In Ontario, Canada, there are three men making music. Not particularly surprising, I’m sure you’ve heard that story a million times. But these are the three that Yack has chosen to present to you, because we believe, they’re awesome.
In Sanity is a hippity hop collective consisting of Eiren, Catharsis and Gonzo. They don’t have a biography or a boring ol’ about us section anywhere, because frankly the music speaks for itself, but if you did want to know a little more about them, we managed to lock them down long enough to fire a volley of intrepid interview questions at them.
Eiren- Usually it’ll start from either hearing a word or phrase I like, and I’ll take note of it then expand on it later. Sometimes a rhyme scheme will literally just come outta no where to me. I used to write a rap and then put it to a beat after, but now I usually write to a specific beat. And I’ll go for weeks/months without writing anything really other than a few lines hear and there and then write something everyday for a week or 2. So idk about a process, its still evolving I suppose.
Catharsis- My process varies on my mood, my stimuli, my thoughts, the word of the day, a dope concept thrown to me by Tyler, a dope scheme I want to completely destroy, Phil making a dope beat that I’m around for, writers block weirdly. Anything else that will come up, there’s Basically a plethora of ways.
Gonzo – I have the worst writing ethic known to man, so I’ll make this as interesting as possible. Basically Gonzo (he’s a different person) will start humming a meledy and it’s my job to remember it, get it down and then make the rest…then about a million other things. I’ll engineer too while I produce because I’m ADD as fuck and have a pet peeve for bad sounding shit. This is also how you wind up with a billion unfinished songs and beats.
Who or what were your influences? What got you into making music?
E- Eminem is probably my biggest influence, as cliche as that is. Later on in life, discovery UKHH was a final push for me to give it a shot, Rhyme Asylum, Jehst, High Focus, Orphans of Cush, to name a few of the big ones. My dad and a few teachers in high school who encouraged my writing as well. Shoutout Miss Farrell. And of course Curtis and Phil, they got me into all this, never thought I’d be a rapper 5 years ago.
C- My influences are very sporadic. To not kick the dead horse, I’ll say Eminem, only because of nostalgia and he was the one that changes my view of Hip Hop or rap more specifically. Growing up, My older brother listened to tupac, biggie and any affiliates. Making the music? My group right here. The idea wouldn’t have came to fruition without my best friends being my belief.
G – I got into producing when I ate some mushrooms and listened to an Excision song when I was peaking, so that’s a pretty big one even though I don’t really make/listen to dubstep anymore. A lot of music has gone through these ears over the ears, I used to write metal riffs in Guitar Pro a while back when I was really into that genre. Lots of underground EDM too, old school dubstep, hard trance, drum & bass/jungle, and of course the almighty Hip hop. I could go on for a while.
What do your songs tend to be about?
E- Everything? Depends how I’m feeling when I get inspired to write. Our albums called ‘Mixed Feels and Uncleared Samples’ because there’s something on there for every mood. Usually just masturbating and doing drugs though.
C- Our songs tend to be about like Tyler said, whatever really. Subject matters only if I’m in a melancholic kind of vibe. Usually when I mess around, imagery is the main goal.
You seem to be a fairly happy bunch? Is that true?
E- Ahaha umm. Yeah. Well. Idk. We all have our ups and downs I suppose. I try not to project my negativity onto my social media life, because I know that shit’s contagious. So I try to keep that to just annoying my close friends with lmao. And a lot of it goes into my songs. But I mean, I make music with my best friends and it gets love from around the world, so there’s a lot to be grateful for, and I try to focus on that.
C- l happy is relative. Comfortable is also relative. We’re humans after all and the mind is a powerful entity. There is a time, place and a select group of people that should be able to affect your mental state or else it can be detrimental to anything important in your life.
G – Try to be brother, we’re all human though right? I think content is a better word and a better state to strive for.
You like to rap then? So do you like hip hop?
E- I’ve been in love with hip hop since I first go introduced to it in like…’99? I mean before that there was radio shit obviously but like when I heard the Slim Shady EP with my cousin I was hooked instantly. Never felt something that seemed to speak so specifically to me, he was just ranting about my life it seemed.
C- My love for hip hop is deep rooted. Since I was a child, my mom and dad used to listen to the Fugees. I can go as far as saying my parents blasted Milli Vanilli, as bad as that sounds. The first back to front album I heard and really felt was The Eminem Show. It was the relativity behind it and feeling like you were a part of his struggle.
On your new album, the first song is a deliberate swipe at the “verse-chorus-verse” mentality. The rest of the album definitely strays away from that as well. Why is that? Do you totally hate choruses?
E- Lmfao, that came to be more as like an inside joke about how to get a better response on this album than the last, and the answer seemed to be ‘more choruses’. People don’t like to see us just shout rhymes at them, they wanna join in and chant with us. But sometimes we really enjoy just shouting rhymes as people, so we just thought we’d address that. We wanted it to be clear that we wouldn’t waiver our integrity of what were trying to do to appease others. But I wouldn’t say I hate choruses, I’m not that ignorant. More just the idea of forcing one for the sake of having it.
C- Like Tyler said, it’s not a deliberate screening we give to every song, we kind of let the song tell. No need to force anything; if you force, it’s not from a innate genuine place of creation.
G – Ehh, it’s not so much a swipe at choruses as it’s a swipe at autotune and the culture of mainstream hip hop today. We just decided to make a bit of a mockery of it, I love a lot of choruses…. Rage Against The Motherfucking Machine does some cool ones.
As far as I can tell this an indie DIY kind of project for you guys. How is that?
