Thursday, June 23, 2011

DERTY SESH - "Unforgivable" [Video]:

Our man is in full auteur mode...

Song produced by Derty Sesh.

Video directed by Derty Sesh.

Tired of waiting for another video grant, our man Sesh emptied out his piggybank and went out and bought himself a camera, and then taught himself how to operate it.

Call this is a test video of sorts, this song is a stand alone track that won't feature on his album or a mixtape.


Sunday, June 19, 2011

YOUNG SID x Sunday News:

Sid finds diamond in a dark place

"WHAT doesn't kill me" reads the message tattooed across the muscular chest of rapper Young Sid. The four words are the title of the South Auckland artist's award-winning album – and a personal statement of intent.

Sid, real name Sidney Diamond, should have been celebrating the success of his collaborative hip-hop group Smashproof. The band's single, Brother, would spend 11 weeks in a row on top of the New Zealand music charts. Instead, the rising star was shattered by the diagnosis of his mum Victoria Diamond with what would prove fatal lung cancer, plus the imprisonment of his gang-member older brother.

"I wrote the album when I was at my lowest, and I didn't feel any happiness or joy that the others in Smashproof felt when Brother broke the record, because I had so much family sh*t to deal with," Sid, 24, told Sunday News. "My mum was on her way out and my brother was in jail."

Another blow came with the imprisonment of a gang member who appeared in the video of his single Hood Like Me, which had Sid strolling through his Otara streets surrounded by supporters. Media coverage included reruns of the video, with Sid's face prominent. "The rest of New Zealand would have thought, this guy [Sid] is a gang member. `Let's not let him perform in front of our kids 'cause he's probably going to influence them to become gang members', which wasn't true."

In fact, he had made a conscious decision to move away from that lifestyle before even hitting his teens. "Dramas, gangs, drugs, violence... that's all I was seeing when I was growing up. My role models were those types of people. "And then I was like, I'm going to choose another path. [I wanted to] do something that could also inspire [people in] my area to live their dreams."

His change of direction was towards singing and songwriting. Forming the ironically named hip hop group The Murder Squad with three young mates, Sid recorded his first song aged just 11. By 18, he and fellow rappers Tyree and Deach had founded chart-topper Smashproof. Two years later, Sid was opening for American superstar Ice Cube's Manukau concert as well as releasing solo album The Truth – the 2008 Maori Urban Album of the Year.

His rapidly aquired celebrity and rugged good looks also attracted a female fan base interested in more than just his musical skills. Retaining a healthy cynicism over his new-found fame, Sid kept focused on his music. He dug deep into his soul for What Doesn't Kill Me. One of the singles, Here Then Gone, relates to his mother's cancer diagnosis and brave but unsuccessful battle against the disease. The raw emotion of the lyrics and pain in Sid's voice bring listeners to tears. "I don't listen to the song, it's too sad. Everyone [who has heard] it, said that they cried as well. That's cool... I tapped into their emotions."

Another single in the album, You, addresses child abuse, something he said he has witnessed too much of. Sid recalled a boy in his street "getting a hiding" from the child's parents for half an hour solid. Nearly two decades on, he can still hear the repeated swishes of the strap and the boy's repeated howls of agony as it landed.

He has been taking the messages from his songs more directly to his young fans, with regular visits to schools. Sid has even been the subject of college assignments. "I tell them [students] to educate their brains and stay fit and healthy. There's been [some] say... `You're like a role model for me to try and do something better'. [It makes me] proud knowing that my music's done that to them."

What Doesn't Kill Me repeated the success of The Truth, and was 2010 Maori Urban Album of the Year. It also made him a finalist in the Best Pacific Male Artist category in this year's Pacific Music Awards. Sid is honoured to have been recognised by both his cultures. His mother was Maori and his father, Vincent George, is of Cook Islands heritage.

Now a partner in his Move The Crowd Records label, he is working on an EP and a couple of new singles, plus preparing for an Australian tour. He is also hoping to return to New York before the end of the year, to finish off recording work there. He keeps in shape for his frantic schedule through an exercise regime that includes boxing, Muay Thai, basketball and the gym.

