Music News

Five for Fighting

Jurassic 5 is known for its throwback sound, which harks back to hip-hop's golden age. Although purists have always gravitated toward the group's old-school-inspired music, the crew is looking at gaining a wider audience with its latest effort, Feedback, which features collaborations with Dave Matthews and super-producer Scott Storch, as well as a video that takes shots at George W. Bush. Soup (aka Zaakir) let us in on the details of the new project.

Westword: Some fans were surprised with the album, which is a little more radio-friendly, saying it isn't the nature of J5.

Soup: But it is the nature of the Jurassic 5. The funny thing about it is, we do the music, we come up with the concept, and we think of all this stuff that we've ever put out. But it's funny how people feel they know who you are better than you. I've heard that, too: "It's not a natural J5 song." But yes it is; whatever we make is a natural thing. The thing is, that's not what people expected us to sound like, because people had us pegged. They tend to put you in a box, and I think that's what people did. People want to hear the EP, or Quality Control, or Power in Numbers a hundred times. So, nah, man, don't expect. If it's good, gravitate toward it, and if it's not your cup of tea, find something else.

One thing fans didn't expect was the absence of Cut Chemist. Why didn't he participate?

He wanted to do his own solo thing. There's no bad blood, but I think he could have handled it better than the way he did. Still, there's no bad blood, and I don't wish anything to happen to him. My thing is, now he's on his own two feet, so if it flops, that's on him, and if he blows up, that's on him. There's no one to point the finger at; it's just his thing. He's a grown man, as we all are, and he's entitled to do his own thing.

People are talking about the video for ŒWork It Out,' where you make fun of George W. Bush. How did you come up with the concept?

The Malloy Brothers, who directed the video, came up with the idea. It was originally supposed to be Will Ferrell, but his schedule didn't mesh, or he didn't want to do it. But we still liked the idea, so the Malloy Brothers said, "What if we take the president and make him work out during the video?" I thought that was way better than Will Ferrell. But we're not saying anything about the president that hasn't already been said. Saturday Night Live makes fun of the president all of the time. So us coming out with this video, we're not doing anything that they're not doing. It's got some fun and lightheartedness, but at the same time it has some serious issues that affect everybody.

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Quibian Salazar-Moreno