Premonition
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Premonition

New York City, New York, United States

New York City, New York, United States
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"Adam Bernard's Artist of the Week"

The first time I heard Premonition was the remix to “Double Time” that was on the Spills & Jesse Abraham album Alphabutter. The song featured half a dozen of NY’s finest and when Premonition’s verse came on my initial reaction was “damn, who’s the dude with the deep-ass voice of God?” Then I started listening to his lyrics and thought “damn, the voice of God has some serious skills!” Over the next few months I’d run into Premonition at a number of shows and find that in addition to being able to shine on a track he can also rock a mic live. A truly passionate emcee, this week I caught up with Premonition to find out more about that passion, who’s going to end up on his future tour bus, and his strange connection with comedian Judah Freidlander.

Adam Bernard: Let’s start with a background check: where are you from, when and how did your path in music start, and how did you end up in the position you’re in today?
Premonition: My background in music extends to a very young age, probably around age nine when an older kid in my neighborhood gave me a cassette of 36 Chambers, which I hid from my mother successfully for years. The album changed my life. I was a nine year old white kid in the burbs reciting every quip from the Genius and every drunken rambling from ODB. From then on I basically did everything possible to find out more about hip-hop as a whole. I was born and raised in a pretty average suburb outside of Philly. I collected vinyl and taught myself how to make beats at about 16. I ran with my mellow Dark Merlin and formed a crew called Central Intelligence, which is still intact with a third member, Nuisance. We’re dropping an album this summer titled Beautiful Dystopia. Together we stole records from yard sales and practiced our skills over blunts and every now and then drank a whole lot of booze and went down to Philly to catch whoever was coming into town and, of course, jumped in the cypher! I recorded semi-seriously during college while I "studied" journalism and PR. We were lucky enough to able to open up for some dope cats that came through during that period, like Killah Priest, C-Rayz Walz, Edo G, Slaine and Reef the Lost Cauze, but it wasn't until I graduated in 2008 that I realized I had to break out of the frame of the small town. I made the move to NY, more specifically, Washington Heights, with little more than two months rent and a new job. My most vivid memory was moving every item I owned on the train from 163rd and Amsterdam to Jefferson St. in Bushwick after a tumultuous two months, knowing one day I'd be telling this story to a journalist. I was determined to spread my name and work as hard as possible at this music. It was my first endeavor as a solo artist.

Adam Bernard: A premonition is a forewarning. Why is this a fitting name for you? What’s Premonition’s premonition?
Premonition: I’ve always loved the power of words. Certain words conjure up powerful connotations and I always felt Premonition was one. I was attracted to the fact that it is a forewarning. It may be good, it may be bad, but it is always right {laughs}. My Premonition is I will be successful, and in life or in death my music will eventually reach the ears of many many people.

Adam Bernard: I know after making guest appearances on a number of songs you’re now working on a solo album. What can you tell me about the album? What’s the vibe going to be? What can people expect from it?
Premonition: The album is a labor of love, without a doubt. It’s attempting to paint the portrait of myself to people who haven't the slightest clue about me. It’s part autobiographical, part braggadocio, part conceptual, but it never strays from the elements of hip-hop. Shouts to Willie Green for being the chief engineer, a hell of a producer, and a great dude. Shouts to Sleepwalkas, Cavalier, L.I.F.E Long, C-Rayz Walz and Dyalekt for blessing me on the guest spots. And mega-shouts to Willie Green, KO Beatz and Spills for the illest of the soundscapes. You can expect a front to back album that will captivate you with it’s personality and diversity in late June. The Build shall be built.

Adam Bernard: Other than painting a portrait of yourself, what do you want to make sure gets across on The Build?
Premonition: I want people to know how serious I take this art form. I want them to know that there isn't a second of my life that I take this culture for granted. It’s cliche to say, but it saved my life and I am beyond thankful to be a participant in it. I hold the elements of hip-hop very closely and I am having fun doing this! Oh yeah, and I truly believe my skills are world class. You will find something you like about this project, unless, of course, you currently have Nicki Minaj in heavy rotation.

Adam Bernard: Thankfully, that’s not an issue here. Something that’s always an issue, however, is the sheer number of emcees in NYC’s scene. In what ways do you feel you stand out?
Premonition: I’d say my versatility and consistency. I can write a narrative story, a personal song, stick to concepts, or just flip some intricate wordplay to get a response. I want to be known as one of the most consistent cats on the scene, not only in NY, but throughout hip-hop in general. This scene makes you check your ego. If you don't come with it at every show, open mic, or collabo, you can fall behind. My reputation is being built on the strength of my attention to this craft.

