The Hood Internet on their studio album, playing Memory Lanes Block Party

Chicago's the Hood Internet is coasting into the Memory Lanes Block Party on a wave of momentum. Having just issued Mixtape Volume 6 on their website (for free) and taking part in a national tour with Star Slinger and Chrissy Murderbot, they will interrupt their trip home with a stop in Minneapolis this Saturday.

DJs ABX and STV SLV (Steve Sleeve), known to friends as Aaron Brink and Steve Reidell, have been releasing mash-ups on their blog in 2007 and gained a following with tracks like "I'm a Flirt (Shoreline)," which blends R. Kelly and Broken Social Scene, and "Fuck with Mo' Money," combining Ma$, Notorious B.I.G., and Penguin Prison. The duo largely combines hip-hop and indie tracks, collecting samples both mainstream and obscure into a textured creation that both pays homage to the original and gives a wholly new energy.

This September, they will release an official full-length on Decon Records with contributions from locals Sims and Astronautalis, as well as appearances from Psalm One, A.C. Newman, Tobacco, and more. Gimme Noise caught up with STV SLV via email to ask about the tour, their upcoming album, and his thoughts on the Twin Cities.

Gimme Noise: Do you and ABX make tracks individually or do you collaborate? How do your styles vary?

STV SLV: For the tracks that get posted on the website week to week, we work on those individually. When we work on remixes, mixtapes, or original productions, there's a lot more collaboration, more sending projects back and forth.

Tell me about the LP. It's neither sample nor mash-up. What is it?

We wanted it to be an extension of what Hood Internet does, but we wanted to make completely new songs, so the idea is that the songs would feel like something you'd download from our website.

How did the participants get involved? Are there legal reasons for avoiding mash-ups?

We started producing skeletons of tracks and sending them to artists we wanted to collaborate with. From there they'd add a part or an idea and send it back to us, and so forth, until we had a collection of songs we liked. Sometimes this would be over email, other times we'd go to people's apartments or houses or studios. We took a step away from mash-ups on this one not for legal reasons, but for the interest in making completely new songs.

In other interviews you've more or less stated that the album format has peaked. Is that why your upcoming record is more of a collaborative project?

In some ways, the new LP is a collection of singles. But, even though each song features different guests, we feel there's a cohesion to it as an album. The songs are sequenced in a traditional A-side/B-side kind of way. There's only so many people that will end up digesting it like that, though.

You're in Santa Barbara, CA on May 25 and Minneapolis on May 26. I take it you're flying in? How do you generally tour?

Our tour with Star Slinger ends in Santa Barbara that day and we fly to Minneapolis the next day. This current tour has been mostly driving between cities. But often a weekend for us will look something like: fly somewhere on a Thursday, play a show, drive somewhere Friday, play a show, drive somewhere Saturday, play a show, fly home Sunday.

Is any of the new album material appearing live?

We've been doing a really good job keeping those tracks under wraps so we're probably not gonna bust them out just yet.

You're a Twin Cities native. How is it to come home for a gig like this?

I grew up in West St. Paul. My family is all here and it's never not great to see them. The Twin Cities music scene has so many great artists and there's lots of cross-pollination going on within - it's totally the spirit of collaboration that we love so much. We've got a lot of love for what's happening here and it's always an honor to be on a bill alongside it.

Who are you most excited to share a stage with on Saturday?

Dream Crusher!

The Hood Internet play the Jameson Main Outdoor Stage at Memory Lanes Block Party at 9pm on Saturday May 26. RSVP here.

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