When did you first start rapping?
Young krillin "I started rapping because of Lil B."
How did you become a fan in the first place?
I noticed very late that rap even existed. As a child you grew up with a lot of different music and at that time rap was already on the radio - but I never made a distinction between pop and rap. For me it was all just music. The first time I became aware of rap was with Dr. Dre. But then I heard Dilated Peoples and "Worst Comes To Worst" and wanted to order an album from Amazon for the first time. Even back then, it was displayed there which albums might also interest you. Then Jurassic 5 suggested “Jurassic 5” and I ordered both CDs. Little by little I ordered other things without even knowing them. I didn't have a group of friends who could recommend anything to me - so I had to take action myself.
Amazon usually suggests superficial tips. Then how did you go deeper into the matter?
Through www.gamesforum.de. That was one of the biggest forums ever - even if it was called spielforum.de, the categories had all sorts of things. At that time I registered because of "Dragonball Z" and then came across the HipHop forum, where people then exchanged ideas. Strangely enough, there were a lot of people active there who had a totally underground taste: Living Legends with Eligh or The Grouch, for example - and if you know a name, then you just look for similar acts online.
Have you already heard German rap?
I totally missed that. The first was then »MFG« by the Fantas. Back then, I gave the album »4:99« to a friend for his birthday - I totally got stuck on the album at the time. That was awesome - but in the years after that I didn't deal with German rap at all. That started later with Kool Savas. That came through a schoolmate I connected with because he heard Dipset. He then showed me Kool Savas and of course I discovered Eko Fresh through him. That was finally something that I could also celebrate in German.
He just had dope flows and mentioned an Amirapper that I also knew in every third or fourth punchline.
It was the same for me. I found that totally impressive because a) he was still so young, b) had these flows and c) this all-encompassing rap knowledge and that with lines like »I yell ›Pain is love‹ ... "
«… Like Cadillac Tah.«…
... has consistently proven. Also that he rapped elsewhere that he was the »freshest newcomers like Fabolous Sport«. Sport was just Fabolous' nickname, which almost nobody knew. That was just cool nerd knowledge that always really got me excited.
But that's how you always get me. For me, Eko Fresh was really the guy for a while. I defended every shit he did. His debut »I'm young and need the money« was also really good - and in my opinion »Die Abrechnung« was always the clearly better song of the battle with Kool Savas. Eko was much more emotional and to the point. After that came the "Fick Your Story" mixtape as Electro Eko. That was very hard and very good, but unfortunately it never officially appeared, but later appeared as a defused version under the name "Fick still your story".
You were also a big fan of street rap from Frankfurt, weren't you?
Yeah yeah Azad, Chabs or Lunafrow were all really good. This »I write my torment on paper in blood«-Rap hold. (laughs) »The sound of sad violins reflects our suffering" and so.
What did you like about the music? "Mental crises" didn't necessarily reflect your reality as a teenager, did it?
(ponders) I think it was the samples first and foremost. These were all so melancholy things that sounded both beautiful and sad. Add to that hard rape - that was just great for the ear.
If you look at your Discogs account, you will find a lot of rare releases from the US underground there. How did you find out about all this stuff?
Via the website www.ugrap.de. They always wrote reviews of very rare albums. There I registered in the forum and wrote reviews myself for a while. Nils Davis, who is now doing this "Everything will be Hood" series, was also registered there at the time. The people in the forum always ordered their CDs directly from America and resold them a few months later, and then I bought a lot of trains from them. I have always ordered a lot via Rapmazon.de - although you have to say that there was of course a lot of scrap with the underground things. (laughs)
Then when did you become a rapper yourself?
That was in 2011 and came through Lil B. He just did rap, who was cool and didn't care about anything - he just rapped on beats with metal, gabber and eurodance samples. He just shit on everything and made a lo-fi sound, although that was totally frowned upon at the time. I didn't even know how to record a rap song at the time. But when I heard him, I knew: It doesn't matter, you can do that too. At about the same time, Lex Lugner started making beats and asked us if we'd like to rap on it - and each of us did that.
Crack Ignaz, Däk Intellekt, DreXor and me.
Was that the moment when HVNUSCHPLVTZFLXW was founded?
