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Q&A with REMI

Melbourne hip-hop duo REMI head out across the country with their sophomore album Divas and Demons and stop by the Top End in November.

By Chelsea Heaney.

It’s been two years since their critically acclaimed debut LP Raw X Infinity led to sell out gigs across Australia and Europe and an appearance at this year’s Splendour in the Grass. The guys took a moment to chat to Off The Leash about their music and influences before they head off on their national tour.

You’ve both had some great collaborations with other artists recently. What has it been like to work with this variety of musicians?

REMI: I think collaboration is essential for me – pretty much every artist I love has done their best work in collaboration with another. It's the fastest way to grow as an artist, and it's the most fun. 

JUSTIN: As a drummer first, I've always had to ‘collaborate’ with the other musicians, so it's only natural for me to work with other artists. They always bring something to the table that I would never have thought of, which is what I love about it. I’m always trying to learn from the people we collab with, and it’s interesting to see how different people play their instruments, or come up with the vocal parts.

What was your first-loved hip-hop or RnB record?

REMI: The first RnB record I remember buying was 8701 by Usher. Hip-hop wise it was The Hip-Hop Collection Volume 1. I remember listening to ‘No Diggity’, ‘Ms. Jackson’ and ‘California Love’ on repeat until I started diversifying my hip-hop. 

JUSTIN: The first CD I loved and bought was Janet Jackson’s Rhythm Nation 1814. I played it non-stop as a kid in grade five.

Your new album Divas and Demons explores issues of race, relationship breakdowns and challenges faced as artists – how does it feel to create music that is relatively personal? 

REMI: All the music we've ever released has been from personal experience, because it's the only way we know how. This record was no different; it was just where my brain was at the time. It can be hard to make, but it’s not hard to release when you've got fans like ours. They definitely empower us, no doubt.

Have you guys been to Darwin before? 

REMI: We have and we love it. The people are real and they show love – too many crocs though.

Fri 25 Nov, 7.30pm | Railway Club | $25 | remikolawole.com

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