The dope folks at Canned-Goods interviewed Sound Sci:
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Soundsci – Hip-Hop Group Interview
Soundsci have only recently released their first EP which gained “Album Of The Month” in Hip-Hop Connection, with an old school sounding hip-hop flavour consisting of fat beats and solid rhymes Soundsci are a group to keep your eye on!
I believe Soundsci is made up of a couple of different people?
Audessey: Soundsci originally started with Jonnycuba and myself (Audessey), but we collaborate with a consortium of talented folks… DJ Ollie Teeba (Herbaliser), No Sleep Nigel (Engineer Extraordinaire) and UGeorge (from The Hemisphere).
Where are you guys based and how did the two of you begin working together?
Audessey: Jonnycuba is based out of London (UK) and I, Audessey, am based out of Atlanta, GA (USA).
Jonnycuba: It started when a friend bought a Mass Influence 12″ (Rhyme Placement) to my Dynamic Syncopation (DSP) partner Loop Professor‘s house. We were bowled over at how dope it was and just cold called from the number on the record. That led to us working together on the 1st Dynamic Syncopation LP (Dynamism). We released two singles “Dedicated” and “Ground Zero”.
Do the two of you in Soundsci have specific roles?
Jonnycuba: Well, Tone raps and I do the beats, but we work on all the concepts together, we also get Ollie Teeba in to do cuts on a lot of stuff.
Audessey: Jonnycuba holds down the productions end and I focus on the rhyming part, but will at least try to get a beat (or two) from myself on the project, but usually we always work together on the songs to make them sounds the best that they can be. At the end of the day its all about making the very best music that we can.
I understand you used to record material for Ninjatunes, how did you come to be involved with Coldcut‘s infamous London based label?
Jonnycuba: That was me, as one half of Dynamic Syncopation (DSP). It’s shamefully nepotistic, I was doing co-production for the Herbaliser and DJ Food started going out with my wife’s sister! So I had connections there, a demo was passed on to Ninjatune they signed us straight away. I had fun on Ninjatunes and released two LP‘s with them. In the end they thought that the true school hip-hop we settled into was too genre orientated for them.
How long have you been making music and what made you get into production?
Audessey: I have been making beats since I was 20 and rhyming since I was 13. Before that I used to b-boy (breakdance), beatbox and was a hype man for my man’s group back in the day.
Jonnycuba: I started at 6th form college in the late 80’s doing lunchtime radio, getting into diggin’ trips with Ben (Loop Professor) and an older cat named (Cool Hand) Luke. We would save money and do overnighters in the studio when the rates were really cheap. Our 1st studio session was overseen by by The Wise Guys, AKA Regal and DJ Touche, where we took in a pile of records and said “this bit and that bit”.
Where does the name Soundsci come from?
Audessey: The name “Soundsci” comes from the word “Soundscience” because we feel that as we work with music we like to experiment with different elements and styles… like scientist, for which a chemist’s medium is potions, formulas, organic/inorganic material… or medium is sound. We work in the space of silence and create a sound from there expressed thru hip-hop.
How would you describe your sound?
Audessey: Everywhere… we fuse with jazz, funk, soul and reggae with the backbone of a dope hip-hop beat and turn it into something special.
Jonnycuba: It’s hip-hop! We use the same techniques the pioneers used and add our own twist.
What has the reaction to your music been like so far?
Audessey: The reaction to the music/project has been overwhelmingly postive from folks all around the world. It’s truly amazing to see people from as far off places as Finland, Peru, The Netherlands, Germany, France and the USA listen too and appreciate the music that we are making. Each positive response we get just really motivates us to do more and better stuff. It’s really been one of the most rewarding experiences. Starting from the ground up and really having a part in the direction of things as we (Jonny, DJ Cro and myself) see the feedback from the ground level of the folks who like an appreciate the work that it took to put the project together.
I believe your “Dig For Victory EP” has been doing well and was even mentioned in Hip-Hop Connection?
