with Chace Infinite
you doing Chace?
brother, I can't complain. I'm right here in sunny L.A., although it's
dark right now.
is finally out, looking at the project, how do you feel about the way
it came out?
happy with the way it came out. It took about three and a half years to
get it done. I'm extremely happy that people can go get it now.
encounter any problems working on this album?
really any problems, more than a series of personal things that happened
in me and Khalil's lives. We started a corporation with DJ Muggs, I had
a lot of things happened in between recording "Change."
track, "Change," is a very powerful song, why did you want to
start the album off with that?
When we talked
about doing the record "Change," the concept was to show the
evolution of us as artists and building into the concept of "Change"
deeper. So much shit happened since "The Self-Science." We went
too war, Bush stole the election...I wanted to address it. We were going
to do "Change" as an intro with three parts, three verses with
three different beats. The first verse of "Change" I've had
for almost two and a half years. The second verse I maybe wrote about
a month or so before the album came out. The first verse I talk about
what happened about looking for Bin Laden and all that, and the second
verse sums things up.
does it usually take you to write a song?
Some songs take a little longer. Sometimes the songs come to me out of
nowhere, where I can put two verses down, then come back and change stuff.
I'm the type of artist that likes to lay something down and come back
a week later and change things. Sometimes it can take three hours, other
times two years (laughs).
is a dope song, do you think that'll catch your core fans off-guard?
Anybody that knows me will tell you that that song is a true representation
of parts of my character. "2-Step" and "What You Need"
are true representations of me. They deal with aspects of me personally.
I go out, I'm social, I buld with motherfuckers. I think on the last record,
"The Self-Science," even though it's a classic to me, I think
it missed a little bit of personality. With "Change," I wanted
to add personality, and that's why I wanted to do "2-Step."
ever feel the fans box you in as to what they expect from you?
Not so much
the fans as much as the industry. They'll put us in the same box as Talib
Kweli, but I feel we're different. It is frustrating when you get pigeonholed.
A lot of artists we get compared to, we don't fuck with. It's all good.
We get pigeonholed a little bit, but I think with time they'll understand.
and Breathe" is a real deep song, what was your inspiration for that
That is mostly
based on a true story. I definitely have examples from my life to draw
from in both situations, from a girl being in an abusive relationship
to a dude getting too caught up in this Hip Hop shit. I know people that
have been caught up in this, maybe not as severely as the cats in the
story, but definitely caught up in it.
you want to give people with "Live and Breathe?"
is about sacrifice, and the sacrifices you choose to make to make your
life easier and your quality of life better. The girl sacrificed so her
mother and brother could be taken care of. The second verse, the dude
wants to make money in the art that he loves, but he starts giving into
some of the pressures of the industry and he lost his way. There's a million
motherfuckers like that. I was able to draw from it and write a song with
it like recording "King Kong" with Bun B?
We did a
that at 4:00 in the morning. He came out for the Wake Up Show album release
party. We met there and went to the studio. He's a real cool brother.
We were saying how we had to do some shit, and he said "it's nothing."
After we rocked the show, we all went to the studio and knocked it out.
It took him exactly 22 minutes from the time he came to the studio and
kicked his verse. I timed it, it was incredible. He wrote all his shit
from scratch right there and killed it.
definitely came off on "Balance," what can you tell us about
on our first record on the song "Cash Craft." He's put out 12"'s,
he's been around for awhile. He's just been going through his own personal
trials and tribulations so he's never been able to put an album out. We
have an album done with him where DJ Khalil produced about 70% of the
tracks. We plan on putting that out one day because he's got some great
at the album, what's the most important message you want people to get?
reason we do this shit is that hopefully our music will be a bridge to
some type of self-examination. Hopefully in examining yourself, you'll
make some type of change. I know that's what I use it for. Analyze the
shit around you and try to make things better. I'm trying to improve my
quality of life man, monetarily, health-wise, all that shit. Sometimes,
in order to achieve things, you have to change. You can't keep doing the
same things over and over again.
were you looking for on "Change?"
looking for any particular beats. Khalil will make about 20 beats, and
out of those 20, there may be three or four that we'll use. It just kind
of happens. He makes so much material because he's placing beats all the
time. It's a feel that we have. We don't even communicate about it all
the time. He'll make a beat and say, "I got some shit for us,"
and it fits. I don't ask for particular beats, it just sort of happens.
noticed a change in Khalil after he started working with Dre?
I don't know,
I wouldn't say a real change. He's just evolving as a producer in general.
He's gotten better at playing keys. He's just becoming a better musician,
but his sound hasn't changed. It'd probably be better to ask Khalil. On
our last album, we used a lot of light jazz elements, but here it's more
'70's avant-garde rock shit. He's definitely become more musical because
he's able to play better than he was on the first album.
the album, you say you're going to "spit raps until you motherfuckers
know my name." How much longer is it going to take for more people
to catch on to Self-Scientific?
man? I think about that shit all the time. I feel that we make important
music and more people should know our name. Maybe if ?uestlove reads this,
?uestlove can you please put us on OkayPlayer? (laughs) Then everybody
will love us right? That seems to be the key. Hopefully not too much longer.
I want to get to the point where people respect it for what it is. I think
we make some of the best music in Hip Hop, period. Underground, commercial,
whatever. I do appreciate the fans we got now, but I want some of Jay-Z's
fans to hear my shit because I really feel like they'll love it.
said on "Tears" that you "love the respect but I can't
get paid off that, I'm trying to get rich and give some of it back."
