Monthly Archives: November 2011

Break It Down: Prime ‘Good Morning’ (part 2)

Part 2 of Prime‘s breakdown of his debut release Good Morning, available for free download right here. So good.

Devilish

The beat for this was originally out of bounds for me when I heard it at Answer’s place but I think I talked him into letting me use it. I can’t remember who but I think he had intended to give it to another artist and I was sort of like, “Just let me record on it and if you don’t think it’s good enough, I won’t use it”.

I am not a religious person but it wasn’t my intention to say to religious people “your beliefs are wrong”. I am exploring the situation as it is told to us from the point of view of “Satan”, who has no impact on my life or my actions because I do not believe in his existence. It’s my opinion but I don’t deny anyone else the right to theirs.

Unthinkable

Another of the early release songs that I thought twice about including. At the end of the day it made it because I love it. It’s not a rap song I borrowed, but it sounds great with rap on it. I feel like it suits me perfectly. Its just one long verse again and to me its the perfect “mixtape” track. I’m just rapping, there’s no hook, its not an original beat. When I wrote it was just when everything was starting to come good. One Way Ticket was about to drop, I had just signed with Soulmate and it felt like things were coming together, but I knew I had a long way to go.

“I’m on the verge of getting everything I wanted before, and all I’m thinking is I gotta get more”.

Pour It On A Page (ft Vegas Aces)

Cam Bluff is a massive talent. Purpose and Motive brought him to my attention in about 2008 when they were making Red October and if he was dope then, he is at another level now. I had another couple of beats of his that I thought about using for Good Morning but it just wasn’t consistent with the feel of the rest of the release. This beat was spot on. It was actually 360’s intention to be on this beat and share this track but with his album coming out around the same time as it needed to be finished, it just wasn’t possible. 4th from V.A. did an unbelievable job on the guest verse at very short notice. I can’t thank him enough for that. The track needed it.

The last verse is a very important moment in the album but still, I didn’t want the track to only be about that verse. Sometimes I get asked if it’s hard to be that open and honest on a track about something like that but it’s not. It’s actually a weight off your shoulders. Just writing it is a weight off your shoulders. I think from a listener’s point of view, and for this kind of track, it’s important to know that I mean what I say. On Koolta’s recent mixtape I say, “I talk about my own life cos there ain’t nothing like it”. In this case thats 100% true.

You’re Only A Man/Three Men (ft Purpose & Raven)

The movie snippet is from “Law Abiding Cititzen” when Jamie Foxx is about to front the press after the court hearing at the start. It is there both as a precursor to the track and also because it sounded wrong going from ‘Pour It On A Page’ to the mayhem of ‘Three Men’.

This is a lot of people’s favourite track and it’s easily one of mine too. When we hit up Raven to do the track he asked, “What is the topic?” and I said, “Rapping as well as you possibly can”. He said “That’s my favourite topic”. It’s an Answer beat again and I’ve had it for a long, long time. A mate of mine had the instrumental as his ringtone for like a year, haha. It was important that we got someone from outside our crew to jump on and being a fan of Raven I’m glad he was down to do it with us. I am and always will be a fan of emcees who put a lot of time and thought into their rhymes and to me Raven is one of the best in the country. Raven and Purps both kill their verses, Hacksaw’s cuts are perfect. It’s one I can really enjoy listening to just because of the contributions of the others.

House of Balloons

‘House of Balloon’ and ‘Heaven and Hell’ are meant to be connected and in order, but I wrote ‘Heaven and Hell’ first, if that makes any sense. I am a big fan of The Weeknd and the beat for ‘House of Balloons’ was perfectly fitting for rap I thought. It is a song about going out and partying in a sense, but there is a lot more going on.

“They say, you measure life on who’s got the better story / But does it mean more or less if they tell it for me? / Does it mean more or less if they never saw me? / Does it mean anything at all if it don’t end in glory?”

