Nico was one of the first artists I met, he was featured on my first mixtape Who The Fuck Is Doc Holliday, and his mixtape Dinner Is Served Vol. 1 was the first mixtape I reviewed. So it only seemed right that I sit down and talk with him as the release of his his new album The Beast Within was coming out. We discussed a little bit of everything from the rap game to life to production. The interview was great and it seemed to fly by…that was until I started typing this shit up…GOD DAMN…it was longer than I remembered and I sound like a fucking robot. However, all robot and tunnel vision aside do yourself a favor and read this shit. There is a whole lot of wisdom and knowledge in this shit lol. As is the case when you get two older people together that love music…me and Nico are getting up there in age lol. Whether you are an aspiring artist, producer, or just a music lover I like to think you will enjoy this refreshing interview. Thanks again to Nico for the interview, I’m always happy to help artists that really love music and put that love into the music they make. I’ll definitely have to make sure I don’t try to type up an interview this long in one day ever again though. Support that good music.
Doc Holliday: So I guess let’s get started, I was going to do kind of an unorthodox interview from when we first met and then just go from there and jump around and shit.
Nico The Beast: That’s cool [Nico would later tell me he was a bit unorthodox, I think it worked out. Two unorthodox people apparently make for a pretty good interview so hopefully you like it.]
Doc Holliday: So we first met through Big O after his comedy show and I told you I was going to have your song on my mixtape. Honestly, what did you think?
Nico The Beast: I was like what mixtape first, then when you told me the song Make Believe was the one you wanted to use I was kind of taken a back. That was the first time someone asked me for a song that wasn’t in your face…that wasn’t aggressive. It was laid back…it was heartfelt, emotional type joint…which was cool…that was dope.
Doc Holliday: Yeah, I mean I like any type of music, so a good song is a good song to me. That was the one that I thought was the best, so that was the one I put on there. [Make Believe is also Nico’s favorite song on the album.]
Nico The Beast: Yeah, so like a said with the Make Believe joint that’s one of the story tale heartfelt songs. Which is about 60% of the new album because I know people are thinking like The Beast Within is going to be all aggressive, all rah rah, but no it’s more or less introspective.
Doc Holliday: That’s what I liked a lot about it!!! I think even with a lot of songs like Make Believe those songs go under the radar especially on mixtapes too. When you think of mixtapes you usually think of hard hitting, aggressive, or grimy songs and I think as a result those good songs like Make Believe go under the radar. It should be the best songs on the mixtapes as least that’s what I think.
Nico The Beast: I’m getting real good feedback on those type of songs too.
Doc Holliday: That’s good man, they’re good songs.
Nico The Beast: Yeah The Last Ride has been up online for like the last 3-4 months and people have been giving me good feedback on that and that’s a story joint. Make Believe…Heat of the Night is kind of a story joint, but yeah all of the story ones are the ones I’m getting a lot of good feedback.
Doc Holliday: That’s good, those are the concept ones…the ones that are different.
Nico The Beast: Yeah because that’s kind of a lost art if you think about it. In Hip Hop today even, Nas, he kind of went left field with it. He doesn’t even really tell stories as much anymore.
Doc Holliday: Yeah, unfortunately…so it wasn’t until Vixion’s album release party when we met again and during that time we both kind of went through our own ups and downs. Do you think a lot of what happened during that time and throughout your life has helped shape you as an artist and helped make this new album better than the first album?
Nico The Beast: Actually yeah, because along the way I already had the title for it…but with my friend passing away in the accident…then my son passing away. That was just stuff to add into the pile of shit that was going on. So the only way I could really outlet it, without getting crazy would be through music…and that’s how a lot of artists outlet instead of going insane. They write it down and put it in the music…that’s the inspiration behind a lot of the stories and behind the project itself.
Doc Holliday: I like that too, some artists do that but a lot of artists leave it on the surface. They don’t really talk about what’s really going on with them.
