The UK music scene lost a legend when Black The Ripper—born Dean West, also known as Ital Samson—died unexpectedly back in April. He left behind a five-year-old son. In this lost interview from 2017, Thomas Hobbs speaks to Samson about his pioneering work as a musician and weed advocate.
"It feels like people want to see the cult of privileged, out-of-touch celebrity smashed to pieces, and for something to act as a symbol to accelerate this process. Well, who is a better symbol than Mr Blobby? The very notion that a pink and yellow-spotted leper could end up as one of the most famous British faces of the 1990s was, at its core, an anti-celebrity act."
Gary Bloom is Oxford United FC’s in-house psychotherapist. He tells Men’s Fitness why the sport is in need of a mental health revolution.
Kamasi Washington might have made the headlines, but the jazz collective he’s a part of deserves just as much of your attention. This oral history explores how the group is only just getting started.
"Beach Chair” was the moment JAY-Z finally let go of his youth, marking his journey into the philosophical elder statesman we celebrate today.
"I question my sanity a lot!” admits Eric Koetting, a Utah-based black magician. “Sometimes it’s like — I just had a 35-minute conversation with Lucifer in my living room. Did that really happen? But I’m here to tell you that these spirits are very real — and misunderstood."
"Chris Crack, JPEGMAFIA, and $ilkMoney know that in a world where everybody wants to be a rapper—and there’s more competition than ever before—song titles must jump off the page and stop people in their tracks. After all, if a rapper can create social commentary just from a song title alone, just imagine how powerful their music can be."
"The sombre message at the heart of the majority of these shorts is far too heavy. You find yourself longing for a glimmer of light, and it’s no coincidence that the best moments here are the lighter ones."
In this new series, Thomas Hobbs speaks to different musicians about their favourite film scores. Next up is Bobby Krlic, the composer for Midsommar, discusses the atmospheric score for 1979's Alien, exploring its impact on electronic musicians.
"There’s a prevailing sense that a label executive knew pushing the idea Tupac was still alive could be a very lucrative business decision, and that they are gleefully rubbing their hands together right now, watching the monster they’ve created continue to mutate."
"Bobby Vylan (yes, apparently that’s his real surname) barks like DMX on a bad day, a quintessentially British voice capable of shouting “shut up” with the rough edge of Phil Mitchell. Having merged together punk, rap, garage and grime, his group, Bob Vylan, are an angry Frankenstein’s monster."
"The idea of processing pain is so integral to 25-year-old Chicago rapper Jayaire Woods’ music that his songs feel like he’s kneeling in church, taking confession."
In this new series, Thomas Hobbs speaks to different musicians about their favourite film scores. Next up is composer, musician and Cat's Eyes member Rachel Zeffira, who discusses her spiritual connection with Nino Rota and his legendary The Godfather score.