JVF Clique All Day

The first (and perhaps the last) in the "...All Day" series brings you JVF Clique. Their debut album Alternative Income dropped recently, so I asked them a few questions and they diligently gave me some responses. I'm no Parkinson, but hopefully I'll get you some more of these in due course.

Tell the people out there about yourselves. How did JVF Clique come about and where are you at now?

“It’s hard to say when JVF was formed but we've been creating music together for 14 or more years and the JVF manifested itself as a step towards the hip hop genre. Before we released the first EP Embryo we were doing drum & bass and hip hop shows on pirate stations Mix FM and Real FM which were packed with a heavy lyrical element, so a move to release some material was inevitable. Now we have just released our debut LP Alternative Income - a culmination of concepts amassed over the years.”

So how long did it take to put together the album and what was the process, both creatively and practically?

“Alternative Income was a long time in the making. The first rough versions of a couple of tracks were done in 2005, but the ideas go back further. It’s a kind of self-selection process when a beat is constructed that fits a certain concept then we agree on structure and direction and then trip out deep into the subject with the pen and pad. We actually did 23 tracks for the album but decided that would be too many ideas to digest, some well random, maybe too deep or abstract for the debut LP (but keep an eye out for them on future releases). So we pulled out our favourite 14 to give a healthy dose of JVF, and there it is - Alternative Income, our debut album. Coming soon to a good musical outlet near you!”

The tune Those Dudes was a favourite of mine. Can you break down the record – who did the beat and what did it sample?

“Those Dudes has gone down really well. The heavy Pappa Doc beat samples a Cuban salsa track from the crates. The lyrics are about the clique and their special Supermanesque word play powers.”

UK hip hop tends to be pretty London-, or at least big city-, centric. What’s the scene like in your neck of the woods?

“Yeah true, hip hop is very city-centric. We’re not from the city but our location is central to a few: we’ve got Leicester, Coventry, Birmingham, Nottingham and Derby all within an hour’s drive. As for Hinckley Town, there’s not much of a scene but it’s where we draw inspiration and create our sound. It’s where we’re from!”

What do you love about hip hop from Blighty?

“UK hip hop has a range of plus points. For example – topics and subject matter, there’s a plethora of variation and situations that most can relate to in one way or another. Entertainment value – there’s a mood to suit any, from comedy to deep thought, rage to quite chilled. But, at the end of the day, that’s what good music is all about; you’ve just got to dig out the good stuff. It also brings people together, all different colours, classes, ages…… you name it. Hip hop is ONE.”

What’s a bit shit about it, or what would you change about the scene?

“There seems to be a lot of samey kind of stuff around, and a lot of false representation, but that kind of thing gives us ammo so it’s not necessarily a bad thing.”

Do you think it’s important for there to be a space for artists such as yourselves to break out above ground? Or should acts be happy with being “underground”?

“Yeah definitely, hip hop’s the future, we’ve tasted it! It’s just a shame the mainstream is about ten years behind what’s happening now. The underground is where it’s at - always has been - and that won’t change but the mainstream has to, as long as opinions do, and that can only be a good thing.”

If you could fill a Super Soaker with your own wee and spray down any UK hip hop/urban/black music/wot do u call it? act, who would it be? Justify why you’ve just soaked them in piss.

“We would gladly cover ourselves in deep yellow midget piss while standing on rubber sheeting, or probably one of those budget piss-tents from Netto. Water sports are integral to a successful music career. Ask R Kelly.”

Here’s the space for shout outs to God, your Moms and any acts of shameless self-promotion you wish to commit. Also, what’s next for JVF Clique?

“Shout out to everyone who has bought the album and showed love.
Shout out to everyone who is going to buy the album and show love!
Shout to anyone who knows or has been involved with the JVF Clique.
Shout to Stella!

As for future projects, we’ve got a few. There’s a couple of EP’s, a mixtape or two and a possible soundtrack. We’ve no definite dates but they’re all in the pipeline, so keep your eyes and ears open for the next heavy dose of JVF. Peace.”

Ta very much.

JVF Clique – Those Dudes

JVF Clique’s Alternative Income is available now from Suspect Packages and JVFradio.com.