5 Questions for Soul Cannon

Soul Cannon's name was the first thing that got my attention (yes I get it). I was one or two years living into Baltimore, and I wanted to see more of what was happening in the city. They were a part of a music fest, maybe Scape Scape? I didn't see them... But I got this image in my head of music that was also a beam of pure energy in neon greens and pinks. It didn't hurt that their logo was a sugar skull - appealing to my Texan roots right off the bat.

When I did eventually hear them live (years later... I know) I was floored. The guy running sound was horrible... Despite the barrier, Soul Cannon still sounded great, four craftsmen - blasting super-technical, chromatic hip-hop. I hadn't heard anything like it before. Motion. Detail. Clarity. Iridescence. Their recent video for Hospital Records is a representative thesis.


It certainly doesn't hurt that the quartet is so kind, open, and generous - including in the answers to these 5 questions.


How did you all find each other, and when did you decide to start making music together?

Sometimes, the universe works in ways one can't explain or define in just a simple story. The everlasting desire for new things to be created push events and actions to points of natural formation where possibilities are endless and the challenge to satisfy the desire becomes inevitable and inexplicable, especially when a few puffs of canibus are involved. In 2006, we formed. The band has evolved and transformed a bit over time. So, Eze, Matt, Jon and Charles do not question or try to define the path we're on. We simply do our best to serve the story that is still unfolding.  


You just recently released your third album, eponymously titled 'Soul Cannon.' Why wait until number three to release the self-titled work? Does 'Soul Cannon' the album seem more representative of 'Soul Cannon' the band than previous releases?

Soul Cannon, the album just felt right at this time. This album can be seen as a mixture of the other two but it's more of a coming of age album. We've grown together and seen the best and worst of each other over time and still, there is no flinching in whether or not we'll continue. This is us. Raw and unapologetic.


The music you make is often described as futurist or forward-looking. What do you think that means? What is it about your music that inspires visions of tomorrow?

I think we try to allow ourselves to hear outside of what we've heard before and try to focus on parts of our tastes that haven't been appealed to yet. The act of creating, for us, is more connected to what we're longing for rather than to validate or gratify what we've already experienced and think we know something about.


Eze is a producer for the Real News Network. Former bassist Ryan Dorsey is a city councilman for Baltimore. How importantly do politics factor into your music? Does art have a political responsibility?

We don't necessarily feel art has a political responsibility but, it's nice when art does give political commentary. Music often defines and feeds us and, unfortunately, politics effect every aspect of our lives whether we want it to or not. Funny thing though, in our early days, Ryan did not really want us to talk about politics. I think if you would have come from the future and interviewed us, we would not believe Ryan would be a council member or that Eze would be producing at The Real News Network. Also, Charles doesn't vote so, there's that.


Who are some artists (of any background or discipline, young or old) that you want people to know about right now?

We're all just really proud of the Baltimore music that’s coming out. There are so many people we could name and so many styles. Veterans who are still at it and young artists coming up. This is just a great time to get into Baltimore music of all the genres and get all the feels.


Yeah we think so too. Catch Soul Cannon at our upcoming show this Thursday, 8pm @ 2640 Space.