Nico The Beast: It’s crazy because the story behind the last song that I laid Darkness Falls, I got the beat from this producer in France named Xfacid. [Damnit I definitely should have checked with Nico on the spelling of some of these artists’ names. Well if anyone reads this before I make the changes I’m sorry, I’m a dumbass, but rest assured this isn’t the first time and I doubt it will be the last time I spell someone’s name wrong] He sends me the beat on a Sunday morning, I recorded the song Sunday afternoon and Rhythm J had it mixed and mastered back to me by Monday morning. Then, the CD was finalized Monday evening…so that’s how fast that translated into a song. That song…bits and pieces, the first verse was about my friend who passed away in December ’09. He had Bart’s syndrome [I had never even heard of Bart Syndrome, as per Wikipedia Bart syndrome is a genetic disorder characterized by the association of congenital localized absence of skin, epidermolysis bullosa, lesions of the mouth mucosa, and dystrophic nails.] So he was like the last really close friend to die in ’09 and that was like the last one I wrote about on the album.
Doc Holliday: Damn…
Doc Holliday: So like I said the next we met was at the album release for one of your artists Vixion. What was the motivation behind starting your own record? Was it to simply help out artists like Vixion and of course yourself or something else?
Nico The Beast: Well in the typical sense of a record label I wouldn’t really consider Memory Lang to be a record label. It’s more like a collective of dope artists getting together and running with a team. It’s like if we were all going around with a varsity letter on our jackets, instead in this case were running around with the stripes of Memory Lang. I got North Philly Kane, B. Kane he’s a monster. He got The Legend of Kain Vol. 2 out now. Vixion she’s got Project Vix, she’s working on this joint now alternative rock/hip hop type thing. It’s more artistry as oppose to just rappers, singers, and producers…it’s more involved with it and these are people that earned stripes and really put work in. Since I’ve done the same thing I feel their paint, they feel my pain…so we’re like let’s get it together.
Doc Holliday: I’m sure it’s a great feeling to be able to help them.
Nico The Beast: Yeah , Big O and I were already working together with Beat Garden and when that collapsed we kind of already knew what didn’t work. So he went under Exponent’s wing and at the same time is still representing Memory Lang. Whereas I’m under the YB Music wing and still representing Memory Lang and in the middle we meet. I love Exponent, YB Music loves Big O, and we just keep it moving. It’s a big well oiled machine
Doc Holliday: So at the party I got a chance to see you perform and I was pretty impressed.
Nico The Beast: My man
Doc Holliday: Was your live set always that good or did it take some work?
Nico The Beast: Nah it definitely took work. [We both laugh] I mean right now gaining a bit of weight with the accent, the breath control isn’t as great as it was, but the presence on the stage is definitely there now. So I would rather give a little breath control for more stage presence. So I’m happy where I am now, but I know I can be a little better. Adlibs…where the dropouts are a little smoother….the breath control, the little patchy spots can be better.
[CDs for the album arrive, so Nico takes a second to burn me a copy of the album.]
Nico The Beast: I’ve always thought of Hip Hop as an expression of soul, like the darker portions of the soul. Rock and Roll was always like a hunky-dory, happy…like that’s do drugs and be fucking happy song type of thing. Whereas Hip Hop was like I got dark spots in my soul and I need to express myself and this is the way I do it.
Doc Holliday: Man, we’re really jumping all over the place now.
Nico The Beast: Man, it’s cool.
Doc Holliday: So I know one of your biggest influences was Remedy. He was the first white and Jewish rapper that worked with Wu-Tang, but he wasn’t just a grimy rapper. He actually has a new album coming out this year too.
Nico The Beast: Yeah see the thing with Remedy, and I relate to rappers that have stories behind them like Joell Ortiz, Joe Budden, or Brother Ali.
Doc Holliday: Yeah, I know I read Brother Ali was another big influence of yours.
Nico The Beast: Yeah but even Remedy, kind of fell off for me as an influence but in the beginning when I heard that Never Again song when he talks about the Holocaust. I couldn’t relate but just hearing him talking about it, was like I was there…like I lived through it myself.
Doc Holliday: Yeah and that’s the thing that’s missing a lot of times these days.
Nico The Beast: Exactly, if you can’t visualize what the fuck an artist is talking about…like not to slight Drake because he’s doing well…but just because he’s doing well doesn’t make him an influential rapper to me.
