Infected Mushroom Infected Mushroom

Vibe Exclusive: Infected Mushroom’s “Unveiling” Almost Shuts Down

On Saturday, August 11th, New York City’s music venue Terminal 5 hosted electronic duo and inventors of “psychedelic trance” Infected Mushroom as they premiered their highly-anticipated new show, "The Unveiling," featuring a stunning graphic set by V Squared Labs. Fans traveled from as far as the band's hometown of Israel to witness this visual and acoustic spectacle. Images ranging from warped mushrooms to intergalactic skies shot across background screens and spherically-shaped DJ booths as IM’s music transcended through various electric-infused genres, including electric guitar solos, dubstep beat, and even some reggae melodies.

Moments before the show was set to take place, mayhem ensued due to technical difficulties going down before their set, the show was this close to not taking place. Amidst the tech glitch chaos, IM member Amit Duvdevani, commonly dubbed Duvdev, was able to take time to sit down with Vibe in his dressing room, despite the stress of the situation (“I’m here basically clusterf**king”), and talks about what it means to become part of their Army of Mushrooms and even delves into politics (“I hate politics. They don’t go nowhere so we try to diverge ourselves from politics, and do music that makes people happy).” Well put... and the show must go on…

Vibe: What does playing NYC mean to you?
Duvdev: NYC is a big deal, and today we have a lot of troubles for the show…Our visuals are not working yet, so I’m here basically clusterf**king…we have a whole lot to do so I’m really out of it but the show, as we say it, has to go on.

What do you hope fans will get out of tonight’s performance, in spite of technical difficulties?
At this point I’m trying to save the night, and this is a weird interview because I’m telling you now I don’t know what’s going to happen. So, if there would be no unveiling show…I got to give my best anyway to put this crowd up because they’re here for a party. This is life on the road – shit happens.
What are your must go-to stops while in New York?
Usually I have time to hangout; I have a lot of friends in New York. I love the city but today it’s all been “Unveiling” and weird stuff is happening, and tomorrow I leave for L.A. at 7am.

What do you usually do to prepare for a set?
Now I’m drinking heavily, because I’m stressed. Usually I come and chill out with my friends, and do my thing before a show and just go on.

Do you perform any vocal exercises, when you're not drinking?
Not as much as I should. I just wing it depending on the day. Today I really slept kind of well you know, so I’m rested. If I’m on a day-to-day schedule doing five shows a week then I’ll exercise my voice more, less smoking, and all this kind of stuff.

What does it take to be recruited into the Army of Mushrooms?
Basically supporting the band, doing as much as he or she can for it. Tweeting about it, Facebooking about it, being a part of the army that brings people to be an Infected Mushroom kind of fan base. There are a lot of them, and they go crazy and we love them.

What drew you from classical music into trance?
I went from classical music to punk, punk to rock, rock to trance so it was kind of a transition of every kind of genre. I played in a punk band as a keyboard player, then a rock band, and then started doing trance back in ’96. Back in ’91, I went to a party in Israel, it was a trance party, and I was like “What the f**k is that?!” and that was the beginning. But then I joined the army in ’92 in Israel, which is mandatory, and did three years in the army, and kind of took me away from music. But when I was released in '95, I went to India, went out into the whole party scene, and then came back fully an Infected Mushroom.

Did you work with Vello Virkhaus and V-Squared Labs to conceptualize the live show?
The whole concept of the spheres you see on stage is ours, because we said that there was already a lot of cubes out there - there’s the deadmau5 cube, Pretty Lights – we wanted something different. So we came up with the spheres idea, and then when we came to V-Squared they said it’s pretty new technology to do a 3-D map on a sphere. So then we started working on it, and came up with a few ideas for the visuals. It was going back and forth, putting the music into it – it was a process.

Do you ever use your music to make a political statement, especially with the war going on the Middle East?
I hate politics. They don’t go nowhere so we try to diverge ourselves from politics, and do music that makes people happy. I don’t care what their politics agenda is, they all want to come and dance on the weekend. Left party, right party. Love this, love that. I don’t care about politics. Of course I want peace around the world, but this will not happen. It’s a bullsh*t kind of planet, but I try to make as much people dance as I can.

What are you plans after the show?
Let’s see what will happen. If it will be a clusterf**k, I will be very upset tomorrow. If it will work, I will be not having a heart attack so let’s see. Then we’ll continue the tour, hopefully with less stress than today.

Define your sound in one sentence.
Massive, hardcore, psychedelic, electronic dance floor music.

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Ella Mai Puts The Ball In Your Court With "Shot Clock" Visuals

Kobe, KD, Kyrie, how about Ella Mai?

Marking her third official single from her self-titled debut album, the 24-year-old dropped a new video from her charting project, bringing "Shot Clock" to life in her B-ball themed clip.

The Colin Tilley directed visual captures the essence of the young singer, framing her unique style and iridescent vocal abilities. The clip captures the various parts of Mai's magnetic energy, as she stars in her own thematic love story.

The two-time Grammy nominee goes through the many downs that occur in relationships while the red beams of shot clock shine in the background slowly reaching zero, a neon indicator of her lessening patience, the singer finds herself alone.

This visual was released in the midst of the "Boo'd Up" songstress' first debut tour currently venturing through the United States and Parts of Europe. Check out the tour dates below to see if R&B's new golden child is coming to a city near you and watch her video for "Shot Clock" above.

