Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Blank Fasiz - New Realm Compilation - 2020

2xLP - 2020 - Back2DaSource Records 

"Sup y'all ?! We're back with another Heat ! We are proud to announce you, we got the Blank Fasiz featuring The DUNAT crew in the house !  Hailling from Providence, Rhode Island, those Emcees are Spiritual Warriors , please pay attention to their Lyrics ! KWE (Knowledge Wisdom Equality) MAF and  the crew wanted to bring you those Positive messages ! AFTAMAF (Emcee & Beatmaker) produced all the beats and he has that Magic touch to elevate the Souls thru the musical vibes; can't forget the DUNAT crew ill flows and deep contents, know your Self, Knowledge is King, use your 3rd I . This New Realm compilation is a Must Have. Very phat prods. Conscious Boom Bap at its best. Add to that some mad flows filled with conscious contents and you got this 12 tracks projects. You will get all the tracks from the New Realm Records 12"s with the exclusive street mix versions. Limited to 300 copies only. Don't Sleep on this Gem !  One Love." - Bee Lapointe (B2DS Records)

Pre-Orders : 2xLP / CD / Bundle 

For those who aren't familiar with the hip-hop duo named Blank Fasiz, it consisted of 2 emcees named Aftamaf and KWE, hailing from Providence Rhode Island. They formed the group in the middle/end of 1994. During a little tchat, I asked them a few questions and they told me their group story. 

Where are you both from exactly ? 

Aftamaf : "I'm originally from Providence Rhode Island. I was born and raised in Hartford Park, a Projects on Hartford Avenue in Providence Rhode Island." 

KWE : "I'm From the Hill, Tonimy Hill... born in Newport RI lived in the Hill 'til I was 9 then moved to North Kingstown, lived there 'til I was 14, then moved to Providence RI."

Where do your names come from ? 

Aftamaf : "A.F.T.A.M.A.F. is an acronym : Africa For The Africans Makes America Fall, inspired by the "Marcus Garvey Movement : Africa For The Africans." "

KWE : "My original name was Kwestionmark. Aftamaf gave me the name Questionmark, I flipped it wit a KW now the KWE stands for Knowledge Wisdom Equality or King/Within/Eternally."

How did the connection happen between both of you ? 

Aftamaf : "KWE hung around with a kid named Shawn, they use to walk around the neighborhood Rapping and Beat-Boxing. I was already an established Artist to some degree, because I was making my own beats at like age 13. So KWE and Shawn use to kick little "Freestyles" off the top of the Dome, but me on the other hand already had enough songs to complete a "Solo-Album". Time passed and KWE knew that I was excelling in my beats and rhymes, he seemed interested but wouldn't come out and tell me that he wanted to move forward with his Rap-Career. So I took it upon myself to get into the habit of writing rhymes and teaching him what 16-bars was all about. He caught on fast, and excelled very quickly! So me and him started writing together and Ripped Up every Open Mic spot possible. Every time we use to roam the neighborhoods people would literally stop what they were doing just to hear us "Spit"!!!  Before you know it, I came up with the concept "Blank-Fasiz", which means "Mysterious Being","Unidentified"."

KWE : " At 9 years old, I wrote my first rap poem, I freestyled all the time as I got older and continued to do so until I met Aftamaf... he showed me how to construct a song and I took flight after that... It came natural for me. 
Shawn was one of the first kids I met when I moved to Prov and he loved to freestyle, we just clicked and started recording freestyle cassettes. We called ourselves SHADOW FREEKS... actually thats how Aftamaf heard me, a mutual friend Sanman played the tape for Maf... rest is history ! "

Their first 12" came out in 1998 (1997 for the CD version), composed of the tracks "Futuristic Rhymes", "Hartford Park" and "What Chu Know". 

12" -1998 - New Realm Records, Inc 

Everything was produced by Aftamaf and the wax was released on New Realm Records, Inc., a record label founded and managed by Aftamaf, Kwe, and two brothers named Mike and Ronnie Franco. 

How did you meet Mike & Ronnie Franco ? 

Aftamaf : "My Aunt "Toni Lee Grace" (R.I.P.) lived across the street from Mike and Ronnie Franco on Hendrick St. "Mount Pleasant" area of Providence. Needless to say, I was sitting on my Aunt's stairs and there's someone playing loud music. And as I'm listening, I notice that someone was "Scratching" over a "45 King" "Beat Break Instrumental Album" called Breakmania 1. How do I know that is because my Big-Brother Dave had it too, I use "Spit" over it all the time. So when the music stops and a teenage white boy comes out who just so happens to be Ronnie Franco, I ask him, "Was That You Scratching", he said  "Yeah". And I told him I was familiar with those beats because my brother Dave has the same album. I complimented his "Scratching" just to get in good Grace's with him. He knew my brother Dave from school but didn't know Dave was pretty nice with "Cutting And Scratching". I told him I have songs for damn near every instrumental on that album, he didn't believe a young 12 year old kid, could ever be that "Lyrical". He invites me over and I Destroy damn near every beat on 45-King's "Breakmania 1". He waits for Mike to get home to introduce me to him. And once I showed Mike my skills, the seed was planted !
Me and Mike were the "Money And Muscle" behind New Realm Records Inc. Ronnie played a huge part in everything that went on regarding New Realm."