Doc Holliday: I completely agree
Nico The Beast: Whereas Eminem, is an influential rapper to me, Jay-Z, the first 5 albums influential to me. You can kind of tell when Hov took on that position of trendsetter.
Doc Holliday: …Yeah
Nico The Beast: As oppose to the hungry go-getter
Doc Holliday: In Hov’s defense it is hard to maintain that when you become successful.
Nico The Beast: Yeah your right and the worst thing about it is some people get successful and they fall off…they forget their roots, where they came from…what got them there and it’s put them in a position where they venture out into other avenues and they forget about the music. Yeah so those are a couple of my influences, but nothing will ever steer me off of that path as far as making music that I want to make. At the same time though on the album there are certain spots…where I might feel a little catchy, where I might want to do something catchy but I still stick to the strip. I still do me on those songs.
Doc Holliday: Yeah it’s funny that you mention that because one of the songs definitely gave me that feeling…What Do They Want. I remember when I heard the beat I was thinking like what the fuck is Nico doing with this one, but you flipped it. It went the other direction, like just because it’s a certain type of beat doesn’t mean the song has to be a party song.
Nico The Beast: Yeah that was from the perspective of just because a beat comes on and it’s catchy and the hook is catchy doesn’t mean it has to be a party tune. It kind of clowned people that already have a perspective of a song just based off the beat or the hook, I hate that whole 10 second play. Like 10 seconds in this sucks I’m going to skip this next thing you know you missed the best song on the album.
Doc Holliday: So I guess getting back to the live set…did you study other artist’s performances when you were coming up? [why do I feel like I’m a robot reading this]
Nico The Beast: Nah not really, my whole thing was the first time I performed I was really, really nervous. So I rushed through my verse, I did one verse with my man Sos back in like ’05-06 or something like that. The verse I had was like 32 bars long and I think 32 bars is supposed to take like a minute and a half. I did it in like a minute, I was rapping that fast, off-beat and everything. So when I got off stage the first criticism I got was actually from Big O, he said, “Slow Down, take a breath let them catch you and then come back in.” The delivery is the key when you’re live and when you deliver a song right people A) feel you and B) want to hear the actual version of it because if it sounds great live then it will sound even better in the studio session.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I’ve seen so many artists with terrible deliveries and stage presence, screaming into the mic, jumping around, etc…just be composed.
Nico The Beast: Yeah you don’t even get to hear what the song is about, so by the time the song is over your like damn I’m glad it’s over type of thing. As oppose to saying I want to hear that mp3 or that actual song, because you’re never going to get catch everything that a rapper spits. They either do it too fast, the venue has a poor quality sound system, or whatever…you just have to get enough to them that they want to hear more.
Doc Holliday: Yeah, one of the songs I really liked from your performance was the Lil Wayne Freestyle over the Dey Know beat.
Nico The Beast: Yeah that was a more or less…I mean it wasn’t a slight to him per say it was a slight to the way he decides to flow these days. I think he’s witty, I think he has some shit to say, and that’s regardless of whether or not you think he borrowed his style or lyrics from someone else or not.
Doc Holliday: Yeah, I agree flow wise and delivery… I think he is talented, witty, and extremely hard working, but I think he’s kind of lazy these days.
Nico The Beast: Yeah and for a person that writes, I write everything that I do. So to watch somebody get so many accolades off of that style, especially if he doesn’t even write his lyrics is a bit frustrating.
Doc Holliday: You also bring up another point with the writing, it’s like if you’re an artist don’t you want to be the best you can possibly be so why not right down your lyrics. Why not put out the best product you can, because quite frankly I can tell Lil Wayne doesn’t write his lyrics down.
Nico The Beast: You know what, to me if you listen to like a Hov or a B.I.G. the way that they delivered was so slow that you would think maybe they don’t write it down. However, for Jay-Z to not write Big Pimpin’…think about that, like did you really not write that Hov and then flow it like that…is that feasibly possible…I don’t know.
