You worked with D.I.T.C. and received co-signs from heavy hitters in the industry like DJ Premier. What lessons did you learn and apply from these industry greats as you prepare for the release of your "BX-Roc" project with producer, Kidd Called Quest?
I learned a lot. It's kinda hard to just single things out, but off top from D.I.T.C's Showbiz, I learned to sit with something 'til I love it because sometimes I'll rush and write 5 songs in a day or a song in twenty minutes, and Show was like 'imagine what these songs would sound like if I took ...
Insomniac Magazine’s Weekly Hip Hop Top Ten: Don’t Sleep On These New Releases
Insomniac's Weekly Top Ten is back with a vengeance! In fact, the heat contained on this week's chart is nearly boiling over!!! So don't waste a second. Jump to it & check out the Top 10!
1) DANNY BROWN set off major explosives on a global scale when he enlisted ultimate rhyme warriors, KENDRICK LAMAR, AB-SOUL, and EARL SWEATSHIRT for a lyrical tour de force called "Really Doe." The "Atrocity Exhibition" super cut laced by Beat Monster, Black Milk, showcases the emcees flexing breath-taking bars over a dark, foreboding soundscape that signals destruction to all opponents who cross their path! It's ...
Insomniac Magazine Interviews Mahogany Beatz
You've earned multi-platinum awards, won a Grammy, and worked with the hottest names in the industry (Jay Z, Mariah Carey, Dr. Dre, etc). Among all of these accomplishments, what was the most rewarding on a personal note and why?
The most rewarding thing on a personal note was realizing that I wouldn't be a one-hit wonder and that I could perform at the highest level in the music industry, and also having the self-actualization that I'm just as creative as these icons.
What first attracted you to production instead of other avenues of interest in the music industry? And when did you ...
Insomniac Magazine interviews Hip Hop production crew Jazz Spastiks
Insomniac Magazine feature:
Scotland's Hip Hop production team Jazz Spastiks
Last week we interviewed mic master, junclassic, about the new vinyl release of his 2011 album, "Mode 7." This week the ultra-talented producers of the project, Jazz Spastiks (aka The Slipmat Brothers), receive the spotlight treatment on the same topic. Read below as Edinburgh, Scotland's production powerhouses reflect on the making of "Mode 7" and discuss their creative process.
2011's "Mode 7" was one of the best fusions of Jazz & Boom Bap since A Tribe Called Quest's classic albums in the 90's. How did the collabo between you & junclassic come ...
Cambatta delivers a BRILLIANT track and video concept in which he takes on the persona of the man who murdered Tupac Shakur in the A1Vision directed clip for the V Don produced “Tupac Murder Confession.” It’s a MUST WATCH. Check it out below!
Peace Rhinoceros Funk! You’re making a major impact on the underground scene as both an artist and on-air personality. Please tell the readers about the origin of Guerrilla Grooves Radio, what inspired you to become a lyricist, and why you chose your unique name.
First of all, thank you. I don’t evaluate my participation in the culture as a major impact, but the love is highly appreciated. The origins of Guerrilla Grooves Radio and The Art Of Lyrics for that matter stem from the love and passion for Hip Hop. Guerrilla Grooves Radio was a show I had on college radio directly influenced by Stretch and Bobbito. After years of conducting live shows with the number one cool guy, Fred Ones (TME STUDIOS). Fred and I decided to revive the show utilizing the morbid and off kilter banter we have established throughout the years. Our brethren include crucial entities to our makeup. Miggz, our music programmer, L.I.F.E. Long, co-host, Danny Kodak, documentarian, Juls Money (Chacho NENE) president of the gallery, round up the squad. I started rapping like many, as a child. I decided to strengthen the ability to do so after the sharp decline in content and skill in the culture. I continued djing, writing, and learned a bit of production. My name derives from being called rhino since I was a teenager. I adopted “rhinoceros funk” after Kool Keith said it on “Hands on Experience.”
