Illogic & Eyamme

HHC: How do you feel about "Unforeseen Shadows" being considered a classic album by a lot of people? What's your personal opinion on this LP 5 years after its release?

Illogic: I am still happy with it. It was my first full length solo record and nothing can top that feeling of accomplishment. I am glad the people consider it a "classic". I'm still waiting a few years and then we will see if it still stands in that light.

HHC: What makes your pairing with Blueprint so special according to you?

I: I think that since we have become friends and not just music partners it helps a lot. He understands my style and has an idea usually of what I sound good over. He knows what music will give life to my words.

HHC: Since the critical success of Soul Position, Blueprint is increasingly becoming known more as an emcee than as a producer. How do you feel about that? Do you plan to do an album together (as emcees this time)?

I: I think that it is great. He started out as an emcee/dj and began making beats because there was no one else around him doing it. I think that he is happy doing both. We are working on an album with dj przm on the beats. We are about three songs in and will be finishing it up soon.

HHC: You've often given a lot of space to spoken-words in your projects and poetry is clearly one of your greatest writing influences. What do you like so much about spoken-word and poetry?

I: I love the fact the there is no restriction of a beat. I love it because the words are what carry spoken-word so if you are not saying anything then it is apparent that you are not saying anything.

HHC: Your texts are often very well thought and carefully written. What does your creative/writing process look like?

I: I have no process. I just write what I feel when I feel it. People hear what I write and think that I go through a ritual of sorts when that is not the case. If I feel it I write it. Some ideas takes longer to develop then others but I have no per se writing process.

HHC: Some of your songs are very personal. Why do you want to share such intimate things with your audience?

I: I feel that I have been given this gift of song and writing to share with the world. I go through things in my life and I feel that I am not the only one that goes through those things and situations. I feel that as an artist I have the responsibility to let people know that they are not alone. I felt that I was alone when I went through some of my experiences and that's why I wrote about them. I just don't want people to feel that they are alone.

HHC: When and why did you feel the need to do "Write to Death"?

I: Well Eyamme and I have known each other for a while. I have watched him develop from just collecting sounds and making ambient melodic noise to becoming one of the dopest envelope pushing producers I know. I needed to put something out before "Celestial Clockwork"and he needed to get started on his career and it worked out.

HHC: At the back of my copy of "Write To Death", you had drawn something similar to an American flag with the word "Fear" above it. Why?

I: Not sure. I didn't do the art on the back of most of the cd's so I couldn't answer that question.

HHC: What gave you the will to write 'War'?

I: Someone need to say something on the behalf of the innocent victims of our retaliation. It just needed to be said.

HHC: What can the fans expect from "Celestial Clockwork"?

I: Expect a lot of words and stories. I think that everyone will enjoy it. It is very thought provoking and mellow. I think its some of my best writing and I think it will be listened to and dissected for some time.

HHC: "Celestial Clockwork" has been announced for years. Still, it's only released these days. Why did it take so long for this album to be released?

I: We wanted to wait till the time was right and now is the write time.

HHC: What's up with the Iskabibbles LP?

I: Nothing. I'm not sure when or if I will come out.

HHC: Two years ago, everybody was still raving about the Ohio hip-hop scene. Yet, it seems nowadays that not too many Ohio artists have been able to rise up to the expectations apart from the Weightless camp. How do you feel about that?

I: There is still a lot left to come out. Just wait you'll see.

HHC: At one time, around the recording of the Orphanage project, you were very close to Aesop Rock, Eyedea and Slug. Is there anything in the works with anyone of them now?

I: No. Maybe in the future but not now.

HHC: Could you tell us a few words about the EP you're going to release with DJ Przm "Off the Clock"? I believe it's a battle orientated project.

I: It's a lot of hardcore beats and rhymes. I don't think that my fans have heard me this raw.

HHC: Is it a need for you to regularly go back to the essence of battle rhymes (to balance the depth of your other projects)?

I: Not necessarily. I always write battle rhymes because it's fun and it's easy. I guess that it does keep me balanced.

HHC: Are you going to do more work with your Spitball crew then?

I: Of course. Przm and I will be working on an album soon and you will hear me on Spitball releases. Anyway, I have too many different projects to name.

HHC: Do you have any message for the readers of

I: Thanks for the support. Hope to be over on your side of the world soon. Peace.

HHC: Eyamme, could you give us a little run-down of your personal history and tell us how you became a producer in the first place?