Doc Holliday: That Lil Wayne freestyle was one of the freestyles you put out to help promote your first album No Beast So Fierce right? [I definitely had tunnel vision during this interview…lesson learned]
Nico The Beast: Yeah and after that I did the Feed The Beast series just to keep up the momentum with the No Beast So Fierce, I ended up doing 10 weeks, 2 joints a week, 20 freestyles on all types of beats. The twist was that people were throwing them at me, people would like email or put it on Myspace. It was like do this joint or do that joint and it wasn’t like I could say no. So, Shawty Lo, came up and it was like do the Dey Know beat and I was ok, but I’m gonna do me on it. So that’s how I did it…kind of double time into the slow flow into clowning on Wayne, that’s actually the one that got the best reception anyway.
Doc Holliday: That’s the one thing that I definitely noticed during that freestyle and on your first mixtape, your ability to switch up your flows. Then, on the album you could really hear the progression, I really wasn’t even sure if it was you on the album on one song. I was really impressed with the different flows, different vibes, and the voice inflection.
Nico The Beast: Know what’s the crazy though, I was just listening to my first mixtape we ever did back in the day and the voice, the flow, all of it were the same on every beat. [LOL] The bars were there, lyrically it was dope. The progression from 2008 to now in 2010 the flow, the cadence, and the voice inflection are easily apparent. Even my bars, lyrics, and direction on tracks has improved, I’ve realized I don’t have to be super lyrical every time. There is a time for that, but there’s also a time where you just have to talk to the people. When you talk to them you can’t be saying [Nico goes in for a little bit]…you can’t be doing that. You have to get into the gritty of the beat…and that doesn’t call for that.
Doc Holliday: That understanding was one thing I really liked about your music, you kind of get that from people who study music, like you enjoy music and not just your own music. One of the big things you said in another interview that I read was a lot of artists these days don’t listen to whole albums they just study songs or singles.
Nico The Beast: Yeah, to me it’s like when the last time you heard a good ALBUM and it’s crazy because Capone – N – Noreaga were just on Official Street Radio the other day and Nore said the same thing. Let’s take it back to when muthafuckas made good albums, not 1 or 2 good singles. It used to be a 13 or 14 song ALBUM if you had 7 or 8 great songs you were damn near classic status. I mean you had a couple fillers, the party joints, and the singles were usually the throwaway joints. Like for instance, when Eminem first came out and he had My Name Is, it wasn’t until you listened to the whole album that you started fucking with that song. It was the other songs that brought you in and helped you understand him as an artist. Then, it was like I fuck with him as an artist so now I fuck with that single, but the single wasn’t even the joint that got you to like him.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I completely agree, another good thing I thought Capone – N – Noreaga mentioned is the fact the record labels have a lot to do with the current state of Hip Hop. It’s a difficult game for an artist now because so much pressure is being putting on artists to just make a hot single.
Nico The Beast: Yeah it’s REAL difficult. Not to slander the blogs because there are certain ones that help out an artists’ career, but there are just so many blogs that it’s almost like another element of the music industry now. You got like 4 aspects of the game now, you got your artists, producer, DJ, and now you got your blog. The blogs used to be fans, so now that they’re getting the music for free who else is left to buy it. So now you have to sell for the girls…the teeny boppers…you gotta Justin Bieber yourself [I loved the use of Justin Bieber as a verb, unfortunately this is true unless you have a strong loyal fanbase]
Doc Holliday: It is a difficult game…but how have you somehow found success? You just got the new distribution deal.
Nico The Beast: Yeah shout out to Whomag, Whomag Distribution, check them out at whomag.net. The thing with that is…it’s fucked up because you can’t even really do physical copies anymore because everything is digital now. Like you can order a cheeseburger online if you want…but I don’t really consider myself successful yet because it’s not like I’m making millions off of this. However, I am successful in that I get respect from my peers. In that aspect, in that regard I am successful because people that have been doing it for awhile that have been getting paid off of it look at me and say he’s got it, he’ll be next up in line and that’s respect. Dudes like J. Hatch, DJ Bedtime 357, Psycho Cyrus, Lex 911, 2ew Gunn Ciz, and the kid Sensa. Those are dudes that tell me like you got IT, whatever IT is. That’s what’s up…that to me is better than money at this point…well unless people were like 10 million sign here.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I always think respect among your peers is very big.
