Illuminati Congo is a Chicago based hip hop group with their second full length album, “All Eye See” scheduled to be released in the Fall of 2011. Vocalist Jahn The Baptist and producer Nic The Graduate create an infectious blend of head nodding beats and unexpected subject matter that will have you begging for a rewind!
Musical influences range from classic reggae to classic rock creating an equal blend of modern synth-and-sampler driven hip hop and danceable, live band instrumentation.
The sound is reminiscent of artists such as Nas and Damian Marley with a hint of Gym Class Heroes thrown in. There is much more space for the musicians to shine than is typical in hip hop. Instrument solos and “dubs” are mixed throughout, giving the lyrics time to settle in and just feel the rhythm. Breakup songs come across just as heart-felt as songs about sexy yoga chicks and the anguish of having a foot fetish- often in a not so subtle tongue in cheek manner.
Jahn The Baptist is unlike any other rapper out there. He is able to utilize his mantra of “as above, so below” to formulate a refreshing unity of the higher self and lower self. His lyrics reflect both his practice of spirituality and his embrace of earthly, human desires.
His words are meant to appeal both to Yogis as well as the inner city Hood- with an authoritative demeanor that lets you know he is equally of both. Having studied and taught Kundalini Yoga and Rebirthing Breathwork as well as being an avid herbalist in the Rastafarian community, Jahns true goal is to heal. Heal the world of its ills through awareness of self and the practice of unconditional love. Hip hop is an art form that has the ability to com- municate complex ideas to a potentially large audience, let it not go to waste!
Nic The Graduate has taken Jahn’s eclectic background and layered it with equally eclectic beats. As a Multi-instrumentalist, producer and dj soon for many years in Chicago, he is most attracted to music that elicits an emotional response.
Rather than just being impressed by songs that get the dance floor packed or stay in your head for hours, he is always more interested in music with a meaning- or soul. In producing the Illuminati Congo album, he has made it apparent that hip hop is truly a global style, combining traditionally heavy beats and bass lines with some unexpected twists and turns from other genres. In using a wide variety of live instru- ments and samplers The Graduate is able create a fusion that activates the soul as well as the dancing spirit.
Vocal collaborations include major reggae recording artists; Lee “Scratch” Perry, Big youth, JahDan and Lutan Fyah. Hip Hop legends; Cee Knowledge the Doodlebug from Digable Planets, Del The Funky Homosapien as well as Chicago veterans; Rita j, Juice, Ang 13 and Sharkula.