‘Bangers On Bangers’ – Planet Vegeta Talk ‘Letters To Chi-Chi,’ Hyperbolic Chambers & Western Sydney
Real ones.
Music 3w

They’re in no short supply…

The Sydney music scene is a flourishing hub of energy, a creative cornucopia giving birth to new and exciting sounds each and every day. But although the city was once united in its sonic blueprint, recent years have seen various frequencies and sub-cultures arise by the tenfold, each and every postcode offering a unique and innovative take on creative expression. One such part of the city that’s been bubbling with that light of change is none other than Western Sydney, and it’s without a doubt helping to lead the way with its richly textured flavours of hip hop, R&B, drill and so much more in 2021.

It’s an exciting time for the area, and as if by some act of divine intervention, the West’s favourite sons Planet Vegeta (made up of LKGD, SVNO and Jazz NOBODI) have dropped their EP smack bang in the middle of the madness, helping to bookmark the exciting chapter of the West as it takes its rightful place as one of the cultural centres of the city and the nation.

Letters To Chi-Chi (out now) sees the trio prove that they’re a colossal force to be reckoned with in Australia’s hip hop and R&B scene, delivering an overflow of slick bars with catchy hooks and soulful melodies, all of which seem to come naturally to the young OGs. Consequently, Letters To Chi-Chi feels fun, serious, raw and refined, striking a multi-faceted chord within our souls as the Western Sydney heroes reaffirm that they’ve got something to say, and whether or not you choose to tune in at first, they’re gonna grind so hard and give so much that you’ll be forced to take notice of them at one point or another.

We caught up with SVNO from the trio to chop it up over the EP, the Western Sydney music scene and of course, geek the fuck out over some good old Dragon Ball Z (if you know you know).

Check it below.

It’s surprising that this is your first EP, given you guys have been such a presence in the Sydney music scene for so long now. In releasing it, was there a sense of having finally arrived? Or was it just something to tick off the list?

We actually created the project in 2018, so it’s been just sitting in the back pocket for a while. But yeah, it feels good that we got a body of work out there now, but in saying that, fuck, we’re just ready to get back to work and just start releasing other shit as well.

The rise you guys have had over the past two to three years mirrors the momentum of the Western Sydney music scene as a whole. What’s it like to be dropping your EP at a time when the west is finally getting its props?

I’m biased with that shit bro. I’m born and bred in Western Sydney. Even my brother Tyler fights in the UFC. Everyone’s just doing crazy things in the West but within the music, it’s crazy. Before it was frowned upon in a way, seeing that kind of stuff happen, but now people are starting to see the value we bring to the game and they fuck with this shit, so it makes me happy.

I’m gonna start with ‘Sailor Moon’. There’s such a badass manga/anime influence throughout the song as well as the Planet Vegeta ethos. How does that area of art influence the PV creative process?

For real, when we lock in in the studio, we look at it like a hyperbolic chamber. And if you know, you know. For the people who watch Dragon Ball… even Goku goes and he just lives in that shit, he’s just by himself. So for us, Planet Vegeta is the home of the Saiyans and that’s how we just see ourselves. I think it just shows in our music as well where we don’t try to ride a wave or fit a certain sound or genre. We just do whatever we fuck with and whatever 92 fuck with, that’s it. That’s what it is. If it’s garage music, hip hop or an R&B joint, that’s how we look at it.

 

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This is just for me, but is there a Kanye ‘All Falls Down’ nod in ‘Jorja’? Specifically the bar ‘The concept of life seems so secure’ along with the whole message about materialism and to not worry about that when you’re with PV?

That bar was Jazz’s but I can say he definitely paid homage to Kanye with it. But yeah, you don’t need to front when you party with us, just bring your vibes. It is what it is. We don’t even flex. We don’t flex nothing, to be honest. We don’t have fucking icy mists and all this and that. We are who we are and aren’t trying to put on a front and shit, so that’s pretty much how that is.

What’s a regular party with the Planet Vegeta crew like?

Regular night with us is just fucking good tunes. We got bangers straight up. Our brotherhood’s called 92 so that’s why it’s PV92 and it’s just us and our boys. We got enough music to play through the whole night, like original music, shit that people haven’t heard of. So for us, whether the boys are drinking or having a few j’s or whatever, we just vibe out together and that’s one of our best nights or if we just go out it’s like backyard vibes, good music, fucking dancing shit, whatever.

I also love the story behind ‘Charlie B’ and the whole rocking up to Oxford Art and just shooting in the crowd. For a group that runs like such a well-oiled machine, you guys have this rich spontaneity to you. Is that something you always wanna keep?