Sid's career has taken him to American supercities, European capitals, and exotic Thailand and Korea. "They were real eye-openers. And then you come back to your hood, Otara, [and] you're like, true. It puts it all in perspective. You've seen all these cool places, and you just want to keep travelling. [But] I'll always represent south Auckland."

Source - Sunday News

Saturday, June 18, 2011

This weeks IMNZ Charts:

Kidz In Space continue to do well on these charts...

Friday, June 17, 2011

CAVELL - "Higher" [Audio]:

Newly signed to the Crowd Gang. Cavell brings his sophisticated R&B & Hip Hop stylings to the MTC roster.

"Higher" is taken from the mixtape, The Last Prince From A Dying World; which is scheduled to drop on July 8th.

We are very pleased to welcome CA and his wingman Richie to the team.

Nice one brothers.

Cavell - "Higher" by KirkMTC

Damon K Fox – "Long Haul" feat. SIR T [Audio]:

Taken from Damon's soon to be released mixtape N.P Resident.

Long Haul (Ft Sir T) by Damon K Fox

KIDZ IN SPACE x Dominion Post:

Making the most of downtime

Ask Kidz in Space's Ashley Hughes to describe his band's sound and he's blunt. "Man, that is the toughest question," he says on the phone from Gisborne, where Kidz in Space are preparing for the first gig on their nationwide tour.

"I've learned to just leave it with the listener and let them decide. What they feel it is and whatever they want to take from it. I think that's the best way to look at our music. I'm not going to sit here and say it's hip-hop. I wouldn't know where to put it - where would you put it yourself?"

And that's a tough question, too. The thing about makes Kidz in Space, one of the most exciting and rapidly popular young Kiwi bands of 2011, is the fact that they can't be pigeon- holed into one genre of music. This is well evident on their debut album Ghosts, released last month.

For those who first heard of the Auckland-based group through the hit single Downtime, they'd assume the album would also be a blend of hip- hop, R'n'B and synth pop. And while those genres dominate Ghost, there's also lashings of rock and indie pop and even touches of ambient and experimental. The end result isn't that far removed from some of the poppy but risk-taking work of Kanye West and of the Black Eyed Peas.

Hughes formed Kidz in Space two years ago with Matt Neshat and Josh Fountain. "When we first started out we were just trying to find our way. Just being able to play a lot of live shows, especially with a lot of people we've been billed with, we were learning off them. It really has reflected on our music," says Hughes, who prior to the band worked in hip- hop under the name Ethical.

There was no conscious effort from the band to create a distinct sound. "We operate on 'if it sounds good, let's do it'. The core members of the band are very completely different dudes from different cultures and different upbringings. We've got different influences, so we actually just throw it in a big melting pot.

"Matt is more the hip-hop side of things. He's really into his hip-hop and he'll seldom listen to anything else. But Josh is the other end of the spectrum. He's just total pop, radio pop, corny TV pop. That's him. I'd say my position is the glue between those two. I like it all. I'm a big fan of AC/ DC and stuff like that, but you wouldn't think I was fan of half the music I am a fan of."

Six months after forming, the band released the EP Episode 001: Chasing Hayley, which included Downtime.

But while there's an assumption that much more work went into their debut album Hughes says Ghost didn't take long.

"It actually came quite quickly. It was more just the other issues with our distribution and label that was the holdup on the whole thing.

"Josh will have the music right there and I'd come into the studio and I'd hear it and then rap and record on the spot, whereas Matt would like to take it home for a couple of days and mull it over. You'd hardly ever catch us in the studio at one time together - it's a really unique way of working, but it seems to be working for us."

Another reason it works is their strong connection, says Hughes. He and Neshat grew up together. "We've got a real rapport with each other and we can work off each other and feed off each other. We're almost like brothers. It's not even a bonus to be working with my little brother, but it really works for us on stage. You can really see that we've got a good relationship."

Hughes says the band loves to play live and describes the prospect of presenting Ghost to audiences as "the big relief". They've taken on a new drummer and he says the show is more energetic. "It just feels more comfortable as a band".