It’s an unusual place to do this sort of “meaning of life” stuff but I think that’s why it works and why I like it so much. The ending of “Even though the party’s over I don’t wanna leave it” sets up the transition into ‘Heaven and Hell’.

Heaven and Hell

Strangely the only Purpose beat I rap on. I say strangely because he was absolutely instrumental in the process of making the album. The majority of recording, planning and brainstorming was done with consultation from him. The little intro skit to this track is deliberately really quiet in the mix. It is supposed to be something you maybe only hear if you’re really listening,

The “dream” from the song really happened. Maybe not every detail played out as it did in the track, but the main part of the story really did happen in a dream I had one night and I really did think I was about to die. It was a pretty unsettling way to start my day but I’m happy I remembered enough of the details to turn it into a track. I don’t know who the girl in the dream was. It wasn’t anybody I know. I’m not sure who the gunman was either. Probably a rapper.

Can Anybody Hear Me

Ante Escobar on the beat. He a has a great ear for cruisy, laid back samples and that’s good for this track because it’s never meant to sound bitter or anything. It’s a pretty brief history of my time in “the game” and how I got where I am now. It also explains that I’m feeling pretty good about where I’m at with music right now even if that hasn’t always been the case before. I wrote this track pretty early in the piece but it was over a different beat that didn’t quite suit it as well in my personal opinion, even though it was also dope. The chorus cuts are from Bushwick Bill and K-Rino verses. They are on this track in particular because I wanted to make this track 100% about me and my story and I am a fan of both. I probably wouldn’t try to write tracks like ‘Money’ or ‘Devilish’ without that K-Rino influence in writing lyrics and thinking, even if we have a totally different sound. That’s the same reason for the Simon Hill Socceroo commentary at the start. Things that have a big importance and big influence in my life.

One Click

As I have said in a couple of interviews since Good Morning came out, I wrote this straight after an argument I had with some of the other dudes in Pagen Elypsis during the making of One Way Ticket. It’s a great example of using things that are on your mind or pissing you off and turning them into music just by expressing yourself. I didn’t hold anything back on this song and I’m glad I didn’t because the track wouldn’t have worked unless I was totally committed. I don’t have problems with any of the Pagen Elypsis people now, but when you’re in that sort of environment things can boil over.

“Here’s my life on an album, one click of a mouse and it’s yours.”

That isn’t meant to make you feel like shit for downloading my album. It’s just meant to say, “I’m putting my heart and soul into this, so please give it the attention it deserves”. I wrote that line before I knew the project it ended up on was going to be free, but even on a studio album in a store people could just download it. I guess that’s part of music. You put your guts into a song or telling a story and it’s possible that someone will just say, “This is shit” or “Boring” without giving it a proper run. Thankfully nearly all the responses I’ve heard on this song have been people saying this really hit home or similar, and that makes it all worth it.

Keep on Running

The prelude to the future I suppose. I know a lot of artists who have a long term ambition to make an album and then when they do they take a break or sometimes never do another one. I won’t do that. This track is basically the intro to whatever I do next. It’s about not being satisfied with what I’ve done so far and always working to do more. It’s an M-Phazes beat which is a thrill for me, and it was great to get Hailey Cramer on the vocals. She is very talented. I also touch on why I’m not battling anymore and why I don’t plan to come back, which is something I get asked about a lot. I can’t tell you when the next release will be ready. I have already got 5 or 6 tracks nearing completion and I’ve got a few name ideas floating around too. I can’t wait.

Beef: 360 vs Short Stack

Exhibit A:

Exhibit B:

Vote for 360 here.

Break It Down: Prime ‘Good Morning’ (part 1)

Prime gives you the inside track on his brand new free album, Good Morning. Download it here. Part 2 coming soon.

