Wayward Blog: So how did you guys get together in the first place?
Konnor Ervin: I saw CES Cru perform at the Pitch Music Awards in, I think, 2008, and there was this moment where U b i was walking around onstage rapping and his mic went dead, and so he went over to the podium mic and started rapping into it, standing at the podium, and I just thought that was so bad ass. Then a while after that, we were approach by Jeriney at 96.5 The Buzz to do this show at the Beast House, which was this weird venue in the Crossroads that promoted Camel cigarettes. Anyway, the catch was they wanted us to play a different kind of show than our usual set, so I had the idea to ask CES Cru to play with us.
U b i: Yeah, and we just decided to go for it, and somehow it worked.
Sweetums: Then we did another show at RecordBar last year on Valentine's Day, which went a lot better than the Beast House gig. The crowd really seemed into it - we did this really long encore.
Konnor: I think we ended up playing a Spacehog song or something for the encore, and they just rhymed over it for like fifteen minutes.
U b i: So after the RecordBar show last year, we sat down and chopped it up - we saw that we had a great turnout, and that people responded really well to us. So we knew we definitely wanted to do another one.
WB: Talk about the process - how do you decide what form the songs take?
U b i: Basically they set the canvas because it's their beats, their music. So they'll play something and then we'll feel out what we want to bring to it. We've got notebooks full of verses and lyrics to draw from, so it's just a matter of picking the right stuff. One thing that's different is that our bar structures tend to be longer when we work with the ACBs. Usually we'll rap throughout the verses all the way up to the chorus, and then they'll take over. Not always though. But, yeah: we do all these super aggressive lyrics, and then all of a sudden the chorus comes and it's this falsetto. It's funny. But good.
Konnor: We do bring in some ACBs songs, but about half the stuff is material we only do with CES. Like, if I have a fun hook laying around that I like but no verse to go with it, that would be a good candidate for a song with CES. Any song I have with a weak verse, really, the CES guys can come in and make it stronger, turn the song into something different and better. Our stuff tends to be so soft, and they can come in and harden it up.
WB: U b i, what are some pop/rock acts you like? ACBs, what are some hip-hop acts you like?
U b i: I like Muse, Lady Gaga, Metallica...fuck it, I like Coldplay. People will think I'm a pussy but I don't care.
Konnor: I like Nas and Wu-Tang a lot, and then some of the poppier stuff, like Jay-Z. Gucci Mane, too.
Sweetums: A Tribe Called Quest, NWA.
WB: What else is new with you guys?
U b i: We're re-releasing and repackaging our album from last year, The Playground, which basically came out like a dry fart in a closet. Nobody noticed it. So we'll be selling that version for the first time at the Riot Room show, and it's available on iTunes. We're just trying to re-awaken people to our stuff, and we'll be playing around the Midwest circuit and trying to push it this year.
Sweetums: Our drummer, Corey [Egan], moved to L.A. in January, so we haven't been playing around much so far in 2010. But we finally found a new drummer, Kyle Rausch, formerly of the Abracabras, and that's been working out really well so far. Tomorrow night, though, we're playing with Austin Ward, from Noise FM. Should be a good time.
Image courtesy of Sike Style.