But it's not only the tour that's likely to expose Kidz in Space to a new audience and further broaden their appeal. Downtime also got chosen to appear on the Michael Jordan NBA 2K11 video game - one of the biggest-selling basketball games in the world. For those older than 40 who think "so what?", this is the kind of exposure for a New Zealand song that used to be reserved for a Hollywood movie soundtrack. And with be the gaming industry worth US$65 billion a year - more than Hollywood or the music industry - it's one of the most important means for bands to broaden their reach.

Hughes has played the game and liked the fact Downtime is played several times. It's given them exposure in unexpected ways. "Sometimes we get emails from overseas. To be honest, we're just some regular dudes. We take everything as it comes and it's quite humbling and quite awesome in the same vein. To think that people know us somewhere in France - we've got this one fan that hits me up on Facebook. She sent me this private message trying to get us over there for a festival, just on the back of Downtime. She got the CD sent over and she was ringing around promoters. We know that we really need to take advantage of those avenues."

Source: Dominion Post/Stuff


Album Review: Kidz in Space, Ghost
By Jacqueline Smith

After a weightless galaxy-soaring opener, Auckland hip-hop dance three-piece Kidz in Space throw their debut album a few hard punches, and raise burning questions over how to define them - heavy pop, strobe-lit hip-hop, Kiwi-Brit rap?

Best Foot Forward is founded on light-footed electronica, but it has a lethargy to it that means it is best digested while seated. It's followed by the quick-step carnival-like title track featuring Dan Black.

Spooky and distant, in places Ghost doesn't sound like it hails from the mean streets of Auckland, but there's a laggard-enthusiasm - and accent - about every song on the album that means it couldn't have come from anywhere else.

The "space" theme creeps into several tracks (namely the heavy and well-thrashed single Downtime) via alien-monster-like vocorders, but there is a staunchness about this band that means they escape the label "cheesy".

Trashy-hip? Party-grit? Perhaps. In Downtime, and everywhere else on the album, a heavy fuzz hangs overhead like an industrial smog that stops tracks skidding off across a dance floor.

Flipping between a lazy love song in On the Road and rooting for fellow geeks in Number 1 ("I wanna know where the cool people go on a Saturday night") then dragging listeners by the ear lobes in the fresh and forlorn final song, Coming Home, it's a bit of a chaotic album, but it seems these boys thrive on a bit of mess.

Stars: 3/5
Verdict: These Kidz are a'ight

Source: NZ Herald

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Maverick Sabre - "Let Me Go" [Video]:

A great looking video from young Mav:

Thursday, June 9, 2011

KiDZ IN SPACE x Amplifier:

Kidz In Space catch up with the good folks at Amplifier. Hit the link to check it out.

KIDZ IN SPACE Album Debut:

Congrats to the KIS lads, their album debuted at #26 on the NZ albums chart this week...

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

D Love - "Skinny Jeans" feat. Shayne & Rickey Okay [Video]:

This one is bound to divide opinion, skinny jeans and auto tune always seem to rile up the traditionalists; but i'm not mad at it...

Friday, June 3, 2011


Kidz in Space get ready for lift off
Source: Stuff

Kidz In Space. It might sound like a Sunday morning cartoon, but the three local lads behind this very real intergalactic pop outfit are trying to keep their feet firmly on the ground after a whirlwind start. After landing for the first time at the 2009 Big Day Out, Josh Fountain, Ashley Hughes and Mat Neshat haven't looked back.

Within six months, their debut EP Episode 001: Chasing Hayley was conceived, recorded and released. And when the single Downtime edged its way into the top 20 charts, and tours with the likes of Gin Wigmore, Kora and BoB following, the trio knew they were on to a winning formula.

But it's taken a while for Fountain, the man behind the beats, to adjust to being in front of a crowd. "I'm used to spending nights in the studio alone, you know, so being on stage is all sort of new to me and it was a bit of a shock to the system for me," says Fountain.

This cautious approach to performing might explain why the band created an air of mystery around themselves in the early days - in the form of space suits and helmets. "The idea was just a spin-off of the name, and then it just became really hard to pull off," says Hughes, who alongside Neshat, is one of the band's MCs. "We were finding when we'd go to shows people were just waiting for a spaceship to come down or something. It kind of just wasn't connecting with the crowd.

"We didn't really think the whole thing through ... and they were just the crappiest looking suits - they're really budget and really uncomfortable and you can't speak in them," explains Fountain. Now, with spacesuits abandoned, they are ready to fire with a new album in hand.

