Lewisham born Mally Malcz is determined to make an impact on the UK hip hop scene in 2008. The two men behind the project, Mally Malcz and producer Joas put all of their spare time into putting together the album, and claim to provide the audience with some key elements that are lacking from the UK scene. Namely musical diversity and originality.
Tracks from the album have already been getting heavy rotation on pirate radio – Rinse FM’s DJ Interlude being one of Mally’s most influential supporters.
Mally also received critical acclaim for his authorised bootleg of Lily Allen’s track ‘Littlest Things’, with his interpretation entitled ‘Dreams’. And more recently, the title track ‘Under the Influence’ was nominated at the Global Marijuana Music Awards.
Now that the entire project is complete, the Mally Malcz machine is working at full steam, and seems keen to find out what people think of his first solo project.
Well, we’re all looking forward to your forthcoming album, Under the Influence. What can we expect?
Mally Malcz: You can expect to hear an album like no other on your CD shelf. There’s a track on there for everyone. Expect at least one of them to be ringing around in you head for longer than you wish. So far the feedback has been big, but it’s gonna be good to see how the wider public takes my material.
Can you tell us a little bit more about the concept of the album? What was your inspiration?
Mally Malcz: I’m quite a heavy smoker. It'll be first thing in the morning for breakfast, and just before I hit the pillow at night; so I’m pretty much under the influence all the time – especially when I’m expressing my thoughts, through writing. These tracks are influenced by the life I live.
We’re all influenced by things. That’s why everyone can relate to what I’m saying on this album.
Your album is all about influences, so do you ever worry about how your lyrics might be interpreted, and how it might influence your listeners?
Mally Malcz: Well if it makes them more like me, the world would become a better place.
What are your favourite tracks on the album and why?
Mally Malcz: Track called ‘Get High’, it's a nice laid back track, a must have for every weed bunner’s CD collection.
There’s also ‘Train Strain’, being one of the first tunes me and Joas put together. It got a big response from those that have heard it; we also had the most joke recording the choruses.
Have you got more videos on the way?
Mally Malcz: We've done some shooting for a track called ‘Why’ (also on the Under the Influence album) I've had a sneak preview and it's looking a lot. Keep your eyes peeled on the Myspace, Youtube and Channel U.
We’re also looking at shooting videos for ‘Our Gaff’, ‘Mally Malcz’ and as many of them as we can really.
What made you want to become a rapper?
Mally Malcz: My sister, when she told me I had a crap singing voice.
How hard is it to be an unsigned artist with the UK music industry the way that it is right now?
Mally Malcz: It can be quite frustrating, though nowadays we have TV stations like Channel U and digital radio like 1Xtra giving UK artists airtime and the chance of a little extra recognition.
I believe ‘come consistently with the quality material if you have it, and you won't be denied’.
We also obviously have sites like Myspace now so you can deal with any fans / customers you may have. The only way is up, stay positive.
Do people ever compare you to other artists?
Mally Malcz: No, not really. But some have said my voice is similar to Dizzee Rascal! But our music isn’t really the same so does that count?
What are your musical influences and why?
Mally Malcz: I’d say my Mum’s music collection of tapes was probably the biggest musical influence on me. She listens to all genres of music from Shabba to Pink Floyd; The Osmonds, Louis Armstrong, Prince and many others.
What’s your favourite tune of all time?
Mally Malcz: As a Liverpool fan it's got to be Jerry and the Pacemakers (You'll Never Walk Alone). Big tune!!!
If you could perform along-side any artist, who would it be?
Mally Malcz: If it’s living or dead, it would be Biggie Smalls. Standard. Do I need to explain why?
In your music you talk about society and highlight its problems. What in your opinion is wrong with this country?
Mally Malcz: We arse-lick too much, trying too keep the whole world happy. Meanwhile, there’s a load of unhappy people over here, living in poverty and with stress – over-looked by the powers that be.
What really gets on your nerves?
Mally Malcz: People who borrow and don't return.
And what’s your idea of happiness?
Mally Malcz: A private party with some Playboy bunnies…
You seem to have a bit of an eye for the ladies. Who’s your ideal woman?
Mally Malcz: That'd be a bit of Kelly Brooke and a little of Denise Van Outen. Mixed with some Jennifer Lopez.
What are your views on the British hip hop scene at the moment?
Mally Malcz: It's growing by the day. Almost every kid now has a few bars, and the levels have taken a massive step over the last couple of years. A lot of good things are happening and it's an exciting place too be for any hip hop fan. UK all the way!
So, you have made your first album. Where are you planning to do next? What's your main goal in this game?
Mally Malcz: First off we'll be promoting this album as much as we can via gigs the net, radio sets, videos, selling on the road, word of mouth etc.
I also plan to start writing for my second album in the coming months. My aim in the game is to retire before I’m 40 with a big stash of cash, 5 albums and a chick for each night of the week.
If you were an ice cream, what flavour would you be and why?
Mally Malcz: Well it wouldn't be vanilla ice. I'd have to go with Lemon ice – colourful and refreshing.
Mally’s album ‘Under The Influence’ is out now. Available from all ‘good’ stockists (which are listed on his web-site).
Information on the impending release of his latest video, and live performances can be found on his Myspace page.
By: Tom Atkinson