THE DEBUT TOUR

Jan 18 – Berlin, DE- Festsaal Kreuzberg Jan 20 – Hamburg, DE- Grosse Freiheit Jan 21 – Copenhagen, DK – Vega Main Hall Jan 22 – Stockholm, SE - Berns Jan 24 – Oslo, NO – Rockefeller Music Hall Feb 12 - Vancouver, BC – Commodore Ballroom Feb 14 – Seattle, WA – Showbox SoDo Feb 15 – Portland, OR – Crystal Ballroom Feb 17 – Sacramento, CA – Ace of Spades Feb 19 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater Feb 20 – Santa Cruz, CA – The Catalyst Feb 22 – Phoenix, AZ – The Marquee Feb 23 – Las Vegas, NV – House of Blues Feb 25 – Denver, CO – Ogden Theatre Feb 27 – Lawrence, KS – The Granada Feb 28 – Minneapolis, MN – Varsity Theater Mar 2 – Detroit, MI – St. Andrew’s Hall Mar 3 – Chicago, IL – Concord Music Hall Mar 5 – Cleveland, OH – House of Blues Mar 6 – Toronto, ON – The Danforth Mar 7 – Montreal, QC – Club Soda Mar 9 – Boston, MA - Royale Mar 11 – Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Steel Mar 13 – Philadelphia, PA – Theatre of Living Arts Mar 15 – Silver Spring, M.D. – The Fillmore Silver Spring Mar 16 – Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Sound Stage Mar 19 – Atlanta, GA - Tabernacle Mar 20 – Orlando, FL – The Plaza Live Mar 21 – Fort Lauderdale, FL – Revolution Live Mar 24 – Houston, TX – House of Blues Mar 26 – Dallas, TX – House of Blues Mar 27 – Austin, TX – Emo’s Mar 28 – San Antonio, TX – The Aztec Theatre

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9th Wonder Talks Collabo Album With Smif N Wessun And The Soul Council

A few weeks fresh off the 23rd anniversary of their classic debut album, Da Shinin', Brooklyn duo Smif N Wessun (Steele and Tek) have released the video for the soul smacking single, "Testify" produced by Khrysis, off their newest album, The All. The project, produced entirely by Grammy-nominated producer 9th Wonder and his Soul Council team, brings the hardcore feel of SNW's best work to the forefront.

“9th Wonder and the Soul Council provide the perfect backdrop for Tek and I to deliver heartfelt lyrical content,” Steele reveals directly. “It’s a true tale of ups and downs, wins and losses, growth and acceptance. It speaks to the hearts and minds of all people; particularly our followers and fans of all ages and ethnicities.”

When artists who rep a certain quality sector of hip-hop music resurface to offer newness to an audience, the longtime fans are looking to bring that old thing back while looking to reflect and push forward at the same time.

"'Testify' is a realistic reflective look back on our accomplishments and failures throughout our career and serves as a precursor to what you will experience on The All,” Steele continues. "This project is a reality check for SNW, one that reflects the struggles and obstacles that we’ve had to endure to survive at the level we occupy in the hip-hop arena."

9th Wonder took the project on as a lover of the group, "My goal is to make sure that we cement the legacy of the artist, but at the same time update the artist. We came up with the concept of  The All (based on a speech from Louis Farrakhan), you can never underestimate the essence of Islam in Hip-Hop. Given the fact that SNW are both Muslim and so many others are as well, we couldn't forget that part."

Going into new chambers of living is needed when you have been recording albums for over 20 years. 9th explains, "we wanted them to talk about stuff they wouldn't normally talk about on records, as they are in a different point in their lives, very grown man. It gives something to our generation to listen to, appreciate and celebrate without feeling old, without feeling outdated. We also wanted to let them know, the legends can still do it."

As the word legend gets thrown around a lot, it's not a far off title for the duo of Tek and Steele. "Some bestow the 'legend' tag upon us (we are very appreciative of that)," says Steele. "And we are chronicling that journey throughout the album.”

The full project will be dropping on February 22nd, 2019 on Duck Down Records. You can pre-order the album here and group merch here.

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Premiere: Duck Down Records' Smif-N-Wessun Returns With Khrysis-Produced 'Testify'

It's been nearly 25 years to the day since their classic debut Dah Shinin' impacted in January 1995, but legendary Brooklyn duo Smif-N-Wessun is still representing the culture with authority and authenticity. "Testify," the premiere music video from their upcoming album The All, adds another notch to their storied catalogs.

"Testify" begins with old photos of group members Tek and Steele in their 90s heyday, but they don't spend much time there before getting busy with present day rhymes. Over a backdrop from Khrysis, the Duck Down Records duo confidently announces their return while solidifying their legendary pedigree. The song gives a short but sweet taste from The All, their upcoming album produced entirely by 9th Wonder and the Soul Council.

“9th Wonder and the Soul Council provide the perfect backdrop for Tek and I to deliver heartfelt lyrical content,” Steele told VIBE. “It’s a true tale of ups and downs, wins and losses, growth and acceptance. It speaks to the hearts and minds of ALL people; particularly our followers and fans of ALL ages and ethnicities.”

‘Testify” is a realistic reflective look back on our accomplishments and failures throughout our career and serves as a precursor to what you will experience on The All,” Steele continued. "This project is a reality check for SNW, one that reflects the struggles and obstacles that we’ve had to endure to survive at the level we occupy in the hip-hop arena. Some, bestow the “Legend” tag upon us (we are very appreciative of that) and we are chronicling that journey throughout the album.”

The All is scheduled for a February 22, 2019 release on Duck Down Records, and is available for pre-order.

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