July 21, 2019
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King Torch

King Torch

JUGGALOS! JUGGALETTES! FUCKING FAYGOLUVERS A LIKE! It’s your boy BeZerk aka BeZerkaveli, and I’m motherfucking back! After years of being on hiatus, and promises way too many people interviews or reviews I never did, I finally got around to doing something fresh for your viewing pleasures. I am very happy to say, that I’m back and probably better then ever before.

If you are newer to the site, you probably haven’t a fucking clue who I am. Probably thinking, who is this egotistical asshole that is proclaiming he’s back? Well I’m the motherfucker who breathed life into this segment after it was abandoned for a couple years by the original person who started this. I kept this bad boy rolling for years until the great fucking interviewer Johnny-O took over for me. Johnny, if you’re reading this; you’re doing fucking fantastic bro. I couldn’t have asked for a better person to take over after my life picked up then spiraled out of control. You’re truly a blessing to this website, as is all the new staff on FLH since I left. I can’t believe how well you all have upkept our website since my departure. It’s no longer just Scottie slaving over his computer; we got a whole very hard working crew that have done wonders since I left.

Well juggalos, enough about that shit. I bring you something new, something fresh; but still kind of old and familiar at the same time. I was sitting around, alone in my dank dark dungeon of hopelessness when I got a random ass message on the book of Faces from some Brad guy. He hit me up, and sounded very familiar with me, but I couldn’t for the life of me recall who the fuck I was talking to. After doing so many interviews over the years, and still being contacted regularly for interviews and reviews; I honestly was scratching my head. Who the fuck is this Brad Torch guy? Well, I figured I’d ask. As soon as he told me, I used to go by B-LeaVe, it all came rushing back. Ironically enough, I had been talking to a friend about B-LeaVe, and low and behold, he hits me up. Shit was kinda crazy if you ask me, because the friend I was talking to isn’t friends, so it wasn’t like a thing where it made it through the grapevine. Just more of a coincidence.

Well after talking for a little bit, B-LeaVe told me his life story of what happened to him. He told me he left music and was on his come back as King Torch. Sitting around my dark and dreary dungeon, it fucking hit me. Why don’t I come back to music and stop mopping around about by bitch ass methed out baby mom? Why not come back with an interview with someone I’ve had a long history with. Someone who essentially helped put me on the scene before Faygoluver? Why not make this an interview worth reading and listening to? Then I hit a fucking deer with the car I just bought… Well there goes my motivation.

Well, I could have either just let this bring me back down, or I could still do something with it. Instead of letting my constantly downward spiral of a life get me down, I figured that I’d keep running and not look back. You guys have always loved my interviews (for the most part, I’m sure some of them weren’t that great). I still get hit up regularly to do them even after retiring. I still get love and support from all of those over the years that I’ve done interviews with. I couldn’t let you guys down again. So here I am. Still car-less from the bitch ass deer and still struggling, but here nonetheless.

So juggalos, enjoy this comeback interview with a comeback artists formerly known as B-LeaVe. I hope you guys embrace this interview, and embrace King Torch’s new identity. I’m hoping to keep doing some of these interviews sporadically with other up and comers. I’m not guarantee anything, nor will it be on a regular schedule kind like I used to, but I will be back with at least a couple more interview. I have one in the works that you guys can NOT miss, because who it will be with is definitely someone who’s going to be blowing up soon.

So until next time juggalos…. ENJOY!!!!

King Torch Logo

King Torch Logo

 

BeZerk: Let’s start this interview with a few standard questions I used to ask. You used to go by the name B-LeaVe, but now you’re starting a new venture as King Torch. Explain to the juggalos how you developed this name, and why you chose to change your name and start new?

KT: It’s not as complicated as it probably should be. The B-LeaVe name was tied to the person I was, not the person I am. And shit did I get asked entirely too frequently if I was a Christian rapper, and my typical response of “have you heard my fucking music?,”  that it got so played out. I use King Torch not because of the royalty thing either, it’s because after all the shit I’ve been through in life; I’ll never allow anyone aside from myself to control my fate and the direction of my life. And torch comes from finally having the fire to be back in this balls deep ready to spring out of the dark corner I sat in for 10 years. It’s more of a creed than a name, but if the shoe fits, kick someone in the nuts with it so they know. Haha.

