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Madlib Talks With Rolling Stone About Upcoming Projects

Nick Giannettino

by Nick Giannettino

Published June 18, 2013

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Madlib certainly has a busy schedule. Hip-hop's legendary DJ, producer, and rapper recently talked to Rolling Stone on the return of his rap alias, Quasimoto, as well as upcoming projects that the Beat Konducta has yet to put out.

On the question of Madlib's high-pitched, cartoon alter-ego Quasimoto, he says a new album with all new material is on the way, but in his words, "I still haven't finished. It takes time. It has to be on a different level." However, Stones Throw Records released Quasimoto's Yessir Whatever today - a 12-song compilation of material recorded over a span of 12 years.

Another expected album to come from Madlib is his much-anticipated sequel to his beloved 2008 collaboration with underground rap's supervillain, MF DOOM, with the album Madvillainy. Madlib told RS that he "handed all the beats to Doom years ago, but ever since he's been in Europe, he's been hard to get a hold of." To add to Madvillainy 2's fate, Madlib said "it probably won't happen, but you never know. I can't sit and wait on that. I did my part." Another collaboration that awaits is an album with Indiana's rising star Freddie Gibbs, which will be called MadGibbs. According to Madlib, "it's done. It sounds good. Gibbs killed his parts. So did Earl Sweatshirt and Danny Brown on the guest verses."

Madlib touched on why he decided team up with Gibbs, stating the following:

It's hard to really explain in words. I look at him as a new version of 2Pac. He does musically a lot of the stuff that I try to do as a producer. He's capable of doing everything, but he's interested in being original and not sounding like all the other stuff on the radio.

Madlib is also said to release a Mos Def collaboration, which is influenced by Zambian rock from the 70's. Madlib said he played music from Now-Again Records' band Witch, and Mos Def loved it. He also said that another album with Mos Def will feature lots of sampling from Indian Bollywood, which, from what it sounds like, will be an album where every song will be as great as 2009's classic "Auditorium." (From Mos Def's The Ecstatic.) More rock from Madlib has also been in the works, under his other name of the Rock Konducta, where he samples many forms of rock. Most notably, the group Embryo, whom he stated as "one of my favorite groups ever. I just finished some music with them – five albums' worth of material. I've got a lot of stuff just waiting to be released."

If one didn't think Madlib's plate wasn't full enough, he recently founded his own record label, Madlib Invazion, where he plans to release his own work as well other artists. Specifically, he mentions fellow Lootpack member and early Alkaholik, Kan Kick, joining the label's roster.

I'm going to release records from Kan Kick. A couple of singing artists. That's all I've found so far. I want to work with Stones Throw and also do my own thing. Stones Throw already has a lot of artists, so it makes sense to be able to release my other stuff on the side.

The question one asks Madlib isn't "What is he going to release next?" but more importantly, "When?" It sounds as though over the years he has compiled enough material to sit back and relax for the next decade, yet leaves so much unheard.

Fortunately, Madlib ended his interview on a subtle, yet reassuring note, establishing he's here to stay, stating that "my whole thing is that I make music regardless. Regardless of everything around me, I'll always make music." Having said that, it sounds like he's nowhere near retiring, and that we'll always have a dose of either Madlib, Quasimoto, Rock Konducta, Madvillain, etc.

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artists
Danny Brown Earl Sweatshirt Freddie Gibbs Madlib MF Doom Mos Def
genres
East Coast Rap Hip Hop Underground Hip Hop
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