Hot Sugar Collabs With Das Racist, Aaron Livingston, And More Vocalists On MiDi Murder EP [Track Premiere]
When we first encountered master of Associative Music and found sound aficionado Hot Sugar, he told us of his solitary adventures in sound, recording the knocking of skulls in the catacombs and stealing the sweet sounds of an antique Steinway. Back then, his foremost collaborator was a white rat named Sarah Michelle Gellar. Since those early days prior to his first release on Ninja Tune, this year’s Moon Money, Hot Sugar has amassed a stable of vocalists to grace his thrift-store-mystical production.
In recent months, we’ve seen him take the stage alongside the likes of Big Baby Gandhi, Das Racist, and Kitty Pryde, not to mention Aaron Livingston, who sings over a Hot Sugar beat on the opening track of The Roots’ Undun. Now, Hot Sugar has pulled together a stack of these collaborators to lay down vocals for his upcoming EP for Scion A/V, MiDi Murder. The teaser video (above) is something of a sequel to his “Making Music” video from a couple of years back, and below is the premiere of “Honeycomb Hideout” (feat. Aaron Livingston and Izza Kizza), the first single off of MiDi Murder EP.
Killer stuff. What other manner of audio will he snatch from the air and craft into his sonic origami? We went straight to the source to find out.
The Creators Project: What is MiDi Murder? How is it different from Muscle Milk and Moon Money?
Hot Sugar: Muscle Milk and Moon Money are essentially instrumental albums. I focused on showcasing my production. I still made some bold production decisions on MiDi Murder but I tried to take a backseat and focus on the features.
The internet is a lawless, unregulated territory where artists can grow in bizarre directions without being suppressed by old-world label traditions and fears, so it yields a lot of creativity. A few years ago, calling someone a blog rapper was an insult, but at this point, if you’ve made a name for yourself online without the help of any major label, I feel like that’s a lot more honorable.
MiDi Murder is my first full-on collaboration with vocalists. I wanted to produce for unique artists that dont necessarily fit the mainstream archetypes but have still proven to have mainstream appeal. Most of these features (Heems and KOOL AD of Das Racist, Antwon, Chippy Nonstop, Haleek Maul, Big Baby Gandhi, Nasty Nigel, Fat Tony, etc.) belong to the new guard of internet savvy artists that dont really care about fitting in. Each artist I worked with has a unique style and persona that’s garnered attention over the web and i’m humbled to be working with them.
The full album should come out early next year, but Scion AV has been nice enough to help me put out a free seven-song teaser called the MiDi Murder EP.
And what are some more double M phrases that we might see emblazoned on future Hot Sugar releases?
Well the full length MiDi Murder LP will include more than double the number of songs with some more amazing features I feel like I shouldn’t declare yet.
After that though, I dont know what the next MM will be. All I know is that I’m doing an MM pentalogy.
What is your opinion of stock patches and sounds?
I’ve mentioned it before, I think using stock patches or sounds is lazy. The average listener won’t necessarily notice or care, but that’s not who I make music for. I recorded all the sounds for this project (either from instruments or non-instruments that I then convert into instruments using Associative Music techniques) and even though it’s endlessly time-consuming, I feel a more intimate sense of ownership to my work than I would if just cut and pasted elements of other peoples’ work.
Can you give us an update on some of the oddest sources of sound you’ve utilized since we last spoke, and that we don’t see in this new video?
One of the songs, “Rat City” (feat. Big Baby Gandhi, Nasty Nigel, YC the Cynic) uses a melody written and performed by a rat. I put a pet rat on a couple different keyboards and video taped her walking over the keys for a while. A lot of it was uninspiring, but at one point, she walked over the black keys of my piano and played a very sinister melody that I barely had to edit in order to loop for a beat. We’ve been having legal issues regarding the publishing because ASCAP wont let us label “Rat City” as “co-produced by Hot Sugar + Sarah Michelle Gellar” (the rat).
I also recorded that rat chewing through a can of Budweiser, which I used instead of a “Bleep” to censor some curse words on the clean version.