HVNUSCHPLVTZFLXW existed before that. Originally it wasn't a crew at all, but a blog where we collected all the rap stuff from Salzburg to show people. In the beginning there were also things from people who weren't at HPF. But when we started making music ourselves, it was clear that from now on we are HVNUSCHPLVTZFLXW.
Not only did you rap, you also made beats yourself, right?
Yes, but only now and then. On "Bullies in Sweaters" with Crack Ignaz there were a few beats and on the first HVNUSCHPLVTZFLXW sampler "Gwantanamo Vol. 1" I also produced something and then concentrated on rapping.
In 2012 there was »Elvis« by Crack Ignaz ...
... and then we all noticed that something could become of him. That was totally strange for us. At the time we were just doing our thing, not speaking in High German at all, and suddenly people were celebrating that who barely understood it.
Two years earlier, another Austrian made quite a splash. How did you feel when Money Boy came up with "Turn the swag on"?
That was amazing. At that time I was at the university and a member of the departmental representation. We had our own room where we advised people. Mostly we chilled there and from the moment it came out, I kept pumping the song and annoying everyone with it. (laughs) The cool thing was: Rap from Germany and Austria had always been extremely exhausted and professionally raised up until then - but Money Boy was the first to tackle this lo-fi attitude. At Gucci Mane it was no different at the same time. The majority said: »How fuck is that?«But you noticed that he got better with each of his freetracks. And: You had a lot of fun when you heard the music. That was perfect for the turn-up and for laughing.
Anyway, I have the feeling that Money Boy has shaped the humor in German rap more than many people who have subconsciously adapted it are aware of.
Nah, I wouldn't say that. I believe that this is simply a phenomenon of our time. Humor has changed with the internet and then found its way into rap. Internet humor is characterized by umpteen meta-references to something. Humor is becoming more and more abstract and relates to things that you already know, but is nonetheless indirect and subtle. Humor today is generally much more ironic and differential. The joke itself doesn't exist anymore, it's all just a reference to something else.
Finally, let's talk a little bit about your new tape. What is "Salamander Schnops" about?
Actually the same as on the solo tape "Feel Me B4 Dey Kill Me". Maybe a tad more real this time. The last one was real and taken from life, but sometimes it was much more exaggerated. The biggest difference is that there are no tracks that exaggerate a drug. With "Salamander Schnops" it was important to me to show this world from its more real side instead of the glorification of all the stuff.
A crackle of campfires, faded spoken word borrowings - the title track has an unbelievably dense atmosphere. How did you come up with the idea of starting the tape like this?
»Salamanderschnops« was the first track that was created for the tape. That was pretty quick. We did the first three or four tracks within two days.
How did it come about that you did the tape with Aloof: Slangin in the first place?
The idea for the songs together came because I heard the EP from Aloof: Slangin and I really liked it. The subjects were quite similar to mine and he is just an extremely good lyric poet in my eyes. Aloof then sent me beats of his own, we wanted to do a couple of tracks and then an EP. Then we still had beats from Lugner and at some point it was clear that it would be an album because we harmonized very well. This allowed us to bring in a lot more styles. The first tracks were totally dark, but then came a few melancholy things and finally even a few happy tracks like »Das Piff«. The middle of the tape is actually the Skit with Brown-Eyes White Boy, which is actually - in a very positive way - the most melancholy track.
The beats are sometimes very melancholic to dark, but then there are also mellow songs like »Geisel«. How come
It wasn't really intended. Lugner and I once did a session at home where we made two beats: "Haazn & Henny" and "Geisel". The idea was to make beats with samples that had already been used extremely often in hip-hop. "Back To The Hotel" by N 2 Deep was the template for "Haazn & Henny" and we came up with "Geisel" through "Swang" by Trae and Hawk. We wanted to send him directly to the gynecologist because we knew that he also likes these Dirty South things and maybe would like to be there. He was up for it, but didn't want to hit the beat because LL Cool J used the sample too. (laughs) Then we quickly built a new beat for him.
Last question: what is it that fascinates you about Bob Ross?
I just liked this sample what we used for the skit. I've read a lot about him and he's had a really sad life with many strokes of fate behind him. He said that very well with a wink in this small excerpt that you can hear - and that's how we came up with the idea for the hook.
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