Adam Bernard: I know you don’t want the paparazzi finding you everywhere, but give me a few of your favorite homes away from home. Are they all music related?
Premonition: I love the parks in NY. They can really inspire you when you’re feeling uninspired. I enjoy watching people from all walks of life congregate on a daily basis in the greatest city in the world. And if all that fails, I enjoy dive bars.

Adam Bernard: Let’s say you’re world famous and touring the country. What goes on in the Premonition tour bus and with whom does it go on with?
Premonition: Oh man, well I would bring my crew Central from back home, without a doubt. Then I would probably bring some of the artists from my album because me and the Sleepwalkas can get it in, me and L.I.F.E. kick it outside of music quite frequently, Dy is my homeboy, Cav is just too ill and criminally underrated, Willie Green because he's my man, and C-Rayz Walz is the most unpredictable cat I’ve ever caused trouble with. Outside of that I’d bring the homies Jesse Abraham, Warren Britt and Spills vs feleciacruz because I got tons of love for them in and out of music. And you, Adam, because someone has to document the carnage. There would be a high level of shenanigans going on almost round the clock. We would channel the mayhem of 80's hair bands through indie hip-hop.

Adam Bernard: I’m looking forward to being on that bus! Finally, what’s this I hear about a weird connection with comedian Judah Freidlander?
Premonition: I just run into that cat on the randomness. A few times on St. Mark’s cuz I work and live near there, then randomly in my gym, trademark cheeky trucker hat and all. Good dude.
- Adam Bernard


"BirthPlace Magazine reviews "the build""

In our role as New York area hip hop journalists, one of our favorite missions is to bring to our e-pages those up-and-coming artists who are making a bit of noise in the underground circuit, who have a following and are simply creating good music. However, because of my clear bias toward presenting our region in the best hip hop light possible, I always fear the days when I have to review a body of work that simply is not up to par, and switch roles from avid supporter of those in the scene, to that of critic, and blast the efforts of a lackluster artist or poorly executed album.

Today is not one of those days.

If your first exposure to him is his debut album The Build, your first impression of Premonition will likely be taking note of his robust rap voice. By the time you get to the second and third impressions (that his flow is pretty agile, that he is very listenable), you will find yourself deep into the “Intro”, and, in my case, immediately pleased with the realization that perusing The Build won’t be a painful experience.

And it isn’t. Beats throughout are eclectically enjoyable, and despite multiple producers (Willie Green, KO Beatz, Spills and Premonition himself), there is an good marriage between variety and overall cohesion between tracks on the album which demonstrates that a thoughtful album construction process took place. To illustrate, The Build delivers three consecutive songs; eclectic, underground grime (“Prem”), a smoothed out lovey-dovey vibe (“Wait”) and a fun, bouncy track (“Fade”), each by a different producer, and through these 10:44, I felt no loss of synergy, nor did I feel the urge to fast-forward. Not a bad feat.

But wait! There’s more! An energetic, head-nodder, posse cut “Bum Rush” follows, featuring Sleepwalkas & DJ M-Tri, and yet another producer, finishing out this quadfecta. Nice.

Lyrically, Premonition is a solid lyricist, and clearly no dummy, dabbling in several topics with just the right a level of linguistic intellect: not too heavy, risking leaving listeners behind, and with enough smarts that allow subsequent listens to reveal more meaning. Good replay value for those who value lyrics.

In an interview with Adam Bernard, Premonition states, “I want people to know how serious I take this art form. I want them to know that there isn’t a second of my life that I take this culture for granted. It’s cliche to say, but it saved my life and I am beyond thankful to be a participant in it.” This solemn dedication to the craft is evident during The Build as nothing screamed “lackluster” or could be classified as a total throwaway.

Are there missteps? A couple. No train wrecks, but a couple of tracks failed to immediately or fully grasp attention. If this review was formatted utilizing our First Impressions system, where we review albums and mixtapes based solely on the first minute or so of the individual tracks, “Get Up” and “Tomorrow It’ll Change” might not have fared that well, but that’s more due to somewhat uninspiring arrangements. Not the end of the world by any means, and in fact, may only shine less bright due to the comparative luminosity of standouts like “The Writer’s Block,” “Nothing” and the aforementioned “Fade” and “Wait”.

