After.Words
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After.Words

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"Video Review"

http://eastofla.com/index.php?s=After.Words&x=11&y=6 - East of L.A. reviews After.Words "Maybe" video


"Mid Tempo Thursday is back"

http://blog.pennlive.com/afterdark/2009/05/midtempo_thursdays_returns_to.html - Penn Live


"Penn Live covers MAYBE album/video release party"

http://www.pennlive.com/entertainment/index.ssf/2009/01/go_afterwords_at_spy_club_satu.html - Penn Live


"After.Words Review"

http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendId=43804614&blogId=486443385 - Mode Magazine


"STLP MixTape Vol. One"

Bangin,Bangin, Bangin! That describes this mixtape that has actual mixing on it. Just released by STLP records, an imprint out of Harrisburg, PA, it’s straight dopalicious. Trust me when I say you’ll be bumpin this all week long. This mix features remix versions to a grip of songs form STLP artists like Pluto, WindCHILL, Artists Over Industry, El *A* Kwents , Apollo’s Sun and the Visionaries type megagroup After Words (Artists Over Industry,Apollo’s Sun,El*A*Kwents) and it is mixed superbly by Gard from Artist Over Industry. This is some true underground real Hip Hop sh*t. The Northeast is definitely making it’s presence known in the Hip Hop world with this right here. - EastofLA.com


"Go After.Words at Spy Club Saturday"

Harrisburg hip-hop supergroup After.Words celebrate the official release and video premiere of "Maybe," the lead single from their debut album Before the War, Saturday night at the Spy Club.Doors open at 10 p.m. with performances by After.Words, The Avengers and Repeat Offenders set to begin at 10:30 p.m. Admission is $10 ahead of time, $15 day of.


Entry includes a newly-pressed copy of the "Maybe" maxi-single.After.Words might be a new name on the Harrisburg hip-hop scene but it's members are very familiar, consisting of local staples Artists Over Industry, El*A*Kwents and Apollo's Sun.After hosting the Midtown Tavern's popular MidTempo Thursdays series during much of 2008, this hard-working, veritable family of musicians has upped their ambition and opened STLP Studios, a professional venue offering recording, mixing, mastering, production, short-run CD duplication and more.The After.Words project will be the first fruit from their labor.


This week, I received a tour of this impressive facility as well as a quick sneak preview of the "Maybe" video.The video, shot on location in Harrisburg, brought back fond memories of watching The Ocean Blue's "Drifting and Falling" video years back.


It's great to see Central Pa. so lovingly reproduced onscreen.Below is After.Words' first video, "GrassRoots," which also features Harrisburg sights and sounds. - Michael Sedor/PennLive.com


"Artists Over Industry in Fly Magazine."

AOI – along with a handful of other artists, friends and collaborators – make up an outpost of vibrant underground hip-hop with its nexus in the Harrisburg area. If those that are doing it for the love are truly few and far between, then WindchILL must have been in the right place at the right time to have found such kindred spirits to partner with.

For those uninitiated into the world of underground hip-hop, you can check your preconceptions at the door. Here, misogyny, drug-dealing and gang-banging braggadocio are replaced with free-form self-examination, political commentary, psychedelic imagination and even an MC-versus-MC debate about the existence and nature of God.

After a half-decade of DJs and MCs coming and going under the AOI umbrella, the group now has three or four years of constancy and growth under its belt as the focused trio that it is now. Referring to the time in 2004 when this current lineup solidified, WindchILL says glowingly, “It’s the three that it always should have been. The last three years have just been smooth sailing. Ever since this trio got together, it’s been unbelievable.”

Inkwell (which I think is one of the most interesting MC monikers since Dr. Octagon and MF Doom) reflects on those early days often.

“Each and every time we take the stage and I see the enjoyment on the audience’s faces,” he explains, “I think back to where it all came from: Just three kids from Enola drinking 40s in my parents’ basement, recording on a four-track and burning our own CDs. Each show we do defies the odds.”

The members’ mutual loyalty is so cemented that WindchILL boldly claims, “That’s AOI. It will forever stay that way.” It affords all of them the confidence to strike out on their own without risk of fracture or ego-bruising. After two collaborative Artists Over Industry releases in as many years, both WindchILL and Inkwell have released solo albums. Fly’s own Dugan Nash summed up his assessment of Inkwell’s Better or Different succinctly: “Inkwell’s blunted-out tales and anxious, discontented self-reflection are nicely supported by beats from various producers that know when to shine and when to stay out of the way.”

About WindchILL’s debut, Nash wrote, “WindchILL’s LP boldly declares, ‘I have arrived…’ Indeed, he has. … He has an authoritative command of his intelligent and thoughtful lyrics.”

The standout moments on the two solo albums are the perfunctory “collabo” tracks, on which the MCs provide guest rhymes for each other’s songs, confirming WindchILL’s assertion that AOI’s lineup is perfect and permanent. These tracks brim with energy as they trade rhymes and lines with a synergy that can only be the fruit of partnership. Meanwhile, Gard has been turning up on countless hip-hop tracks from rappers throughout this self-made scene.

WindchILL explains how his love of music took hold early on. “Dad was an avid record collector. He had mountains and mountains of records, and it was only a matter of time before I learned how to use the record player,” he says. “He would come downstairs in the middle of the night and I’d be in his den with headphones on listening to, like, Aerosmith records and Jimi Hendrix.”
Fast-forward to high school, where, as WindchILL explains, music was part of teenage emotional survival. “I mean, a Walkman was a necessity for school. It was my release. After every class to the next class: Walkman on.”

After becoming a devotee of early ’90s gangsta rap, WindchILL – admittedly an observer looking in on a life that was foreign from his own – was given a whole new perspective upon hearing the thoughtful, confessional and personal rhymes of Nas on the classic Illmatic. He says, “[Nas] would rhyme about the way he felt about things, rather than exact instances that he went through.” Then Gang Starr introduced the idea of applying imagination to the reality of those experiences.

The final influential piece of the puzzle came from the legendary MC who not only reigned as a rapper from the notorious Southern California gangsta scene, but also became known for his thoughtful, poetic, reality-based lyrics. “Tupac was my influence to not be afraid to put my personal experiences down,” says WindchILL.
Gard’s influences have had a similar trajectory. He says, “I first remember listening to Tupac, Biggie, Dr. Dre. But my biggest hip-hop influences came when I was 19 and a friend of mine introduced me to the underground hip-hop scene. … Right after that, I bought my first beat machine and started making beats and playing my guitar to them.”

These days, the group’s tastes have expanded and evolved, as has the whole genre. AOI’s current collective influences include a list of semi-obscure artists (Jedi Mind Tricks, Brother Ali, Atmosphere) that WindchILL says are “just making a living doing what they gotta do. At the end of the day, they don’t have to sell out or be someone they’re not. They are who they are and they are good at it.”

Inkwell, who employs a degree in philosophy in his mind-bendingly trippy rhymes, answers the question of influences by describing a process and a stage of life that led him to where he is today artistically. “I was 20, at which point I hit a rough patch in my life, or, more esoterically, an existential crisis. I imagine it’s what people describe as a midlife crisis, but mine was slightly younger,” he explains. “I was questioning everything in my life – love, religion, adherence to societal standards. With all these questions swirling erratically in my head, I sought an outlet. My writing not only alleviated the inherent stress, it focused my frantic cerebral pulses.”

The age of the Internet has hit the music business hard in the wallet. However, for underground hip-hop musicians, it has blown open a global subculture. For example, WindchILL’s album features beats that are made by producers in NYC, Switzerland and the UK. For him, the whole process begins there. He says, “The beat has to totally move me inside to where I want to write. Basically, my job as an MC, to me, is to interpret what this song is trying to communicate.” A block-rocking beat can be huge and danceable, but an album full of meaningless party rap or violence over these beats is instantly forgettable. AOI’s songs cover a wide emotional range, where each song has a narrative, and each narrative has an intimate relationship with the beat.

While it’s clear that art comes first for these artists, the members of AOI do not take the business side of things lightly. They have formed their own record label, STLP, as a means of releasing their own albums, as well as those of other hip-hop artists, further cementing their status as shrewd kingpins – albeit humble ones – in the local hip-hop scene.

