Ephect, MVL, Jay Paul, NRG, Nesto, Switch-Blade, Shadow, Dropoff Records, Stash House Records, DJ Balo
Spin Nightclub, 6308 Guilford Ave.
Saturday, April 5, 9 p.m., $5, 21+
Naptown’s hip-hop artists don’t sit around and wait for some bigwig to give them a break. They break it off themselves. Such is the case with Indianapolis artist and entrepreneur J. Fullen, more popularly known as Ephect. He’s part of the new wave of talent in the local hip-hop scene that is more interested in collaborating than battling, and that is thereby strengthening the hip-hop community.
“You’ve got to branch out farther than just being an artist,” says Ephect, who also helps run a recording studio on the Eastside. “I love that part of it as much,” referring to the countless hours not only put into managing his own projects, but also those of the other artists on his label, New Method Productions.
Ephect chooses the artists he works with carefully, basing his decisions on how much the drive of those artists measures up to his own. He says that there’s a lot of “talent” and “hunger” in Indianapolis, “but you’ve got to be real with what you’re talking about.” The majority of the performers on Saturday’s lineup will be New Method Productions artists.
Ephect’s production is not only heard on tracks by rap artists on his label, but also on other genres, including work for pop singer MVL, who will perform at the Saturday night show. “I keep these shows from turning into sausage fests,” MVL informs me. “I bring out the ladies.”
Sometimes raunchy, sometimes heartfelt, MVL has been building up a fanbase for a few years now, playing regularly with a DJ and back-up dancers, and singing songs with subject matter ranging from the aftermath of a one-night stand to the results of domestic violence.