Melbourne's Curse ov Dialect will no doubt challenge your preconceptions. And in something of a coup, they may be set to challenge the world's preconceptions this year if a potential deal with Mush (an American label that has released music from the stables of Anticon, Labtekwon, Radioinactive and so forth) comes to fruition. They are a five-piece collective set of provoking thought and reaction through music and performance and they hit Frigid this weekend.
Who's in the group and what do they do? How did you form?
There are five members of the Curse: Ray-sles (split-personality style rapping, production), Paso Bionic (turntables, production), Vulk Makedonski (machine gun raps, Macedonian raps, production) and Folklore 1600 (vocals of gruffness and smoothness and production). All members are individual in costume and delivery and ethnicity. We formed in 1994 with another member Malice. We were more straight up hiphop back then with Ray-sles and Paso Bionic at the helm. We were musically on the different sampling tip back then but we've progressed. Curse ov Dialect is five people who express hiphop and music in our own individual way - anti-racism, sexism, abuse, homophobia, the environment and materialism being issues we deal with. Paso Bionic is also part of a hiphop crew from Melbourne called TZU. We use heaps of world music and other loops in our music. Hip hop is and always will be a cross-cultural termite.
What is happening with Mush? How did you approach them and what will come of it?
Basically I persisted in emailing them all the time until they heard our CD and dug it. If all goes well, it should be a worldwide release which would be really cool - to express an Australian but Curse ov Dialect perspective would be mad fun. On our last release we co-produced with electronic music man Ollie Olsen (which was excellent) but our new album is all us.
Do you guys regularly get involved with the spoken word/poetry like at Sound Summit? If so, do you feel that what you present and how you present it in that forum differs to a "live show"?
Not really, we are basically a mixture of open-minded multicultural kids who are the black sheep of our families. To be honest, poetry is still hiphop in an urban environment. It's good for non-hiphop heads to dig our shit because it's not preaching to the converted. We never planned it this way. It's just evolved. Live shows involve costumes, ego piss take battles, while freestyling and poetry readings are without that. In our music we are influenced by mainly experimental music but also every other genre. It's really hard to pigeon-hole our personalities and styles. Folklore 1600 would say r&b! I say John Cage with Public Enemy.
What are your main creative focuses in regards to your music and lyrics?
To have an open mind and tackle ignorance in every way. Also our own individual perceptions differ greatly from member to member, so a lot of personal feelings are expressed. We also do a lot of abstract but meaningful stuff (devoid of drugs), rapping about unusual concepts on a multicultural mixture tip.
Is it true that you throw shit at people during your shows? Why?
Back in the day we used to throw things at the shows but this was a stage we went through expressing ourselves outwardly, but, WE NEVER THREW SHIT! Cucumbers - yes, but never shit. The big problem we get from people is misconceptions. Firstly we evolved from hiphop. Secondly, we do not need drugs to act different. And, thirdly, we represent a combination of mixtures ethnically and musically but with an injection of chaos! Our reputation for live shows has been positive and negative. All in all, it's just hiphop expressed differently. We are just being ourselves. Progression is the key; diversify your strategy!