vancouver, BC. Situated in the heart of down-         clan of their own, Mishap is ready to show he can be an all-in-one en-
town Vancouver, the new The Fall opened in October 2007. This shop is            tertainer. He arranged, engineered, and recorded his debut solo album,
serious about body art, they employs seven tattoo artist and three pierc-        Mishap Muzik Vol. 1, chiselling the sound down to perfection in the stu-
ers, and the location houses a hospital-quality sterilization room. All tattoo   dio. And the grind is paying off, you can get his album on iTunes and he
artists are encouraged to contribute to the monthly art shows to exercise        is about to share a bill with Kardinal Offishall. One of the most enigmatic
their skills in other medi-                                                      local performers this city has seen, I understand where his influences like
ums. After only two years                                                        Method Man have had the most impact. Mishap Muzik Vol. 1 showcases
in operation, The Fall has                                                       thirteen tracks of a Vancouver emcee/producer carving out his place in
become a coveted spot                                                            the game. He also rips up production from DJ Extremidiz, Ominous, and
for up and coming artists                                                        DJ Crown from France, while there’s lyrical contributions from Gee Wun-
to do solo shows and the                                                         der, and of course part-
space in booked well into                                                        ner Xxxplicit. Not slowing
2010 already! They even                                                          down while the music is
have annual events like                                                          flowing, Mishap also has
their charity show for the                                                       a collabo EP in the works
Pivot Legal Society, and                                                         with up and coming pro-
a custom toy show every                                                          ducer Phonik Ops. Look
Christmas. Well, it might                                                        for that 10 track banger
have taken a huge fire                                                            in the Spring. Check out
and a cross-country move                                                         Mishap at: myspace.
but The Fall tattoo studio                                                       com/mishapmuzik
and “active” artist gallery
is now a Vancouver des-
tination for those looking
to get ink and those look-
ing for fine art with some
edge. For more informa-
tion and portfolios check
out their website at:
Metrotown Center, Lower Level
Cleverly named after not only one of the most recognizable cities in the     “Lifestyle marketing” is the buzz catch phrase of our flailing economy; as
superhero world but also the location in Metrotown, Metropolis Comics &      our lifestyles are forced to change we look for companies and products
Toys is a new school comic and toy shop...and I mean brand new, we vis-      that reflect our inner selves better than the desperate and over priced
ited during their first week open and the place was buzzin’ with customer     major brands that have been exploiting the market for years. As R13
activity. I even got caught up in the frenzy and picked up a few pieces of   Clothing founder Wess Lambright says, “Our clothing is like your second
the very popular Gundam line.                                                skin.” Started as many clothing labels do, with a desire for edgy designs
Gundam is a glueless, build-it-                                              not available in the current market, R13 is perfect for the new breed
yourself model series by Bandai                                              of high octane youth that follow the “work hard, play harder” mentality.
that retails for anywhere be-                                                Most of them also follow MMA religiously, so the octagon-influenced
tween $20 - $450 and Metropolis                                              design and fit of the shirts is killing it for MMA fans that also have a life
carries all the accessories and                                              outside the ring. Look for R13 as a sponsor in the upcoming Battle of
paints to get them looking right.                                            the Cage in Nanaimo. Their Reaper silouhette logo will show up as Gary
The most obvious feature of the                                              “Evil Ginger” Wright enters the ring. Evil Ginger is the undefeated Cana-
store is comics, and while the                                               dian Welterweight Champion. His Shotokan Karate style won the KOTC
mere presence of a comic shop                                                Canadian Welterweight title back in April 2007. Outside the ring, look for
in a mall is pretty unprecedent-                                             the clothing line to expand beyond t-shirts to hoodies and shorts next.
ed, it’s a definite reflection of                                              The strategic marketing angle for R13 is to do more sponsorships and
the industry’s commercial resur-                                             have the Reaper appear in music videos and at more lifestyle associat-
gence. Metropolis is considered                                              ed events like Motor X. Recently, R13 has landed support from Organic
the destination spot for Trans-                                              EnergyMax, a natu-
formers by serious collectors.                                               ral product that will
You can get the classic style toy                                            hopefully give R13
line, the popular Animated toy                                               sponsored fighters
line, Japanese imports, Trans-                                               an edge. Retailers
formers Mighty Muggs, or even                                                interested in carry-
loose, prebuilt Transformers.                                                ing R13 can contact
They also carry figures in vary-                                              Wess Lambright for
ing sizes from properties like                                               orders at: sales@
Star Wars, Marvel, DC, GI Joe,                                     
Halo, and Gears of War, made
by companies like Hasbro, DC
Direct and NECA. I went into
Metropolis a superficial fan and
left with a better understanding
of the collector’s mentality.


