If your only experience with the duo now known as Shwayze is from last year’s MTV show “Buzzin’” or their breezy debut from that same year, which featured such beach ball fare as “Corona and Lime,” you might not be prepared for the harder driving hip-hop of “Let it Beat,” which came out earlier this week.
“For the true fans who know the scope of our sound and have all the music we’ve made other than just the first record, which were all the demos that were out there and just the early stuff, they know that it isn’t all just that sunshine, acoustic sound,” says Cisco Adler, who produced both albums, played most of the music, and recently became a sharing partner in the group moniker with Malibu rapper Shwayze.
“Yeah I feel like I’m in Bon Jovi,” jokes Adler. “When it did evolve into a group … that name had a ring to it and it sill encompasses our relationship because of the nickname I gave Aaron, so it just stuck.”
The sound on “Let it Beat” is decidedly more club than beach club. Adler says, “this is the nighttime to that album’s day.”
Another major difference in this album is the number of collaborators who come out after dark. Giving Shwayze cameo appearances on “Let it Beat” are artists as diverse as Snoop Dogg to the Cars’ Ric Ocasek to E Street Band pianist Roy Bittan.
Shwayze says he and Adler didn’t want to employ any outside help for the first album, because not only would too many cooks get in the way of fans getting to know them, but it could get in the way of them getting to know each other.
“The first record was just like us becoming friends, kicking it, hanging out and making music,” he says, “and the second one’s like ‘OK, now let’s really show these people what we’ve got.’ … I think fans gravitate towards it because they know we’re not just trying to go spend $100,000 to get Akon to sing on the hook so it might be radio-friendly.”