Their second 12" came out the same year... an EP with 5 tracks untitled "Mind Power" which is the lead single, "MOFA", "Be Divine", "M.S.E.I.N.A.S" and "Uncharted Parts"

In terms of production, everything was done by Aftamaf. You can also listen to other Emcees affiliated with Blank Fasiz on this EP : Raidge features on "MOFA" and on "Uncharted Parts", and J.B & Sev Statik feature on "Be Divine". 

How did the connection happen with Raidge ? 

Aftamaf : "Raidge is part of our "Super-Titan-Team" D.U.N.A.T. (Da-Unknown Nife Assassin Terrorists). KWE introduced me to him at a place called AS220 which held Open Mics. Raidge single-handedly took command of the whole place! From that day on he rolled with me and KWE, and has been our Brother ever since. Sev Static and J.B. are from Albany New York. I believe Ronnie and Mike Franco connected with Sev-Static from Internet-Interactions. Needless to say, Sev and J.B. came to Rhode Island to meet us, kick it, and make music. An experience I'll always remember, those Brothers were very peaceful and respectful gentlemen, the vibe was "Authentic".  "

Raidge, could you give more info about you ? 

Raidge : "I'm from Providence RI, born and raised in Roger Williams Project, South side then West end in my teens...Wiggins Village. I was originally a human beatbox in the early 80s and I started emceeing in the late 80s, but the love of music is a family thing... I was in a music magnet program as a freshman in high school."

How did everything start for you ? 

Raidge : "I fell into hip-hop with the first joint I ever heard, which was the adventures of super rhymes.. then Kurtis Blow. I was in it since... this was the beginnings of rap music.. dirty rap by blowfly. I started beatboxing when Fatboys came out.. I started writing after Rakim dropped "My Melody"... "

How did you meet Kwe & Aftamaf ? 

Raidge : "Before D.U.N.A.T, I was the beatbox for a group called T.O.C. (Touch Of Class) then I started writing my own lyrics.. created the name Raidge and wrote a concept album called The Bloodbook.. I was a solo artist. I went to Jamaica Queens and linked with a producer named Sunroof Top who was formerly a part of a group signed to Polygram in the early days called Black & Gold. We recorded a demo for The Bloodbook at Power Play Studios in 92-93. Ended up doing some time in 93.. dumb shit.. when I got out I was discouraged from music for awhile till I linked with KWE at AS220 he introduced me to Aftamaf then it was a wrap!
When I recorded the demo in 93, we shopped it and I was offered a 1 album deal with a stipulation to change my lyrics and pose like I was from NY.. I declined.. that’s was the discouraging factor..
I no longer have that music... The Bloodbook is mythical at this point.. lol "

Third and last 12" dropped by the group in 1999 ... "We Came To Blaze", still released on New Realm Records, Inc. 

All the tracks were produced by Aftamaf except "Underground Will Rise" produced by a cat named Misfit. A new batch of emcees are featuring on this wax... Ambishun, Believa, I.B. Da Soul, Troop Raw, Rap Skal & 5-lba of Bless, all members of D.U.N.A.T. 

Could you give me more info about the different emcees featuring on "We Came To Blaze" ? 

Aftamaf : "Ambishun went to school with me, a school called the "Junction". We connected because he was driving around with his friends looking for "Trees". I was on the Cranston St. you know doing my thang, I hop up in the car and there he is. We exchanged numbers and re-connect and he clings to me like glue. Now mind you, this kid never had any notion of being any kind of performing Artist. He was around me, KWE, and Raidge, and just one day put some pen to the paper, with my guidance, started to find some inspiration. Me and Troop went to Perry Middle School together. Troop was dope since 1992.  He was the nicest White Boy around with Lyrics. So I had to make him part of the D.U.N.A.T.  Me and Believer went to Hope High School together but he ended up connecting with I.B. Da-Soul. They're both originally from Jamaica. Me and I.B. was putting in some work and one day he shows up with Believer, and Boom, we just made it happen!! Rap Skal grew up on the South Side of Providence. So him 5lb.s of Bless, were the South Side "Heavy-Hitters" when it came to "Spitting"!  Me and 5lb.s of Bless was in 6th grade together at a school named West Broadway. He use to Beat-Box for me, and I would kick original rhymes. But what I'm not going to forget to mention is my Cousin M.I.S.F.I.T. Me I Self For Infinite Time / Master Of The Rhyme. He gave me the inspiration to always want to take it to the next level. Due to the fact music runs in our Family, my older brother Dave, Cousin M.I.S.F.I.T. and his oldest brother Mark "Mars-Rock" Stephens. I always had some "Big-Shoes To Fill" if you know what I mean? "

Could you talk about the positive message in your lyrics ?

Aftamaf : "Yes, we've got enlightened through "Mind-Elevation" and through Our Craft metamorphosize into the True And Living Kings We Are."

The three 12-inches were released between 1997 and 1999. Why is there no official album ? What happened ?

Aftamaf : "We split up, there was slacking with the "Team", and I started using cocaine and alcohol excessively..."

Mad Props to Aftamaf, KWE, Raidge, Bee and the B2DS Fam !!