Audessey: Totally, they were impressed with the Soundsci “Dig For Victory EP” and awarded it ‘Album Of The Month’ (HHC Digital – Issue 004). It also features on DJ Switch’s mix and when they asked which track is his favorite in the mix he said “It would probably be Soundsci‘s ‘The Remedy’, it’s got that jazz vibe about it and it’s also a straight-up track you can drop at the peak of the party”. It was really dope to get that album of the month and also a short feature a couple of weeks before… I mean with all the albums that come out on a regular basis to be selected as ‘Album Of The Month’ from HHC was really, really awesome and let us know in some way that maybe we are doing something right when it was coming to the music that we made (smile).
Jonnycuba: The response from people who have checked us out has been overwhelmingly positive, getting LP of the month in Hip Hop Connection was a real blessing. For such a tiny home brew project to get out there with no promotional budget and all of us having full time jobs too requires a big effort on all of our parts and the goodwill of the people we connect with. Personally I’d like to have some small connection with each person who buys our music.
The “Dig For Victory EP” has been released though Crate Escape Records, can you tell us a bit about that label and how you came to be involved with them?
Jonnycuba: Crate Escape Records is the creation of DJ Cro from Birmingham (UK). He set up the label to release a limited vinyl run of the Kurious George Demo’s as they had great production from the likes of the SD50‘s and Prince Paul, basically too good to stay in the vaults. They had been released in digital form but had not been mastered etc. DJ Cro put in a big effort to get them up to standard and released on wax! I met him through a web board called ‘Diggers With Gratitude’, where die hards go to exchange knowledge about hip-hop from it’s roots up to new stuff. I had posted a track Soundsci had done and DJ Cro got in touch saying he liked both DSP and Mass influence. We just all clicked and it flowed from there.
Audessey: I met DJ Cro, who is the founder/owner of Crate Escape Records, thru Jonnycuba. We all then communicate a lot thru instant message and email and then as we were recording stuff at first a single was planned but it really just made sense to put an EP together and then one thing lead to another and here we are. With a lot of hard work to get here and still a lot more to go we all feel we really have something special.
Where can people listen to and buy your music, is it available on-line?
Audessey: If you want to order the limited edition “red” vinyl (and the goodies that come with it) go to Crate Escape Records. Any inquires you can hit us up at email@example.com. You can buy the music directly from us (digitally) at http://soundsci.bandcamp.com where we also have a FREE download of the song “Remedy”. Also, for those that have iTunes and shop at the other digital vendors out there we are also available at the following:
- Amazon On Demand
- Amazon MP3
- Amie Street
- LimeWire Store
- Wax Poetics
The “Dig For Victory EP” features Ollie Teeba from The Herbaliser, do you have any plans to work with any other artists in future productions?
Audessey: Oh yeah most definitely, but if we told you then it wouldn’t be a surprise would it (smile). I give ya one… DJ Switch, the 2009 DMC World Deejay Champion, is gonna bless the next project with his skills as well as some other folks.
Jonnycuba: We want to stay working with the musical family we assembled on the first EP and anyone else who (a) shows interest in being part of what we do and (b) we think are dope.
What equipment do you use to produce your music?
Jonnycuba: A laptop running logic and an EmuSP12 to sample drums.
Audessey: I use an MPC2000, ASR10, Protools (Digi002) and a Proteus. I’m starting to mess with Logic but still prone to mess with the MPC 2000 and ASR10… lol.
What would you say has been your greatest achievement so far?
Jonnycuba: Getting it together to make the EP and press it on vinyl.
Audessey: Personally I have to say to have a relationship with my daughter Jay who is an incredible person, woman and talent. Musically, I would say to just to be able to live a dream since I was a kid and to make music that people appreciate and like in the style of music that I love so much.
What are your musical influences?
Jonnycuba: Whatever I’m listening to at the time! I’ve been into collecting funk, soul and jazz for a long time… also film soundtracks, psych rock, and hip-hop. I love the arrangements of James Brown, an obvious choice perhaps, but there are lessons right there…
Audessey: Anything and everything… music is every and anywhere, you just have to keep your eyes open. I like jazz, funk, soul, reggae… classical too… just good music influences me.
Do you have a favourite tune of all time?
Jonnycuba: I have listened to “Baby I Love You So” by Jacob Miller, especially the dub on King Tubby Meets The Rockers Uptown thousands of times and never get bored of it.