8am
I wrote it long before it became a track. At first it was going to be on a beat Answer made that was really cinematic and loud and epic and dope but I just felt like it wasn’t right. I knew that first 8 bars had to start the project and sonically that beat wasn’t right for what that song needed to be. A friend of mine who had heard the Answer version urged me not to change it. We hit up Mules with the (pretty loose) idea of what sort of beat we wanted and he delivered perfectly. In terms of lyrics the whole sitting behind the wheel/going to the same place/being caught in traffic thing is about me being yet another MC about to do his thing on the solo tip.

 “Right now WE’RE sitting behind the wheel.”  It’s all of us. I find a way to get across the median and go the other way. To me those 8 bars are vital in setting the scene for the rest of the track, album, solo career. Like “we’re all going this way, I can’t really get through this way, and I don’t really wanna go this way. I’m gonna go my own way.” It’s my music, I’m going here.

Tunguska
After the kind of slow, simmering intro I wanted something with a bit more energy to follow it. One Above is a very talented producer and he’s about to get some of the props he deserves now with this involvement in the new Hoods album and I think that’s great. He deserves it. Anyway, the beat is his and the way it has all the breakdowns, different parts of the sample used etc, he expected me to do verses and a hook and verses and cuts. When I showed him what I’d done over the beat he was like “Oh you just rap the whole way through” haha. I think it works though. There is an element of punchline shit in those lyrics but it’s not just rapping to rap. It goes somewhere.  “They tell me it’s generation Y/ I prefer to think of it as hesitate and die” is my favourite moment I think.

I get asked a lot about the title, if its about “blowing up” or some shit, but it’s not. It’s not that cynical.

Money
It’s a 2 year old song at least, maybe older. The motivation for writing wasn’t me saying “money is evil” or anything like that, but that line about people spending all their money to give the appearance of having some is true. I guess the message is “money is great to have, but don’t fuck up your life to get it”. It’s another Answer beat and it really goes off live. We had it in the Pagen Elypsis crew live show long before it came out and whenever I do it now it goes off. Even when I’m on someone else’s tour and 80% of the crowd don’t know me that song kills live.

Alone (ft. Purpose)
Some of the lyrics for this track were in a track I made but threw away called “This Plane I Built”. When I made it I loved it, but over time I realized it wasn’t perfect. I was listening to “Sure Thing” by Miguel and I started spitting some of the lyrics from that joint over it and it was just perfect. The thing about making a free album/mixtape/whatever is it gives you the opportunity to experiment with jacking beats or remixing existing tracks. I re-wrote the track around some of the ideas and lines that were already there. The little bridge after the second hook is the intro to the Miguel track. Anyone who is familiar with Purpose’s work earlier in the year knows the hook comes from his track “Faded”. The track was just going to be me. One night we were in town and I asked Purpose to add a verse to the end of that joint. He had to make sure a few days later I really meant it and it wasn’t just the drink talking. I told him I meant it and a couple weeks later he killed it.

For The First Time
Motive (Pagen Elypsis) was in contact with a producer out of Birmingham, UK called Kelakovski and he had a stack of his beats. One night I was sitting in my old house listening to tunes and that beat just came on. I started messing with it and what I ended up with was “For The First Time”. It’s a homage to Lupe Fiasco’s “He Say, She Say” but it’s also an exploration of that kind of concept spanning separate generations rather than just two different people in the same situation. The response for this track has been really dope, and I’m glad because it’s the kind of track that will only really reward the listener if they’re on it the whole way through. It’s one of my favourite tracks on Good Morning. We put the screwed snippet of “He Say, She Say” on there at the end to confirm that I was deliberately paying homage to it. It’s also a cool little thing for the person who picks up on the connection between the tracks.

Right Here
There’s no metaphors or hidden stories or anything about what this song is about. This song is “I am here, look at me. I am not going away” and nothing more. Good Morning is at times a pretty depressing record and this track is I guess what you would expect me to do based on my previous work. This track is definitely more in the Pagen Elypsis mould than a lot of the more personal stuff on Good Morning. It’s a big beat, big statements, big punchlines. It wouldn’t have been right to go through a whole 18 tracks without  a couple of these tracks. I’ve started opening with this live just because it has that kinda of airy, ominous intro and then it bangs into life. Answer on the beat again. We made this at the same time we made “Money” and a few of the other tracks. It does pick the energy up after “Alone” and “For The First Time” and give the record a bit of momentum.

Restore My Faith
I wrote it January 2009. I had written like 50 bars or so just on some stream of consciousness shit. It was just a very honest account of where I was at and what I was feeling at that moment. A few days later I was in Melbourne to watch Adelaide United play away and while I was in town I dropped into to Answer’s place. He had made that beat the night before and I was like “I have a song for this.” I chopped the verse up and re-wrote a few bits and wrote a hook and we had a song in less than two hours. I don’t remember how It happened but somehow the track was getting played on Sydney community radio before I had released it or before it was even properly mixed. From that it got a few plays on Triple J in 2009. I decided at that point to put it up on myspace and from there it got ripped and put on youtube. Because it had been floating around for so long I thought twice about putting it on Good Morning but at the end of the day I felt that track needed to have somewhere to exist and kinda be immortalised. I didn’t want it to just fall away to nothing or be forgotten.

It’s one of those tracks where you put 100% of your honesty into it and by the time it’s released you might not neccesarily still live those feelings. That’s just how I write though. It’s probably the most popular track I’ve made.  I guess people just relate to it and even those that don’t relate can respect what I’m doing rap wise on that track. I’ve had people say “I don’t like that kind of track but I love that track” and I think that’s a great compliment.

The Closest That I Get (ft Motive)
When Pagen Elypsis dropped One Way Ticket in August 2010 we had a launch at Fowler’s in Adelaide. That is a big venue to fill for a crew like us that didn’t have any previous albums or radio play or anything at the time. We were really relying on pushing it at a grass roots level and we pushed real fucking hard to get that place full. We prepared for that show like a grand final. Kadowg from PE and I would refer to that show as the Grand Final in the rehearsals. The show was huge and it was a big validation of what we were doing at the time. A week later we were like 5th on the bill for an international act, went on at about 8pm and there was no one in the building. The message from that for me was “There is no grand final. This doesn’t end until you quit or die.” And it’s true. From then on I’ve done bigger shows than I could have ever imagined and while you don’t ever get that career-defining win you might get as a footballer you do get those moments of validation. That’s what the track is all about. Just doing your thing the best way you can until that next big moment comes up.

I’m really glad Motive was involved. He is one of the best people I’ve met in music and it was important to me to get him on the album. I think he has the ability and potential to do some really dope solo music and I hope he does. One Above provided the beat and it’s perfect once again. This was the very last song to get finished in time to make the final tracklist.

Video: 360 covers Regurgitator for ‘Like A Version’

One of the most viewed videos on YouTube this past weekend. Puppetry in motion.

360 in top four of [V] Oz Artist 2011

360 has reached the top four of the [V] Oz Artist 2011 viewers poll.

You can help him hit the top by voting here.

Fluffy press blurb below:

 360 is a man on a mission. A force to be reckoned with, the innovative indie rapper’s sophomore album, Falling & Flying debuted at number one on the iTunes album chart, in the top five of the ARIA charts and is still going gangbusters. He scored the Most Hunted Award at this year’s Jagermeister Independent Music Awards, is finishing up a massive Australian tour and pretty much everything he touches turns to gold. Will he cap off an incredible year by taking out [V] OZ ARTIST 2011?

Oh Ruby…

Prime on new Koolta mixtape

Hilltop Hoods Initiative winner & all-round good guy Koolta drops his brand new mixtape The Forked Road today … and it’s free.

It’s the latest taste of what’s to come in 2012, when the talented producer-emcee drops his highly anticipated debut album.

Check out the track ‘Great Expectations’ for a guest spot from Soulmate’s own Prime. Download the tape here.