Emerging Belgian producer Blacklib draws inspirations from J Dilla, Black Milk and Madlib. His latest release ‘Watts’ incorporates an electronic feel, an instrumental luminous track that will keep you vibrating.
We sit down with Blacklib and ask him why he works purely instrumental, his creative thought process and why producing simply is key.
You just released Watts can you tell us about it?
Watts is a relaxing, vibrating track, which allows you to feel what was on my inside at that very own moment of creation. I chose this title because the electronic feel it has to it, reminds me of how luminous my lifetime aspirations are.
What goes on in your head when you’re creating?
There are plenty of things going through my mind, but I’m not sure if I can find the words to explain them. I try to connect to the pads or keys and express myself naturally. It’s mostly after a certain amount of layers have been laid down, that I can start visualising landscapes or elements of life. Music is truly science, it’s amazing.
Who are your inspirations?
My main inspiration is J Dilla, he comes through with such an angelical sound on certain tapes. Flying Lotus, Madlib, Black Milk, Dibia$e, Samiyam, House Shoes, Ras G, Afta-1 are all innovators in their own lane as well. They pretty much define my modern-day vision of instrumental Hip Hop or Urban sound.
I also have other inspirations such as Vivaldi, Mozart, Jean-Michel Jarre, Sizzla, Midnite, Placebo, Jay-Z, Kanye. It just goes all over the place!
Who would be your ideal collaboration?
It would be so awesome to be able to work for a Kanye West album, but the chances are 1 in a billion for that. Producing and rapping with Jay-Z would be beyond amazing. But like, being on stage with Black Milk would be a dream come true.
You do purely instrumental, why is that?
As a spiritual person, rap often is contradictory to my beliefs. As much as I do love hip hop, it’s hard to find rappers who have the tact to explain their life events or feelings through decent lyrics. I grew up writing raps and poems since I was 16 and have been inspired by 2Pac, Kanye, Nas, Talib Kweli, Hov, Eminem and tried to filter out the good and bad to come up with my own way of writing. But it’s just way harder to make songs who please God and the people at the same time. That’s why I rather stick to beats, although I have batches of rap songs I’ve recorded over the years. I have a rap project I brought out last year with my homie Nar6 called Block’O – Random, but we didn’t push it hard enough through the media, although the sound was captured pretty nice, I noticed how complex it would be to take rapping to a professional level. Writing is cool, it makes you levitate in a certain way, but getting your point across is another. By the way, Oddisee is really an outstanding writer.
What do you use to produce music?
Ableton, MPD32, usb-record player for samples and a basic 2 entry sound card that links my Rhode Microphone and my Microkorg to the DAW. I don’t really feel the need to have too much equipment, although I could use more. Don’t have it too well financially at the moment so I’m sticking to what I have with a simple eye.