Luke Sick/Grand Killa Con Interview
So just how indebted is Grand Invincible/Grand Killa Con’s mastermind MC Luke Sick to his rhymes?
“Everyone has their problems, and quite honestly, this style of music helps me step back from the edge of that dark abyss in my mind. It’s a check up from the neck up, for sure. I can honestly say that if I wasn’t doing this, I’d be lost with no place in this world and not long for it. It’s about writing the rhymes and examining my demons, getting something out of it, instead of just standing there at the edge, staring at the nothing and begging for purpose. It’s the only thing I give a shit about other than my girl.”
And despite the dive bar MC’s laser-guided focus of his time, talent and energy towards his DIY label Megakut Record’s brand of “cold, no-bullshit vintage hip hop” over the past five years (as well as his formidable years as front man for the critically-lauded but equally esoteric backpacker outfit Sacred Hoop), the vision for his current “demon examinations” are more insular, localized and personal.
“We’re not hungry for the idea of selling hundreds of thousands of units or being on a giant tour circuit all the time. Not to say I don’t want to play big festivals or go on tour, but I don’t want to bite off more than I can chew or be expected to do things I can’t. I work full-time at a record store that pays me a third of what I was making in corporate America and I work on weekends, so it’s hard for me to get time off. But I don’t want to be that MC you can see every other weekend anyway.
“This starts with guys like Brycon and DJ Eons One with their MPC2000s and their record collections in small windowless rooms creating raw, simple stuff for MC’s like me to jump on,” he continues. “The thought I had when starting the label and ‘zines (letsside.tumblr.com) was about needing an outlet and wanting to bring something to the table in the Bay. There’s a ton of good music here, but I wanted to resurrect something I felt had been lost, not just for myself, but here in the area.”
Sir Sick has navigated Megakut’s transmogrification from a fledgling tape label into a fledgling actual record label about to announce its third vinyl release. Also on the horizon is Grand Killa Con’s second album, La Barranca, which offers a twist on the sound of their debut Year of the Tre Bag via the incorporation of records Brycon excavated on a trip to South America and a whole new plethora of sound collage and Roland Space Echo usage.
“The producers I work with compose all the music, and the puzzle for me is to make the rhymes fit or contrast, cadence and mood, making sense comes last,” he says. “With Eons or Brycon, we’ve now all been making music for so long, it’s like playing a board game or fishing, something we naturally meet up to do. As we’ve gone along, the writing has mutated to the situation. It wasn’t intended, but the last GKC record, Year Of The Tre Bag, was comprised of rhymes I’d written with Eons beats in mind, but he had to reprioritize his life when his daughter was born, so we back-burnered Grand Invincible until he could figure out how to manage music projects as a dad, which was smart on his part, but that was when Brycon came through with a gang of beats and Grand Killa Con was formed using those same rhymes. The cool thing about La Barranca is for that album I wrote all new shit exclusively for a certain batch of Brycon beats over a particular time period, so I feel like on my part this one really is GKC fully realized. And in the meantime, Eons found out that being a dad doesn’t stop one from making ‘naptime beats’, so the GI hiatus was barely even a hiatus; we’re putting the finishing touches on a new project as well. Shit you just keep doing always seems to find a way of happening is the way I see it.”
Current new releases at Megakut:
DJ EONS ONE: REVENGE OF THE CRATE GOBLINS 7”:
GRAND KILLA CON: YEAR OF THE TRE BAG full-length CD:
MUTUAL DAPS: S/T full-length CD:
Coming soon at Megakut:
LIGHTBULB AND DJ EONS ONE 7”
J EAZY/DANKSLOB: split-tape produced by BRYCON & G-PEK
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