Monday, December 4, 2017

4Square: JooseBoxx's New Album Covers Series with Notiz Yong, King Dice, Hvlloween, D'zyl 5k1 and more!

This year we wanted to do something different at the end of the year than just more reviews, profiles and video round ups. We wanted to add a little retrospect and creativity to the pieces so we're putting our year end content under the banner of The Wrap Up. To start off 2017's Wrap Up, we bring you the first installment of a series that will explore album covers we like, 4square. We're getting quotes from the artists and the visual artists they teamed up with for their album covers about some of our favorite releases from 2017.
In this series, we're asking musicians and the visual artists that helped them with their album art for quotes and stories about the covers to their records. I'll add a little commentary and perhaps on occasion some additional relevant imagery. We haven't failed to notice that our readership has tripled in the last 2 years and we want to reward y'all for that with some fun content, so thank you for reading as always!
MUSICIAN: Notiz Yong

"I had the concept of havin every title in acronyms, but Apostrophe was the one that threw the idea saying it'd be dope to have it look like a ransom note."
"  I think i was having a talk with Notiz - cant remember where i think it was at his house and he was explaining to me how he was working on the BRB project and how every song on the album was an acronym. I complimented him on the originallity before asking if he had thought about his album art? He replied nah not yet. So i asked him " have you ever see the sun of sam? or like mysteries where they cut a letter from different magazines and stuff for there ransom letters? After shot him the suggestion of the mysterious cut and paste idea. He told me it was a good idea, i didnt think he would remember and thats pretty much how it happened. "
"So my bro Notiz Yong hit me up said he had an idea for a cover and wanted to know if i could try and create it for him...his project titled BRB (be right back ) was a project fully song titled in acronyms , he said he wanted to make it look like a ransom note, so we got to work with his help of course went through hundred of font individually choosing what letters (font ) he wanted to use, we pretty much sat there and pasted every piece of font onto the cover which i suggested we used a crumbled paper background to give it that real feel. It worked out great; took some time but well worth it. He loved it, I loved it. It came out dope. Added the actual title names in Korean as well I believe. Anyways, Notiz Yong is that dude and my brother for life! Make sure y'all download BRB, Sincerely, Kast One ( Yo mamas favorite rapper )"
ALBUM TITLE: Shalu Avenue

"As far as Shalu’s cover. I knew it was going to be Shalu when I started. I took the pic myself. That street sign is the actual place where the intro to the album takes you if you follow the turn by turn directions given. It’s where much of Dante’s Theme took place. When I was up to no good as a troubled youth it’s where I used to kick it everyday."

* for comparative reference, the cover to Dice's last album, RED MAHOGANY DRIVE*

MUSICIAN: Hvlloween
ALBUM ART BY: Ken Maddskillz

"I wanted it to be a new age Dre day."
Ken Maddskillz
"Hvlloween had a vision and it was my privilege to make that vision a reality."

*for comparative reference, the Chronic album cover*
MUSICIAN: D'zyl 5k1
ALBUM TITLE: Delusions of a Commoner
ALBUM ART BY: D'zyl 5k1 /  April McPherson

D'zyl 5k1
"My idea. Photographer: April McPherson who I've used for all my albums except the Sauce. It's on the top of Perris Hill in San Bernardino. I wanted to express that the sky is the limit and that someone from my area can achieve great things...or at least dream it. Albums traditionally have the artists face on the cover. I wanted to show my back to convey that everything I've done is behind me and it doesn't matter. Only what's in front of me. I treated the album like it's my first. A reemergence and reintroduction of who I am....letting my face be a mystery and my words and actions speak for me.

I did that photoshoot in December of '15

Made the cover in the middle of '16. Album released March 31st of 17. I try to stay ahead of myself. From that same photoshoot I got the pictures for the Golden State Blues ep

I wanted the artwork to be done by me. I feel like most of my artistic expression should be personal and organic. When I brush up on my beat making skills I will start producing my own albums as well."

"The main thing that comes to mind about the album cover and photoshoot we did was how it started raining on us. D’zyl is full of fun ideas whenever we do a shoot and this was no exception and was still a blast. Plenty of clothing changes, locations and laughs - he’s really a diva deep down but we still love him!"

Tristan "Tanjint Wiggy" Acker is a staff writer for JooseBoxx, youth hip-hop writing instructor with CHORDS Enrichment Youth program ( and member of the Inland Empire nerdcore hip-hop group the West Coast Avengers. Catch more of their work at, follow Tristan on Twitter @Tanjint or e-mail him at

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