by Alex P80 Parks
Vinyl Villain and I originally linked up a few weeks back and discussed getting together to see what he’s got cooking. Last week he reached out and offered me a glimpse into the mixing of 2 brand new tracks he’s got coming out. He told me to come by Jon Glass’ studio to check out the product.
Glasshouse studios is owned and operated by Jon Glass in Beverly MA. It occupies a seemingly unassuming garage space down by the Marina next to the shoreline. Inside the space, however, is packed with crates of vinyl, couches that just pull you in and all the tools and equipment needed to operate a studio capable of supporting a variety of types of music.
When I arrived there, an event was just ending and I was warmly greeted by Jon Glass and Vinyl Villain. They both introduced me to some local cats there for the event and I immediately felt at ease in the studio.
Villain had invited me to the lab to sit in while Jon mixed the 2 new singles he produced. The first single was by Detroit’s Nolan the Ninja:
The track begins with a sample from The Departed which features an ice cold Jack Nicholson quote. Villain highlights Nolan’s staccato flow with a sawing accordion along with organs and layers some ticks and boom appropriately. If your local mafioso ristorante played hip hop during dinner, this would be the jam. Nolan flexes his wordplay and machine gun bars while Villain shines with his versatility on production.
The second Vinyl Villain produced joint was “Heist-a-fella” by Sauce Heist and Ty Da Dale Heist:
A quote from The Wire pulls you into the track as Vinyl Villain lays down a grimy beat with a sinister effect for the Heist brothers to murk over. Ty Da Dale has some sharp rhymes and almost sounds like Killa Cam in his prime on a few bars. Sauce brings his usual brand of fiery yet smooth NY street rap. Sauce has quietly established himself as one of the more consistent underground lyricists lately.
Glass did his thing with ease and proficiency. He would highlight certain aspects he felt needed to be emphasized and Villain gave him some feedback. Villain let Jon do his thing, which is make an already dope track sound that much better.
Throughout the course of mixing while Jon was working his magic, Villain and I chopped it up about artists he’d sent beats to, dudes he’s got tracks in the works with and artists that he’s really feeling at the moment. He cited AnkhleJohn as an artist who is on top of his game. I was able to pry out of Vinyl Villain that he has an upcoming project with Sauce Heist in the works. He also mentioned that he and AnkhleJohn have a new EP in the works; one with a grand, cinematic vision. This follows up Ankh-nasty, released last month, which featured 2 Vinyl Villain produced tracks.
Not all secrets can be divulged though. Villain has some projects in the works and others he’s begun that fans are just going to have wait for and hear when they drop. Though he has no plans to release his own album yet, Villain says “it will happen” in the near future, “hopefully this year.”
We joked that his catchphrase has become: “Music to extort small businesses by.” He credits CodeNine for bestowing that descriptor on his work. I suggested that be the title of his full length album. Now I’m starting to think that he should remove the word “small.” There’s nothing small about Vinyl Villain’s expanding resume and Rolodex of clients.
After Villain’s 2 tracks were mixed, he cue’d up an obscure jazz sample to mess with. He played it a few times and Jon was loving it. Jon flipped it and just started chopping it up and was “hearing” it all come together as he plucked the pieces apart and then placed them carefully together, adding other elements along the way.
Jon added some drum fills and a spaced-out sax loop to drift your head right into the clouds.
And then played around and added in some synth for a West-coast type of flavor:
This track ended up extremely dope in such a short flip. Jon is a true professional and a talented musician along with being a skilled producer and mixing engineer. Excited to hear if this track comes to fruition and excited for whatever Jon has next in store.
Both Jon Glass and Vinyl Villain have got plenty more gas in the tank to keep banging out great hip hop. Keep your ears open for more from both of these talented cats.
this is just one chapter..
The saga continues…