 

BeZerk: You have been doing music for a long time. How long have you been doing music for? What got you into doing music?

KT: Oh shit this feels rigged bro. I started writing in probably 1995. I would hear a beat, and think my way through it differently than the way it was presented. It was typically on the radio back then. I would go out and buy the A/B cassette tapes that had the instrumental (usually on the B side), and I would write the fuck out of it. Eventually some friends got me onto goldmic.com (RIP!) and I started battling on there. Initially in text, but through my boy Pantz, who was the fuckin eternal reigning champion in written battles; I wound up starting to do audio battles too. I only remember having lost 2, against Pantz and against Chincheck; both of whom were top ranked in their respective divisions. Even losing was fun, man. It was like a fuckin beat fueled roast battle. Now its 2019, shit so I’ve been fucking with rap for 24 years. The music fueled me for so long dude. The complex mixture of styles, topics, flows and the vibe. FUCK can you feel good music.

 

BeZerk: Who were some of your inspirations to start doing music?

KT: I was initially a pre-Eminem dude. So my OG influences were the old heads: Twista, ICP, Esham, Bone Thugs, Dre, Cube, Eazy E, but then as I got into the music scene guys like DZK, Hard Target, Chincheck, Javid, Ends (formerly Finale), even Adil Omar who is doing huge things out in Pakistan. I surrounded myself with people who made me feel like I had to raise my game, and try to match what they were doing. DZK was a fuckin monster man. I was sad to come back and see he wasn’t in the game anymore as far as I can tell. I should probably throw out names like Pantz and Infinite Skillz too. Then my local guys always had me pushing myself, Spooky and Silentz (Skrapt Soulz) Snypa Da Prophet (who I am so beyond proud of what hes done with Liquid Assassin). I always found a reason to find new inspiration.

Torch and Dzol

KT and Dzol sharing the stage

 

BeZerk: You’ve been on the Chicago scene for a while. What is your favorite memory from doing music in your career?

KT: Man from back in the day, anytime we played at the Pearl Room. Whether it was Tech, Twiztid, Blaze, Boondox, ICP, etc. That venue fucking rocked HARD. There’s a lot of dope memories from another closed venue called Tiger O Stylies [BeZerk here: I remember when I first started fucking with KT and TSP, they were doing A LOT of shows here].  I remember doing shows with SCUM, and the homies from Wicked Wisco back in the day. Geno & Damien Quinn as Dark Half, all the Midwest family out here, a lot of good and some sketchy ass memories; probably as many forgotten as remembered. For more recently, getting my son DaeLyte on stage at St. Patrick’s day massacre in Indiana was fucking dope. He’s following in my footsteps, but we have this ability to sit and hash out a track in a matter of minutes. He’s got a solo mixtape coming out shortly, but to see him put in work and grind is awesome. Rocking the stage with him is a defining life moment for me, not just within music.

 

BeZerk: You were doing a lot of battle rap for the website Goldmic.com. Your record was 57-2. Who did you lose to, and who did you consider was the hardest emcee you competed against?

KT: Chincheck and Pantz both handed me my ass on silver platters. They were and still are so fucking good at what they do. Pantz ran a crew called SSR or SoSo Ruthless, and it basically held all of the most talented guys on the site, of which I was a member for a long time. Chincheck was this Australian lyrical killing machine. I think the hardest I ever went was the text battle with Pantz. It was like going against the guy who I looked up to most in the scene, and actually collecting some votes in the process was a bit of a confirmation of self. He won hands down. Fuck I would’ve voted for his verse, but I gave him all I had at that point. He’s still a good friend, and when I need some witty shit to play off of I have no issue hitting him up to clown around. Dude could still be a killer.

 

BeZerk: You spent a little time in the Detroit scene too. What happened then?

