Not to be missed by Hip-Hop fans, The Wow are ones to look out for. From working with legends to carving out their own lane in a crowded scene, the MC and producer/DJ duo from Hollywood are gaining the attention of many in the industry. Their latest LP “LGNDRY” contains classic elements of boom-bap with futuristic sounds. The duo believes in story telling through their music with higher aspirations of being worthy contributors to the culture. RESPECT. talked to them about their journey thus far and what fans can expect of them in the future.
RESPECT.: Tell us a little bit about the The Wow.
KO THE LEGEND: I’m KO THE LEGEND and my role in The Wow is the MC. [I] bring words to life. I’m one half of a bigger equation.
Balthazar Getty: The Wow is a throwback to the Producer-Rapper duo where you have the consistency in that singular vision from both artists where today for the most part, rappers will have lots of different producers. We’re in the spirit of Eric B and Rakim, Gangstarr, Pete Rock and CL Smooth where you had this consistency in the story they’re telling. The Wow is just real Hip-Hop where we straddle great boom-bap and balance it with the futuristic, where music is going. The album is foundationally boom-bap but at the same time current.
What are some of your influences, musically?
KO: Towards my sound in general, anything that sounds good to me from RHCP to Kid Cudi to Earth Wind & Fire. I’m inspired by creativity and anybody that tries to take it to the next level.
B.G: I have a very eclectic music taste. I love everything from Johnny Cash to Public Enemy to Peter Tosh, Bob Marley, Miles Davis, Nina Simone, Billy Holiday, 80s and 90s Hip Hop but also obscure music from Ethiopia, Nigeria, Afro-Cuban music, music from South America the whole gamut.
The “Masterpeice” featuring Method Man. What was the process that went behind that particular song?
KO: It was actually very organic. Like all songs, I walk into the studio and Balthazar will be playing a beat and I’ll try to capture that feeling. That entire process played itself out for this particular track and when Method Man came to LA, my management was able to get him in the studio and he layed the track down.
How is it like working with Method Man?
KO: The crazy thing is it was a surreal experience, I use to listen to him and Biggie in my headphones growing up and to have him in the studio was something else, I definitely relayed that to him. Method Man was to me the probably the only rapper to perhaps one up Biggie on a track.
B.G: It was incredible because he’s just a hero because when I made the beat I thought to myself, damn Method Man would sound amazing on this and then a lucky series of events lead to him coming to the studio and we got to meet and hang out and chop it up. He was incredible and professional, so prepared, walked right up to K.O. and gave him his props and told him to stay humble and gave us some advice. He’s someone who co-signed us and to have him tell us we’re doing good means a lot.
Your project “LGNDRY” is out. How are the fans receiving it?
KO: The people that give the music an honest chance, they love it, they can tell we’re authentic, that we’re part of the culture. We don’t worry about people that think it’s just a vanity project. The ones that know and have the same mentality as us know that we’re participating in growing Hip-Hop culture and enriching it.
B.G: There’s 18 tracks on the LP, we have Prodigy, Fatlip, Vinny Chase, Realm Reality. It was a year and a half of work and we had a lot of songs to pick from so it’s a huge accomplishment. When you feel you’re competitive and wherever you go whether they didn’t like us at first, they come around and if they liked us before they loved us even more now. And we love playing live as it’s a great way to turn believers into non-believers.
What can fans expect from your music?
KO: Authentic Hip-Hop. We’re not about telling you we’re “real”er than the next person, we do what we love and what we grew up on. If you grew up on lyrics and the kind of beats that make you bop your head instead of turning up, projects that you gotta peel back and take in the nuances instead of hearing it one time. Be prepared for a sonic amalgamation of where Hip-Hop came from and where it’s going all in one.
How does it feel putting out your project and the feedback your getting?
KO: For me it’s a dream come true. We’ve been working on it for a year or two and to have validation from MCs like
Prodigy, Fatlip and Vinny Chase, I’m a fan of all these guys before I look at them as peers. So especially someone like Vinny Chase who we didn’t know and for him to get on the phone and say they like what we’re doing is awesome. The whole Cheers Club family was cool they came down to SXSW and shot the whole video for it and showed love.
Any plans to tour this year?
KO: If I had it my way we’d never stop. We’re putting it together now, I’m sure you’ll see us at Art Basel in Miami and a couple of other places before the year is up so definitely keep checking TheWowMusic.com and it’ll be up there.
What are your Goals for 2015?
KO: I would love to make a collaboration with people that are at our level sonically like Action Bronson, Pro Era all those guys on one track with us would be crazy. A major tour whether we’re opening or not. Do something amazing with a video and content distribution. Also a partnership with a tech company that understands where music is going and to be able to engage with an audience in a new way.
B.G: The Wow is out right now, Abstracto is out right now I want them both to do well. Win a Grammy, we think we have a good chance with Abstracto in certain categories. Also putting out two new records and a new project.
Show some love and take a minute to stream their latest project “LGNDRY” below:
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