Asaviour gives Rapnews the exclusive scoop on what we can expect from his forthcoming album 'The Borrowed Ladder' and talks about his inspirations, touring, labels and the scene.
What part of the UK are you from and how's its scene?
The North. The Hudd baby! (Huddersfield) There is a scene but I would say that it is kind of spread out through the north. IE Bradford, Huddersfield, Leeds, Manchester, York etc.
Who were some of the first artists that inspired you to emcee?
Slick Rick, Big Daddy Kane, LL Cool J, Large Professor, EPMD, Wu Tang, Nas, Jay – Z, Biggie, Tipanic (Black Twang), Ty, Rodney P, Gunshot.
How did you start getting involved in UK hip-hop specifically?
Well first I just freestyled. Then I wanted to do my own rhymes and I guess I just snow balled from there.
What's been the highlight of your rap career to date?
Ere…not sure. Our little stint at the Jazz Cafe last year was pretty sick! I also played a festival in my hometown recently. We made the local papers and shit. Bare people turned up. Even Jehst and my parents. Had to edit some of the lyrics but I was all good.
Which of your releases are you most proud of so far, and why?
Suppose 'Homecoming/Money In The Bank' really. Got a really good response from that. Just a shame what happened!
The company that pressed the vinyl went into liquidation and they lost the metalwork (what they use to press the vinyl) so YNR couldn't repress any more copies which is shit because it was selling like hot cakes! Still, just makes the record really rare. (Better set up my e-bay account!)
When can fans expect to get hold of your forthcoming album?
You're gonna be able to pick it up 24th of October on Low Life Records.
What's it called and how long have you been working on it?
It's called 'The Borrowed Ladder'. I been working on it for just over a year now.
Can you tell us about some of the producers and guests on there?
Jehst – One of the top boys in this UK shit. Supplied me with 5 beats. What can I say? He's fucking sick!
DJ IQ - Ah, The Babygod. We worked one beat together and he produced another by himself. He's heading for big things man. Together we made some up-tempo apocalyptic madness and he brought me some rawness that just said SEX all over it!
Apa-tight – He's a newcomer set to make waves for real! He's from Huddersfield as well, (just up the road from my mum's house!) He's got a really complete sound. You'd think he had some 100 grand studio, but he's straight out the ghetto. He's the future for real!
Mr Thing – The OG (Original Ginster) Thing gimme a straight up banger. Something I could just open up and spit on… play around with flows n that. The beat just comes tumbling out the speaker. Pure rawness!
Ghost – Got the title track from the man himself. Been knocking about with that breah for a while now. For me he's a master of composing. He don't just make beats, he can create songs. The emotion in the beat grabbed me instantly. I had half the rhymes written already and the beat allowed me to just tie it all together.
Braintax – The guvnor (ha ha). Straight up tight emcee and producer. A pro yo. He gimme the hook for the track "So Northern? (video coming to MTV, Channel U etc very soon!) and I guess the title. And also produced a skit.
Evil ED – Now, you don't need me to tell ya how sick ED is. He's been doing it for years. As soon as I thought about making an album, I knew I had to go see ED. He supplied me with warm soulful ish, which captured the mood perfectly.
What are some of the topics you're dropping lyrically?
Sex, Religion, Politics and a few battle raps…
Did you have much label interest and why did you decide on Lowlife?
Nothing massive… a bit, but at this stage in my career it was the only logical choice for me. I already had an EP out with him, which was doing well, plus I wanted creative control and Brains is real cool about that shit. He'll let you know what he thinks of the music but he doesn't tell you what to make or anything like that.
Are you going to tour the album and who else will share the stage?
Well I start gigging in October. You're still gonna see me with Jehst & DJ IQ and we'll be pushing the material from my album and also Jehst's & IQ's up and coming releases.
How did you enjoy the thousands of Jehst gigs that you performed at?
Er, I enjoy pretty much all the gigs I do full stop. Done some off the hook ones. Done some shit ones. But generally I love gigging. Mind you, it all becomes a bit of a blur, especially when you're touring and lean.
Is there anyone left you'd love the chance to work with?
Yeah nuff peoples! I've only just started. In no order; Konny Kon, Harry Love, Roots Manuva, Fallacy, Farma G, Jay Dee, Kano, Trim, Just blaze, Mystro, Cappo, Milano, Sway and sooooo many more!
What was the last hip-hop release you bought, downloaded or blagged?
You know man, I'm listening to Kanye West's "Late Registration? as we speak. It's not bad. Think he's used some obvious breaks n shit but he's flipped em, and I guess that's the point. I'm feeling 'Heard Em Say', 'We Major', 'Crack Music' and 'Drive Slow'. Paul Wall is jokes. Never heard him before this. With lines like "The disco ball in my mouth insinuates I'm balling?, he's got me as a fan.
Which producers and artists in the UK do you rate most highly at the moment?
LG, Apollo, Jehst, Harry Love, Terra Firma, Apa-tight, Beatbutcher, Ghost, Verb T, Sway, Kano, Mr Thing, Trim, DJ IQ, Wiley, C-Swing, Joe Budda, Yungun, Mystro, Taskforce and so many others I can't think of right now.
Have you dabbled in any other elements of hiphop culture?
Was quite into graff and had a little sketch book for a few years but it never went any further than that. Was more into sport.
Do you wanna make any shout out's or drop a message to finish on?
'The Borrowed Ladder' album, out 24th October on Lowlife Records. Live shows coming to a town near you very soon!
Thanks a ton for ya time. Much appreciated man.
No problem men anytime. Wear your game face with pride!
Check out the official Asaviour website at www.asaviour.co.uk