Turkish production duo Artz & Bugy are chief architects of their homeland’s burgeoning hip-hop scene, having built the template for Turkey’s biggest rapper Ezhel on his full-length debut, 2017’s Müptezhel. Since Müptezhel‘s release, have further established an eclectic sound and style, which reveals their ability to infuse rap production with elements of trap, reggaeton and Afrobeat.
The duo are superstars in their native Turkey. And for the duo, two important question was left hanging over their heads: “What’s left? What’s next?” Well for the Turkish production duo, it turns out that — well, a lot is left and a lot is next. “There have been a few producers handling popular albums in the Turkish rap scene, and I made one of them. It was very successful from my point of view,” explains Artz. “That success afforded us so much power, plus the capacity and the potential to dream up ideas we couldn’t even think of before. Now, we ask ourselves, ‘Why not? Why limit ourselves to home?”
With their recently released debut EP We Survive, Artz & Bugy have set out to make a global effort that illustrates and celebrates their Turkish roots while adapting their styles to create familiar ecosystems for the artists they recruited and worked with. The EP features guest spots from Jamaican dancehall artist BEAM (FKA Tyshane), Detroit‘s finest Royce da 5’9.” Ezhel, and Grammy-nominated emcee Freddie Gibbs, which should prove that the duo can craft beats for a diverse and eclectic array of artists and styles. For the duo, the EP is an introduction to the larger world and a love letter to the hip-hop they grew up idolizing — and are now shaping in their own image.
EP single “War Zone” sees the rising, Turkish production duo teaming up with the aforementioned Freddie Gibbs. Gangsta Gibbs’ self-assured, dense and intricate bars full of braggadocio and street shit is paired with a menacing and uneasy production centered around twinkling and arpeggiated key, skittering trap beats and tweeter and woofer rocking low end. Simply put, this track is fucking flames. So, when will the trio collaborate on an album or something, huh?
Working with an American superstar like Freddie Gibbs wasn’t lost on the duo. While such a momentous get was something that they were one day picturing accomplishing, it’s surreal for them to hear one of the dopest emcees in the world spitting bars over their beats. “A couple years ago we were imagining what sort of beat we would be making for Freddie Gibbs,” Bugy explains. “When we got the chance, we just jumped on it, and he killed his part too.”