Local hip-hop Product looks to Break Out
Standing in the back of In Orbit Thrift Boutique’s record section, Harrison Platz had Frank Zappa’s “Phi Zappa Krapp” poster hanging over him. While seeing a grown man completely naked on a toilet would elicit a response from most people, instead there was silence. Platz continued to flip through the records unfazed and looked up at me to ask, “Do you like Funkadelic?”
That afternoon, Platz and I were just digging through records. Looking through records is a traditional past time for hip-hop artists. It’s the ultimate bonding experience between hip-hop heads.
An 18–year–old hip–hop artist from Kitchener known as ANML MTHR, a reference to the film Full Metal Jacket, it seems strange that he looks for inspiration in the heart of his city, in a shop across from city hall. Kitchener has never been known for its local hip-hop culture, but Platz is not your typical hip-hop artist.
Like the portrayal of Zappa in the infamous poster, Platz is upfront, real, relaxed, and funny. His music is who he is. There’s no separation between the image in his music and who he is on a personal level.
“My content is different from a lot of mainstream hip hop,” Platz explained. “It might be the reason why my other projects haven’t worked out.
“You really can’t rap about street tales from Kitchener. I’m a firm believer in rapping about what you can back up. I mean, it’s cool to write about rapping but it needs to mean something. I always try to be genuine.”
Platz’s aesthetic can be characterized to be Canadian, highly influenced by golden age era hip hop, like the current important players. Platz uses old school principles to create his art, a lot like fellow Canadian hip–hop artists Buck 65, Cadence Weapon, and Shad.
Like Buck 65, his flow is spoken word stylized, and his delivery is precise and emphatic. Platz’s similitude to Shad is in his wordplay, which is silly, erratic, and enjoyable from a comedic sense. His resemblance to Cadence Weapon lies in his long winded tangents, carrying concepts then switching on a whim.
His influences differ from his aesthetic, citing grittier, harder, slang obsessed New York emcee, GZA, of the infamous Wu-Tang Clan.
“I probably would say he’s one of my most revered emcees,” said Platz. “He would be dropping these really cool lines, and they would be layered. The first time you listen, it’s just dope rhymes. But then you delve into it and he’s dropping bombs.”
A lot like GZA, his lyricism is steeped in double references, entendres, and definition changing world play. While the way he tackles his subject matter and uses his tone can be fun, Platz is never afraid to use lyrical weight behind his rhymes.
He produces his own tracks, his production is even based in old school principles. Platz is a big advocate of using sampling in his production. It defines the music’s central aesthetic and its possibilities. “To me, sampling is hip–hop,” said Platz.
Platz is currently working on a five track EP, to be titled soon. Platz plans on releasing the EP through cassettes. He wants to get physical copies in the hands of potential listeners and eventually play shows in Kitchener.
But you can check out his music out through SoundCloud at http://soundcloud.com/anmlmthr.