Part 3 - Interview In Run Up To NH7 Weekender: Riz MC
16 November 2011
This coming weekend, Laxmi Lawns, Magarpatta City in Pune will play host to one of India's premier music festivals, The Bacardi NH7 weekender. Spread across multiple stages, it will no doubt be a hotpot of multi-genre and multi-talent, showcasing the best acts Indian independent music and the world has to offer.
Below is our final introduction from one of the three international artists playing at the festival as part of a 3 part introduction series, finding out a bit more about what they're looking forward to doing both on and off the festival site.
Still only in his twenties, Riz MC, a rapper and award winning actor has achieved a lot in a short space of time. He is certainly not your run-of-the-mill MC. Having graduated from Oxford University in politics, philosophy and economics [PPE] and then Central School of Speech and Drama, Riz knows exactly what he's on about. His style of music cannot be straightforwardly discarded as a rambling hoodie from a council estate. It's actually quite the opposite; his sounds differ from the archetypal subject matters of his peers with lyrical dexterity and charismatic convolutions of culture and politics along with creatively ground-breaking music.
Riz pooled his Oxford education and musical talent to record the sardonic social-commentary rap Post 9/11 Blues. The playful track created a frenzy across media; the lyrics were considered "politically sensitive" and the track was initially banned from airplay, however it won him a loyal fan base. Subsequently, Riz has been supported by BBC Radio 1 (on the 'Introducing' stage at Glastonbury in 2007), touring the USA and playing gigs at venues such as Fabric and the Royal Festival Hall (2008), opening the Meltdown festival with Bristol-based trip hop group Massive Attack. Last year Riz released his debut album MICroscope, distinguishing him as a remarkable voice with an innovative musical forethought flowing with potency and perspicacity.
So what can you expect from Riz MC? Watch out for skillful biting lyrics with a mixture of well orchestrated electronica and high energy audience interaction. Catch Riz MC on the Eristoff Wolves Den.
In the run up to his performance we threw him a couple of questions:
What are you looking forward to doing in India?
I'm looking forward to playing this gig! I have been intensely filming for 2 months - half of that in Delhi right now, and am looking forward to letting loose for the NH7 crowd.
Who are you looking forward to seeing at the festival and why?
I'm looking forward to seeing Shaa'ir + Func. I saw them at National College in Bombay once, and Monica came to see me play a week later. They are great performers and cool people. I want to hear their new stuff.
Words: Sanjay Kundalia