Your latest project is called “An Aesthetic Act Of Aggression.” Why did you select that particular title? Also, was the recording process an arduous affair in the sense of lyrical concepts and beat selection or was it more organic in nature?
Many don’t like using the word HATE. I love it. But in the interest in the advancement of the English language in Hip Hop I attempted to translate this hate into an aesthetically pleasing composition of my hostility, hence the title. The process was far from arduous. Many of the rhymes came natural and some were already conceived prior to the collaborative effort with Silent Someone.
It’s usually difficult for artists to pick their favorite cuts from the album. But if you had to choose five tracks from the project that stand out the most, which songs would they be and why?
“Nom De Guerre” due to it’s revolutionary components. “Guerrillas” for the same sense of versatility in rhymes and beats. “Skills in Tons” for the collaborative effort of the MCs I respect and love. “Diggers Delight” because I was able to transcribe the emotions of the production aspect with the help of Silent Someone. And finally, “Pandemonium,” because it was the first track Silent Someone and I worked on after the song “Rhinoceros Funk.”
What makes an “Aesthetic Act Of Aggression” different from all the other Hip Hop albums on the market and what makes you unique as an artist?
The album is different because I’m different. There is not one song created for popular approval. I approach music with a sociological scope utilizing my political convictions with a boom bap fusion. This project is musically sound, free of ridiculous attempts to forge into what’s considered the norm nowadays.
You worked with two brilliant producers (Silent Someone and FredOnes). What made them the “go to guys” for what you wanted to achieve on this album, and sonically, how do their styles differ and also complement each other?
Working with Silent Someone and Fred Ones was a complete and utter honor. Silent is a genius in his own right who works diligently on every sound he touches. The man is an avid professional collector, musician, and innovator. His ability to direct and envision a song is uncanny. We rarely disagreed, and his confidence in my ability to navigate a song, find sound bites, or organize particular thoughts was encouraging, and our next project will be sure to provide more of the same. Fred Ones is the conductor. Behind the boards he provides the experience afforded to him and shares endlessly without expecting anything in return.
As your popularity and visibility in the industry increase, there might be a time when you’ll have to choose between your roles as an on-air host or artist. If you were forced to choose between the two, which path would you select and why?
I really don’t see my brand of Hip Hop allotting the opportunity to tour at the moment. I have been doing radio for close to 20 years and regardless of the opportunities that arise I will never stop utilizing the medium.
What is your main motivation for making music and what lessons have you learned during your time in the industry?
My main motivations are the effects of global capitalism, racism, depredation, inequality, history, shitty music, and ignorance. As long as these exist, I will continue to make music. What I have learned is that when these are your motivations, fuck the industry. Like El-P finely stated, “When sales control stats I place no faith in the majority.” I make music for my own sanity. My audience will appear soon enough.
Do you have any upcoming shows? What can fans expect when they check out a Rhinoceros Funk performance?
No shows to speak of as of now but my live performances are filled with animated passion, clarity, and outstandingly composed ballads of aggression.
Any final thoughts? Shoutouts?
Thank you for taking the time to review the album and interviewing me. I don’t do these often but crush them when I do. Just want people to get the album, listen, and await further instructions. Shouts to the man behind the majority of tracks for this project, my brother SILENT SOMEONE, peace to my GUERRILLA GROOVES RADIO family, FREDONES, MIGGZ, LIFE LONG, CHACHO, DANNY KODAK, SINCERE-SOLO VIBES MUSIC, GUERRILLA REPUBLIK-IZ & RAB LOVE and everyone who makes this opportunity possible by supporting the radio show and THE ART OF LYRICS. Peace to the guest appearance on the album, YAHZEED, WHITE OWL, and AKBAR. And peace to INSOMNIAC MAGAZINE. AN AESTHETIC ACT OF AGGRESSION. ENJOY.