Can you talk about that?
thing is that we love doing the art and music. I love creating songs.
But at the end of the day, we live in a capitalist society and you need
money to make change. Eventually, I want to succeed so I can make enough
money so I can advocate some real change instead of just talking about
shit. Until you get money, there's not a lot you can do. I don't want
to be one of those artists that has all of these accolades and everybody
loves, but I'm not able to make no real change because I don't have any
like the underground claims to love Hip Hop the most, yet they're the
ones downloading the most albums off the internet
I said "fans figure why pay if the music is free, but never mind
what it's doing to me" Fuck that! It's crazy! (laughs) I'm an internet
surfer now, that's the way the music has gone, especially with the type
of music we do, the underground shit. All these kids are super-haters.
Everybody hates everything. They're the "most Hip Hip-kids ever"
but they don't want to buy anything. They want to go on HipHopGame and
say "I heard it first!" That's crazy. In one sense, it's good,
because it helps spread the music, but then the artists you love like
a Buckshot, Little Brother, or Atmosphere, we may not be able to make
the money we could because people download our shit. It's hard, we have
to get some money man.
you rather have sales than exposure at this point in your career?
No, and I'm
still doing shit for less than I know I should be getting. I know how
the game is and we need that exposure. I'm not complaining by any stretch.
I'm happy doing what I'm doing, but I know how it could be better.
you write for?
A lot of
my shit is written really to explain shit to myself. I think different
people may draw different interpretations from it. Like "Free Will"
is about a religious concept that I was explaining to myself. I don't
know what I necessarily want people to take out of it, but if you do draw
something out of it, I hope it's positive.
a Self-Scientific song made?
start with a concept or a beat. I'll write a verse and a half and sit
with it for about a week, then come back and finish it. Our material is
pretty linear. If we have a song about a topic, we focus on it for all
two or three verses. A lot of cats may have a title and then the lyrics
don't go with the title. A lot of times, our shit is pretty direct and
the title deals with the song. I start my shit, I lay it down to make
sure I got the cadence right, then I go back and write more. I like to
keep my cadences the same so people don't get too confused when they listen.
It's bad enough that I'm saying all this shit. If I say it in too many
different ways, then people definitely won't be able to follow it. I'll
analyze what did, come back later, and finish the rest of the song.
back to "The Self-Science," how do you feel listening to that
I feel weird
listening to "The Self-Science." To me, that's a great album.
I love that album. I think that's the part when me and Khalil came into
our own as artists, and now you can see our growth. "The Self-Science"
is a really dope album to me. There hasn't been an album like that from
the West Coast in a long time. Sometimes I forget about some of the songs
like "Anguish." You reminded me of that shit the other day.
"Cash Craft" with Kombo. There's songs on that album that I
love but I don't ever listen to anymore, like "Dead Honest."
Whenever we do a show and we do "Best Part," it reminds me that
we have material that people love. We may not be selling crazy records,
but we have fans that know that record front and back.
you ever want to drop a project working with other producers?
I don't know.
I thought about doing a mixtape or something, but we're a duo. I don't
think there's too many people doper than Khalil. That's just me though,
I'm kind of bias. As of right now, I don't have any plans to do shit like
that. To me, these are solo albums. I don't get no damn help on this.
Kombo comes in and does a verse every now and then, but this is a solo
album. Motherfuckers be calling me "Self-Scientific." Chace
Infinite and DJ Khalil equal Self-Scientific. Self-Scientific is not my
alias. I am not Self-Scientific, we are.
is the chemistry between you and Khalil in making a cohesive album?
duos, we have that consistency. Regardless if you like every song equally,
you can't deny that our work is really consistent. You can tell that we've
spent a lot of time together and that our chemistry is really good over
the years. It takes years and a lot of time. Some groups get so big they
end up not talking with each other. Me and Khalil are like brothers, we
may have a disagreement, but then it's like "whatever" and we're
back to making music. I think what's most important to Self-Scientific
is that we don't really stray too far outside from what we do.
your responsibilities with Angeles Records?
Khalil handle the production aspect. Muggs is very adept at reading contracts.
I handle a lot of things with our distributor, Fontana, as far as setting
up things like overseas distribution and all that. I run the day-to-day
shit. I have an assistant named Miranda. Muggs and Khalil make sure the
projects come out sounding high-quality. We're all working together, trying
to get this shit cracking.
do you want to take Angeles Records?
In five or
ten years, we really want to build a consistent label. Not just a West
Coast label, but something with real, good, quality music. We need to
build up the brand and develop artists. I want to be a powerhouse. I want
to fill the void left by Rawkus and Tommy Boy. Koch is doing a good job
swallowing up some of those projects. I want to get into artist development.
I want to be the cool boutique label that makes money.
"Change" is out, have you given thought to the next project?
already done about two or three tracks for it. It's called "Come
in Peace, Prepare for War."
when you want to put that out?
I don't know.
We're working on it now. We'll keep working on it. We just started promoting
this record, so I want to give this record a little bit of time to breathe.
And then it's time for "Come in Peace, Prepare for War."
you want to say to everyone out there?
all for supporting Self-Scientific. Go pick that "Change" up
at your local retailer. Go pick up that DJ Muggs vs. GZA. Look out for
Mitchey Slick coming in February, look out for DJ Warrior coming next
August. Angeles Records is on the rise you bitches!