InkAddict recently had a chance to learn more about our newest sponsored musician Sadistik. We discuss his new album Ultraviolet which is in stores and on iTunes right now, what influences his music and poetry, his recent European tour, and, of course, his tattoos.
What drew you to hip-hop?
I loved the anger of it, initially. I was really drawn to West coast gangsta rap as a kid. The things they were talking about were so far from my own experiences but I could relate to the anger behind it so easily. I eventually started branching out to different styles & niches of hip-hop & found different nuances to appreciate. I still love the raw aggression behind it all, even though I tend to take my own music a different direction.
Did rapping come naturally or is it the result of a lot of practice and hard work?
I would say my skill-set is more a result of working on my craft than a natural talent. I’ve always had things I felt a deep need to express, but it took a while to get my craft to the point where I was comfortable doing so. When I look back on the last 15 years of my life, a huge portion of it was spent by myself writing & recording songs.
How long have you been rapping?
I first started rapping 14 years ago, but my first album came out about 6 years ago. I was writing poetry before that.
Do you approach the two mediums differently? Are different topics explored?
I definitely approach the two mediums differently. I feel comfortable in my music; I have a fine-tuned idea of what I think works and doesn’t with my style, but with poetry I’m still trying to figure it all out in a way. I feel much more naked & vulnerable with my poetry than I do on songs. Maybe that’s why I should be doing it, though. I’m aiming to release my first poetry book soon.
Do you write constantly or does it come in spurts?
I write constantly. Lately it’s been more about how much time I have to do it. I feel inclined & inspired to write more than ever lately but my time is getting scarcer, so any time I get to write feels like a haven right now. Sometimes it can be as small as a fleeting thought that I type in my phone, and sometimes it can be me scribbling in my studio to the same beat loop for an entire day and everything in between. I don’t think writers ever get to take time off.
You just came home from a European tour. How were you received over seas?
Well, it was actually my second European tour. I did a smaller one a few years ago with my friend Kristoff Krane , but this recent one with CunninLynguists was certainly larger scale. I had a really good time out there & was received pretty well. Every show had at least a handful of die-hard fans so I always felt welcomed. Most of those shows were sold out & being the main support for an act as accomplished as CunninLynguists was fun.
You've said that "Flowers for My Father" was about the place you were in after the passing of your father. Will you continue to cover personal topics on Ultraviolet?
I think Ultraviolet is emotional & introspective, but not quite as directly morose as some of my other work. This album covers a lot of concepts that are kind of masked by abstracts, metaphor, imagery, etc... but the meat of it holds a lot of the same themes I’ve talked about before. I feel myself growing, changing, devolving; however you want to put it, lately & I think that newer scope shows up in these songs.
I've read several interviews with you where you've mentioned dreaming. Both good dreams and bad. Do dreams ever influence your writing?
Absolutely. I don’t remember my dreams often but when I do I tend to remember them well, especially the tone & emotion of it. A lot of my not-so-subconscious fears pop up in my dreams and I try to draw from it when I write.
At what age did you start getting tattoos?
I think I was 22. I got a line from a Dylan Thomas poem down both of my inner arms.
Would you like to give a shout out to your artist or shop?
Yea, huge shout out to Rok at Slave to the Needle here in Seattle. People ask me at every show who does my tattoo work & that’s my guy. For my two cents he’s the best in the city.
How much of your skin is covered?
I’m still pretty green in the tattoo world. I’m about 30 hours into the sleeve on my right arm and I have another large one on my left forearm. It’s almost exclusively portrait work so far so it’s a long process; I just make appointments between tours.
Do you have plans for more?
Definitely. I don’t really have an end goal for my tattoos but I don’t have any plans on slowing down.
Sadistik's hits the road for his 2 month U.S. tour with Cage on July 3rd. Order some new InkAddict threads and go see him perform when he comes through your town. For more information about Sadistik including upcoming tour dates, check out our artist profile.
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