REVIEW: RHINOCEROS FUNK – “AN AESTHETIC ACT OF AGGRESSION”
Radio host and lyrical juggernaut, Rhinoceros Funk, delivers raw energy and BARS GALORE to true Hip Hop heads worldwide on the 15 track opus, “An Aesthetic Act Of Aggression.” Kicking off the action with a series of creative sound bites, the Silent Someone produced “Aggressive Campaign” introduces us to the unstoppable power of the rhino before listeners are smacked upside the head with a tour de force of rapid fire rhymes on the funky gem, “Brilliant Disaster.” “Sudden Sense Of Blood Showers” alerts the audience to the one man stampede fast approaching, then settles into a laid back groove R.F. efficiently mutilates with his murderous flow! The FredOnes laced “Salvation” (featuring Yahzeed & Akbar) connects with a sonic right hook that will blow you away with 90’s inspired Boom Bap and more top of the line mastery on the mic.
“Diggers Delight” showcases Rhinoceros Funk’s impressive versatility as the emcee BODIES two vastly distinct soundscapes expertly crafted by Silent Someone. THIS is a MAJOR highlight on the project that demands some visual accompaniment(HINT, HINT). Simply put, the joint is INCREDIBLE! You’ll take one listen and stare at your speakers in awe. “Social Conflict Theory” finds the lyricist riding an Electro-Boom Bap fused track while commenting on the social landscape with complex bars you’ll want to replay and examine. “Pandemonium” is the aural embodiment of chaos and excitement. It’s the kind of track that will make you rise up and start smashing store windows with a baseball bat! Wanna HEAR what energy sounds like? Start here. You won’t be able to stay in your seat for this one! “Ridiculous Acts Of Aggression” serves up more solid sound bites before “Nom De Guerre” incites us to fight against the powers that be with R.F’s commanding call to action propelled by slinky, exotic production. “Street Peasants” picks up the tempo as Rhinoceros Funk delivers more gritty rhymes and conveys that his heart and soul never stray too far from the neighborhood while “Place Of My Own” shines light on the emcee’s superb storytelling abilities over a spectacularly soulful backdrop.
“Guerrillas” begins with a pounding rhythm that Rhinoceros Funk soon dominates with more ill wordplay that promise to “Kill your future while affecting your current roster” before an electric guitar enters the mix to elevate the track even further. Just when you think things can’t get any better, R.F. starts to flex his lyrical muscles in Spanish and blows the roof off the entire joint!!! “Skills in Tons”(ft. Guerrilla Grooves’ very own L.I.F.E. Long along with super talents, WhiteOwl & Akbar)bulldozes it’s way into the scene with monstrous beats and of course, bars too good to be believed! The emcees brought their A-Game to the studio. Real Hip Hop is in the building! FredOnes brings more heat to the proceedings with the mellow, laid back, “Gloomy Sunday” until our sonic escapade ends with the jazzy Silent Someone produced gem, “We Are.”
Rhinoceros Funk proves that he’s a creative mastermind with his new project that’s guaranteed to receive acclaim from critics and hip hop fans alike. If you’re looking for top quality lyrics and production, embrace the anger within and lash out at the haters with “An Aesthetic Act Of Aggression!”
If you’re looking for lyrical mastery and impressive production in your Hip Hop selections, “SS96J” will give you an ample amount of both. Top choice beats and rhymes are on full display here, as well as stellar contributions from fellow #TheWinners fam, including Hus Kingpin, Rozewood, Sean Rosati, Marvelous Mag and El Ay.
On the production tip SmooVth does double duty, while rocking well over tight tracks from a bevy of Hip Hop’s finest new era beatmakers, including Kev Brown and the Crate Divizion’s Giallo Point and Vic Grimes.
Regarding the title, it’s no where near a slam on Jay-Z, instead, it’s a nod to the God Father’s contribution to the game. Don’t for a moment sleep on the new album, go out now and cop it from one of these fine platforms: