The Optimen release O2 Breath Control at the Moonbar on Thursday.
Emerging local hip-hop outfit the Optimen are off to a flying start, with their first EP (8 tracks and all) out already. Not bad for a group who's only been together for a year. I had a chat to MC Sammsonite ‘bout the roots of the group and discovered they’re complete smartarses. Takes all folk, really.
When did The Optimen form? How did you all meet?
“Whilst The Optimen members (Sammsonite, Datsun and K-west) attended high-schools in the same local area, we only met for the first time standing in line for Fleetwood Mac tickets. On the day, as we recall, it was raining quite heavily, and we (the three Emcees) took shelter under a devoted fan's Stevie Nicks umbrella where we huddled to share warmth. The rest, as they say, is history.”
Describe the band - Who plays what and why?
“The Optimen comprises 6 members (when fully assembled), which utilizes the talent of three emcees and three deejays. The emcees (Sammsonite, Datsun and K-west) are at the core of what the group does. They have (at this stage) produced all of the beats and have written all of the lyrics (naturally), while the expertise of the Terntable Jediz (DJs Sheep and Kenny), have been added in when the product is towards being completed. DJ Damage (Terntable Jediz) did not feature on the EP but will definitely appear on the full length CD release, later in the year. The Jediz may also make more contributions towards the production side of recording on future releases.”
Where did you record your EP?
“The entire EP was recorded at the Space Ghos' Lab (Big shout out to the Space Ghos' and his canine companion Space Mutt. The beats on the O2: Breath Control EP are predominantly produced under the creative control/influence of Sammsonite, with contributions also being made by Datsun and K-west. However, all bass kicks were the product of Def Leppard's one-armed drummer Rick Allen. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Rick once again for his assistance with recording this EP. Nice of him to lend a hand!”
What can audiences expect from an Optimen show?
“I really loved this show! The writing is fantastic. Original, funny, mind-expanding. The acting is great. Ken and Andy are both charming and funny (not to mention very attractive). And the supporting cast is wonderful. If you can see only one show, see the Ken and Andy show. If you can see only two shows, see the Ken and Andy show twice. Seriously, it's great. I couldn't recommend it any higher.”