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03-31-10

Kevin Knapp Picks Up The Mic on Yellowcake's "Toe The Line"

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San Francisco DJ and producer Kevin Knapp lends his vocals skills to Yellowcake's most recent release "Toe The Line." The new EP is out today on Beatport and iTunes.

Loq caught up with Kevin to ask him a few questions. Kevin keeps it real with his answers (and spills the beans on a few upcoming projects -- this man is BUSY).

Loq: You worked with Marc Kate (aka Silencefiction) and Yellowcake (aka Jondi) on this EP. Tell us how "Toe The Line" came together.

Kevin: Toe the Line came about in a fairly organic way actually. I have been working on projects pretty steadily with Silencefiction over the last year and as we are both good friends with Jondi (my co –collaborator under the moniker Slow Poke), we were both privy to the track in its original incarnation as he’d sent it to us to hear our thoughts. I felt like it was a really strong track with thuggish, unapologetic bass sensibilities, par for the course for Yellowcake, but I had some ideas for a vocal treatment that differed somewhat from what I heard. So I mentioned that to Jondi and sent over some ideas and we were off and running. I have done all my vocal recording with Silencefiction at his studio, and he’s really good at getting the best out of me on the mic, so all of us getting together to do this was a natural fit.

Loq: What other vocal projects do you have coming up?

Kevin: I’m fortunate to have a bunch of new material slated to come out over the next few months. I finished a track with Matt Tolfrey and Inxec called *Real Talk* which is slated for release in May on Murmur. I also have a track coming out on Leftroom Limited called *Like This* which Audiojack is in the process of remixing now (or soon) as I understand it.

Slow Poke has a track we’ve had corked and ready to release all up in people’s bidness, which I am in the process of nailing down a vocal treatment for. I am starting work on a project with Alland Byallo from Kontrol that I am pretty excited about. I also just finished writing two additional songs (er, um, if you can call’em that) for Tolfrey & Inxec that I confident will go off once the boys get into the proverbial lab and start handlin’.

Loq: Which other artists are using vocals in dance music in new, interesting ways?

Kevin: Um, well, Nicolas Jaar is pretty much changing the world right now.

Loq: Pop act you are impressed by?

Kevin: This question has me tripping a bit as I listen to basically zero radio stations. I have been listening to the Breeder’s station a lot on Pandora at the jobbie job, does that count? There’s a band that keeps popping up called The Amps, which kick all kinds of ass and are not on itunes for some reason. Look’em up.

Loq: San Francisco: 4 DJ's to look out for?

Kevin: NIKITA – just an unreal talent, really, that’s it.
KENNETH SCOTT - he’s got nasty production steez as well
WORTHY - like ya’ll didn’t know
EO – He and Kenneth play together on all analogue gear as a duo called Moniker. Words do their sound no justice.

Those four I dig but there are a ton of crews and parties with mad talent in the bay fo’ real: Kontrol, WerdSF, Dirtybird, Soft Target, Binary, Listed, Non-Fat, Forward and more which I’m sure I’ve slept on here, there’s lots to choose from in this town. I am really stoked about and inspired by my music homies in SF.

I dig some of the LA cats to like:
Droog (LA - I find for living half a state away our taste are surprisingly similar)
Clovis Bouhier (LA – the kids got musical perspective)

Loq: San Francisco: Venue of the moment?

Kevin: Is this a trick question? 222 Hyde! Although, there is a certain underground spot near Hunter’s Point which ain’t half bad.

Loq: Marc Kate = potential superproducer?

Kevin: Haha, he thinks he is. I’m just playin’. I dig that cat a lot and he is a musical almanac so who better to have driving the bus right? He’s covering a lot of ground right now both in the electronic and analog worlds, production wise, and I’m not mad at him.

Loq: Top rock 'n Roll influence?

Kevin: At the moment, I’d have to say Japandroids, but TV On The Radio is always in the conversation. Honorable mention, …And You’ll Know Us By The Trail of Dead and Kings of Convenience.

Loq: Your recent physical transformation, care to comment?

Kevin: Well, it was time for the big man to shrink a bit, so I did. Not at my goal yet, but I've shed a quite a few lbs. You can catch me flossing at a beach near you soon guy, just be patient.

Loq: Thing you're most looking forward to this summer?


Kevin: DEMF 2010 and gettin' some more work done on the mic, ya dig?



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