Issa Dash: “Lupe Fiasco is probably my biggest influence in rap. I only admitted that to myself recently because everyone keeps asking, ‘What’s your influences?’ And I always say I don’t have any rap influences but I think Lupe because I listened to all three of his projects full straight through and loved all of them. He was the best.
I feel like we’re the evolution out of the Lupe era in a sense. What he was trying to do, but with a different approach. I wouldn’t say he messed up. It’s hard, I guess. - Issa Dash
“I feel like we’re the evolution out of the Lupe era in a sense. What he was trying to do, but with a different approach. I wouldn’t say he messed up. It’s hard, I guess. Especially being one of the only ones doing what he was trying to do, and being such an early pioneer. He made mistakes but, I don’t know, he’s a little aggressive with everything he does, that’s the thing. I don’t know if it’s beneficial for him or if it’s making people tired of hearing him, because whenever you see Lupe on TV it’s never something positive.
“[Kanye West] is awesome. I like every Kanye project that ever came out besides 808s & Heartbreak. And even now, listening to his current music, I feel like I need to go back and listen to 808s because it might’ve been just ahead of its time. That’s the only one I didn’t like because I don’t know why he switched it up. At that time, that type of song was like, ‘What! Kanye! What happened to ‘We Major,’ and...?’ You know what I mean? So it was hard to get into it, but you can hear his current music and still hear how 808sevolved into him right now.
For any rapper, anyone right now to say that Kanye isn’t an influence on them [is being dishonest]. I mean, consciously I don’t think [he’s directly influencing us], but unconsciously I know he definitely is embedded somewhere in there, because those first couple of albums were just godly to me. - Issa Dash
“I always talk about when Kanye says, ‘50 told me go ‘head and switch the style up and if they hate then let them hate...’ I feel like, he switched the style and boom, we love it now. We can’t get enough of Kanye. For any rapper, anyone right now to say that Kanye isn’t an influence on them [is being dishonest]. I mean, consciously I don’t think [he’s directly influencing us], but unconsciously I know he definitely is embedded somewhere in there, because those first couple of albums were just godly to me. Late Registration, and [that era], dancing in my house and shit. It was sick.”
AK:“It’s like how Nas is for [the generation before us. Kanye is] like that for us.”
Issa Dash: “For me, the reason I don’t listen to hip-hop is because it’s too bland, I guess. I listen to hip-hop, but it’s not the most prevalent thing I listen to. Fleet Foxes is my favorite band ever. They’re my favorite band of all time, period. And John Mayer is my favorite artist. I’m obsessed—well, not obsessed with him, but his music. I know every song he ever created. His live stuff is better than his album stuff. The album stuff is obviously [great], but when he takes his album stuff to the live stage and he starts to improv and talk with his guitar, that’s when he’s at his best. [I also like] Grizzly Bear, and those type of guys.”
AK: “Local Natives. My Morning Jacket.”
Issa Dash: “We love Local Natives ridiculously.”
AK: “I was listening to Local Natives today, when I woke up, [like I do] every day.”
Issa Dash: “Yeasayer’s fire [too], man. OD. Their live stuff is crazy, too. The way [the lead singer] acts and shit. That’s the kind of stuff I’m into. Those type of bands. I like guitars and instruments and stuff like that. Band of Horses is one of my favorites, [too]. ‘Comin’ up only to...’ Coachella’s looking crazy. All the dudes that we mentioned just now are at Coachella.
“Grizzly Bear is on the same label as Flying Lotus. So I was talking to the owner of Warp, and he was like, ‘Oh you like Grizzly Bear? Let’s set something up.’ And I was like, ‘What? Don’t tell me that.’ If I actually get them to personally work on a track [that would be so dope]. Their song ‘Yet Again’ is OD. It’s trippy as fuck at the end. It’s kind of scary.
“[I saw Fleet Foxes live], it was crazy. My friend, the Zombies manager, the day he played them for me, he was like ‘Whatever you do, you’ve got to see them live.’ And I forgot. Then I went to see them live, and they’re amazing live. People crying and shit. Like a crowd of people around me crying like, ‘Wow, what did I just experience?’”