Audessey: There are too many great and awesome tunes out there in the universe but one that touches me is Gary Bartz Ntu Troop “Celestial Blues”, the lyrics and meaning of that song is truly power. Give it a listen and check it out… truly, truly one of many dope tunes out there in the universe:
I know from reading your blog that you guys were born and raised “golden era” hip-hop, any chance you could give us your top ten or top 5 cuts?
- Organized Konfusion – Stress (Large Professor Remix)
- Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth – They Reminisce Over You
- A Tribe Called Quest – We Got the Jazz (anything from A Tribe Called Quests first 3 albums)
- De La Soul (anything from them)
- Early Rakim (anything from 1987- 1992)
- KRS1 – My Philosophy
- Main Source (anything from the “Breaking Atoms” LP
- Slick Rick – It’s a Boy (Large Professor Remix)
- Mobb Deep (anything from that “Infamous” album was phenomenal
- Pharcyde – For Better Or For Worse (anything from “Bizarre Ride II The Pharcyde”)
Jonnycuba: In no particular order:
- Diamond D – Freestyle (You That’s That Sh*t)
- KRS1 – Outta Here
- Big Daddy Kane – Wrath Of Kane
- Organised Konfusion – Stress (Large Professor Remix)
- Showbiz & Ag – Silence Of The Lambs (Remix)
- Black Sheep – Still In The Ghetto
- The Beatnuts – No Equal
- Main Source – Just A Friendly Game Of baseball
- Redman – Time For Some Akshun
- EPMD – Scratch Bring It Back (Mic Doc – Part 2!)
Who are your favourite artists out there at the moment and do you have any tips of other artists to keep your eye on in the near future?
Jonnycuba: I’m really looking forward to the Sputnik Brown LP being released, also some new material by Roc Marciano (U.N) would be dope. Keep your eye out for a kid named Jaisu from Scotland who makes killer beats.
Audessey: Um lets see… Cadence up in Boston is dope. Artists such as Binkis Recs, Kid Kaos, StaHHr, there’s a lot of emerging DOPE artist in the ATL that people need to look for… also Kosyne (out in the UK with his projects and works with LouisDen Beat Battles). The thing is good hip-hop is all around and with the web and technology is all you have to do is look for it.
If you were given the chance of being able to collaborate with anyone you choose which other artist would you most like to work with?
Jonnycuba: I’d love to do a track with Redman.
Audessey: For me it would be Large Professor because ever since I was a kid and I was introduced to the Main Source I have been a fan of his work (music production and rhyming style). He really personifies to me someone who really loves hip-hop for hip-hop and believes in, making the type of music that he believes in and wants to make without sacrificing creative integrity for the sake of making a dollar.
What was the last record / CD you bought?
Jonnycuba: A 45 by Yvonne Baker and The Sensations called “Eyes”, killer early 60’s r’n’b cut.
Audessey: I was actually at the record store a couple of weeks ago with my nephew and bought some old jazz (Quincy Jones, David Grusin) and some other records I can’t remember… lol).
Do you have any other interests outside music?
Jonnycuba: Idle web surfing in those moments when I’m not doing one of the thousands of things I have to get on with.
Audessey: I’m and avid gamer and play World Of Warcraft. I also love to workout, work on cars, draw/graphic design (on occasion), computers/technology… too many interests to tell!
What can we expect to see from Soundsci in the near future?
Audessey: More dope music for the people! Our mission is to remind folks why they feel in love with hip-hop and that is what were gonna do with every beat, rhyme, cut that we make.
Jonnycuba: Look out for a remix of “The Remedy”. Also we’re working hard in EP2 right about… now!
Anything else you would like to add?
Jonnycuba: I’m outta here! Peace to the hardcore.
Audessey: Thank you for the opportunity for the interview and as we were talking before if it wasn’t for platforms like you have here at Canned Goods indie group and artists such as myself and others wouldn’t have dope platforms to get word out to the people. So support your local hip-hop where ever it is if that in the UK, USA, Germany, France, Finland or Peru… support good hip-hop!!! We can and will keep this vinyl culture alive, but its up to the people to continue to support it.