Far East Movement took over the airwaves last year with "Like a G6"—the electro-rap-pop single that you just couldn't get out of your head. The group, born and raised in Los Angeles, is back with another club track, the Tyga-assisted "Dirty Bass" with a new look to match. Members Kev Nish, Prohgress, J-Splif, and DJ Virman are bringing bass back to the streets and looking at Uncle Luke for inspiration; that means we're about to hear a lot of thump, see a lot of ass, and wear a ton of gold.
The guys stopped by the 'Plex headquarters to let us shoot them in our studio, talk shoe addictions, custom clothing, and more. Cop the Dirty Bass album, out on June 5, and catch them on tour with LMFAO this summer.
Interview by Soo-Young Kim (@sooeypooey)
That's a big ass chain!
Kev Nish: I never leave home without my L.A. bass chain.
Who made it?
KN: This was designed by Transparent Agency in Downtown L.A. It’s a reflection of the inspiration for our new album Dirty Bass. L.A. bass was the foundation on the album, so I always rock it just to represent a little bit of home.
And I see you're rocking some gold too.
J-Splif: Gotta keep the grill on me all the time. Got gold in my mouth. Shouts to Ben Baller.
First things first, how does your music influence your style? Or is it the other way around?
KN: Our music definitely influences our style. We’ve always treated being artists as half the music and half the lifestyle. For this album, our fashion grew like our music—organically. We’re heavily inspired by what we like to call the Golden Bass era. You know, there’s the L.A. bass, the Miami bass, the fun, colorful, booty shaking rhythms. Just that whole era from the So So Def Bass All-Stars to the NWA bass songs to Uncle Luke and the whole 2 Live Crew movement. We wanted to take that fun energy, the golden era, and put it into this new album. So along with that comes the lifestyle.
We bought ourselves a 1989 Cadillac limo. We found it really cheap—dirt cheap—and we fixed it up. We put in five 12-inch sub-woofer amps just like the olden days when you used to take your auntie's 1989 Ford Escort that maybe she gave to you. You know, your first car, hooking it up with sub-woofers, just rolling down Wilshire in L.A. We brought that vibe, we’re just bringing that classic bass vibe and that really reflects our style because a lot of these custom dirty bass jackets to the chains to the Adidas collaboration, everything’s inspired by this new album. And it's all custom. We think of it and we collaborate with Transparent Agency to bring it to life.
What's Transparent Agency?
KN: It's our in-house media group with all of our friends, all of our neighbors. We built this collective called the Transparent Agency. They do jewelry, clothes, these are all our own jackets that we had customized. Denkym of Transparent Agency is part of our team. He does all the media, music videos, that's how we started. We're a do-it-yourself team. When we were younger interning at Interscope and learning, we realized the only way to ever do anything is to create it yourself. So we put together a team of friends, we all grew up together in the scene in L.A., and now we’re a full functioning unit.
When you guys aren't wearing Transparent Agency custom clothing, what other brands are you wearing?
JS: It’s a combination of both high-end and streetwear and whatever looks good. It can range from anything from Nikes to Creative Recs to Vivienne Westwood. It’s whatever works with combinations and of course we’re always on the custom made tip, so even if it's a YSL jacket, we’ll "Dirty Bass" it up and put patches on it or spray paint it or do all types of crazy stuff to it—piss people off you know?
KN: It's more fun like that though. We don’t want to wear it like exactly like how they made it. We want to try to customize it.