Boys, boys, boys, boys…boys I do adore…
I remember the first time I saw iLL-Literacy perform. It was back in the fall of 2005, I was visitin iLL homie Adriel in the Bay and I was their default road dawg for the day as we drove 2 hours back and forth from Berkeley to Santa Cruz. I was so geeked when I got put in charge of protecting their GET LIT lighters and chapbooks at the merch table while they put their game faces on in the green room. Needless to say, the show was bangin’! With opening 8 bars to spitfire poems, I found myself slipping further into the present moment with the onrush of words. Over the years, I’ve taken great indulgence in seeing their artistic evolution reshape creative fronts and constantly inspire all those around them. Don’t be fooled, there is so much honesty behind those plastic legohead facades. Never settling, always innovating, the first release of iLL-Literacy’s ib4the1 marks only the beginning of a mouthwatering adventure to unfold. GOOD SHIT!
Track Listing for iB4the1.1:
Additional contributions by Smashley Johns (vocals)
2. Gentleman’s Kool-Aid
Additional contributions by Rufus Redbone (vocals) & Billy Hi-Life (bass)
3. The HereNow
Additional contributions by Jeremy “Passion” Manongdo (vocals), Billy Hi-Life (bass) & Sammy Hi-Life (guitar)
4. Finding Emo
Additional contributions by Ruby Veridiano-Ching (vocals),
5. Circus Nights
Additional contributions by Rufus Redbone (vocals) & Sammy Hi-Life (guitar)
All songs produced by Dahlak, co-produced by Ada Clock
About iB4the1.1: iB4the1 is an epic. The debut album from iLL-Literacy premiers in three parts– each approximately 25 minutes in length, and suited best for a short car drive…or upon the back of a spiny-toothed wombat in Africa, while watching Planet Earth on mute. The first of the three acts is simply entitled iB4the1.1. Despite its brevity,.1 is grand in its effort to bridge sampled voice and original instrumentation, experimental music and hip-hop narrative.
The sound of iLL-Literacy—architected by group member Dahlak with the assistance of producer Ada Clock, along with the contributing imaginations of N.I.C and Drizzletron—draws character from an unusual blend of influences, spanning funk, afro beat, alternative, soul and of course hip-hop. iB4the1 is a presentation of iLL-Literacy in total humility and acknowledgement to all those who have come before and to the artists they are to become. This is iLL-Lit before the start. The prequel to the saga. iLL-Lit before the One. Take that how you want.
About iLL-Literacy: Toggling between daydream and full-blown hallucination, iLL-Literacy is a music and performance collective that fuses elements of funk, hip-hop, spoken word, and interactive theatre for a sound and live experience that draws as much from the rich artistic and political history of its Oakland hometown as it does from the experimental and imaginative inclinations of its current Brooklyn base. In their recorded debut, iB4the1, members Dahlak, N.i.C, and Drizzletron work everything from the ground up – from in-house production, to self-directed music videos, to the development of a new approach to musical interaction that intimately involves the listener throughout the inception, production, and promotion of the final product. Please join iLL-Literacy at http://www.ill-literacy.com.
REAL LIFE HOMIES MAKING REAL LIFE BEDDA. ILL-LIT WIT THAT LEGITIMATE SHIIIIIT!