Hailing form Perth, Coin Banks has released his long awaited debut solo release “Heads”, featuring Ta-Ku, Homeboy Sandman, 20syl and Atom from C2C, Like from PAC DIV and others. Cutting his teeth in Perth Hip Hop group The Stoops, Coin left in early 2012 to pursue new projects – including the Coin & Ta-ku collaborative album, the full-length “Letters To The Sun” collaboration with producer Akouo, and membership of rising live hip-hop collective UPNUP.

Coin has spent the last year crafting away on some of his best music to date, gearing up to debut as his first solo release in 2014. “Heads” will be closely followed by its companion piece, “Tails”. Both releases show Coin Banks striving to make music that is original and carries a social and conscious message, drawing on inspiration from the Native Tongue movement and its modern day equivalents such as Top Dawg Entertainment. Coin is currently working on his full-length album, with Ta-Ku and Nottz listed as contributors.

What are your earliest memories of music?
I remember my dad buying me my first CD when I was in primary school. It was a jazz cd, but I cant remember what it was. I remember hearing naughty By Nature for the first time when I was in primary school, we used play bball and play them on repeat back then.

What first got you into Hip Hop?

Who were your musical influences coming up as an artist?
Native Tongues, J Dilla, Beastie Boys, Gangstarr and Common

You first started out as a member of The Stoops before you went your separate ways what did you learn from being in the group and are you enjoying the creative freedom as a solo artist?
Yep, definitely enjoying the creative freedom to express my self entirely. I think the greatest lesson learnt is how to collaborate with other artists and how to take and give criticism.

Describe the Perth Hip Hop scene to us?
It still feels quite young and isolated but I think due to the isolation the scene is a lot closer and supportive.

As an artist what are the pros and cons of living in one of the most isolated cities in the world?
Cons: It’s a lot harder to get our music heard and to do tours.
Pros: Coz we are so isolated, it makes us work harder and forces us to be more original.

What are you wanting the listener to take away from your debut EP “Heads”?
I hope it connects with them, maybe they can learn something from it, it can influence them or simply give them something to dance to.

Much of the collaborations on the EP were done via the web due to the international features how hard was it piecing it all together?
Its not as hard as it might seem, all the cats I worked with are very professional and we all connected on the same wave length so for me it felt very organic.

You have another EP “Tails” ready to be released later this year what can you tell us about it?
There’s less features and more of me. It’s more soulful and upbeat than the previous release.

Who is on your wish list of artists/producers you want to work with?
I have slowly ticked off working with my favourite artists, but I would love to one day work with De La Soul, Common, and a new producer that I’m really feeling is Louie Lastic.

You got to record a whole project “Home” with Ta-ku last year and he contributed a track to “Heads” are you surprised by the worldwide attention he is getting now?
Not at all, not only is he a superbly talented producer, but he has a really good head on his shoulders. He is always planning a couple steps ahead.

What inspires you to write?
Life, Love and Hip Hop.

How would you describe the Coin Banks sound?
I love Soul, Hip Hop, future beats and I think that all blends together in my sound. Music for your mind, body and soul. You can dance, think or f@ck to it.

For those unfamiliar what artsist do you feel best represent Australian Hip Hop?
At the moment, I think Jimblah, Thundamentals, Horrorshow, Remi are killing it with their albums. I would like to also include NZ into this for my 5th album and that would be @Peace . This has been my favourite release of 2014 thus far, they have inspired a lot of artists in Australia, and some of the members being based in Melbourne now, I would like to throw them into the mix.

What one thing does Australian Hip Hop need right now?
More diversity – sonic, racial and sexual.

What artists are you currently listening to?
Gold Link, Moon Child (the neo soul band – definitely not the rapper), @Peace and Chance The Rapper.

You are about to tour Australia and launch the “Heads” EP what can people expect from your live show?
With my first national tour, I’m going to try and keep it raw, just myself and a DJ. I want the people to get to know me. So I think they can expect a very honest and personal experience.

What is the best piece of advice ever given to you?
Just because they don’t understand it, doesn’t mean its wrong.

What does the future hold for Coin Banks?
More music, more growth and less time.

What is your definition of Grindin’?
Working against all adversity to finish the job.

Interview by Duggs

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