Our Beyond Wonderland pre-show coverage continues! Can't believe that the festival is only a few days away. The excitement is definitely building!
One of the most promising and high-energy artists to take the stage this year will be Max Hype, better know by fans as Protohype. Hype is bringing an insane set to the Beyond festival grounds this year, and I got to sit down and interview him earlier this week. We got to talk about the creation of his newest EP, Dog House, the live show that he has in store this weekend, and the way that he mixes different genre elements throughout his songs.
Before talking about Beyond, let’s talk a little bit about the INSANE EP you dropped this year. How did writing the tracks on the Dog House EP compare in relation to writing an EP like Encore?
There’s a couple different things, depending on which way you’re looking at the tracks. For one, I didn’t know as much as a music producer when I made Encore, or the See No Evil/Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil series. When I made all of those, I was still learning. I mean obviously, I’m still learning now, but by the time I got around to finishing up the Dog House EP, all of those tracks on there were old tracks that I had just needed to put the final finishing touches on, like with vocals and stuff like that. The Dog House EP was more of collection of tunes that I had been working on over the years that didn’t make it on the past EPs. That was kind of the theme, as much as it doesn’t really seem like a theme.
I know this was a couple years ago, but I was also very curious to know what it was that inspired the “No Evil” trilogy of EPs.
Well, the original plan that my manager and I had come up with was to write a full length album. And then we kind of decided that it would be better to split it up into pieces so that people could still have something to look forward to. People nowadays have music A.D.D., and they can only handle so much at one time. And also, if you look back at the “See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil” saying, it’s visually shown by three monkeys, and my logo is a monkey. So that was the kind of icing on the cake that it made it all kind of glue together.
When writing, what originally drew you more towards the electro/dubstep/trap sound? What connection do you have with it?
Well writing melodies and the big anthem-type chords like that are probably what I would consider my strength as a music producer. So that’s what comes most naturally to me, just because I’ve always been writing music like that since I was a kid. And then, when I started making the EP, after I had played in on the drums and guitar and stuff like that, I started with hip hop beats. All of my tunes have some sort of hip-hop somewhere throughout them if you dig deep enough. Over the years, my sound has kind of become this mixing of different types of sounds.
I think one of the interesting things about trap is that the melody is so crucial. Artists like yourself, Bro Safari, and Flosstradamus make it clear that it’s not just about the beat, but about the melody, so I think it’s really cool that you’re able to make that stick out.
For sure, thank you man. I kind of write whatever comes out, but there’s always going to be certain elements of my style that will always be there, and melody is one of them. People like that, and I like it too.
Beyond Wonderland will be taking place this weekend, and it should be a great time. Like all festivals, fans are going to have music being thrown at them left and right. In your opinion, what do you think will set you apart from the other acts performing that day?
I think that performing is almost as important to me as a musician now as making the tunes are. I’m like a natural performer, from whatever it was, doing theater as a kid to just performing throughout college, you know? I did public speaking, and I was student body president. I enjoy being out in front of crowds and stuff like that. So, that’s one thing, being on the mic and engaged with the crowds. I try to always have as much fun as I can.
Another thing would probably be my visual content. I always try to get new visual content that is cool. I have a lot of animal visuals. I’ve also got a bunch of cool unique shapes and stuff like that. Very bright colors, all fun stuff. So that’s another thing: if you’re walking by the stage and you see some of these visuals, those attract.
I also play pretty much, unless it’s like one of my more well-known songs like “Fly” or “Encore”, most of the songs I play aren’t released. People get to hear a lot of fresh new music. There’s a lot of new things to come, so stick around for my set.
This is the last question I ask to every artist that I interview, as a way to close things out. It’s a broad question, but what does music mean to you?
Music means, to me, I would have to say... music means everything to me. I’ve been the kind of kid that’s dabbled in everything throughout their childhood and into their early teens and 20’s. Whatever it be, sports, school, things like that. But music has always been the constant, common thread. That has never stopped; I’ve never stopped playing music, I’ve never stopped making music. To me, it’s a lifeline. I don’t know what I would do without music. Music is always there for you, whether you’re having a bad day or a good day. I would refer to music as a lifeline for me.
Be sure to catch Protohype when he perform on the CHESHIRE WOODS stage at Beyond Wonderland THIS SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 26 from 7PM to 8PM. For information on the festival, visit www.beyondwonderland.com. For more on Protohype, visit www.facebook.com/protohypemusic
This has been another Shameless Promotion.