They seem to fit the stereotype perfectly. Loose-fitting t-shirts, lots of tattoos and the attitude to go with it. Mund de Carlo, also known as Carlos Demsitz, is a hip hopper, alright. But he's more than that - he's a business man with a love for his music that has driven him to explore new ways of using his potential and skills.

Freestyling: Something about your mum, and something about your genitals

Juliane (E&M) interviewing Mund de Carlo

I meet Mund de Carlo right after his performance at the Skate Scene at Roskilde Festival, where he participated in the Rap Battles - something between a poetry slam, a freestyle rap battle and a more regular performance. The rappers have prepared verses meant to diss their competition, but they rap without a beat and rely on the audience's good will to keep them in the tournament. It's a rough environment where you can't take offense when the weight of your mother or the size of your private parts are being used as lyrical weapon. I asked Mund de Carlo why the style of the freestyle battles is always like this, and he explained: "You have to think on your feet and while you are rapping one line, you need to come up with the next. At the same time, you want to please the audience, so the language gets rough sometimes because that's what comes to mind when you have to think that fast."

Friday, 24 February 2012 11:56

Wired in #29: Message To Bears

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Message to Bears is a one man band from Bristol, UK with music that can make you sentimental and dreamy, or just happy and at peace. Jerome Alexander, the talented multi-instrumentalist behind Message to Bears, just released his latest album "Folding Leaves". Read on to find out why messages from strangers can be important for song writing and, of course, where you can see a Message to Bears gig soon.

E&M: Your latest album was just released. What was the most exciting part of the creation of this record?

JA: The most exciting part for me was probably whenever a new track came out of nowhere after a period of writer's block, or when I tried one simple new idea (sometimes by accident) that completely changed a song for the better.

E&M: Being a one man band, I imagine it takes a while to put together and conceptualise the different audio tracks that go into a song. Do you have a clear idea of the outcome when you sit down at the start?

Wednesday, 01 February 2012 10:17

Wired in #28: Leap Over Light

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Can music have a national identity? If so, then maybe the 'Danish' style would be best captured by the slightly sinister, yet beautiful melodies of the Copenhagen-based duo Leap Over Light. Whether it's because they're Scandinavian or just very talented musicians - Leap Over Light are a great European band, and they've created a special sound which you must check out! Find out more about them in E&M's interview with singer Julie Aagaard.

Cumulus by leapoverlight


E&M: How did the band come together?

J.A.: Lennart and I have known each other forever. We started back in the day in a really, really bad high school band. After that, we worked together for quite some years as a songwriter team - but always on different projects. We surfed around in a lot of different musical styles. But two years ago we decided that it was about time that we too do our own thing. So we did!

E&M: Do you ever get in fights because you don't agree on which direction to take with a song?

Wednesday, 11 January 2012 06:33

Wired in #27: Gazpacho

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Time to introduce a band that does not fit into any category and yet is often compared to bands as great as Radiohead or Muse! Gazpacho from Oslo, Norway have created a fascinatingly unique sound and use lots of unconventional instruments. The perfect band for rock fans who are looking for more than the many all too similar indie albums. Read on to find out what the six guys from the band think about making music with childhood friends and which European country has the most dance-crazy audiences.

E&M: The band was formed by childhood friends. What does it mean to make music with people you've been so close to?

Gazpacho: It means we can be ourselves in the writing process. It also means that after 6 studio albums (and we've just finished the 7th) we quickly understand each others' tastes when writing music. It's easy to say 'this won't work' or 'this person won't like this riff' in the process of creation, so we can quickly get to a point where we discover a gem (for Gazpacho purposes) as we understand each other completely, even without talking. It's like having a family. That's why we can write a studio album in a weekend (as we have done with the newest album).

E&M: You've already played plenty of gigs all over Europe. How do tours inspire your music?

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