words: Andy McColgan

Ed Banger Records – home to the likes of Justice and Busy P – goes all experimental on us with the classical-inspired, jazz-fused, hip hopera of Krazy Baldhead’s debut album The B Suite

Ed Banger new boy Krazy Baldhead ain’t the type of artist you’d normally associate with a French electro label. He’s spent 10 years at a jazz music academy in France, and claims he never listens to electronic music. Now he’s releasing his debut album, The B Suite, and in an almost classical twist, it comes in four movements. There are no track titles other than first, second, third and fourth part for each of the movements. Jazz influences feature heavily, as do hip hop beats, but there’s also more than enough funky, bass-heavy electro goodness to ensure the album sits nicely alongside the rest of the Ed Banger roster.

That said, it’s encouraging to see the Ed Banger stable branching out in terms of its musical remit, as Krazy Baldhead – or Pierre-Antoine Grison as he’s usually known – is a genre-bending artist with no shortage of ideas. The collaborations on The B Suite are the ones to pay the closest attention to – Brooklyn rapper Tes, Miami’s The Beat Assailant and Japanese hip-hoppers Big-O and Yulia all provide vocals that complement Krazy’s leftfield electro-jazz-hip-hopera.

Krazy released his first EP on Ed Banger back in 2004 and has contributed to the three Ed Rec compilations that Busy P and co have put out. He’s also done remix work for some underground and equally experimental groups such as The Mules and Pivot. Now he’s got plans for a Krazy Baldhead live show in full swing, and he’s starting work on side project Donso, and that’s not to mention more remix work in the post. EQ managed to find time in his busy schedule for a chat about the new album, his influences and working with Ed Banger…

How would you describe the Krazy Baldhead sound? 
I’d say it’s pretty eclectic. It’s quite hip hop-based, but it’s not just that. I think the key is being groovy and not just doing the four-on-the-floor thing. 

Tell us a bit about The B Suite? 
It was designed as a four-movement composition, with each movement being about 12 minutes long and going in any direction while always trying to be connected to the main musical themes. It was inspired by a classical piece – Scheherazade by Rimsky-Korsakov – structure-wise. While I was building it I kept asking myself: “And now what would I like to hear?”

What was the thinking behind the concept for the album? Do the four movements represent something other than the obvious difference in musical style? 
I don’t really like the idea of music trying to represent something. I mean it obviously does, but I prefer to leave it up to the listener.  Hence the titles which are just labelled ‘movements’. I didn’t want to call them ‘Spring’ or ‘Moon’ or ‘Red’ as it narrows the imagination of the person listening to it. My music demands a bit of effort to be listened to, but in the end I think it’s pretty rewarding. 

What were you listening to up to and during the recording process? 
A lot of jazz and some progressive stuff from the 70s, like Soft Machine and Gong, as well as Prince and Hendrix. I didn’t listen to a lot of electronic music, except for what I could hear in clubs when playing somewhere. That was cool because I don’t have too much time to analyse it and get influenced by it. It’s more a matter of catching an idea and trying to remember it and then integrate it in my own productions. 

How did the collaborations on the album come about? 
They’re mostly people I’ve come to meet over the years. I’ve already made an EP featuring Tes so I couldn’t imagine not having him on my first album. I made a remix for Outlines and met them. They are cool guys, and Irfane has an amazing voice. We also have lots of common influences. On the track I remixed for them was Beat Assailant and I liked his flow. As for the Japanese MCs Big-O and Yulia, I wanted to have some Japanese rap as I think the language really fits this style. Last summer I was booked in Tokyo, and thanks to Kiri from Revolver, I managed to do a recording session with them. That was an awesome experience. 

How did working with Ed Banger records come about? 
I sent a demo to the label boss Pedro in 2004 not really knowing he was setting up a label and definitely not knowing it would be such an incredible story.

Has the relationship with them been a good one so far? 
I don’t think it could have been better. The whole crew is completely dedicated to what they do – releasing good music, having fun and spreading some love. And they do that very simply, just with their heart, not calculating what the financial profits will be – as you can tell, releasing an album as weird as mine.

Your first release on Ed Banger was back in 2004. What have you been up to since then? 
Well, I’ve released two EPs, I’ve done tracks for the Ed Banger compilations, done a couple of remixes, and I’ve been playing my live set across the world for a couple of years. Plus I’ve been working a lot on my side project Donso, which is a band making a blend of music from Mali and electro. It should be released pretty soon as we’re busy right now polishing off the album. It’s not on Ed Banger though. 

Can you describe what we could expect from a Krazy Baldhead live set? 
There’s some banging stuff, but also some hip hop, some weird beats – it goes in many directions, so you’d better not be too drunk. It’s basically a rework of the album with a couple of older tracks as well. It’s definitely more clubby than the album though.

Where has the reaction to your live show been at its most appreciative? 
Since I’ve started playing I think the best parties I’ve had were in Germany, but then I don’t want to make a rule of it. You can never expect what an audience will be like.

The B Suite is out now on Ed Banger Records. Visit and




“My music demands a bit of effort to be listened to, but in the end I think it’s pretty rewarding”