After Midnight

Souls Of Mischief, the Oakland hip-hop collective and members of the mighty Hieroglyphics Crew have dropped a non-traditional and unusually creative first video from their new album, Montezuma's Revenge. The video is a souped up time-lapse of artist Steven Lopez painting the Montezuma's Revenge cover set to the album's lead single, "Proper Aim." The album, produced by Prince Paul and Domino, is available today via Hiero Imperium Records.

Souls of Mischief have always been groundbreaking musically, and now they are stretching the boundaries of hip-hop videos as well. When was the last time you saw a rap video with no rappers in it? There are no lip-synchs here- only a transfixing peak into what it takes to create a dope art piece that doubles as an attention-grabbing album cover. Sound slow? It's anything but- in fact, the video's unusual format allows the viewer an unheard-of degree of immersion into the song.

Souls handpicked artist Steven Lopez for the cover art, and Lopez had the forethought to record his multilayered process. Lopez, himself a fan of Souls since their debut album '93 'til Infinity, was excited to be given the opportunity. When asked to describe his experience working with Souls, Lopez says "when you work with other artists of a high caliber, there is no need to convince or walk them through. They are legit and it didn't take us long to have faith in each other. The icing on the cake was the fact that these cats are diehard b-boys." Lopez's work ranges from street art to collaborations with artists such as Erykah Badu. Lopez attempted to capture not only the group as a whole, but each member's individuality. "I dislike pictures that are purposely posed so I would talk to each member and ask them to reenact certain memories and moments. Those were the shots that I was looking for. It was like a picture that alludes to another story."

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After Midnight

Steven Lopez

Steven Lopez has merged his art and his appreciation for music into a binding force creating a hand painted collection called, the “After Midnight” series. The title tells the night story of sound euphoria. An intimate concert for the lucky few who get


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Steven Lopez has merged his art and his appreciation for music into a binding force creating a hand painted collection called, the “After Midnight” series. The title tells the night story of sound euphoria. An intimate concert for the lucky few who get to hear a time capsule of blissful sound under the stage lights for one night only. The series consists of female nightingales that have the sovereignty to capture the audience. This collection of paintings carries a synchronic composition that marries a timeless synergy of notes, vision, and unspoken words. At first glance you hear the melodies converging from the brush strokes of these painted time capsules. For each individual musician, Lopez begins by painting after midnight, embedding himself into the song he has thoughtfully selected, and following up by transcribing the lyrics onto canvas as part of the background. At this point the music and brush become one. This harmonious union is where Lopez draws inspiration for this fine collection of work. Each painting is combined with a time lapse video of the night in which Lopez paints the singer to the exact same song, accentuating the romance between song and brush, painter and musician. This multimedia extravaganza brings the viewer into the world of Steven Lopez and his “After Midnight” Series.

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