|A-Trak: Yeah, like he said.
The next thing on our plate is this European tour
that the three of us are doing in May-June to promote
"Rugged Radio Saturday", which is Audio
Research's first big CD release, coming out on August
12th. The CD market is kind of new to us so the
idea is to introduce the label to a new audience.
It's a mix-CD of our catalogue, old and new, and
Serious and Simahlak produced a bunch of joints
on there. I'm also cutting on most of those songs.
Aside from that, I'm just doing a bunch of shows,
and trying to integrate a lot of new material into
that. At the same time I'm working on a solo single
and a new battle record.
|Why is this kept so secretly?
|Simahlak: It's not really.
Dave-One and A-Trak simply picked joints from what
we all had in the vaults. We just let the music
speak for itself when its available and accessible
to do so.
A-Trak: We just don't talk too much about
projects until they're really confirmed and locked
down. Last time we updated the website (www.audioresearch.net),
I think Craze had just finished the CD and we were
wrapping up the artwork. It was a bit early to announce
it. We wanted to create a bit of a buzz, that's
all. At this point it's really not a secret - we
just hadn't updated the site in a minute! But that's
already taken care of by now.
|What I thought was strange is
that you have distribution for every key market
|A-Trak: (laughs) Yeah that's
just how it happened. We're working on that right
now actually. I guess we were more preoccupied with
setting up the major markets first, because it tends
to take a bit longer. But Canada won't be neglected.
|As you three are DJs and producers:
how do you split up work?
|Serious: We don't really
delegate tasks to each other, but rather work with
cats who we feel we're clicking with, either from
time or at the time. So we basically set our own
forum of work spaces and ethic respectively. For
this particular project, as mentioned before, Dave
and A-Trak hand picked joints from our catalogues.
A-Trak: Right, we each work on our own stuff
and then Dave and I pick through it for our releases.
Like Sim makes a ton of beats and then we'll be
like, "let's get OD to spit on this one for
the comp". Meanwhile Serious does his own thing
in Toronto and sends us CDs periodically. And I
do cuts on certain songs when they're ready to be
put out. Most of the production I'm doing is just
for my own turntablist projects. But when I did
the beat for "The Grill" it just ended
up sounding like a rap beat so we used it with OD.
|Is there a rivalry between Montreal
an Toronto? As Montreal is in Quebec and they wanted
to be independent from Canada a while ago.
|Serious: Not really. Sim
is from Montreal and I'm from Toronto. We're like
brothers from another mother. We got a tight fam
base aside from music.
A-Trak: Yeah, I wouldn't say there's any
kind of rivalry. Definitely not because of the whole
independence issue. The last referendum was many,
many years ago. And no one really cares about that
in the music scene.
|Isn't Celine Dion from around
there? Do you see her in the streets?
|Simahlak: Yeah, she's from
Montreal, where I'm from. Actually, the joint I
did for Troy Dunnit, "Mindblowin" was
mixed at Piccollo studios where Celine records.
But other than that, I do see her in the dollar
bin crates. I touched her drums.
A-Trak: You know, I have the same birthday
as her. We're linked in the cosmos. And like Sim
said, we mix a lot of our records at this studio
which is owned by her band. Dave actually saw her
there once. He's convinced she gave him a little
|Do you guys speak French?
|Serious: Il est midi.
Simahlak: Ah oui oui. Je m'appelle un crayon
A-Trak: Wow. Yeah, French is actually my
|I watched that movie "Bowling
for Columbine". Is it true that Canadians don't
lock their doors?
Serious: I lock my doors.
Simahlak: I'm actually checking that movie
out tonight. But yeah, I lock my doors, mos def.
A-Trak: I lock my doors too. See? There's
a common vision.
|What do you guys do in Winter
when it's 20 below freezing?
|Simahlak: We go ice fishing
and we're national bob sled racers.
A-Trak: I once met a guy named Bob Sled.
Nice guy. Um, we just wear big jackets and stay
indoors a lot. I think I wouldn't have practiced
as much when I was coming up if it wasn't for the
cold. But it makes it really hard to scratch sometimes
when your hands are frozen. I guess it's the same
thing as when baseball players train with heavier
bats and then move on to regular ones.
|Why do Canadian hockey teams
have such goofy names as Montreal Canadians, Vancouver
|Serious: At least we're
not a Mighty Duck or Minnesota Wild
Simahlak: I am presently growing a mullet.
That's hockey hair y'all. I'm not even joking.
A-Trak: What's hockey?
|What's up with The Allies right
|A-Trak: Everybody's doing
good, just working on a bunch of different projects.
We've got our battle records that come out every
couple of months. That's what I handle mostly with
the crew. The next one is Craze's "Bully Breaks
2". Infamous is setting up the Allstar Beatdown
battles for this year. And the new issue of Tablist
magazine is shipping right now.
|Are you guys still practicing
together or has it become more of a loose collective?
|A-Trak: We're not really
practicing together on the regular. But it's been
like that from the start, since we live in different
cities: Miami, Atlanta, New York, Jersey, Montreal.
I mean, when some of us are in the same city, then
we always stay at each other's houses and practice
and stuff, but we usually just keep in touch over
the phone. There's a lot of "hey listen to
this real quick" conversations. Normally we
get together only when something needs to be done.
|After winning everything at
such a young age, do you still feel like battling?
|A-Trak: No, and that's why
I stopped... Well I wanted to defend the ITF title,
and I did that. After that I realized that most
people don't even know the difference if you have
this title or that title, they just know you've
won a bunch, so I decided to move on to other projects.
I used to dedicate practically all my time to preparing
for battles, so I took that time and used it for
everything else I'm involved in.
|What is your specific role at
|A-Trak: I guess you can
say I'm like Dave's right hand man. I do a lot of
stuff like following through with people, or making
sure mail-outs get done, or I'll help him get in
touch with certain people that I might know through
my own contacts, from DJing or whatever. We really
share a lot of tasks though. Dave and I talk about
5 times a day so we're always like "OK can
you call this guy? I'll book this studio session,
you make sure this thing comes through". And
I handle all of the turntablist projects: the Ammo
battle records and the D-Styles projects. That's
like my department. Oh and I take care of bookings.
When Obscure Disorder toured England two years ago
and when we did a west coast tour in Canada and
the US last year, I put those together. And this
year I took care of the European tour with my agency
in England, Profile.
|Are you afraid that you producing
beats will be judged and compared by others with
your DJing and winning championships? In other words,
to you feel a pressure to reach the same quality
level producing beats as you did with DJing?
|A-Trak: For sure, but that's
a good thing. It sets a standard that I have to
reach. At this point a lot of people want to hear
turntablism grow beyond the typical live format,
or the battle format. There's a certain curiosity
there and I try to work with that.
|What do appreciate most about
Simahlak and Serious?
|A-Trak: Their haircuts.
And their interest in the label. Not only are they
talented but they share our vision for Audio Research.
Dave and I don't work with a million people but
we try to pick a few with whom we can have a good,
loyal relationship. I think that by now they know
that we're looking out for them and they trust Dave's
input. And they're hungry too.
|Any info you want to share with
|Serious: We look forward
to rocking shit for this tour, doing promo for the
"Rugged Radio Saturday" compilation and
basically share our musical tastes with everybody.
Thanks a lot. Peace!
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