Standing outside the Midtown in Harrisburg on a “Mid-Tempo Thursday,” WinchILL says, as if to assure me that business is never far from his mind, “No bullshit, man! Right now, I got my book bag, [and it’s like an] underground hip-hop pack. I got CDs, stickers, business cards. I got markers, Sharpies, rubber bands. I got no books, but I got posters up in there ready to go, man.”

AOI continues to confidently work towards the restoration of real hip-hop. One album (solo or otherwise), one hot track, one show at a time, WindchILL, Inkwell and Gard are pursuing their goals with a sense of destiny. WindchILL says, “I don’t really believe in coincidence or anything like that. I believe that hip-hop, and music in general, needs a revolution.” - Keith Wilson/Fly Magazine


Discography

After.Words - Maybe Maxi-Single [2008]
El*A*Kwents - Rex 84 EP [2008]
Wellis Fool - Better or Different [2008]
Apollo's Sun - Rust EP [2007]
windchILL - I Have Arrived [2007]
Apollo's Sun - The Happy Masochist EP [2006]
Artists Over Industry - Leaps & Bounds [2006]
Artists Over Industry - Research & Development [2004]
El*A*Kwents - Lucid [2004]

Photos

Bio

Harrisburg based imprint, STLP, proudly presents the formation of its newest hip hop group: After.Words. Consisting of emcees Wellis Fool of A.O.I, El*A*Kwents, windchILL of A.O.I., and Apollo's Sun, After.Words is the culmination of lyricists sharing similiar ideas and morals. The final vertebrae completing After.Words' spine come in the form of multi-talented DJ/Musician: Dj Gard of A.O.I. Each individual of After.Words has extensive experience in their respective realm of work and are all seasoned performers on the live show circuit. Each artist in After.Words has traveled well beyond Pennsylvania's borders to show their lyrical prowess on stage and have opened for national recording acts such as: Hieroglyphics, The Pharcyde, Krs-One, Method Man, Masta Killa, Louis Logic, and Inspectah Deck. After.Words hosts a solid rock foundation, broken down into individual stones all represented by the artists who make up the group.

Wellis Fool contributes his no holds barred, socially aware lyrics with his own unique style of production while also overseeing artistic design of the After.Words project. New Hampshire bred El*A*Kwents offers a politically charged arsenal of songwriting skills and third eye perspectives to the collective. Emcee windchILL's aggressive lyrics and explosive live performances solidify After.Words stance as a group on a mission. Apollo's Sun brings his own unique blend of heart felt poetry and intense stage presence to the After.Words table. Finally, the web of After.Words is threaded together by DJ Gard who handles a bulk of the group's engineering duties. In addition to his menacing studio abilities, Gard is the DJ for After.Words, creating the backdrop for the group during live performances. Beside ravaging songs together, After.Words prides themselves in their abilities to remain self efficient, rarely looking outside of their circle to create, distribute, and promote their sonic creations.

After.Words is a group with a purpose, a synchronized brain of like minded artists fed up with the current state of hip hop. While synthetic "rappers" cater to ignorance, After.Words stands firm in their decision to create music to further the mind without the influence of society's devious hands.

To date all the members of After.Words have released 8 albums combined, all of which were released on STLP. After.Words released their lead single "Maybe" on January 17th 2009. It was also accompanied with a video that has garnered much success. On March 14th After.Words took the final step and released their full length cd entitled "Before the War". It features production from all ends of the earth including, Switzerland, Romania, Germany, Canada, and the United States. Directly following the release After.Words hit the road on tour. They hit 8 different cities in the north east United States in 12 days. They performed with the likes of Louis Logic(Fat Beats), Reef the Lost Cauze(Army of the Pharaohs), King Magnetic(Army of the Pharaohs) and many more.

After.Words has a few missions in mind. One is to entertain the other is to enlighten. In a world where the truth is held captive out of the public eye, After.Words aims to shed light on those truths. There weapons of choice are mind numbing rhymes, top notch production, and an unmatched stage intensity.