In this week's upcoming paper, Jesse Hughey talks to local hip-hop producer/beatmaker Rob Viktum about his upcoming release, Progress 2. Be sure to keep an eye out for that story, but in the meantime, some added background: As you'll hear/see in the above clip, the record's release is something of a fundraiser for the people of Cambodia who are still suffering in the wake of the Khmer Rouge rule of their country in the late '70s. And it's a cause close to Viktum's heart, too: The family of his longtime girlfriend, Tavy Um, fled Cambodia as a result of the atrocities taking place at the time.
Inspired by a collection of Cambodian records Tavy's father passed along to him, Viktum in 2007 released a hip-hop record called Progress. The record's beats were made entirely of samples from that collection, and, on some level, it was a breakthrough record for Viktum's career, earning him fans both domestically and across the Pacific. It helped, probably, that the record was made available as a free download (and it's still available right here).
Tomorrow, Viktum's brand new label, Mega Royal Records, will release the sequel. But whereas the last one was free for anyone who wanted it, Progress 2 is being sold the old-fashioned way. The reasoning behind that much is pretty admirable, though: Mega Royal will be donating a portion of the record's proceeds to a charity to help the people of Cambodia. And, today, to help drum up some excitement for the release, Viktum released one of the album's tracks. Like the first Progress disc, this song, and the rest of the songs on Progress 2, is completely comprised of that same Cambodian record collection Viktum was gifted.
Check out "12.25.78"--and feel free to download it, too--after the jump.
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Some of the tracks on the disc feature guest emcees; others, like the track one are instrumentals.
Whereas the guest rappers Viktum brought on each chose the titles of the songs they guested on, the above track--like the rest of the instrumentals on the disc--is named simply with a date. Each date, as you can read about in this upcoming print edition of the paper, is named for a crucial moment in the Khmer Rouge rule of Cambodia.