Who: Fort Knox Five
When: Sunday, Aug. 5
Where: Tommy Africa’s
The Fort Knox Five
crew were scattered across the globe last month. Jon “JonH” Horvath toured
Asia, Steve “Raskal” Raskin covered California and New York gigs, and Sid
Barcelona and Rob Myers held down the hometown fort in Washington.
The boys were busy raising funds and sounds for what Horvath considers the group’s first full-length album. The break beat crew released remix CDs and label compilation albums, but the new not-yet-titled March release is all Five.
“We became big very quickly and you get put on a pedestal and then you mentally put yourself on an even higher pedestal, but we decided to start from scratch rather than build on tracks that have been around for years,” Horvath said. “It was really important for us to create an album with fresh and new sounds. Hopefully we will get a fresh product that comes out of nowhere.”
Into the recording studio the Washington boys go for September and October, once the Shambala Music Festival and Burning Man celebration are behind the troupe.
To their tracks, the foursome brings a wealth of shows and music exposure to shake up their new sound, focusing on what spins out of their DJ shows. Hip hop, funk and reggae will work their way into the new funky Fort Knox Five mix, with a little Australia, Russia, Europe and Asia on the side.
“Those kind of experiences really help with the album and what direction we want to take it,” Jon said of his recent show in Russia.
In the same town Jon’s father grew up in and later fled when Russia invaded Hungary, Fort Knox Five joined Roots and Protégé for a live show rocking out to a crowd of 40,000 earlier this year.
The jetsetters also touched down at the Good Vibrations Festival Down Under, keeping stage company with the likes of Jurassic Five, Snoop Dog, and Kraak & Smaak.
Their highly sought-after production style has been called on by the best in the biz, including Tito Puente, Louis Armstrong, Tower of Power, A Skillz, Krafty Kuts, Afrika Bambaataa and others.
Many of these remixes have worked their way onto Fort Knox Five’s most recent album, Reminted , released last fall on their indie label For Knox Recordings.
A. Skillz & Krafty Kuts, Tito Puente, Ursula 1000 and Malente all work their way onto the album.
“The greatest thing is that we got into the position that a lot of people were into what we are doing,” Horvath said. “We basically went out and hand picked the best. We are not just remixing a new track, but it’s our chance at reproducing the track.”
Fort Knox Five is branding the Reminted concept for future remix showcases.
Other recent coos include the remix of Duppy Conqueror by Bob Marley.
“Bob Marley isn’t on Reminted , but it will be on the next,” Horvath said. “It was officially sanctioned by Rita Marley and all the island people.”
Even with a rigorous touring and recording schedule, Horvath feels like he is sitting on top of the world. Sitting poolside in Hawaii awaiting his next show in Honolulu always helps, along with a month in Asia with time to take in the sights in Bali.
“We’ve all done the nine to five and now our life is this,” he said from his sunny recliner. “Things are looking pretty solid.”
Fort Knox Five joins Dirty Beats in Whistler on Sunday, Aug. 5 at Tommy Africa’s. Tickets are $5 before 11 p.m. and $10 thereafter.