Cadence Weapon

Just when I thought I couldn’t take Montreal’s vicious 2007/2008 winter anymore, I called Rollie Pemberton, better know as Cadence Weapon, at home in Edmonton. The 22-year-old DJ/rapper/producer said it was cold and windy, and I imagined frosty arctic air whistling through Edmonton’s downtown streets – making me glad I was in la belle province.
He sounded tired over the phone – possibly from having just returned from playing six shows at the SXSW Music Festival in Austin, Texas. He told me that playing SXSW was one of his year’s highlights, but I was curious to know what Cadence really thought about life on the road – especially with an 18-date cross-Canada tour underway.
“Touring is really hard to deal with,” he admitted. “I kind of miss being a regular dude.” The rapper mentioned envying his friends back home in Edmonton who hang out with their girlfriends and work “regular” jobs. “I wish I could be home, drinking a beer and playing Halo . . . but then I’m in Paris,” he joked. Doesn’t sound that bad!
Afterparty Babies is Cadence’s newest effort, released last month. The album is almost a metaphor for today’s youth culture – scenes and trends under a magnifying glass. “I question these things, but ultimately I’m apart of them too,” he told me. “I am DJing at these clubs, I know some of these people, you know? I’m kind of part of the scene,” he said. “It’s kind of a weird juxtaposition.”
As a former music critic for the renowned online review website, one might assume this would affect his creative process. “I do not approach music from a critical perspective at all,” he told me. “For me, making music is a lot more organic and I don’t really like to take such a tactile approach to it.”
“As far as how I take criticism, I usually just beat the shit out people who give me bad reviews,” he joked. Luckily I gave Cadence a positive review in The Concordian a few issues back, avoiding a possible black eye for when he comes here on…
April 19 with Buck 65 and Skratch Bastid to play at Le National, for their extensive Canadian tour’s Montreal-stop.

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