Owning the Rhyme

With individual backgrounds in hard rock, hi-hop and soul, Roger Gunz, The O.G.Manny-G, and Chuck Nasty may seem like an odd group of musicians. Bonded by a shared Latino heritage, a hometown and love of writing the four musicians make up the Mineola-based band, A Side of Darkness (A.S.O.D.). Together they create an alternative form of hip-hop, one full of energy.

Pulse Insider: How did you get your start in music?
We started individually, all of us writing. Chuck made his beats through Fruity Loop and Roger and Manny writing rhymes and lyrics. After returning from the Marines, Roger and Manny reconnected, realizing they both liked writing. Manny brought Chuck to the table because he remembered a time at a party when Chuck was playing “Still D.R.E “ and Manny thought it was the coolest thing to be doing

From there we began recording at Roger’s house using his living room closet as a recoding booth with some bootleg equipment we found at Guitar Center. We did this for about two months until we began recoding at Music Farm recording studios. At the Farm we were able to record our first album and a number of tracks still yet to be released.

Who are your greatest musical influences?
Our sound is influenced from all genres of music, Latin, rock, classical, but if you want to shout out names: Wu tang, A Tribe Called Quest, Red Hot Chili peppers, Guns N’ Roses, Nas, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg.

We love all decades of music.

How would you describe your music to someone you just met?
We like to write rhymes that are their own rhythm like its own instrument. It’s hip-hop alternative to the mainstream.

Describe your creative process – do you come into the studio ready to record or is it more improv?
It’s organic. Either we write something on the spot or we have something written before we get into the studio. Chuck is always writing and composing new beats.

What’s next for A Side of Darkness? Where are you playing in the next few months?
We would like to tour the northeast coast and put out a sophomore album. Roger a marine will also be competing in his jujitsu, Chuck is a chef and Manny is also a visual artist and will be creating and showing new pieces.

Check out what A Side of Darkness is up to: online, on Facebook and YouTube.