KT: Long story short, that fucking scene in 2004-05 was full of fucking snakes man. People claiming shit they didn’t do, people boosting themselves up off shitty music. This was also the time span in rap when the south had a crunk, snap music, basically trash takeover of the radio waves, and the underground was basically the only place to get good music. There was still more trash than treasure. I was in a crew out there that basically turned out to be a pile of assclowns with no idea what they fuck they were trying to do. All they did was lie out their asses and steal written verses off of websites. Shit was sad. As soon as I got back to Chicago, they dropped a like 8 minute diss track on me, so I wrecked them one by one, and by 2006, they ceased to exist. I like to think a “you’re welcome” is in store, but I can’t even remember the idiots names.

 

BeZerk: In 2005, you were back on the Chi-town scene and started up the crew Talk Sick Productions in which you worked with and put on quite a few artists. Who was with that crew? What were some of your favorite memories with TSP?

KT: Man TSP was some of the best shit I’ve ever had the joy of doing. It consisted of Spooky & Silentz, who were also the duo Skrapt Soulz, Snypa Da Prophet who was just Snypa back then, Sicc aka Lil Sicc and Intrekit. We did a ton of work with Wicked Wisconsin and Trackula back then. It was just a non-stop show binge dude. Holy shit my liver still hurts thinking about it. Silentz retired from music, and I think Sicc is also either retired or on hiatus. Spooky is one of the most talented tattoo artists on the planet, and we all know Snypa is blowing up with 42 records and Liquid Assassin. I’m so beyond proud that the dude, who walked into my moms house once, sat down heard a beat and murdered it in his first track is out there making moves. We’re all still friends, though we don’t talk as much as we’d probably like to, but we’re all still around. Man most of those memories end in hangovers and police. I’d say the Tech Sicology 101 show in Mokena was towards the top of the list. We just had a fuckin blast and hanging out with the underground GOAT was dope. We got in the studio 4-5 times a week and just went until we ran out of shit to say for the day. We made a ton of music, and every minute of it was awesome.

Bonfire Cypher

Screenshot of the Boonfire Cypher

 

BeZerk: You were once an affiliate with Mission: Infect. How did that come about?

KT: Long story short, I was being managed by someone who was close with a lot of the crew. So I started putting out music with Saint-Sinna, BadLuck, and Grewsum. I lost my entire old catalog, so I couldn’t tell ya who else, but the movement was more pure back then. It was just soldiers on soldiers on soldiers; everyone went hard as fuck for it. It was a ride or die type crew. Over the years cracks and shit formed, but I was with TSP by then. I’m still close with some of the guys. I’m working on a track with Saint and Klep (Bio Killaz) right now, and have Lokey and Grewsum scheduled to be on my comeback album. A few weeks ago, I shot a video with Wikid One. But man so many of those guys are still grinding hard and doing amazing shit. I finally got to see Mad Maxxx live last month, and he and Soldiers of Fortune go soooo fucking hard. PS FUCK DRAMA.

 

BeZerk: You had a couple friends pass away while you were not doing music, including the late and great Geno Cultshit of Dark Half and your friend Ragged Skull. What were some of your favorite memories with Geno and Ragged?

 

KT: Man I can’t say enough good shit about Geno. I don’t know anyone that went as hard as he did every show in and out. Small or huge; Geno and Damien complemented each other’s perfectly on stage and musically. Hands down the best duo to hit the stage in the underground, and they both finally got the acclaim they deserved. When I heard about Geno, I was totally stunned. We’ve all got demons, but he was doing so much musically and his voice was everywhere. He is one of a kind, there was nothing he couldn’t do. Ragged, Asif, was the man. We did a ton of work together before I left music behind, and his passing didn’t even get into my attention until I came back. He was too young and had too much left to do. He could produce, he did this crazy ass Ceelo impression that murdered hooks. Ragged hadn’t even scratched his potential. So that loss hurt like hell. I came back hoping to do some new work with him only to find out he had died from a heart complication. Dude was so young and so raw. He would’ve done big things. I’ve got a tribute track to them both on the comeback album, but man would I love to see them both here doing what they loved most still. They’re both widely missed.

 

BeZerk: What did you think of the Geno and Liquid Assassin album 4-5-1994?