That’s funny you say that. I’m so glad that actually comes across because fuck, we’re the most last minute people that you’d know man. Like with project deadlines we literally do it the day before, but we obviously have our goal in place and that, but man, shit gets crazy and then we wake up and the due date will be tomorrow and we’re like, “Fuck, we got to get in the studio and just pump some stuff out.” So, if we do get that part of our game down pat, then I think we’ll be on another level, but we’re spontaneous every day of the week.

Straight up, we’ll record a song and we’ll just hit out… like that ‘Charlie B’ track, we recorded it the night before and we told one of the guys to just meet us at Oxford and that we’d just shoot something and that’s how that turned out, so yeah.

How did you guys even pull that off?

So it was like this hip hop… or, I wouldn’t say hip hop, but just like a dance event. We know some people there, they do showcases and shit, and when we got there we just told the owner “We’re going to shoot a music video.” And then we got on the decks and played ‘Charlie B’ three times and got all the shots we could, otherwise everyone would just be hearing the same shit. We played it once and had a little 10 minute break. And then we played it again and we just said over the mic “Hey, if you see a camera, fucking vibe out.” And then that’s how it ended up.

Yeah, straight up, but it turned out hectic. I vibe to that video. And that’s the same with the fucking hot dog joint that we were at as well. We just rocked up there, standing on the tables and shit, and just shot some of the shit.

That video was released as part of that Sunday School series from last year. Reading the comments on one of the videos I saw you say that you wanted to build your YouTube following, then jump over to the streaming platforms. Why was YouTube such a focus for you?

I’m not sure who replied to that, but what we’ve talked about is basically, with streaming today, the label and all that is involved so it’s a bigger… you’ve got six weeks, maybe three to four weeks before release or whatever the fuck it is. But with YouTube we can just pump shit out, original shit without having to take it through the system and that. For us, we just wanted to build our fan base, really. Doesn’t matter where it is for me, to be honest, If it’s out there, it’s out there. It’s literally at a click of your thumb, you can switch from Spotify to YouTube and you see it.

Obviously you can’t replay it and shit yet. But yeah, at that time I think we were just trying to pump out stuff. Because we’ve got so much shit that people haven’t heard. We’re just trying to figure out how to release it and shit.

 Moves like that prove you guys aren’t your typical rap group. Like it’s really dope you’ve all been dropping your own solo music while dropping music as PV. How does dropping solo music help the PV creative process?

I think it’s cool like that because we all have different flavors. So I think it’s good to do that because then it actually levels up for when we come together as well, just because we’re getting that itch out of doing our solo records and it just levels up the PV sound as well.

Levels up the PV sound how specifically?

I think it’s just vibes. With PV, we just go in the studio and we just make shit but with our solo stuff, we can really experiment and that. So for my shit, there’s some sounds I wouldn’t use in PV. Or Jazz, if he just wants to spit 64 bars and shit, then he can do that and experiment with how he would navigate doing that. And with LKGD and his producing for his solo shit, I feel like that just brings more to the table with PV. We’re able to bring what we experiment with in our solo shit and then just add little dribs and drabs to help PV’s sound.

 

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Just to get a bit nostalgic. I remember seeing you guys at Field Day 2020. The crowd was hype AF for what was an opening set, but im pretty certain if we repeated that festival again, you’d be way further into the night and have five times the crowd. Do you feel that?

Not personally to be honest. I personally don’t give a fuck if it’s one person or 200 people. I just love performing. And I haven’t really thought about us being… I just feel like we’re still in the same place just because of COVID in terms of shows. But we got our first show coming up this week, so we’ll see then how many people turn up. But yeah, we haven’t really been thinking about it, we’ve just been trying to get these projects done.

 

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Now that shows/festivals are coming back and the EP is out, what’s the plan to take it to the next level?

Oh man, the plan is to just stay active. I’m sick of not doing shows. But yeah, the plan is just to try and do as many shows as we can. Drop another project, another few singles and hopefully go stateside. And when international opens up then hopefully we can go overseas as well.

Lastly, for anyone that might just be getting put on to Planet Vegeta and consequently the Western Sydney music scene as a result of this EP, what would you say to them?

Fuck, just keep tuning in hey. Bangers on bangers on bangers. Not just from us, you got everyone. Onefour, CG Fez. The whole hood has just gone crazy. It’s nuts to me. I still buzz out myself that… because most of these guys, I’ve know them since I was young. I’ve grown up with all of them, I’ve seen them come through from then to now, which is just crazy. But yeah, just keep plugging in.

Planet Vegeta’s new EP ‘Letters To Chi-Chi’ is out now. You can buy/stream it here. Be sure to keep up with them on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date on all of their latest projects. 

Words by Amar Gera April 6, 2021
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