Having created hits for stars as diverse as underground rapper Blu (Below the Heavens) and veteran group Mobb Deep (Pearly Gates), acclaimed San Diego producer Exile is now juggling a burgeoning solo career and several new collaboration albums for 2009.
Despite being disgusted by todays urban radio market, Exile crafted his latest opus Radio by sampling all the LPs sounds, including drums, from local LA radio stations.
The 12-month creative process has resulted in a melting pot of arrangements, melodies, and rhythms that brings together everything from the jazz funk of Donald Byrd, to quirky request callers and opera singers.
I turn the radio on now and all I hear is that vocoder s**t. Im amazed by what theyre playing. I listen to it for a couple minutes and shut it off, Exile explained to AllHipHop.com. [With Radio] I would actually have ideas of certain types of vocals I would want on the beat. Id just listen until I captured something that spoke something I could manipulate to what I wanted to convey.
Without having to tailor his production for the bars of an emcee, Exile elaborated that he was able to use Radio to showcase extended vocal and instrumental arrangements normally seen in jazz and classical music.
[The sound] was left completely open to fill in the space where an emcee would normally rap, Exile detailed. It gave me a lot more freedom to have a lot more things going on. It allowed me to find a voice within the radio and in the vocal samples to communicate a new message as opposed to just playing beats. I wanted to do a different instrumental album that was more than just beat records. It tells a story.
In addition to Radio, Exile will again collaborate for full albums with several emcees in early 2009.
Im wrapping up an album with an 19-year old rapper from Fresno named Fashawn. The album is called Boy Meets World. Were going into the studio for the final time this week, Exile stated. I also executive produced an album for my man Blame One called Days Chasing Days [due out in January]. I did the majority of the beats, but theres other stuff on there from Black Milk. Blu and Sean Price will be on there as well.
Fans of Exile will also be happy to learn of a new project from Emanon, the critically acclaimed group that features his partner Aloe Blacc.
[Finally] Im six songs deep into the new Emanon group project with Aloe Blacc, Exile revealed. Hes been singing lately but man his raps are better than ever fight now. Im real excited [and] itll be called A Birds Eye View.
Radio hits stores January 20, 2009.