SoundTown Series: Sims talks about his first headlining tour and new EP


The beats never stop for the tireless crew of Doomtree. It was barely six months ago that Sims released his sophomore album, Bad Time Zoo, to overwhelming support from critics, peers, and fans. His smooth delivery and the intelligent persistence of his rhymes make Doomtree's youngest partner a standout member of the burgeoning Twin Cities hip hop community.

Gimme Noise chatted with Sims about his upcoming tour, future projects, and playing SoundTown this weekend.


So, you've got a tour coming up: Good Time Zoo with Lazerbeak and Cecil Otter, kicking off in September. Are you excited? What's the plan?

Super excited! It's my first time headlining a tour, so I'm excited to see what that's like. It's kind of win or lose, you know? I'm more just excited to be on the road. I noticed you were ending your tour in Minneapolis and not kicking it off here. Any reason behind that?

SoundTown, actually. I think there's a proximity clause or something. Anyway, we also wanted to make sure SoundTown was awesome. We've only done a handful of shows since February, anyway.

I read in an interview a while ago--when Bad Time Zoo came out in February--that you'd like to have another record out within a year... and did I just see that you've got a new EP with Lazerbeak coming up?

Yeah! It's called Wild Life. It's got five songs and it's just some stuff we're working on. We're putting out soon... we don't have a date yet, but it'll be out for the tour for sure. We're thinking early September. We're excited about that, and we're also mixing the Doomtree record right now... That's supposed to come out late November. After the tour, I'm trying to get home and start working with Lazerbeak on some new stuff.

Cool. So, Bad Time Zoo had a very ritualistic, hunter/hunted theme--you've said as much before. Are there any other themes floating around in your head? How is your new work shaping up?

Yeah, the EP is actually more just story songs... I'm not exactly sure why, I was just in the mood, I guess. I don't have any radio hits in there by any means, but I like them. It's just a good thing to have out to support the tour. The Doomtree album, I don't even know how to explain it... There's not a lot of choruses, every song is fairly long, and the production is amazing. It's got a lot of movement to it. I think it's pretty cool the way we did it... Cecil, Lazerbeak and P.O.S., the three of them basically co-produced every beat on the record, so they worked on that for a month or two and then we all escaped to a cabin, like some Bon Iver shit or something. (laughs) We had to book this thing like two, three months out, because everyone's so busy, and that's amazing. But yeah, there's something about the songs that isn't too thought-out. They're just really fresh. I think I read before that you think this new Doomtree album will either win you fans or lose you fans.

Oh yeah, for sure. It's not like anything that we've ever put out before, and I think we're gonna win in town with some people, and I think there are some people who are gonna be like... probably not. (laughs)That's the goal with every record, to push yourself as an artist and try to push the envelope a little bit, either lyrically or production wise... It's definitely not abstract rap, it's pretty straight-forward. I'm excited because I haven't heard this shit come out of any of us before. We just keep cracking it out. Yeah, you definitely are putting it out there. I heard Dessa's coming out with a new album, so we've got your EP, then Dessa, then Doomtree--am I leaving anything out?

I think that P.O.S. and Cecil Otter and Mike Mictlan will be coming out next year and I think I'm gonna try to squeeze in there too. I don't really know the release schedule for next year, I think it's based on like, when your project is almost 95% done, that's when we sort of plan the release schedule. What can we expect to see at SoundTown? Who are you bringing with you?

I'm bringing Lazerbeak, so he's gonna make the beats live and do what he does, because I have no idea. (laughs) I'll play songs from Bad Time Zoo, maybe a song off the new EP. It's gonna be a shorter set, I think, and we're gonna try to jam a bunch of songs in there, and basically just make a good party happen.


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