KT: That album gave me goosebumps. Every verse, every word was relatable. Torn fucking blew my mind. It was such a good mash up; two guys who had done incredible work on their own. In their own prior duos coming together to make this unfathomably good album that I swear has spoken to anyone who has heard it. Geno was one of a kind, and Liquid is a fucking MONSTER on those beats. The harmony and balance they brought to that entire album was just unbelievable. I’ve got it on every playlist I have on every device. Anyone who hasn’t heard it needs to go out of their way to bump that shit.

 

BeZerk: You actually worked in some MMA while you weren’t doing music. How was that? Is it something you’d do again?

KT: Man, that’s double edged. I was working in writing and management, but I’ll be god damned if that world doesn’t have some of the shadiest fucks on the planet. I got to meet a lot of cool people, a lot of my MMA heroes. I guess would be the way to put it. My son still scrolls through EA UFC 3 and goes “my dad knows him, her, him her.” It’s cool as shit. Getting to meet and talk to people like Ronda Rousey, Miesha Tate, Roy Nelson, Anderson Silva, it’s dope as fuck to get to know the person behind the fighter. They’re all normal people just with this super human ability to take and dish out punishment. The fighters aren’t even the shady ones; it’s the promoters, the sponsors, and a TON of the coaches. There’s points where I was standing in a room surrounded by what I felt were enemies, because I refused to share their exact viewpoint on things. It was fun at times, but I also often wanted to punch people in the nuts for being complete fucking idiots. I’d never step foot in that world again, but it has been sad to watch some of the companies I wrote for collapse under the lack of support since they switched to the writers who say what people want to hear.

Ill Howze

ILLHowze Logo

 

BeZerk: You left the states to kind of regroup mentally and rediscovered your love for making music. What were some of the realizations you had when you were gone that convinced you that you should come back to music?

KT: Nothing will peel your heart and mind to the core like sitting on a 5 acre property in Canada for 6 months with no idea what you’re going to do next, or what you need to do. It really felt like rock bottom at times. My support system was gone, my ex wife had run all the relevant people out of my life, and I literally didn’t have shit. My kids were here in the states, my family, everything was 1500 miles away. It took listening to myself, and learning to listen to myself to get out of that. One day, ironically during a supercell tornado; I got an email that changed everything. The woman I’d wanted for – fuck it this is gonna sound corny, but forever hit me up. It was like life telling me “this ain’t over yet.” Within the week I was back in the states. We talked about why things couldn’t have clicked with us before; just life wasn’t in the spot for us. A month later we got engaged in Vegas, and a month from now we’re getting married. It was a fucking roller coaster bro, but life’s never been this good. It’s only getting better. We were sitting waiting for an uber in Vegas, to meet up with the aforementioned homies, Silentz & Snypa – when she looked at me and went “Why don’t you go back into music?” Without that simple statement, I’m not here today. My son followed me right back in, he wanted it his whole life now we’re shredding shit up at a higher pace than I would’ve ever expected.

 

BeZerk: You are working on a couple of comeback projects. Why don’t you tell us about those?

KT: How much time we got? Haha. Shit ok. I’m working on a collaborative mixtape with Mnemonic Devize, who was featured on The Voice in Germany. The boy can sing, he can rap, and he can get grimey. We haven’t locked in all the features yet, but I can tell you for sure Stalks Boogie from It That Betrays will be on it, Empire of Dirt, Dzol, Nastie Ink, Chamber (who murdered a beat for me). I’m also working on Prelude, which is the predecessor to my album in mixtape form, you’ll see Wampthing from DamneDnation, Keagen Grimm, Empire of Dirt, Don Orias, Kung Fu Vampire, Nastie Ink, Haze, Hitman Chris, SKX, Midi, Optymus, Jenocia-X, Famz & The Hooliganz, Xman and my son on that one. It’s been a long running project, but it’s just around the corner from completion. The comeback album, ReBirth is a litany of emcees bro: Lokey, ClaAs, Grewsum, Liquid Assassin, Insane Poetry, Donnie Menace, Snypa, Famz; the list goes on. I decided I’m going all out on it, because if I don’t, I’ll always regret not going balls deep on my first major release coming back in.

 

BeZerk: You are even helping your son get into music, and helping him with his first album. Can you tell us some details on that project?

