Interview With Killa Kela
HEAVYWEIGHT BEATBOXER WITH A SCRATCHABLE, MULTI-CHANNEL LARYNX
Killa Kela (who has a real name, but let’s not ruin the mystique in the first line) is a beatboxer of some repute. After learning his trade in his teens with the 360 Physicals crew, he was picked up by DJ Vadim after sending him a tape of his unquestionable skills. His subsequent first release was a mixtape (Antistatic Mouthwash) with Mr. Thing and since then Killa Kela has been a member of The Isolationists, Rock Steady Crew and The Scratch Perverts. He is considered to be one of the best beatboxers in the world and his live act incorporates drum and bass, electro and hip-hop stylings, singing, MCing, vocal scratching and imitations of popular songs. He calls his technique multivocalism – a term coined by longtime artwork collaborator Mark Splinter. As if to audibly illustrate, he’s recorded this short skit exclusively us:
Following on from sharing a stage with artists such as Pharell, Prince, Negative Narrative uber-darlings Super Furry Animals and De La Soul, and recording with Roots Manuva, Neneh Cherry and a whole host of other luminaries, Killa Kela has recently announced a new collaborative EP (Crowd Control) with France’s premier beatboxer Eklips (check out his beatboxed four minute history of hip-hop here). As an introduction to the collaboration and the EP (which is out in October), Killa Kela and Eklips (that’s them both pictured in the profile photo) recently hit the streets of East London on a beatbox pub-crawl that traversed Brick Lane. Ambushing clubs, venues and bars with only two microphones (or mics, as I believe they are referred to on ‘de street’) they played six shows and documented them in a short film called The Brick Lane Project (which you can see here).
Killa Kela has kindly donated a free track for you all to download. It’s called Virus, will be on the EP, has got WORLD PREMIERE written all over it, and is attainable by simply clicking here with your tetchy, itchy finger. You’ll be wanting to check out the snaps Killa Kela took for us below too. Rec-rec-rec-rec-recognise. Or something.