              Metrotown Center, Lower Level next to Toys R Us
                                                                             The Plague - LT Moe presents The Plague EP

                                                                             What do Ludacris, Murs, Chingy, and Tha Dogg Pound all have in com-
                                                                             mon? They’ve all got songs produced by LT Moe. You might not have
                                                                             heard his name before but you’ve heard his beats. From radio hits to
                                                                             hood anthems to boom-bap neck-snappers, his versatility is amazing.
                                                                             When he’s not in the studio with your favorite rapper’s favorite rapper,
                                                                             he’s working on music with his group The Plague. The group consists of
                                                                             rappers Donny Arcade, Okelis and Buddy Boie. I’ve had their self-titled
                                                                             debut EP on heavy rotation since it dropped a few weeks ago. The Intro
                                                                             really starts shit off proper. Three emcees spitting that high voltage shit.
                                                                             No chorus just hard bars. Voice Of The Plague has this horror feel to it
                                                                             that really sets the vibe of the EP. Affiliate group members Phoenix Jones
                                                                             an Ahdae both spit ill verses on the Plague Allegiance. Atlantis is more
                                                                             of that doomsday music. The Outro ends shit with a exclamation mark!
                                                                             Just like Okelis says, “Iron Sheik suplex niggas to sleep.” LT Moe’s top
                                                                             notch production and the trio of dope lyricists make this EP a rare gem in
                                                                             today’s dumbed down Hip-Hop market.

                                                                             Classified - Self Explanatory
                                                                             Sony BMG Records

                                                                             Real talk in Canadian Hip-Hop is hard to find. Which is strange consider-
                                                                             ing our country is praised for its modesty and positivity. Classified is a
                                                                             breath of fresh air for a couple of reasons, he wears his experience on
                                                                             his sleeve and lets his ear for producing great beats inform his rap style
                                                                             and cadence. Most of all though, he doesn’t front like he is something
                                                                             he is not. Class has two distinct flows, on some tracks he is aggressive
                                                                             and on others he rocks as his smoked out alter-ego. The title track is the
                                                                             opening cut and he breaks down his life and perspective. Class is so sure
K’naan - Troubadour                                                          of his diversity on this album, he includes Choose Your Own Adventure
Universal Records                                                            interludes that give you a choice of what kind of song you want to skip to.
                                                                             I feel Class is at his best on feel good joints like Up All Night and Things
Somali street soldier K’Naan may call Canada home now but remem-             Are Looking Up. Quit While You’re Ahead with Choclair, Maestro and
bers his nightmarish upbringing vividly and on Troubadour the super          Moka Only is what little braggadocio us Canadians can muster...well, at
emcee transports you back to the dirt roads where ducking gunfire is          least the most since Northern Touch. Your boy Class is fortunate enough
the daily. Story has it he and his mother were on the last flight outta       to be on Sony, thus making it easier to get ill Phil Collins samples cleared
dodge before shit hit the fan. What’s even more astonishing is the fact      like the one he uses on Anybody Listening. Oh…Canada is a fun almost
that he learned the English language through studying his favorite rap-      South Park look at the quirks of being a Canadian emcee in an American
pers’ cassettes and CDs. With quick quips and razor sharp rhetoric           dominated industry. Class has stayed on his grind and this major label
K’Naan is one to keep an ear on. Troubadour plays out like a theatrical      release is the next level for his career, here’s to his continued success.
production with incredibly deft instrumentation and penetrating lyrics
that you’ll swear float word for word in front of your eyes. One of the
most touching songs is Wavin’ Flag. K’Naan sings an eloquent ode to
his homeland and parallels Bob Marley carrying the weight of Jamaica
on his back, and likewise Wyclef working for the betterment of Hai-
tians worldwide. From eye-opening lines to political pontification, this is
one emcee that speaks from the soul sans posturing. The production
throughout is upper deck and Troubadour is more world music than
Hip-Hop with flavours for every musical palate. Guests run the gamut
from old school kingpin Chubb Rock on ABCs, to pop power player
Adam Levine of Maroon 5 on Bang Bang, to rock god Kirk Hammett on
If Rap Gets Jealous, through to two of Hip-Hop’s best, Chali 2na and
Mos Def on America. Rarely do you find an entire body of work you can
listen to end to end but K’Naan will not lose your attention.

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