KT: Bro, young DaeLyte over here is only progressing more every day. He writes his thoughts out, and he just blazes. The mixtape is going to be called Awakening. He’s got some heavy features on there too, including myself, Famz & The HooliganZ, Empire of Dirt, Dzol, Vicious Villainz, Stalks Boogie, Oddity, Infexous, Krook Da Savage, Optymus, Nastie Ink, and a few surprises. He makes me proud every time he gets behind the mic, and the artists who have grown to support and work with him, are some of the dopest people I know. It’ll drop before the end of summer, I know that much for sure.

 

BeZerk: You have started up a new sub-label to go with your main label. Why not explain what this sub-label is about, and who is going to be on it?

KT: To really put it as collectively as possible, it’s a label based on meeting the artists needs. It’s called ILLHowze Records, my buddy Dzol is co-founding it. We’ve got Ill Noise, 29Noxious, Stasis-X, Dzol, Empire of Dirt, and DaeLyte as of this writing. It’s about collaboration; its about bringing underground heads together again, and having a contract and label format that isn’t out to fuck the artist. There’s too much of that and I have to give infinite props to Tim Willaims aka Suicide the Dead of Wickid Tendency (the label I’m signed to), who is giving us this opportunity. We’re cranking out music, doing shows, and pushing forward as fast as we can. There’s some hyper talented people on the label, and it’s going to be awesome to be involved with them as they expand. Dzol is like my spirit animal. He never stops. He never rests. He’s music 24/7, and it dumbfounds me how hard he goes when he records. Fate put me and that man in the same place, and here we are running shit!

Some of the members of Purp Gang

Some of the many members of Purp Gang

 

BeZerk: Your bigger group you’re in is Purp Gang, and it has 35 members across 8 states. Who are some of the people that are affiliated with that group? Who should the juggalos be on the watch out for?

KT: Man, Purp Gang has been a fucking explosion. Me and my son kinda tossed it around one day, because we dead ass have Purp Gang as our crew name in GTA V, and one day I pitched it to Dzol. I was like, bro, let’s make this shit a fucking movement. Within a week we had 10 members. In another week, 15. Now we’re at 35, and it’s not only music either. We have graphic artists, we have make up effects artists (Chelsfx), we’ve got security, we have a videographer, and photographer. It just fucking exploded. I’d watch out for a Purp Gang mixtape to drop in the fall. Everyone is always working forward to stretch the arm of reach in this game; we all came together to be musical fuckin voltron.

 

BeZerk: Is there any major projects the juggalos should be on the watch out for when it comes to Purp Gang?

KT: We’re working on booking shows, and a mixtape for now. There’s a lot of heads in the group, so it makes it really easy to fill in verses, but right now it’s planning. We have one track done that Optymus absolutely murdered. Now we’re all like: ok, let’s step this shit up and match that intensity. We do have groups in Purp Gang that are scary talented. Our motto quickly became we’re taking over and we adopted the pWo logo (a play off the OG nWo in wrestling), and we’re a never say die never stop type of group. In September we have FamZ and the HooliganZ coming out from West Virginia to play our next Purp Gang show.

 

BeZerk: What are you excited for with your comeback to music?

KT: Working with some of these new cats who absolutely demolish the mic. I’ve done a couple tracks with Famz, the man is a killer. Stone fucking cold. HaZe whose local, and she just signed with 42 records; Liquid Assassin just did a track with her. Jenocia-X, Donnie Menace – who OMFG have you ever heard someone throw so much ill shit in, and not even have it feel forced? The guy is a fucking beast. I’ve got so many people on my list I want to work with, and see how I can vibe with their style. It’s also exciting to be writing day in and day out; having a studio setup again man. I can go on for days, but the crop of talent right now is exciting as fuck.  I can’t wait to see it take off. Speaking of which, Jenocia-X just announced her new album Worlwide Jenocide. I hope everyone is ready for her to blow their fucking minds!

 

BeZerk: Do you have any shows coming up that the juggalos can check out?

KT: The next one I have confirmed is September 14th. It’s a birthday show for myself, my homies from Purp Gang and F.A.D.E. entertainment: Sacrafise and Lep, and also Tito from Famz, and the Hooliganz. It’s gonna be in Round Lake, IL. Once we have the flyer ready to go; I’ll make sure its visible as fuck!

