January 26, 2011 / 12:49 AM / 7 years ago

M.I.A. producer Blaqstarr goes "Divine" on new EP

NEW YORK (Billboard) - After garnering notoriety through production work for M.I.A., Baltimore DJ, producer and hip-hop artist Blaqstarr will be branching out on his own this week, for the first time since 2008.

Tuesday marks the release of his six-song set, “The Divine EP,” on M.I.A.’s own Interscope imprint N.E.E.T.

Of the six electronic-tinged, experimental songs on “The Divine EP,” Blaqstarr believes that all will be club bangers.

“Groovy, just groovy sounds,” he told Billboard.com, explaining what he believes makes a club banger. “Just the whole song, the element of the song, the feeling -- it captures you in the middle of the dance floor.”

The EP’s positive title stems from Blaqstarr’s hope that the release, whose lead single “Rider Girl” is a new version of his previous hit “Ryda Girl,” will kickstart his own divine mission.

“We live in a clearly imperfect world and I‘m an imperfect human being so I‘m perfect for this mission,” he said. “The divine mission is just bringing enlightenment to the world.”

He recently worked with M.I.A. on both her 2010 album “MAYA” and late 2010 mixtape “Vicki Leekx,” whom he first met through producer Diplo.

“At the time, I was doing a situation with her then-boyfriend Diplo,” Blaqstarr explained. “He wanted to introduce me to his girlfriend because he felt that we would work well together because of our vibe, and I was like, ‘Sure, I‘m willing to meet her.’ From there, we clicked.”

Having also worked with likes of Mos Def and Talib Kweli and playing a hand in discovering dancer/rapper Rye Rye (with whom he recorded 2008’s “Shake It Down To The Ground”), the 25-year-old’s work has transcended Baltimore’s club scene. This is something he doesn’t believe will end with the “The Divine EP,” as he predicts that all six tracks will do the same.

“It’s universal,” Blaqstarr declared, in regards to the EP. “I‘m gonna say, all over the world,” adding that listeners will be “cosmically entertained.”

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