There is a clear divide among the so-called “underground” in New York City hip hop. Thuggish street rap is still alive and well, as artists continue to aggressively document (or fabricate) the grimier side of urban life. But the circuit also bubbles with what we have often termed “progressive” hip hop, with anti-thug and occasionally anti-music-business attitudes, intelligence and experimentation, a slice of the genre that we feel is gaining momentum, in part, due to non-traditional media coverage, like ours, and the seeming increase in recent years of venues more willing to open their doors to hip hop that doesn’t exude unadulterated aggression.

This is a good sign for artists like Premonition, who, with The Build, firmly plants a foothold in this realm. While albums by artists in this lane can be off-putting to portions of the overall hip hop audience, they are a welcome change of pace for those who continue to seek hip hop on a truly higher level. The Build is a solid effort, and being the conscious artist that Premonition appears to be, will will likely make a concerted effort to gauge what worked, and what didn’t, so we expect that subsequent releases will “build” on the added recognition that this project is likely to bring.

Premonition cele - Manny Faces


"Definitely Amazine: Lyricist Chronicles"

Define Hip-Hop as it relates you as an Artist and a Fan.

PR: I will always be a fan of this artform, far too many artists become established and forget why they loved it in the first place. That part of me will never change.


What is it about Hip-Hop that made you want to become apart of the historic genre?

PR: Hip Hop has always spoken to me on a level no other genre has. Although I wasn't raised in an urban environment, nothing ever moved like that break-beat. the syncopation of words with drums just made my soul move, i could feel it. The scratch of a record still sends chills through my spine to this day, its a love affair that never gets old but rather ages beautifully.

What is about Premonition that the world needs to know ?

PR: I believe the world needs to know that I am an individual who holds no sense of entitlement when it comes to this art form. I feel privileged to be able to contribute and the amount of respect that I have for this culture shines through in my craft. I pay very close detail to what I present, and would never exploit the art for my own gain. Oh, and they should also know that I'm talented and will die before finish staking my claim.




When "Building" your LP "The Build" what were some of the things you wanted to come across in your music for this album?

PR: First priority of this record to let people know that i'm here. I take this music very seriously and I have a a lot to say. I wanted to adequately display my versatility, as well as brief my listeners on who I am as an artist. And also playing of the title of the album I wanted to "build" my foundation while signifying there i much more to built further upon from this effort.

Describe your feelings on the importance of Lyrics and what you say on a track.

PR: Lyrics are very important. The power of words should never be underestimated. As emcee's our voices are our instruments and the means we have to communicate with the listener. If we don't pay the utmost attention to what it is were saying we will lose credibility as artists. listeners hear everything you say for the most part, so be honest and be careful what it is you choose to say.


We know you have ties with "Fighting For Futures" your strong connection with them is due to your wanting to give back. Tell us about why you feel such a strong need to give back and why more artist should do the same?

PR: Basically anytime I can lend my talents to affect anything positively outside of music, I look forward to the opportunity. Once I saw the things Felecia was able to accomplish through FFF I wanted to find out how I could get involved. After a few successful events we've developed a dope synergy that works in a positive way. So its definitely a good look for both of us and being able to contribute with my music makes it that much more rewarding.

What are the next steps for Premonition?

PR: Well now that I've completed my debut album I want to push it as much as possible. I think the world needs to hear it, and I've witnessed far too many quality projects come and go without the proper push behind them. I don't want that to happen with this, so im going all-out to make this album reach its potential. After that I'll be working on a number of projects including the release of my crew Central Intelligence's debut record "Beautiful Dystopia." I'll also be featured on many projects in the near future including: C Rayz Walz, L.I.F.E. Long, R.Me, Warren Britt and Otis Clapp's future releases.

Tell us more about this release party Presented by Former DA lady of the week Ms. FeleciaCruz.

PR: The release party will be held on Thurs. July 1st at club Drom on Avenue C and 6th st. The entrance fee will be 7$ with a oration of the proceeds going to Fighting for Futures. The lineup is insanely talented featuring the following: Dj M-tri, Hosted by Tah Phrum Duh Bush, Dyalekt, L.I.F.E. Long, Cavalier and Sleepwalkas. The show will get cracking around 10PM and we'll be partying in there till 2 AM. It is likely to a very memorable event. And i hope to see you there!
- Definitely Amazing


"The Mad Bloggers: In Pursuit of Realness"


So, this project is dope. It's been in my inbox since June 22. That's my bad. Sometimes I wish I just had more time to check out dope music.