Nico The Beast: In Hip Hop that’s the biggest thing. To me Hip Hop is all about the struggle, so if someone is respecting you, their respecting your struggle. They’re looking at you and saying that muthafucka is the same as me…period…that’s it. They’re not saying oh he’s an okie doke dude from the suburbs of Philly, nah they’re saying this dude grew up in South Philly. He handled his business, earned stripes, and got up in the game and now I’m going to pay him respect. My man North Philly Kane is from North Philly, The Badlands, 8th and Lehigh that’s the struggle. My man Big O grew up in Passyunk Projects everyone knows him as Drawers [LOL, had to give that a capital D]. That to me right now is worth more, you can just walk into a place and people give you that respect because you garnered it.
Doc Holliday: That’s big man…so I guess along with the new distribution deal the other big thing you had happen in your life was the birth of your son
Nico The Beast: Yep, Nicholas Antonio born May 12th…yeah it’s like you go through the lows to get to the highs. I’m a walking testament that God giveth and God taketh away, but then God giveth right back. So I’m glad for the second opportunity to throw a baseball or football with my son, teach him how to ride a bike, and tell him how to deal with the chicks. Teach him the suave ways, but for a second it felt like I might not ever get that chance again. So I thank my wife for giving me another opportunity because it is a lot on her to bear as well.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I had the honor of meeting your wife Christy. You’re definitely a deep rooted family man, that’s the one thing I have to respect about any artist or man.
Nico The Beast: That’s another thing with a lot of the artists that I deal with, we’re all fathers. So they know what it’s like to struggle, to want for somebody else. For me I don’t live for myself day to day, I live for my kids. Like everyone I deal with has kids, so not to say that were like old heads on the way to the nursing home but at the same time we’ve been down that road of the bullshit, the partying now it’s time to get that grind money.
Doc Holliday: So switching gears again we talked about the album briefly…but what can new fans expect and what can old fans expect from the new album? How would you compare it some of your older stuff like the mixtape we reviewed?
Nico The Beast: I’ll tell you what, you can expect something different. I’ll tell you that much, it’s not like it’s the same hard hitting punch you in the face type stuff even though it does have songs like that. Wake The Beast, Never Stop, and Nachurally Gifted-Introduction are all hard hitting, you still have that aspect because at the end of the day I still have to release tension on the beats. Any MC will tell you that’s a big stress reliever so joints like that are typical, but like I said I still have the more story type joints that new fans are listening to and really enjoying because it’s music they can relate to. One of my goals is always to make music the fans can relate to, that people understand first and foremost. Then, when they start relating, it’s like I fuck with that dude, not Nico The Beast but that dude because they can kind of understand me as a person. They understand me as a human being not just the rapper. I bring them inside my world.
Doc Holliday: What would say is your favorite song on the album?
Nico The Beast: Make Believe, I think that’s the best song for me. I guess that’s one of the reasons you picked it, you’re around music all the time and a lot of the other joints are good songs but that song is just complete. Deep, introspective lyrics that have a lot of meaning to me so that’s why I choose that for myself…but for everyone that has ever gone through that…it’s like me paying homage to my wife for sticking it out. That was one of the hardest situations…for her to almost lose a husband, dealing with an injured husband, and then to lose a song. I had to pay respect for that.
Doc Holliday: Yeah it’s a good song, like I told you I liked a lot of the songs on the album. I can play it all the way through. I think probably the other song that stood out to me the most aside from Make Believe and True Hero that surprised me was One Chance.
Nico The Beast: Yeah with the reggae beat.
Doc Holliday: Yeah because I didn’t expect that from you and you killed it!!! [I really hate the sound of my voice especially when I get excited]
Nico The Beast: Shout out my man Vibe aka Ill Clinton, he did his thing. It was crazy because I got that beat and I think he sent it to me with the hope of as long as I liked it he would be happy. I don’t think he expected me to actually go on it, so I hit him back like I need a full version of this song. I think it was called Precision. He was like you really fuck with that joint, and I was like yeah send that back. So what I ended up doing was writing my bars to it, laid it down and then I sent it to my man Stupid Genius in Florida [He did the beat for Golden as well] and he just went off my lyrics. That’s another one where you’re expecting this catchy ass hook and I’m talking all gritty and shit. I’m getting good feedback from that one as well.
Doc Holliday: Yeah that’s probably my favorite song on the album. So you got Vixion on the album?
Nico The Beast: Yeah she’s on 2 songs, she does the hook for Golden and Heat of the Night and she also has a verse on Golden. She’s also on Make Believe, she does 2 little parts on the hook and lot of people tell me that makes the hook really stand out. She comes in and just twists it, almost kind of twists the heart.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I was happy to see her on the album, I liked her album [I should have had some of her stuff online a long time] but like I told her there are some things that could have made it better. I think working with you on the album will help her with things like that, expanding her content and also beat selection. She is very talented though, she has some skills that can’t be easily learned. I think you can learn how to make a great album though, but for her first album I thought it was good.
Nico The Beast: She’s got that mainstream type of sound nailed, she just has to focus on what she wants to do as an artist and go for it. The Hip Hop/Rock type thing that’s more like her release, so if that’s the direction she is going to go she is definitely going to take it to the next level. She’s too good of an artist, everything I’ve heard her on she’s killed. Me and O have been talking about her for a minute, working with her and stuff. She was actually a part of Beat Garden and when that crumbled she came with us…I ain’t letting her go.
Doc Holliday: Yeah she’s very talented, impatient but very talented lol. So I guess let’s talk about the production on the album, we touched on it briefly. It’s top notch, all different types of beats from producers most people may not have heard of it. So speak on the production.
Nico The Beast: Vanderslice to lead it off, Rhythm J, Kornswagger, Samik, and everybody I’m naming has been in the Beast of Beats Battles, iStandard Producer Showcases, and The Red Bull Beat Battles. They have been in these things and they crushed them…I’m not dealing with slouches especially with production no more. I had No Beast So Fierce [Nico’s first album] and production wise it wasn’t even close to this one and it’s not close in songs or content either. It all starts with production, like as soon as I hear a Rhythm J, Vanderslice, Samik, or Stupid Genius beat…Stupid Genius sends me beats and automatically my head and the pen starts going. Then, next thing you know you got a song like Golden or like Vibe even he sent me one joint that didn’t make the album that will make the mixtape. It’s called Case Closed about some bullshit that I’m through and the beat took me there. If I listen to a beat and it doesn’t already have me generating thoughts and putting out ideas then it’s a beat that I won’t be able to use. Like right now I’m getting beats from Astatus, he’s got some fire, dudes like Shay Boogie, Premise from Pittsburg they got that fire. They get the mind going in the direction where it needs to be.
Doc Holliday: Yeah I remember reading that you like beats with a story built in.
Nico The Beast: Yeah, I can’t work with dry beats where it’s nothing there, they just feel lifeless.
Doc Holliday: I guess that brings me to the one beat on the album that gave me the chills and I love dark beats…the one with your daughter on it.
Nico The Beast: TRUE HERO, that’s my brother Noochman
Doc Holliday: Yep, I was going to talk about that, I didn’t even realize he was your brother when I reviewed the mixtape.
Nico The Beast: Yeah, he did a couple songs on the mixtape, My Man Streets and Requiem of a Beast. Then, on the album he did Heat of the Night and True Hero like I said. When my brother sends me something, automatically my head goes in story mode because he’s always dark with keys and strings that tugs at the heart and gets you emotionally driven to do something story wise. So he always gets me to where I’m ready to go with the stories.
Doc Holliday: I’m sure it’s great to work with your brother too…did you start out rapping first and he followed in your footsteps?
Nico The Beast: Yep, I had been rapping for a minute and he just started making beats not even a year and half ago, 6 months before the mixtape.
Doc Holliday: You guys actually did an album together right?
Nico The Beast: It’s called Dark Days, it’s coming soon Heat of the Night and True were actually from the album but they fit this project perfectly so we used them on the album.
Doc Holliday: Production wise I thought it was top notch, different beats and concepts you can pretty much rap on anything.
Nico The Beast: Yeah, Rhythm J, Vanderslice, and even Samik sent me a couple joints that were like opposite ends of the spectrum. Like Wake The Beast is real hard hitting in your face and Make Believe is the complete opposite and Vanderslice made both of those beats. Then, Rhythm J did You Mean Everything which is about my son that passed away and then he did Grown Man Music complete opposites once again. It just goes to show you the production level that these dudes are at. They can give you a story beat or a party beat, I gave Rhythm J some samples and 3 days later he had a beat for me. The process was beautiful and even the Vibe beats were opposite ends of the spectrum as well.
