MUSIC | DJ MUGGS - The Influence (Part I)

dj muggs

"I just got bored."

And it’s that simple. How many great revolutions are based off apathy and sheer boredom? Don’t bother answering the question, but embrace the motivation.

DJ MUGGS, the man behind the legend that is Cypress Hills’ unique sound has such motivation and kaboom: his newest album, Bass For Your Face, presents new explorations in production, sound and the man himself.

His work, associations, and personality precede him. MUGGS is best known for his work with seven studio albums with heavyweights Cypress Hills; as well as classics like House of Pain’s ‘Jump Around’ and Ice Cube’s ‘Check Ya Self’.  Having also released solo albums, MUGGS is a consistent darling of the critics, and has an ironclad following of fans - not to mention his art collective, Soul Assassins.

With a few decades of experience under his belt, the support of an entire genre and openness to venture into uncharted territory DJ MUGGS sought out a new way to express himself. “There’s only so much to do in hiphop, it wears out after awhile." His curiosity lead him to electronic (and sequentially- dubstep) music and slowly but surely he got acquainted with the structure that made up this complicated genre of music.

“I taught myself everything. It was crazy. I started listening to whatever I could and i let what I liked guide me. It was a long process. There was a time where I was - this shit is taking too long and I felt so much frustration — but I rode it out."

Going from hiphop to electronic is no easy feat as an artist and a producer - never mind someone who wears both hats. The methods that involve creating classic hiphop are fairly simplistic - whereas electronic methods are intricate and limitless in terms of sound design.

MUGGS as in past albums, brought on a fleet of artists to add to the quality. DJ Bambu, Dizzee Rascal, Chuck D are among those contributing to MUGGS newest album each uniquely adding personal touches to what will inspire other hip hop players to go explorin’.

When asked where the bulk of his influence and learning came from - MUGGS answered with zero hesitation - “Radiohead. They got it on every level and somehow they continue to go further - shit they put out in the 90s, most are just learning how to perfect now."

Lesson to the wise, the best learns from the best.

To be continued….

Words | Moeima Dukuly