The name A-Diction says it all; wordplay, cleverness, and an overall obsession with the previous two points. Born and raised in Melbourne, the duo consists of emcee’s Breach and Boltz. Breach, the precise wordsmith with focussed flow and witty punchlines, and Boltz, the crooner known for his explosive debut album The Wishlist, which featured international heavyweight Royce da 5’9” and local producer extraordinaire M-Phazes.
Walkin’ Alone is the title of your first LP release and features a whole range of crews and mates chipping with vocals, beats and cuts on various tracks, from M-Phazes to Fraksha and Mules to DJ Juice of the battlehogs, Doc Felix and more. Has this release been a great project to work on because that reason?
Breach: Yeah, I guess when you put it like that the whole thing was a huge collaborative effort from a lot of people. This is part of the reason that the album took a little longer than usual, but is also the reason we’re so happy with the final product. Some of the people involved are mates, some are artists we’ve never met face to face before, but regardless we’re happy with everyone’s contribution.
Boltz: I feel like every track has a different personality to the last thanks to the guests and producers. I think if you’re a Mules fan or a Jase fan or a Phazes fan etc. you’re really going to listen out for the tracks we did with them; but in saying that, there’s cohesiveness between all of the tracks and we kept that in mind when we were choosing beats and guests. I think you can tell from the vibe of the album we had a lot of fun getting all of our mates and favourite artists involved.
2005 is where things starting coming together for A-Diction with the release of the ‘To Be Announced EP’, we then saw last year ‘The Three Year Itch Mixtape’ and more recently the ‘In Good Company Mixtape’. What was the most important thing A-Diction have learnt and put into practice since your first release?
Breach: To be honest, if you wanted a 16 bar verse from me about nothing in particular I could have it back to you in 5 minutes, but being able to actually write a song, that’s something that has taken me some time. I think The Three Year Itch had a lot of tracks from me that were basically exercise for the album, I was writing like 50 bars at a time at that point but most were non-topical, and had no real song structure. Moving on to the IGC mixtape and Walkin’ Alone, I’ve tried more to enhance my song-writing ability, which is a very different thing in my opinion. The mixtapes are great to put out, get some shine, and hear what the heads might like / dislike about the music you’re making.
Boltz: For me, it’s always been about patience, quality and doing the little things. I’m not saying every release we’ve done is perfect; I’ll still go back to our first EP and even our last mixtape and think “I could have said that line with more energy” or “Maybe we could have done this differently” but at the time we made sure we re-recorded anything we weren’t happy with and we spared no expense when it came to buying the beats we wanted or advertising in a particular magazine. I’m glad that when it’s all said and done we can say that from our first to our last release we always put in 100% and never released anything sloppy or half assed.
It’s clearly been a long road to this moment what will it be like to finally see the Walkin Alone LP in the punters hands?
Breach: HELL YES! I was talking to Jase (Beathedz) about this; me and him spent a lot of afternoons at his place mixing the album and one thing he said that stuck in my mind is that ‘putting out an album is like giving birth’… I couldn’t agree more, except we don’t have stretch marks to show for it after it’s out! People are ALWAYS asking “Hey where’s your album?” The last 3-4 years has all come down to this Friday, August 6th, when the album hits the shelves, we can’t wait.
Boltz: Breach is a bit more anxious than me because I dropped my solo LP so I’ve been through it once before; I have to keep reminding myself that this is still the first A-Diction album! It certainly doesn’t seem like a debut because we’ve been writing and recording for so long; it feels like a second or third album to me. Having said that, this will definitely be my proudest moment; better than the EP, the mixtapes and the solo joint- all of those things were just appetisers and this is the main course.
Breach: Anxious is an understatement haha
The track Walkin’ Alone contains a great verse and goes something like ” There’s too many emcees not enough talent, not enough quality too many haters, not enough honesty too many faker’s, too many freebies not enough payers, not enough retirees to many stayer’s…” Do you think that these are some of the negative aspects of the hip hop scene in Australia or in general?