Doc Holliday: Anything else you want to tell the people about the album? I loved it.
Nico The Beast: Just give it a chance, don’t be one of those corny ass 10 second listeners. I don’t like the snare on this so skip or this has a piano and I hate pianos so skip. Don’t do that, give an album a chance. I listened to Eminem’s joint all the way through; I listened to my man Psycho Cyrus’s joint all the way through, Lex 911, Young Buggs all the way through. You know what I’m glad I did because the whole project as whole is great. A lot of dudes aren’t just putting out wack music, but if classify them under track 3 was wack so I don’t fuck with him then yeah it might be wack to you. Fam there’s 16 tracks on there, what do you mean one track ruins the whole album for you…that just doesn’t make any sense.
Doc Holliday: Yeah that shit is crazy. I think a lot of times people have a hard time understanding the beats have to fit the artist, you don’t want to just get beats from this hot producer or this hot producer because then it sounds like every other fucking album or mixtape. You want it to fit your music. You want it to sound like something that was made for you.
Nico The Beast: And that’s what a good artist does, they make a beat fit them. Like I’m not necessarily a party guy but I’m not going to pass up a good party beat because I don’t feel like rapping about a party. I can still rap about whatever the fuck I want to rap about on a party beat and then tell you I bet you thought it was a party song. That’s an artist, not just someone who raps 50 fucking bars about nothing…rapping about nothing is done. If go on a beat and rap bar 1 and it doesn’t match with bar 16…QUIT [this killed me when Nico said it the first time and it is still just as funny typing this shit]
Doc Holliday: [laughing] So what else are you listening to these days?
Nico The Beast: More or less if people send me stuff I’ll listen. Eminem, waiting on The Roots, haven’t listened to the whole Drake, Psycho Cyrus Open Bars, Lex 911, 2ew Gunn Ciz is about to drop, Distant Stars is about to drop, and North Philly Kane. I got 5 rappers on my iPhone, Ed Brock who is about to drop, Kane, Young Buggs, Lex 911, and my man Psycho Cyrus. Oh and Reef The Last Cauze Fight Music, that shit is RETARDED. My man killed that joint and my favorite joints are the story joints, Lazy Sunday [one my favorite songs on the album as well]. He gives you the Reef that everyone knows, the punch you in the mouth, hard lyrics, hard body shit, but then he also gives you the introverted take a walk in the day of Reef The Lost Cauze and those are the best songs [I’m stealing this quote]. Sun is crazy too [I agree as well, Nico sings the hook lol].
Doc Holliday: We got Nico in here singing
Nico The Beast: Yeah man I did the singing on Darkness Falls [I didn’t realize this during the interview, but I definitely thought that was Nico singing on that song]
Doc Holliday: Couple questions I always like to close things out with…if you weren’t rapping what would you be doing?
Nico The Beast: If I wasn’t rapping…I would have to be in music some way, engineering or production because it’s like I got an ear for it. Not to say that I know everything, but I know enough.
Doc Holliday: Yeah regardless if you choose that life it kind of chooses you.
Nico The Beast: Yeah exactly, exactly and once you get into it…it’s kind of hard to escape it.
Doc Holliday: It becomes an obsession…what would you say is your favorite album?
Nico The Beast: Shadow of the Sun by Brother Ali is definitely one of them.
Doc Holliday: I definitely need to get some older Brother Ali, all I have is Us which I really liked and The Truth Is Here.
Nico The Beast: To me that Shadows of the Sun, I don’t skip anything. Picket Fence is probably my favorite song of all time. You can look at Brother Ali and see he went through some hardships and some struggles just being albino and then you get into this business where everything is so critical. He came up in the battle scene so you know the first thing they’re going to talk about is him being albino, so the Picket Fence joint he sums up how he deals with and how it makes him stronger.
Doc Holliday: So last question I always like to ask…favorite movie?
Nico The Beast: Cliché would be The Godfather, but probably my favorite movie all time is Braveheart.