After years of toiling away, producer duo Heavytrackerz are ready to unleash their new album Odyssey: A Musical Journey. The album is showcases the diversity the grime and UK rap scene has to offer, and includes an abundance of British talent from Mikill Pane, to Young T & Bugsey to JME.
In the lead up to the album’s drop. The duo held an exclusive listening party at our Relentless No. 5 space including performances from a selection of the album’s featured artists such as Lethal Bizzle, Joe Grind, Big Narstie and Face.
We caught up with the boys to find out more about the album and what goes into making an album from a producer’s perspective.
Your new album Odyssey: A Musical Journey drops this week. How are you feeling about it?
Pretty good, it’s been a steady build up, but we're getting to the end of it. Really can’t wait for people to check out the record. We're slightly oblivious to it all, and would love to anticipate it from a fan's point of view.
How long has this been in the making? The word ‘Odyssey’ suggests an epic adventure…
Two years, since 2015, and kind of correlates with the journey that we've been through ourselves within this music industry. 'Odyssey' is also fitting because we didn't necessarily stick to one style of music, the album is quite diverse in that sense.
A lot of producers have dropped albums this year. Do you think producer albums are becoming more about how many big features you can get rather than the actual songs?
That is absolutely the wrong way to do music, although the allure of big names on an album can’t be overlooked. We went for people that would fit the tracks and tell a better story exactly how we want them to. But it's a bonus to also have producers showcasing their A&R talents and building a whole project from scratch for their fans
That being said, you have a pretty incredible line-up on Odyssey. How did you choose who to collaborate with on the album?
We just jammed, enjoyed the instrumentals and had a board where we would write the names of the people we absolutely wanted on the album, whether it be people we worked with or not. The next stage was just to scout and get some newcomers and some lesser known acts. Overall it was fun playing Executive producer/A&R/Manager/
What is a ‘Rudeboy Flex’?
“Rudeboy Flex” was the last track we did for the album, it’s an accumulation of anger & frustration towards a system that was not allowing us to make this album happen. In essence it’s when you put your professionalism aside and stick a middle finger out to the doubters, the system and the music industry
Noel Clarke features on the intro, how did that come about?
This is probably what we meant by pushing the boat out. We wanted to look at the industry as a whole, music/ film/entertainment and people who influence it. Noel was the best person to speak on the injustice and the hardship of it all, having transitioned from actor to movie director.
Your videos veer away from the traditional grime image. Why did you choose to go left with how you’re visually represented?
We're really trying our best to fly the flag for the unorthodox in Grime, really trying to push the boundaries and it’s always fun to think outside the box. We come up with our own ideas and bring ‘em to life, just like the way we produce music.
It’s never been so easy to get your music out there, which makes it hard to stand out from the crowd. What advice would you give to aspiring producers to get noticed?
The best idea is to be consistent with your work, your social media presence and always thinking outside of the box, in terms of how you present yourself and want to be perceived. But most of all keep shipping out tunes to artists.
You’re performing at the Relentless stage at Leeds this week. How you feeling about hitting that crowd?
Can't wait, it’s our 2nd year doing it, last year was pretty amazing, we'll be playing new tunes from the album. The crowd is always amazing.
Finally, what does the future hold for Heavytrackerz?
Shows, shows, shows. Can’t wait to get on the road and perform the album and take over the world.