Ghost was almost a year in the making and the band is surprised at the places they are finding success. Recently, they have won awards and topped charts in the electronic scene, but they don't necessarily connect with the "dance music" tag. "We wouldn't consider it that, but the best thing for us to do is let the listeners really decide. Because it really is a big melting pot of stuff," says Hughes.

Fountain agrees that trying to define their sound is the hardest thing to do. "It's hard, especially for us because we have two rappers and then a lot of the beats are dancey and a lot of them are poppy. We sort of tread the fine line between lots of different genres."

The band says this varied sound stems from their ability to draw on an eclectic range of influences - some old and some relatively new. "When I was just listening to hip-hop, I think I was just too staunch, I didn't want to listen to anything else," says Hughes. "I was like, 'Nah, you can't. If you're hip-hop, you're hip-hop'. I had that kind of mindset. But when I hooked up with Josh and we started Kidz In Space, I thought about what really made me happy with music, and a lot of that was the older stuff from when I was a kid."

And while Fountain didn't stick with the genre for long, he knows it all helps make the band what they are. "I went through my hip-hop phase early on, like from 10 to 14, and then I grew out of that," he jokes. "But when our powers combine, we are Kidz In Space."

KIDZ IN SPACE x Public Address Radio:

KIDZ IN SPACE - Public Address Radio by KirkMTC

YOUNG SID x Hawkes Bay Today:

Young rapper battles back to keep music real
LAWRENCE GULLERY | 2nd June 2011
Source: Hawkes Bay Today

When it comes to hip-hop and rap music, singer Young Sid is 100 per cent sure New Zealanders have it over the Americans in the "being true to the lyrics" department.

"I've been in studios in the US and heard people talk about how much money they have, how many people they shoot, what kind of chains they have and cars they drive. But in reality they've got none of that, so they're making stuff up - it's a fantasy.

"New Zealanders, we like to talk about (in songs) what we are going through and what's real. We sometimes grab a character and talk about their life but that's still real, and that's the difference - we are real people."

Hawke's Bay had a glimpse of what makes the singer "real" when he presented with four other Maori artists at a music workshop for secondary school students in Hastings on Monday.

The artists, who included Maisey Rika and her brother Jay, Taisha Tari and Ruia Aperahama, shared their experiences with the budding musicians before performing at the launch of Waiata Maori Music magazine at the Hawke's Bay Opera House in Hastings on Tuesday night. They also wrote a song together and recorded a demo version, to be released later this year, at Radio Kahungunu in Hastings.

Young Sid said he wasn't "good at public speaking" but found himself opening up to the students on Monday when he talked about the death of his mum and how his career almost came to a standstill.

"I grew up in Otara and in a gang environment. There's a gang called the Killer Beez and some of them are friends and family and they asked me to feature in a song they did with their label. I thought, of course, if it's going to help them do something else positive. We did the song, we did the video clip and then a couple of the members got caught in a police operation."

When it hit the news, television played the video clip, specifically showing Young Sid, even though he was not part of the gang and not wearing gang colours. The impact was huge. He was on the verge of being "blacklisted" by radio stations, venues and concert organisers.

"Every city I went to there was a lot of police. There were articles in the paper saying this guy Young Sid is going to come down with like a busload of Killer Beez gang members and try to recruit.

"I had to really work hard to show people that I wasn't the person I was made out to be."

Soon after Young Sid, who's mum was Maori and father from the Cook Islands, found success with hip-hop group Smash Proof. The group's song, Brother, spent 11 weeks at number one in New Zealand but the chance to enjoy it slipped after news his mum who had been "the rock of our family" had terminal cancer.

"I was going through so much, the media and police scrutiny and my older brother was in jail. It all happened at the same time. So I had the biggest low and the biggest high in one year. But I just had to keep going and keep working so I didn't lose control. Now I am really proud of Smash Proof and can enjoy the success."

Young Sid has been booked to perform at this year's National Waiata Maori Music Awards in Hawke's Bay in September.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

KIDZ IN SPACE Retail Homepage Placement:

This is a great look... thank you to everyone involved in making this happen...