Hologram Lo’ – Interview

dj lo live

Hologram Lo is a dj/beatmaker part of french rap group 1995. The boys have enjoyed real success with the release of their first two EP’s ‘La Source‘ and ‘La Suite‘ which has lead them to acquire considerable notoriety within the rap game and most importantly, the respect of their peers.

We wanted to get a closer insight into the man behind the turntables and delve deeper into our fascination with beatmakers.

Here is how it went down. (click here for French version)

First of all, when did you start composing beats and why?

It’s quite simple, I’ve been listening to rap since primary school. I was always very interested and knew that sooner or later I would get into it in one way or another. I started 3 years ago with a mate of mine (Nu Delhi). I bought an MPC 1000 at the beginning of 2010 and I haven’t looked back since. 

Who are your influences in terms of beat-making?

I am lucky enough to have been brought up with a dad who listened to quite a bit of music like Jazz, Soul, Funk and a lot of Rock. So that helped educate me in some sense. He made me discover all sorts of stuff like James Brown, John Lee Hooker, The Who and also Miles Davis, Coltrane, Charlie Mingus, Duke Ellington, etc… I am not a Jazz connoisseur, but I know those are the artists that were played in the car. What you listen to as a kid and throughout your life is very important. I listened to a lot of Dj Premier and Pete Rock, I then discovered Alchemist, then J Dilla, Madlib, Marco Polo, Dj Medhi, 20Syl, Para One, etc…

Describe your sound in 5 words.

Not. Yet. At. Required. Level.

You released your beat-tape ‘925’, any other solo projects in sight?

Yes. I am finalizing my first EP ‘Deeplodocus’ . It took me some time and quite a bit of reflection before getting it how I wanted it.

We can feel a real difference between beats like ‘Q’, Nuage’ or ‘Le Singe Fume Sa Cigarette’; what inspires you to compose a beat (music or other)?

I am a city kid, who likes the marine universe. I try to make music that reflects these two elements as much as possible. Something urban but aquatic at the same time.

What is the creation process when you compose?

I work from an MPC 1000 on which I sample, sequence and edit 95% of the beat; I then put the final touches on Logic. 

Your dream collaboration ? 

I doubt that there is one in terms of beatmaking. I hate working in groups, I get the feeling I’m going nowhere, I can’t do what I want, how I want it. I am the problem, not all the guys I have come to work it. Maybe Para One, for the variety of sounds he has experimented with along his career, which you really hear in his latest album. 

In terms of french rappers, no one in particular. I am happy with my homies. The dudes I want to work with already have a beat of mine in their inbox, or will soon have. Otherwise in the States nowadays I listen to a lot of the Pro Era crew, Joey Bada$$, CJ Fly, etc… Action Bronson, Mac Miller on certain songs, Pusha T, etc… And otherwise the classics. 

You’ve worked with Lomepal and Caballero on the ‘Le Singe Fume Sa Cigarette’ mixtape, you’re now working with Georgio, and don’t you have a project coming out with Areno Jaz? 

Yes exactly! We are proud of the ‘Le Singe Fume…’ project, especially since we reached the 40 000 downloads mark. There has been a real good reception to it, so we’ve decided to bring it out on CD with exclusive tracks and all the instrumentals. In parallel i am trying to finish Georgio’s 2nd EP which I am producing. It’s cool, he’s a real patient dude and very open musically. And finally I have just finished the beats for the project Areno Jaz and I have in common, we should get recording soon and release it in 2013. 

What is your view on the french rap scene these days? 

It’s good, I feel that it is improving. Maybe because the competitiveness has come back into play. MC’s now pay much more attention to their rhymes, flows and delivery. Who knows, at this pace, 5 years maybe rappers will get recognition for their talent ? 

What’s next for DJ Lo’? 

First of all ‘Paris Sud Minute’ is out on the 31rst of December. I am extremely proud of this record. I feel it reflects the maturity we might have gained from out last projects. I hope the people will appreciate it. 

Final words?

‘The Hobbit’ just came out, gonna have to go see that.

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