SLUG‘s first Localized showcase of 2023 brings together three trailblazing artists who think outside traditional boundaries and merge genres into a foamy broth of experimentation. Come to Kilby Court on Thursday, Jan. 19 (doors at 7 p.m., music at 8 p.m.) to catch Co-headliners Idan Jene and Numerohuno alongside opener TRIBE BLVD for a can’t miss night of some of the city’s most cutting-edge sounds. SLUG would like to thanks to Essential Photo Supply for generously hosting the photoshoot for these articles.
SLUG: Can you please talk about your history with music? How did your passion grow into your Numerohuno project?
Numerohuno: About 4 years ago I heard my voice on a mic for the first time and never looked back; I just knew it’d be something I’d end up doing for the rest of my life. Mostly cause of how fun it is—hearing the final product of my songs is a feeling and craving that can’t be succeeded. If I’m sad, music; mad, music; happy, music; excited, music; depressed, music; high as a kite, music; unmotivated, music. In the end of the day, my life revolves around this music shit. It’s an obsession. My music is really just fueled by emotion, the ups and downs [and] my experiences through the years, along with being open and not holding back. I like to express and let those feelings go so I can continue to move forward and evolve.
SLUG: Can you please talk about your own musical tastes, and how they inform your writing? How did you come to inhabit your unique sound?
Numerohuno: It all goes back to being a little child riding around in the car with my mama. We were always on the road hitting long trips back and forth between California, Utah and Minnesota visiting family, as we didn’t really have a stable place. Some long ass drives listening to her wide variety of music for hours on hours would eventually be the light to it all. Everything from artists like Linda Jones, Barbara Lynn [and] Jenni Rivera to Bone Thugs, Nirvana, ’90s–2000s hip-hop, Usher, Bob Marley and so forth. My pops was also heavy on 50 Cent, TI, Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg and the Dr. Dre tapes.
I started using the money I’d get for snacks to buy CDs from the ice cream man who would pull up to my grandmas neighborhood every Sunday. CDs were getting pricey, so my aunties would burn CDs for me. I think it was at that point that I subconsciously became obsessed. The movie You Got Served played a huge roll as I became obsessed with music and the culture revolving it—I’d watch it back to back to back. It was the drip for me, the baggy pants, baggy tees and fitted hats, along with the break dance aesthetic, that had me goin! I’d start writing lyrics with no beat and I’d remember every flow and cadence as I’d write them. My music taste was already so versatile because of my mama, but then I started exploring more for myself. Young Thug, XXX Tentacion, Future, Travis Scott, Tyler, the Creator and ASAP Rocky would eventually lead the way for my generation. From fashion to lyrics, and [having] vulnerability while holding the upmost confidence fueled me even more. I don’t really listen to music anymore, and when I do it’s typically rap, which is why I like to experiment with different sounds—it’s all new to me and I get to be fully creative with minor inspiration. I’d say my sound is still very experimental. I’m always blending different things that I haven’t heard yet with songs that I love. It’s the process that I enjoy the most.
SLUG: How does collaboration play into your music? Do you produce all of your own work, or do you work with other local artists on this front?
Numerohuno: I’m blessed with a very unique team—everyone who’s hands on with my work is one of my brothers. We’re all very close and committed to each body of work. Cuka Beats and Adam Banx are the two masterminds behind my beats and engineering. Cuka makes most of my beats [and] Adam engineers and masters every body of work I’ve ever put out [and has] even produced a handful of my records. It’s a privilege to work with these great, talented individuals that I get to call my brothers.
SLUG: Can you please talk about how your visual look/style interacts with your music, or how you conceptualize the visual parts of your art—album covers, photoshoots, music videos, etc.—within your music?
Numerohuno: I just be getting dressed and letting the sets flow—Be cute, be fly and vibe. I like being hands on with my work, but as of now when it comes down to visualizers and photoshoots, I like to have photographers/videographers express themselves 100% with little to no input. I’ll only work with someone whose creativity I admire. I think it’s more genuine like that.
SLUG: Where do you hope to see your artistic practice grow in the future? Any new ideas in the works that you’re excited to share?
Numerohuno: I’d really love to just be able to record myself whenever/wherever and have my records ready to drop. It’s a lot of steps in between before I can get that to work, as I understand the difficulties of mixing and mastering, but that’s a goal that I’ve set for myself that I will achieve. I’m currently working on two projects. No dates have been set in mind as to when they’ll drop, but I’ll be dropping a handful of singles in between while getting those done.
SLUG: Anything else you wanted to bring up here?
Numerohuno: “CANDY RAMPAGE” OUT NOW BABY GO GET THAT. I also dropped a project earlier in the summer titled VIC VALENCIA. BE A GENUINE HUMAN KEEP YOUR INTENTIONS PURE ALWAYS. Take care of your mind and body. It’s ok to feel lost sometimes and not know what you want from life. Stay pure, move with love, and your purpose will find you. Shoutout SLUG MAG.
Follow Numerohuno on Instagram @numerohuno.valencia for more.
Read more about experimental and unclassifiable Utah pop musicians here:
Local Review: Willow Skye-Biggs – Lexen
Local Review: CLUB MUNGO – LODESTAR
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