Maturity seems to be the necessary word to open this up with. The Fuel EP is a bit more than your standard EP release. It’s rather a fully developed, potent body of work from Koncept and J57. You may just create a bucket list, make amends to those you’ve harmed, dance, snap your neck, and hug your parents after all eight tracks.
J57‘s soundscapes are carefully fearless. Koncept‘s content is transparent. Together you get a magical, explorative dish of honesty. Aesthetically, we give credit to Red Bull Studios for the fine tuning and beautiful finalization of the record. What fuels the two to keep going in this bitter sweet thing we call music? After your first spin you should have the response.
Guest artists include Dice Raw (The Roots), frequent family Akie Bermiss, Hollis, 11-year old Nevaeh and more – not making the record what it is, but adding to its foundation as it should be. They’re meaningful slots.
The amount of work that went into EP is incredible. If you were following their moves, you get it. If not, it’s okay. Welcome to the world of Koncept and J57. These two do not sleep, and as you will read in the interview segment below, they have much more in stores heading into the new year. Grab The Fuel EP now via iTunes after streaming it.
What is the most memorable moment during the recording of The Fuel EP?
J57: There were a ton of memorable moments; at least one per song, but I think the biggest stand out moment for me was while we were working on the song “Excitement”. We were at Room17 Studio and we had the song finalized and Joe Rogers was giving it a rough mix when he was like, “Wait a minute… let me try something.” He disappeared for a few minutes and comes back in holding a ton of analog equipment. He spent a solid 5 to 8 minutes setting everything up / plugging everything in. He then started to revamp the main melody that I played and distorted the living shit out of it — even more than I did already, to begin with. Koncept and I jump up from our seats and walk over in amazement. I’ll put it this way — that full day/night studio session we just spent on ”Excitement” didn’t end till approx 4 or 5am! We left knowing that we just brought the song and the direction of the EP to a new level.
Koncept: Well, J nailed that one, so I can’t really beat that.
But, one thing that people don’t know is that “Live Forever” was originally meant to be on the full length LP, “Flight” that’s dropping in 2016. I recorded my vocals in Brooklyn sometime in the Spring still having no idea when we were going to be in LA recording the album. In the song I say the date, “May 7th”. It just so happened with absolutely no intention or know how whatsoever that we were mixing that record in Red Bull Studio on May 7th. Our engineer, James Musshorn turns to me and says, “how did you know that we were going to be working on this record today!?” That was crazy. haha
The record is executed and pushed as if it were a full length studio album, but I know it’s just a taste at what’s to come. What are listeners in store for moving forward?
J57: “The Fuel” is the pre-cursor / set up for “Flight”, which drops summer of next year. The vibes are similar but “Flight” is like a big brother to “The Fuel”. That statement will make a lot of sense a year from today — you’ll see. But, in the time being, enjoy “The Fuel” and please listen to the entire thing knowing that something way bigger and way better is coming in a short 6-8 months.
Koncept: I just finished a full album with Madonna.
Any funny moments, or the funniest moment, during the recording of the EP?
J57: There were a ton of funny moments but my favorite one was:
“Crazy Is Beautiful” feat. Nevaeh:
We featured Nevaeh, an 11 year old singer from Portland, Oregon, that is the daughter of our good friend and incredible photographer, Jessica Keaveny (http://jessicakeaveny.com/). The chorus for this song was written by my new artist Mike Two, who’s background was writing for Atlantic Records till he left recently to pursue his own solo music under the Five Seven Music umbrella. Mike recorded the chorus for “Crazy Is Beautiful” at our brother Optiks’ studio in Brooklyn, with hopes that we would get a female singer on that track. A week later, we went to Portland to shoot the “Porcelain” video and decided to record Nevaeh’s chorus – in which we did. We recorded her on my laptop and had Mike Two on Koncept’s laptop on Skype, coaching her how to deliver it, since he wrote it and envisioned a certain delivery — which she nailed.
The funny part about this is, Mike Two wanted Nevaeh to sound sad and somber, and being that she’s 11 years old, he had to give her specific motivation to really bring her there. So, before we started, Mike said, “Ok, pretend your mom promised to get you ice cream and you’re really happy about it, you get to the ice cream parlor, then changes her mind and says you can’t have it. How would you feel?” Nevaeh quickly looks and sounds sad and says, “…sad.” Mike says, “Ok, great, let’s record that last take again with that feeling.” She ended up absolutely NAILING it. It was honestly hilarious and dope at the same time. I bet you didn’t expect to hear that story from the one and only sober session we had during the making of the entire EP haha! This was my favorite funny moment.
Koncept: We were recording vocals at Room17 Studio in Brooklyn with Joe Rogers one day while it was snowing outside. I think we were working on “Plane Ticket” that day. We were in the zone and didn’t even leave the room for almost 12 hours having no idea what it looked like outside. We actually forgot it was even snowing. We decided to take a step outside to get some fresh air before the next stretch, and when we opened the door there was over 2 feet of snow, AND a state of emergency through the city. haha
We all bundled up and went outside and were jumping off of things into piles of snow. I filmed it all on my GOPro. I think we’ll have to release the footage at some point.
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