Boltz: Yeah, that was the first track we wrote for the album so it’s one of the oldest verses on the LP. I think when I wrote it I was probably feeling a bit disillusioned with the scene; if you pay too much attention to what you read on internet forums or listen to some of the heads at shows, it’s easy to think there’s nothing but a world full of haters and know-alls out there. I’m probably a bit more mature now and I can see both sides of the coin. Whenever I go to a packed out show or hear a local act on the radio I am amazed at how much our scene has grown and how accepting the wider public has been towards some of our artists. In terms of the other stuff, everyone knows the music industry is going through some changes right now which has bought about the Myspace MC’s and an abundance of free mixtapes etc; it’s not all great but I guess you have to take the good with the bad.
Bekah and Vida Sunshyne both feature on the album with Bekah on the track Consistent and Vida on the Remix of Drop the Beat. Did you just have to have these guys on the album?
Breach: In terms of Bekah, me and Boltz have seen her perform a number of times, and every time she hits the stage its like the whole room freezes. We’re cool with her boy Ceefor too so it just made sense to get at her to contribute. We’re really happy with what she did for us and the album wouldn’t be the same without her.
Boltz: As for Vida, G-Force fans would recognise the original verse of ‘Drop the Beat’ from his debut album ‘Clouded’. When we heard that song with Vida on the chorus I said to Force “Dude, you have to let us remix that song; that hook is amazing!” Every one involved in the remix agreed that the new version sounds amazing and came out sounding like the hook was written specifically for the verses as opposed to the other way around.
The track One Fact features a great little sample from Brad Struts ‘It’s Official’, no need to mention the amazing beat by M-Phazes and cuts by Doc Felix. Was that sample bit of a shout out to Strut?
Breach: Man this track is really special to me, as soon as I heard that beat I contacted Phazes’ management and said I wanted it 100%, it’s just like that sometimes. The Strut sample is definitely a shout out to him, he’s still number one in this country in my opinion, and I still bump Legend: Official all the time. I contacted him and asked if it was cool to use the sample, and he was down, too easy. It also made sense to get Doc Felix on the cut, we’re mutual fans of each other and he is one of the most genuine dudes in the scene. See you on the next LP Doc!!
The track ‘Capital Vices’ featuring Billy Bunks, Scott Burns, Fraksha, Whisper and Raven will have fans reaching for the repeat button with its approach. Do you think the posse track is becoming a must have on a lot of releases?
Breach: I think a posse cut is a must have IF it’s done proper. This one did take a while to put together, but the final result will be an instant classic. What’s different about this particular track is that most posse cuts are just about “yeah yeah, we’re dope, your wack, blah blah”… Boltz came up with the idea of each MC choosing one of the Seven Deadly Sins and kicking 8 bars each and I think it worked really well. Every MC absolutely smashed it, shouts to Whisper for coming through at the final hour!!
Boltz: They’re definitely a lot of fun to hear but they are a bitch to organise! Ha ha. I would like to hear more themed posse cuts; like Breach said the braggadocio ones have been done to death so hopefully “Capital Vices” encourages others to put their thinking caps on next time they’re putting together a big colabo.
A-Diction will be officially launching Walkin’ Alone on Friday the 17th of September 2010 as a double album launch with the Gold Coast’s finest Choose Mics @ The Espy in St Kilda. We know your big fans and close mates with the Choose Mics crew, what will it like launching albums with them?
Breach: Man we can’t wait! Honestly, for me, all this hard work comes down to the launch; it’s like a celebration of what we’ve achieved. Sharing the night with Choose Mics couldn’t be more fitting; those dudes are just as hungry as us and have been down since day 1. It’s gonna be a CRAZY night!!
Boltz: I agree man, ‘fitting’ is the only word that comes to mind. Throughout the making of the album we would talk to Mules and his manager Adam all the time to get advice and ideas regarding the songs and also the business side of things. Adam gave us a lot of tips along the way and really helped us whenever we needed it. Mules too; whenever you asked him for a favour he would literally drop everything and you’d have what you needed within 24 hours, usually less. I’m really looking forward to having a drink with those guys, and Haunts, on the night and celebrating both of our releases.