I caught up with Protohype as his new ep for Firepower drops and asked about the origins of this, the first of a trilogy…
Protohype: Well, I’ve been sitting on a lot of original music for a fair amount of time now…just kind of waiting for the proper way to release it all. When I came up with the concept for See No Evil, Hear No Evil, and Speak No Evil, it just made perfect sense. The monkeys, different themed EPs… and a way to release a bunch of music consistently over the summer. So I just came up with See No Evil to be the heavier themed EP. The other 2 will be different.
DB: So what’s a tune off the EP you’d isolate and say ‘THIS one is ME’…?
P: That’s a tough question. It’d probably have to be between ‘The Peak’ and ‘Turn The Bass Up’. I really love ‘The Peak’ because it is a nearly perfect mash of me and Getter’s styles, which I think is always the goal in a collaborative effort.
I am partial to ‘Turn The Bass Up’ because of the hip hop influences, and of course with my own vocals being on there, it resonates even moreso.
DB: Do you enjoy remixing? I have to say I’m a big fan of ‘Nuke Em’!
P: Thank you! I love remixing. I love making original music of course, but remixing just comes a bit easier to me. I also just enjoy putting my own spin on a track that I’ve always enjoyed listening to. ‘Nuke ‘Em” is a perfect example of that.
Sometimes with remixes you have to tread lightly, and be picky about how you mess with the original flow of the tune, but if executed correctly, a great remix can breathe new life into a tune that may have started to fade away.
DB: You guys have a heavy touring ethic, could you tell us about it.
P: The tour I’m on right now is with Minnesota. I’m hoping to ride along with the Firepower family on the next tour however! I’ve played shows with most of the guys in the Firepower crew, and the energy that we all bring to the table is truly next level. I think that’s what Firepower is all about. Datsik, Terravita, Getter, AFK, Frim, Rekoil, Barron, the whole crew really brings a level of energy to the table that sets the bar extremely high.
DB: In terms of producing – and in general I suppose – what things influence you?
P: I’m influenced by everyone in the electronic music scene who is doing something positive. You don’t always have to be influenced by sounds, you can also be influenced by work ethic and friendly competition.
As far as production goes, my main influence from the start has always been hip hop. Before I got deep into electronic music I produced strictly hip hop for about 5 or 6 years, so a lot of my influence as far as production style and techniques come from hip hop. Post hip hop, I’ve gotten a lot of influence from D&B honestly. I’m always infatuated with properly executed D&B.
DB: What sort of D&B?
P: Some of my favorite D&B producers are: Noisia, Phace and Misanthrop, TC, Metrik, and Hamilton just to name a few.
DB: What about tips for someone new to the game?
P: I’d say become a student. Not necessarily in the literal form, but just learning as much as you possibly can. The more knowledge you have the faster you will progress and get to the point where you desire to be. You can never know everything, so try to learn something new everyday, and you will always be progressing.
DB: OK. So getting back to touring… got a road story?
P: Oh man, road story let’s see. I remember I played a show with Liquid Stranger in LA not too long ago, and ended up getting a little drunker than I had originally intended, and ended up convincing my manager to let me do a front flip crowd surf…I’m pretty sure I had already crowd surfed twice by this point in time so I think it was completely unnecessary to attempt this feat, especially since there was about a 6 foot gap to get to the crowd first anyways. I did it, and luckily they caught me and I landed safe. Probably could have died, but I didn’t. That was also potentially one of the more athletic things I’ve done in my music career.
DB: So what is in store for 2013?
P: So much! Two more EP releases on Firepower, several random singles here and there, plenty of free music, bunch of big shows and a couple festivals. I’m pretty excited to be playing Summer Camp outside of Chicago, that will be my first legit music festival.
And World Domination!