An informative chat with the westcountry crew about their releases, people they rate, how they formed, who came up with their name and slang.
First up, can you tell us who makes up The Cohorts?
The Cohorts core crew currently consists of Milestone (MC / words), Loctite (Decks), Herb Boy (production / engineering / various instruments) and B-Boy Parkz (Production/beats)
Where abouts are you guys from and how long ago did you form?
We're based in Plymouth, UK and originally came together in the year 2000. Loctite is based in Exeter and we represent the Westcountry.
Who came up with the name of the group and what's it all about?
Milo came up with the name, he was going to use it as the name of a graff crew with a mate but he unfortunately died so we used the name in his honour. The Cohorts are a collection of people working towards a common cause.
Did you release anything prior to being on Aerosolik Records and how did you end up with the label?
We did a few promo CDs and then a self-financed 6-track 12" called "Told You So". It's really hard to get hold of now. We drove around the westcountry distributing it ourselves and there was only ever 250 copies made. We got some good reviews off the back of it and Aerosolik picked up on it and we started working with them. You might be able to track it down in a 2nd hand shop somewhere.
For those that didn't hear it, could you talk a little about your EP 'Escape From Jannersville'?
It was made in a very short space of time and is much more of a digital flex than anything we've done before or since. We didn't spend too long on it as we were excited about the prospect of a label putting it out for us and wanted to strike whilst the iron was hot.
The website says there's a video for the main track in the works. When can we see that?
Never, we don't talk about it. It's buried underground with the lost ark!
How do you feel the EP release did? Did it get a reception that you was happy with?
We got really good reviews for it. It was really good to see it being considered in the same vain as more established hip-hop acts. We started out as chancers and that's the way we'll always be!
What else have you released so far?
We followed up Escape with We Fight Alone. This was a more aggressive record and more traditional hip-hop sounding thanks to the input of new producer B Boy Parkz. It's more of a breaks based record than the digital style of Escape. It's available through www.suspect-packages.co.uk
What's the current project you're working on and have you got a release date yet?
We are currently working on an album. No release date has been set. Working title is Co-Dependent. The idea at the moment is to get lots of tracks down and then make a decision on running order closer to release time.
Who provides you with the beats, and what producers would you enjoy the opportunity of working with?
We provide our own beats and we're our own production team. We do get some guest beats from the likes of Hoodee and Percy Filth and Milo occasionally guests on tracks for other producers…
Out of the other UK hip-hop groups, who are you feeling at the moment?
The Aspects crew are dope. Check out their live show. In our opinion it's the best in the country. Our label mates Lower Case are coming with a different flex for the Westcountry. Fat Club are dope. They are the demi-gods of westcountry hip-hop. Also, we really feel Blade who is just doing a couple of tracks with us for the Aerosolik compilation United We Stand, which is coming out later this year.
I saw that you were involved in a Peace Not War show in Plymouth. Are you all for music being a vehicle for political thought?
Politics will always creep in to our music as politics is life and life is politics. We are always up for charity and political awareness shows if it's for the right reasons. Milo comes from an anarchist background so he hates about everything!
What's the hardest part about being an independant UK rap group?
Money and the lack of it. But that's made up for by the fact that we can do what the fuck we want. We're not down with this whole UK 'the man's trying to keep us down' steez. We think music in itself is a reward.
Have you got any slang that you guys use which we can add to our new online dictionary?
Scab = poor person from the Westcountry. Bay = westcountry man. Jannersville = Plymouth City. Magpies = people who bite your rhymes and beats. Dinobots = people who can't let go of the past.
Any shout out's you'd like to make?
All the Aerosolik crew, Kiss Kiss, Aspects, Lower Case, Jedi Mics, Doozer, Fat Club, Hoodee, Bloodshot.