On the heels of releasing his first album in nine years, New York producer/rapper J-Zone discussed the machines that made him a late 90s underground mainstay.

Sitting down GoVillianGo, Captain Backslap revealed some of the techniques he employs in the studio including how he limits his technology use to challenge himself.

“I always kind of felt that too much technology was a bad thing when it came to making music,” J-Zone said when discussing his equipment. “To me, it can kind of have an adverse affect on your creativity because you see all the new software coming out–advanced Marty McFly shit, super duper high tech but the end result, at least from the Hip Hop side is kick, snare, hi-hat and it’s always been. So you have all this capability to do stuff but nobody really uses it.”

J even goes backward in time to give himself even more of a challenge and produces a product he believes is better quality.

“Whenever I’m working on some music, every once in a while I like to challenge myself by going backwards in that process and limiting my studio equipment as much as possible,” he explained. “By being limited in my tools I like to see what that brings out of me as a producer. What you don’t have in equipment, you have to compensate for in brain power and creativity.”

J-Zone also shows fans what he considers his “two girlfriends,” two pieces of studio equipment he holds dear to him.

“That’s what I like to call them, my two girlfriends. Every once in a while when my MPC is not working I’ve got to call up my two girlfriends so we can have a little threesome here in the studio.” “My two girlfriends are called ‘Betsy’ [his four-track]… And the new edition to the family… Diana [another four-track]… Instead of going out and buying another MPC, instead of updating the software and dealing with all that shit, I decided to go backwards and decided to get a hold of some of the old four-tracks from the 80s to track some of the music out for my new album.”

J-Zone has released five studio albums starting with 1999’s Music for Tu Madre. His most recent project release was all the way back in 2007 when he dropped To Love a Hooker. He will release his newest album, Peter Pan Syndrome in September. Watch the full interview with J-Zone below:

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