Eyamme: I just turned 24, A dread, I spent 3 years after high school studying philosophy and religion in college before settling down into a serious pursuit of music, though I got my first set of turntables when I was 15. I have cleaned blood in hospitals, built homes in third world countries and sat in the padded walls of university wards. I feel I am fortunate enough to have lived through heaven and hell and, through producing, manifesting the emotions of these experiences. Music is the most tangible way I see to change the world.

HHC: How did you hook up with Illogic?

E: At the end of my junior year in high school I started hanging out with 3RD Eye, which was Illogic's crew at the time. I remember sitting in the sugar shack getting schooled from everything from conciseness to 4*4 timing to the proper treatment of women. Back then we were all young and all about building. I remember back then me and ill would have a hard time communicating because we finished each others sentences so often

HHC: What gave you the idea of doing the limited edition album "Write to Death Vol. 1" with Illogic?

E: Illogic needed a project to tie him over till "Celestial Clockwork"came out. I think because of our close friendship we were very much so in the same place and the pieces just fell right to do that kind of project. Plus I always wanted Illogic to do a more poetic album and my early beats were just slow and open enough to let Ill bring his words to life. "Write to death"is funny to me because it is so many of my very first beats.

HHC: How did you approach the making of this album knowing that you were obviously going to be compared to Blueprint?

E: Really you can't think about it too much. Blueprint is a great producer but our styles are starkly different. I knew there would be comparisons both positive and negative, especially being the first producer to release an album with Ill away from Blueprint. Also, knowing what Illogic has coming down the pipe, I felt ok doing a more avant garde album to get him out of his box.

HHC: On this project, your productions were very dark, layered, mysterious and atmospheric (with a lot of subtle changes during the course of each track). Why do you like this kind of sounds?

E: I would say that that is a fair description of that album. I made most of those beats just after being overdosed by anti-depressants and ending up in a mental hospital. Things in my life were very dark and layered so to me it only makes sense that the album would reflect that. I love the sound of "Write to death"but hopefully I will never make another album like that. Music is supposed to grow; for example I used to describe my music as depressed but now I would describe it as pissed off.

HHC: Who are some of your influences?

E: I have too many records, but just to name a few Miles Davis, Portishead, Common, Bjork, Joni Mitchel, B.B. King, Bob Marley, Jimi, Lalo Schriffin, John Cage, The Roots…. Also Just the Columbus environment of dope artists like Illogic, Rjd2, Blueprint, Copy, Prizm, S.A. Smash, Envelope, Walter Rock Tight…

HHC: What gave you the will to create your own label Dove !nk?

E: 9-11 swung the doors wide open for revolution; the world is ready for change. I feel that dedicated artists spearhead all movements. We need to reconsider how we approach life, politics, and the environment… Dove !nk was originally created to mean peaceful writings. My adopted motto has become a poem I wrote:

"I've declared that everything is war
From pole to pole and sea shore to sea shore
And in times like these one must overstand that draft dodging
Is simple speaking from you heart the first time
So please take you stand aside
Place down you dragon quills and polish of you silent ohms
For we plan to lay burning breath to there bricks to chant down the walls of Babylon."

HHC: I've got the new 7" 'Only Give You Love' featuring Illogic in my hands. Does it mean that a second volume of the Write to Death series is in the works? Will it be similar to "My Hand Hurts"?

E: More than likely but this time it won't be my production. It looks at this point as if we are going to assemble a group of songs that Illogic has done with other producers from around the country (I can't say names yet but it should be beautiful). That does not mean that me and Illogic aren't working on another project, we're already a couple of tracks in and it's fire. I'm really excited; it could not be more different from "Write to death".

HHC: What do you plan to release on Dove !nk? Tell us a few words about Periphery for instance.

E: At this point we are planning on doing a series of 45's along with the two that just came out. I would look for 4 to 6 more 7", plus "Write to Death Two"and possibly an instrumental album from myself. I can tell you that the next 45 will be just Periphery our new artist. I just heard it last week and I can't wait to get it out.

HHC: Anything you'd like to add?

E: We are living under a cloak of evil. Halliburton, diebolt, coke, Nike, TV, Bush, consumerism, elitism, racism, religion are working to control you. Do not be a number, be free. Go tag, burn, degrade, disrespect. Sticker bomb, rage, against all systems of oppression. Be Peace.

Eyamme (I AM ME)

June 2004

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