Microphone Misfitz Travel to Outer Space on New Album and Comic Book
Written by Vocalo Radio on November 14, 2019
Chicago’s dynamic hip-hop crew The Microphone Misfitz will debut their fourth album and comic book combo “Escape from Babylon Vol. 4” at Pocket Con this weekend.
“Escape from Babylon” is a satirical action adventure comic series that takes the conspiracy theories about the way the music business is run and puts them into a very literal context. Members Ray of Light, Mel L., and D-Nick stopped by the studio to fill us in on what to expect from the new chapter in their Babylon saga.
You’ve been to China since the last time we spoke. Is hip-hop really banned there?
Yes, United States hip-hop is banned in China.
How do you even enforce something like that?
They have a very, very strict communist republic. That’s just how it is over there, even social media is banned and blocked. So we didn’t know that we had such a big fan base in mainland China until we got to perform at the festival. You’re performing in what looks like a soccer stadium.
Did you have to tell them you’re Canadian or something?
So the caveat is, they don’t consider what we do as hip-hop. They consider Top 40 hip-hop, which isn’t a diss to that stuff. What they classify us as is b-boy or b-girl music or we’re old school hip-hop. For them, that’s a different genre. When we arrived there, it was mad hip-hop on the streets, there were people outside with the boom boxes rockin’. There’s a lot of nuances and a lot of things that we had to work around, but we got government approval and they let us come over.
Did you end up learning just as much as you ended up teaching these folks?
They got some hip-hoppers over there who write and make their own music so we were vibing out with some of their artists.
Let’s get into your new album and the comic book. Why is the marriage of those two art forms attractive to Microphone Misfitz?
It works on all levels. It’s artistically fun for us. It’s lucrative for us, I’d be fronting if I said it wasn’t. Walt Disney’s been dead forever, but Mickey Mouse is still here kicking. So we too get to immortalize ourselves and our collaborators in comic book form. This book will be here long after we’re gone. A lot of times as artists it’s hard to keep having fun because of the constraints and the weighing down from the music form. You know, it’s just for fun.
Let’s catch up, where are we at this point in the “Escape from Babylon” saga?
We’re trying to prevent an evil entity that created our arch-nemesis Autotune from manufacturing more Autotunes in space. So the Misfitz go to outer space! We’re joined sonically and visually by Mega Ran, our collaborator, good friend, and tour buddy. He makes his comic book debut here.
Talk to me about Pocket Con. I love that there’s so many comic book fans in Chicago that the city felt that they needed another convention to accommodate all these folks.
We’ve been doing Pocket Con since day one. It’s always been a beautiful experience, the mission and the mission statement. This year, I’m looking forward to performing again with our students. They’ve gotten so big and a lot of them are about to age out of the program. Pocket Con has gotten to watch them grow. It’s dope to have all of this in one space for kids to see and understand the different avenues where music, art, comics, video games, and cosplay meet. And it’s free and all ages!
More info on Pocket Con 2019 here
Visit Microphone Misfitz’s website
Interview edited for length and clarity by Olivia Cerza
Audio produced by Fyodor Sakhnovski
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