 

 

BeZerk: Do you have any music videos coming out?

KT: We actually just dropped one recently with Dzol and BabyBoi LaFlare called “Floating In The Noize.” It was edited and shot by A Fire Links. Shit came out absolutely amazing. Then Wikid One is currently editing and finishing up a video for the Bonfire Cypher (off my album that we shot during Nastie Bash in Indiana). It’ll feature myself, Stalks Boogie, Optymus, Nastie Ink, and Jenocia-X. The promo shots Wikid did were off the fucking chain. So I can’t wait to see what he does with this music video. Then we’re about to shoot another video for an Ill Noi$e track called “Out The Mac” sometime in the next few weeks.

https://youtu.be/66lbsGROwsc

 

BeZerk: What would you like the juggalos to know about your music?

KT: I don’t say it if I don’t mean it. I refuse to be one of those “I’m gonna roll up in a million dollar car, with a million dollar watch, and shoot you with a gun I stole from a dead midget hooker laying in the alley” type guys. I speak my mind. I speak my feelings. I don’t have a filter, and I’ll basically say anything that I feel fits with the aesthetic of the song. You don’t have to like every track, but some of them are going to speak to you. I refuse to release music that doesn’t mean shit. That ain’t my style.

 

BeZerk: Who’s your favorite artist out right now?

KT: Tie bro. Donnie fucking Menace and Jenocia-X. They’re fire breathing mic murderers who I just listen to and go “how the fuck did they do that?” When I got Jenocia’s verse back for the Bonfire Cypher; it was so good I had to stop, walk outside, smoke, take a drink, and then listen to again. It was crazy, off the wall, fast as fuck, and she made so many good video game references that I was just jaw dropped. And Donnie Menace, man holy fuck. HOLY-FUCK. Ominious is all you really need to hear to know this guy is a fucking legend in the making, if not already. Blood Eagle, the Nitebreed Cypher. I’ve never heard a bad verse from him. Life Ender with AXE. The man snaps on everything.

 

BeZerk: Where can the juggalos check your music new and old?

KT: iTunes, Spotify, Google, Amazon, shit everywhere there is music, it’s there. I lost most of my old music in the MySpace server transfer, but I was able to find bits and pieces of it laying around in old files. I know I’ve changed and evolved my style since then, but I still try to be proud of the shit I did when I was younger and twice as stupid as I am now haha.

 

BeZerk: Do you have any merchandise coming out?

KT: Wickid Tendency has been printing merch. The next load will come out with the release of Prelude sometime in late August. Purp Gang merch and IllHowze merch are going to be on the horizon in the next 2-3 months too. We’re gonna pop off, and the best place to find the merch will be purpgangx.com which is basically going to be our central hub of merch music and madness, because we’re all fucking nutty one way or the other.

 

Shout outs:

God dammit bro, you know this shits rigged. Gonna start with my family My Queen, my daughters, and my son. I love you all more than life itself. PURP GAAANG. Dzol, D-Stein, J Block, Hitman Chris, BabyBoi LaFlare, Lep, Stitch, Sacrafise, Death, Nrty, Phaz, X-Kalibur, Infexous, SKX, Kiltcha, Doka Butcha, Angal, Stalks Boogie & Reapz Rott, ChelsFX, Suicide & Crookid Gee, Optymus & Optymrs, Scotty Rotten, Link, the entire family at Wickid Tendency, Fade Ent, Snypa Da Prophet, McNastee, Ends, Saint-Sinna, Jenocia-X, Donnie & Rick at Force 5, Nastie & Mrs Nastie, Famz, Tito, Xman, Damien Quinn, the whole LSP Crew, Claas, Grewsum, Ashley aka Lil Mama, Klep, Soldiers of Fortune, Mad Maxxx, Mr and Mrs Don Orias, Er1ka – my personal hero, my fav sister Bitty Smash, Silentz, Spooky, Inquisitve Minds, Neil at Iron Tiger Tattoo, the only dude I let ink me up, my homie Stevecha and everyone who truly loves this underground music and the people who make it YOU are the reason we do it and YOU are the reason we exist so thank every one of y’all for supporting this music!

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