Photo courtesy of the artist
Canada's west-coast legend Madchild is dropping a new album called The Darkest Hour. "Write It Down" is the first song released off the project, which will be fully available on Spotify and iTunes on March 10, 2017. Produced by Evidence from Dilated Peoples, "Write It Down" is a boastful and dark lyrical exploration by the Swollen Member. Madchild has long been one of the country's masters of the gritty, backpack style. He also knows his reputation as a controversial figure, as he raps, "I'm not ashamed to be tyrant that I am." Listen to "Write It Down" from The Darkest Hour below:
Noisey: What's "Write It Down" about?
Madchild: Basically, its overall theme is just about staying true to yourself and staying in your own lane. When I make music, it's rare that I conceptualize a specific topic beforehand; I just hear the beat and start writing what I'm feeling at that time. Word play is always going to be something I focus on. I would say it's just about making your own art without paying attention to what everyone else is doing at the moment. With this song, "Write It Down" and the rest of the new album, The Darkest Hour, I'm just making myself and the people that fuck with my music happy.
What was the inspiration for the new album The Darkest Hour ?
We all have good years and bad times, so the title The Darkest Hour, and overall theme of the album, loosely reflects on going through some of those rough times. I wasn't afraid to express the way I was feeling at that time on some songs. I was also in a great place and confident during the whole writing and recording process so it's a mixture of just having fun and making the best art possible with moments of honesty and not being concerned with showing a little vulnerability.
Anything in particular we should pay attention to?
Working with Evidence and guys like Alchemist and the other incredible artists that blessed the album with their verses, I had to stay on my A-game. Evidence is one of my favorite producers/rappers and definitely brought the best out of me. Recording the whole thing at his studio brought a new energy to the creative process and I wanted the end result to be a more mature finished product.
There is just a slight difference overall from my cadence to the way I approached each beat. Evidence kills it on the production so I was very focused on letting certain lines breathe and where words landed. If he gave me thumbs up on the first take, I didn't question it, we would just move on to the next verse. We definitely caught a vibe making this album and I'm honored that it happened. I think we just made a banging hip-hop album. DJ Premier has played songs from the record the last two weeks in a row on his radio show. For my world that's an incredible start and good indication that The Darkest Hour will really land with people that fuck with my music, as well as the chance of reaching a new audience.
Devin Pacholik is a writer from Saskatchewan. Follow him on Twitter.