DJ Critical Hype Jumps “In the Mix” (Exclusive Interview)
Ever since we dropped the DJ Critical Hype and DJBooth collaborative mixtape "Best of the Booth Vol. 1" yesterday praise for Critical Hype's skills have been pouring in (we couldn't agree more), so we thought we'd take a moment to further introduce this month's DJBooth Featured DJ.
Born and raised in Montreal, DJ Critical Hype always found himself drawn to doing blends ever since he first touched a turntable ten years ago. That love for the fine art of turntablism landed him an internship with DJ Green Lantern and he's now officially part of Lantern's Team Invasion. For more of the man's work you can tune into to Montreal's K103.7FM on Tuesday nights, check out his previous blend tapes, and of course keep it locked for upcoming projects like his Knottz blend tape.
In this exclusive five-question interview, Critical Hype breaks down the hip-hop scene in our northern neighbor, explains what makes a dope blend and confesses to some vinyl-related theft.
You hail from Canada - Montreal to be exact - a place most Americans frankly look down on when it comes to hip-hop. Make the case for the dopeness of Canada's hip-hop scene.
DJ Critical Hype: Well I know Montreal in particular has a lot of talent, the problem is we don't have as much of an outlet here. DJ wise we got A Trak reppin Montreal but no famous rappers. The best way to make a case for dope Canadian hip hop is to bring up Toronto, cause T Dot has produced well known acts like Kardinal Offishall and Drake that are big south of the border. Toronto's scene is the biggest & most organized in Canada. I'd like to think in Montreal we can make that happen soon too. Other cities in Canada I cant really speak on cause Ive never been to or checked out the smaller cities, but yeah, Montreal and Toronto have a lotta dopeness.
You were recently named as part of DJ Green Lantern's Team Invasion collective after working with him for the past year. What DJ tricks of the trade has Green Lantern taught you?
DJ Critical Hype: I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you…lol. Green Lantern's taught me an incredible amount, but a DJ never reveals his secrets.
You've always been drawn to creating blends and have a long running blend mixtape series. What distinguishes a good blend from a bad one?
DJ Critical Hype: In my opinion a good blend should it flows naturally and sound like the artist is actually rapping/singing to the beat. I try to make it as good as the original or better. Sometimes I hear original songs and I'm thinking to myself, it sounds like I need to remix that…. make it sound better cause I'm not happy with the original for some reason. I think its so dope that I can hear a beat and be like, "I can picture Royce 5'9 killin this" and actually make it come to fruition.
What songs are out there right now that you's recommend DJs absolutely have to include in their sets?
J. Cole's Who Dat is an amazing song and bumps hard, the new Drake ft. Jay-Z, Light Up is crazy, Drake kills that. And Joell Ortiz' Project Boy is big for me right now....
Last words? Shout outs? Confessions?
Be on the lookout for Pharoahe Monch blends, Slaughterhouse blends Vol.2, Nottz blends & Mr. Green vs Wu Tang mixtapes, all comin soon.
R.I.P. to my man Vaughn Williams who always believed in me and always pushing me to do this music thing. I do this for you homie.
Big Shouts to Z & Nathan!!! And cant forget all the artists that have showed me a lotta love, of course Green Lantern, Talib Kweli, Marco Polo, Nottz, Freeway, The Clipse, Mr Green, Nino Bless, Pill, Crooked I. Also, DJ Red Dredd, DJ Quest, Big Jay, Two Face, Noodles, TJ, Cracked Lips, Dutch, Dj Blaster, Shake, DJ Boodah Blaze, Maya The B & all my fans/supporters.
Confessions..... umm when I started DJing at the college radio station I used to steal records from their collection. Sorry I'm a vinyl addict. I gotta problem, lol.
Written by Nathan S. on 06/1/10
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