People are made up of hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, phosphorus among many other essential elements. These elements create our world, the planet, the galaxy and the universe. So it’s no wonder why international graffiti artist and hip hop emcee Monk.e is on some next level, out of this world shit.
He released his seventh album earlier this year, Esclavage, Exode et Renaissance. To say the least, it’s a banger for any Hip Hop head.
I caught up to Monk.e for a short building session while he was painting at Mural Fest this past June. We spoke about his album, Coca-Colanisation, Babylon, multi-dimensionality, knowledge as a weapon and more.
Mural Fest 2015 started yesterday— that 2 week transformation of the Main into a real live art gallery is something that gives our city its unique flavour. And, yes, there will always be that little niggling beef with Under Pressure, but I don’t really care. There’s talent and walls enough for both.
There are some sick muralists on this year’s roster. I was really pleased to see MTL graf scene veteran MONKE finally get the nod. The dude’s murals are top notch. Also, Toronto’s JARUS will do a wall this year— as far as large scale realistic work with aerosol is concerned, JARUS is holding it down.
Of course then artists are not all aerosol based, there are different mediums in effect— The melding of medium and style is what makes street art so interesting and identifiable. And by saying identifiable I don’t mean it’s easy to spot, I mean with such a wide aesthetic it’s easy to find a resonance within oneself.
NYCHOS, AXEL VOID, EARTH CRUSHER – like yo, it’s gonna be a good festival this year. I’ll be down on St. Dominique and Maisonneuve in the gravel lot with mad all city chilleurs if you’re down.
So yo, we jetted down to Hochelega to catch the filming of Monk.e’s video for the first single of his new album. The track is titled CASHDOWN and is produced by MTL’s own Fred Po, AKA – PSTV –
It was mad cold out that day as we scuttled up grey streets toward Monk.e’s crib to chill while the video was being shot. Halfway up the block we saw some mooked out characters in the alley. Dudes doing wild hand signs in bubble vests, director Carlos Guerra catching the perspective from the other side of his Canon 5D.
This was my introduction to PSTV in person, but to be honest, I was chilling with Monk.e the week before, listening to his new album when I heard the production for CASHDOWN – I immediately remarked that the beat was a really sharp hybridization of trap and EDM flavour. It’s always been my wish that conscious MCs would rap over more futuristic beats – well bang, it was made manifest. I set up an interview with PSTV for the next week, because yo – his beats are on point and I’m not one to be sleeping on the MTL underground. In the meantime I gave his set from the Belmont a spin.
It became apparent rather quickly that PSTV is more than just a hip-hop beat maker. He’s just as comfortable mixing juicy house beats as he is composing trap and trance. Everything in PSTV’s music is measured, and he uses space really well, too. To me, such a range of skills being expressed in equal strength across a wide aesthetic field is the hallmark of an up and coming artist we should keep our eyes on. Plus PSTV is straight out of the Plateau, a real MTL dude.
PSTV has all kinds of other projects on the come up as well. I’ll give you the 411 as I get it. Here’s the link to all places you can catch PSTV – holla @ your boy – ONE.