E- I think the creation is easier, at least for me, cuz we don’t have anyone in suits breathing down our necks about content, I have full freedom to write whatever the fuck I want to. But again, I just write words. Thankfully we’ve been blessed to have Jody Tompkins help us with getting amazing sounding recordings. The hardest part is telling family members etc that you’re a rapper, minus a fancy car/chain. Surely a multiple grand signing bonus would be nice to physically flaunt my wealth and put on a mask of success, but I’m not that kinda guy anyways.
C- Yea, the freedom to create, let your feelings drive the vigor of a topic is very refreshing and IMO, gives the best result for the song and the confidence of the artist to keep making great music for decades to come. We have been utterly showered with people who believe in our writing skills to give us that space, also, the equipment to make us sound the best doing so.
G – Creative freedom is great and we also have quite a few blessings right now ourselves, but there are a lot of downsides. DIY is going to be the way it is though for most independent artists out there so it’s all about adapting and making the best out of whatever situation you’re in.
Ok, so picture this scene, you’re in an alleyway, you are approached by a drunk Hulk Hogan. He wants to mug you, what do you do?
E- I think time of day is important here. If he’s drunk in an alley during the day, I’d probably cry real tears, cuz that’s like a Shakespearean fall from grace. If it was night I’d probably just use it as a photo opportunity. I wouldn’t have much to mug anyways, so I’d just fan out about hulkmania, the balls it takes for a senior citizen to rock a bandana, grumble something ending with an aggressive “brother!”, and try my best not to mention the fact that his daughter could catch it. Or just ask if he was Golddust and hit him where it hurts.
C- Haha I’d first say “Youre illustrious career cannot even be muttered in any conversation without including that you’re the best wrestler to ever lace the boots and step into a ring”. I am not afraid of milking the cow to appease it, especially if it’s angry. The diameter of his biceps alone can crush my neck and rupture my trachea and internal bleeding will not subside in such a dingy cavernous place. If that fails, try and Rey Mysterio the situation. He’ll eventually tucker out.
G – I’ve always had a general fear of Hulk Hogan, ever since a kid, so probably just stand there paralyzed and take it like a bitch.
So you’re Canadian? What’s that like?
E- Sometimes, if I hold the door for someone, and they were just far away enough that I totally could have not, which makes them have to speed up a bit, I say sorry. Think that about sums it up. Oh, and poutines.
C- It’s great. I love being Canadian. Yes sure, our portion sizes pale in comparison to our grandiose neighbors and our Netflix is shit but I would never wanna live anywhere else.
G – Eiren hit the nail on the head, cheap pot and healthcare is pretty cool too.
Do you have any shows coming up? Anything you’d like to promote? Because we will totally allow that.
E- Our muffhuggin album!!
C- Our album just dropped on soundcloud/youtube so check that shit out. It’s our best work so far.
If you could replace one member of your band with a mega rock star, who would it be and why?
E- I’d replace Catharsis with IceJJFish cuz I feel like we’d make great music together and I’d just flat out replace Eiren with *insertwhiterapper*, he’s shit.
C- I’d replace Eiren with Stitches, he’s hard af, hits licks errday. He just has that ambiance about him, so original and upfront.
G – I’d get of both of them and holla at Celine Dion & Bizzie Bone.
Name someone in the world who you truly hate.
E- Gary Oak. Cunt.
C- Randal Wheems
G – Any motherfuckering rapper who didn’t even bother checking my beats when I sent them (I checked on SoundCloud). You probably don’t know/will never know who you are.
C- Neil DeGrasse Tyson (Editor: played by Chali 2NA?)
G – Bill Hicks R.I.P.
Does anyone in In Sanity have serious mental health issues?
E- Nothing that’s been diagnosed, thankfully. Haven’t really been tested or anything. The reason for the name was that at the time of the initial forming, we had a couple very close friends get committed and we found ourselves often question what sanity really was. The first idea was Project Sanity, but we decided with the play on the words instead.
C- We’re pretty up and down dudes, like every human should be. If its not balanced, there’s going to be an overload. It happens, the mind is like the universe, by construction and mysticism, we”ll never fully understand it and the stigmas behind the unknown will either hinder or curb them towards the answer. And what tyler said.
G – I think Curtis might not be born on this planet does that count? Haha.
Finally, is hip hop dead?
E- To me, hip hop is in one of the best places its been in years. There’s an insane amount of incredible work coming out these last few years, all you have to do is do some digging. As much as it’d be nice to see a bit more money in more diverse artists hands but there’s always been pop music, that’s just the way its gunna be. But right now we live in an exciting time for independent music. The internet levelled the playing field. I mean were from Canada and we get to do this interview from across an ocean. Some of my favourite artists have less than 500 likes on facebook. Hip hop is everywhere and as long as people like you guys keep doing this magazine and people keep supporting shitheads like us keep supporting us, it will always be very much alive.
C- Hip Hop will never die. It’s engrained in the poverty stricken, the blue collar and the hard working people of this world. You can look anywhere in the worlds footprint and find people, streets, subways, dance studios, art classes, homes imbued with Hip Hop. I’m hopeful more now than ever actually, so much UK Hip Hop. It should have crossed over by now but honestly, I’m happy it’s in it’s own cube because it is amazing and I’ve been a fan from day 1.
G – It will never die as long as people decide to keep sticking up for what it really means as an idea/belief. It goes a lot deeper than just the music in my opinion, hip hop shaped who I am today as a person.
Stay tuned for the rest of todays Featured Artist Friday on In Sanity