Hip-Hop super-producer and Red Apples 45 co-founder, along with A.G. of Diggin' In The Crates (D.I.T.C.) Ray West (@RedApples45) recently formed a free-spirited, one-off project—cleverly dubbed "Ray West & The Soul Misfits"—with A.G. of D.I.T.C. AKA Andre The Giant, Dave Dar, L-Fudge, Nelson Dialect, Moonshine, Phil Moffa, John Robinson, and Jay Rivera. Ray West & The Soul Misfits' initial collaborative sessions were held at Butchasound Studio during "a born day gathering" for West's 40th birthday and later, curated, further detailed, and finalized at Red Apples 45's home studio in The Bronx. "We had the MPC3000, John Robinson's SP-404, Phil Moffas's illustrious set-up of vintage drum machines (TR-808/909,) and his various synths," Ray West told The Witzard, via email. "My good bro, Jay Rivera AKA Jay Sidious, came with his vintage guitars. We all just [collaborated on] production and concepts..." West charismatically continued. Mr. West was gracious enough to provide The Witzard with a comprehensive track-by-track breakdown of Ray West & The Soul Misfits for our recurring column, All-around Breakdown. Ray West & The Soul Misfits' self-titled full-length debut is currently available in both limited edition blue-tinted cassette and digital album formats with artwork by @Sek3 on Red Apples 45, as distributed by Fat Beats.
01. "Soul Misfits" (Prelude)
"This was the first track we made together during the studio session. We were using the MPC3000. It was a "dirty" sample that Phil Moffa had on the sampler when we arrived... the groove is what made Dave Dar come up with The Soul Misfits hook. He originally laid it down as, like, a reference track... but it was full [of] feeling, so it stayed. Jay Rivera played guitars on top. It's real raw and spontaneous."
02. "How Much" ft. Moonshine, Dave Dar, Sean Santiago & John Robinson
"This track was also, created all together the same night. We used John Robinson's SP-404 and the MPC3000. Myself, John, and Phil Moffa all played different parts to the beat. All the emcees wrote their verses and [laid] them down on-the-spot."
03. "What Happen" ft. A.G. & Dave Dar
"This track was made previous to the LP concept. I used the MPC60. I had a session in my home studio with A.G. & Dave Dar. They wrote [it] together and [laid] it down together."
04. "Tribal Live" (Instrumental)
"This was an instrumental when I was working on the tracklist and finalizing the project. I used an MPC Live. This was made to give the project some Tribal-type of feel; since we were a large group collaborating, I wanted to capture that Tribal feel."
05. "Get You Some Protection" ft. Dave Dar
"This is a Dave Dar solo. We did this in the home studio. MPC2000XL - plus, some live Moog Synth overlays. I played a lot of live hand percussion on this: shakers, tambourine, and hi-hat [cymbals]."
06. "Fort Apache" (Instrumental)
"Same as the other instrumental, "Tribal Live;" this was made on the MPC Live for this project."
07. "Everything Is Bright" ft. A.G.
"Every Red Apples project needs the signature A.G. song - this is that! MPC3000. Me & A. in the studio doing what we do, free-spirited. I feel, it's a side of A.G. that the Red Apples umbrella opens for him; a more free-spirited side (at times) - I love this song!"
08. "Beyond The 10th" ft. Nelson Dialect & Dave Dar
"This is another track similar to "Get You Some Protection." MPC2000XL, live Moog, and a bunch of live percussion. Nelson Dialect really made the concept for this: "Beyond The 10th." It was a play-on-words. They say, we only use 10% of our brains. We are "beyond the 10th." We plan on more "Beyond The 10th"-type of music."
09. "In The Pocket" ft. Moonshine & Nelson Dialect
"This was made on the same night as the first two tracks, same studio session. MPC3000 and Jay Rivera's guitar. Moonshine & [Nelson] Dialect wrote together and laid it down. I did the cuts later in my home studio."
10. "Hold It Down" ft. L-Fudge & Nelson Dilaect
"My bro, L-Fudge! I feel so blessed for all of Fudge's contributions to Red Apples, over the years. He is such a talent. I had this track for a while and Fudge gave the green light to release. So pleased to have Nelson Dialect on this with him. It was a great closer!"