Interview With Killer Mike and El-P at The Passion of the Weiss

You guys are hitting a point in your careers — especially now that you’re doing Run the Jewels together — where you could be filling that superhero role for kids growing up. What do you hope kids listening to the Run the Jewels record will get from it?

EL: What I want for them to get from it is a feeling of rawness and rebellion that I think has been missing a little bit. You’re listening to a record where we’re taking absolutely no prisoners, but we’re not taking ourselves too particularly seriously. And at the same time, we’re just basically saying, “Fuck you” to everything. That energy is really mischievous and important, and that shit really formed who I was as a person, looking up to people who were not in the strongest positions in society, they weren’t rich, they weren’t in control of the world, but at the same time they were saying, “Fuck you, I’m the shit.” And there was something to aspire to as a kid with that shit. I wanted to feel that. I wanted to be that way, y’know? I wanted to be the type of man that could say, “Fuck you” if I didn’t like what they were saying. And so these rappers became my heroes. Nowadays, there’s no real rebellion, is there? There’s danger. There are people saying, “I’ll hurt you,” but there’s not anyone saying, “Fuck your idea.” There’s not anyone saying, “Fuck your plans, fuck your sense of grandeur.” And those are more important to me than, “Fuck you, if you try and take what I have, I’ll hurt you.” That shit’s cool, too, but this is a different zone, this is something that isn’t always being tapped into. There’s no one better way than the other, but it has to be there. There’s a balance. Me and Mike felt like we knew what that was. We knew what a group was. The last great group was probably… Part of them is sitting in the fucking room right now. [El gestures at Kool AD, formerly of Das Racist] Straight up, you know? Das Racist was a big deal to people like me because it was a group.

read the interview here

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