Electronic Directory (re)presents Subject Detroit – featuring interview with Mister X.
Mister X Biography
Mister X has been there from the beginning…
He was there at the music institute.
He was there at the Hip-Hop shop while Em and Royce were rhyming.
He and Bone were at Derrick May’s as he showed them how his production setup worked.
He was at Record-Time, Buy-Rite and Save the Vinyl.
He made beats for Bugz and Proof as they prepared to become D12.
He was on Planet E records until they decided it was safer to shelve him.
He was mentored by the great and mysteriously off-the-radar Ron Estill.
He worked in the studio where KonArtis, Denaun Porter and DJ Butter toiled.
and he was at the first 3 DEMFS lurking in the shadows backstage, camera in hand.
Mister X is not a traditional musician-he is a media manipulator. He makes beats, videos, websites and digital art. He makes music in whatever style and genre he chooses. He forces today’s technology to his whims and makes it do his bidding.
Mister X makes music not as a career choice, but as an aesthetic one because not enough people in the industry make the music he wants to hear while others made compromises to their art to get in the game. He waited…and started investigating the internet as an outlet studying mp3 compression and streaming rates back in 1999 learning how one can survive at this without selling their soul while being unapologetically original and unfiltered.
and now he’s here to change everything-but still he feels his greatest contribution to the world of music was being the man who bought DJ Bone his first turntables…
Interview with Mister X by Kazuumi Ishii
Where did the name Mister X come from ?
X has always stood for the unknown, whether it be in science, math, an anonymous informant or where the pirate’s treasure is buried – I am the unknown element in electronic music.
Describe your relationship with DJ Bone/Subject Detroit ?
Bone and I are perhaps best described as ‘partners-in-mindcrime’: we both like what we like without apology, believe in creativity without compromise and feel that actions speak the truth, not words. My relationship with Subject Detroit is that of a ‘creative consigliore’ – I advise, contribute and suggest, but at the end of the day I work to help fulfill Bone’s vision for independent, uncompromising and innovative Black music and media.
The tracks on your MySpace are more hip-hop, but the ‘Unbalanced EP’ sounds like some real house thing from 1985.
The concept of being limited to one musical genre holds no appeal to me – I don’t just make techno, house, hip-hop or orchestral scores…I make MUSIC. I do not see the need to be confined to one musical style, as long as whatever I choose to make brings the heat.
You have a brand new release on its sister label INFO as well as Subject Detroit, right ? Can you tell me a little bit about them?
‘UNBALANCED’ on Subject Detroit is a dance-driven project that I consider a distillation of how the best techno and house music has made me FEEL – not just the sound, but the emotional effect truly great dance music can have on the soul.
‘BEATS WITHOUT BOUNDARIES’ is an unapologetic challenge to the current world of hip-hop music production. I make it no secret that I feel that most of today’s beats are not songs but simply unfinished ideas that are extended to radio single length. Hip-hop became rap, which is now the new pop. Pop is the opiate of the sheep-herded masses-my beats are the wolves of hip-hop…and I defy anyone in this industry (barring a few acknowledged masters of the game) to challenge me to a beat battle.
What first hooked you into hip-hop ? Was it an elusive tune ? the breakdancing ?
To me hip-hop has never just been about just the music-it’s an ideology. Simply put: take what exists & make it yours and exploit whatever technology you have available. I follow this not only as a musical production principle but as a way of life: my life is hip-hop.
The most fundamental sonic influences that drew me to hip-hop production are the art of noise’s ‘beat box’, the seminal work of the early years of Def Jam, Kraftwerk and the still – unparalleled sampling artistry of Public Enemy and The Bomb Squad.
How would you describe Mister X in one sentence ?
A living embodiment of the past, present and future of underground music & media production – a self-aware deprogramming virus let loose on an unsuspecting pop marketplace.
Do you see a long-term future for Mister X ?
I am already in the future…I am simply waiting for the world to catch up – then you will be ready for what I REALLY can do when I cut loose…
Mister X appears on Subject Detroit
Mister X – Unbalanced [Subject Detroit]
Mister X makes sublime motor city moment. The standout track ‘Hazy Bliss’ is an old-school deep house with a wailing vocal from Sunni. Reminiscent of Mr. Fingers’ finer moments and what’s more, it’s a dancefloor shóe-in. Another very good release from Subject Detroit.
- A1. Hazy Bliss
- A2. Jefferson Ave. 1989
- A3. M.I. Quickie
- B1. Because
- B2. Cum 4 U (Cum 4 Me)
- B3. Loveclub Quickie
- B4. Meltdown
You can pre-order your copy of this here: