First and foremost you got to explain the name Swollen Members?
Prevail: Well the Swollen means like big, large, or a phat crew. As far as how we got the name, we were drunk returning from a show, and we were saying, "what if we had a group called fat dicks?" Then my boy Moka Only said yeah call it Swollen Members, and it stuck. It's easy to remember and it stands out, so we kept it.
When, or how did you and Mad Child hook up?
Prevail: I meet Mad Child when he was living in Frisco and I was there visiting. He was up for like (a nomination of) underground emcee, and I saw he was from Vancouver so I voted for him and we talked briefly. Then we again met up at a party in Vancouver and we're drunk and began to rhyme for like 2 hours. Afterwards we decided to start doing stuff together.
When did you guys get into hip-hop?
Prevail: I can't speak for Mad Child, but for me I got into the dance thing first, like the Scoob and Scrap stuff. I didn't listen to a lot of rap because we had limited access, so I was more of a metal head. But later my cousin from back East hit me with a few mix tapes and those really got me into it, and then Vancouver got MTV to play more rap videos, and a bit more on specialty shows. So with more access, I got into it more.
When did you start making music?
Mad Child: We started going to the studio in '96. In '97 we were prepping to drop our first 12" but we needed a label for the single so we came up with Battle Axe as our "label" name.
Prevail: Yeah, but we didn't drop any thing until '99. That was because of my lack of experience in studio. I could rhyme but didn't know how to write in bars etc. But actually as we grew closer as friends and our ability to make music grew.
Mad Child. In '99 we dropped our first 12" "Consumption b/w Paradise Lost". Our first 12' moved 11,000 copies. Then the follow up moved 15,000 and thus we kept putting out music on Battle Axe. Today we've put out 3 LP's, and 20 Singles, on our own label. We've started to treat Battle Axe as an actual label, with an office, etc only in the last year.
Who are some artist you'd like to work with?
Mad Child: Swollen Members have always had guest appearances; so we are actually down to do work with most anybody. Currently we've been doing things with guys like Joey Chavez, Alchemist, Kemo, Revolution, Beat Junkies, and Evidence. We also have our crew the Battle Axe Warriors. The one kid I'd love to do a track with though is Supper Cat or Sean Paul. I got hot sh*t planned if that ever happens.
What is the hip-hop scene like out in Vancouver and Canada?
Prevail: Today there is a massive graffiti influence. Graffiti is huge out here. There are a few known DJ's and hip hop shows, like battles are a new thing out here. There are emcees that like to battle and are into the culture. Then there are the suburban cats that have office jobs, but rap for fun. They usually get served in the city. The scene is real new; like out here if you've been into hip hop for 10 years you're an old school veteran. Heads are very hungry out here and in Canada in general. Canada has a hand full of big cities so hip-hop is limited, but if you got to the city and look for hip hop, you'll find it everywhere.
What is your style, how'd you describe it?
Prevail: Swollen Members, we became a group before we were really friends, so as a result our entire style is more music based than anything. Mad Child is more dark and descriptive; I'm more laid back in my flows. We are a balance. We're like the treble and bass, you need us both for it to sound right.
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