Anyway ... "The Build" from Premonition, with Willie Green as the executive producer is a solid listen from beginning to end. At 12 tracks this joint is perfect! One of my favorite cuts is "Wait" (approaching that age when I start to self reflect...)

And really that's what this project is about, as Prem explains in his press release, “It represents the progression of a young artist. The Build is a metaphor for the struggle of the artistic process, taking the good with the bad, which comes together to give you progress.”

With production from Willie Green, KO Beatz, Spills and Premonition, "The Build" is definitely worth the listen. Check it out!
- The Mad Bloggers


"Rox Fontaine reviews "the build""

Premonition is obviously a student of Hip-Hop and more importantly; a student of life. Any artist that can reference Fyodor Dostoyevski and Chinua Achebe in the span of 4 bars is no dummy. This is not to say that he's a rapper that will bore you to death with academic references. He understands the balance in engaging the listener with lyrics that showcase his intelligence without talking over the listeners head.

The Build is a well thought out and cohesive first effort. It's great to see an up and coming artist take his craft seriously. This album is clearly about art. From the content to the cover, this project is confidently coordinated and executed. The work is focused and defined.



Listeners will definitely enjoy Premonition's tone. His deep voice and mellow delivery almost lull the listener into his music whether you're actually listening to the lyrics or not. This quality is most apparent on the self produced "Wait". While listening to this track, I almost had to double check my playlist to make sure I hadn't accidentally skipped over to a Substantial (QN5) track.



If there is any glaring gripe to be had about the album it is with the sonic quality of some of the tracks. "Get Up" for example is an uptempo track with a pounding kick drum that doesn't quake like it should. "Catalina Fischer" and "Prem", produced by Spills, both sound a bit "cheap" for lack of a better term. The story is interesting on "Catalina Fischer" and it's delivered well, but the track is just distracting. If it were up to me to pick the winning formula, it would be Prem and KO Beatz. It was like listening to the Freeway and JakeOne you've never heard of. They compliment each other extremely well.

Give 'The Build' a shot. It's quality material. Definitely a great addition to any summer BBQ playlist. Overall a top notch effort that deserves some attention.

Premonition Official Website
Premonition on Twitter

Click Here to Download 'The Build'
POSTED BY ROX FONTAINE AT 4:30 PM
LABELS: DOWNLOAD, FREE, HIP-HOP, PREMONITION, RAP, THE BUILD, UNDERGROUND
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Rox Fontaine
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Join in the discussions on RoxFontaine.com's facebook fan page. Montana Fishburne? Buy vs. Download? Chime in! Invite a friend.
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@ClevlndsGotSole God bless. Be strong and it will work out for you. Y'all have tons left to do.
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AT&T gets the BB Torch!? Burn in hell.
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Zone out time with Ninja Assassin.
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? 07/11 - 07/18 (3)
Premonition - The Build
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? 07/04 - 07/11 (4)
? 06/27 - 07/04 (2)
? 06/20 - 06/27 (3)
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- Rox Fontaine


Discography

Premonition- "the build"

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Bio

Spawned from the lineage of that clever get-freshness. Prem willingly took the torch of the great writers, lovers and warriors of the past. An emcee in every sense of the word Prem dug from beneath the norms to find what it meant to be a great and enduring presence.
Nurtured by the suburbs he found his only outlet a safe refuge of dusty records and literary classics. Inspired and influenced by Kool G Rap and Keruoac, Dylan and Dostoevsky, Gangstarr and Tom Waits, Prem became a fusion of the creative world he imagined.After building a solid live show resume` and building a foundation with his crew Central Intelligence, Prem made the journey to New York with little more than 2 months rent but a wealth of ambition.
Two years and four or five shifty landlords later the framework for “The Build” has emerged. The full length debut from the artist meant to sketch the passion, struggle and hope of a young man.Featuring some of NY’s finest unsigned MCs and Producers such as: Cavalier, Sleepwalkas, L.I.F.E. Long, Dyalekt, Willie Green, KO Beatz,and Spills , “The Build” is poised to introduce the world to the budding talent and style of Premonition. An avid freestyler and technical writer, Prem finds beauty in the spontaneous as well as the concisely charted. His style exhibits a bit of each with a live set that aims to end blackberry usage during a hip-hop show. Pay attention, listen, and let us build.