After months of teasers and two highly impressive singles, Alexander Lewis is in the race to claim 2019’s trap throne with the release of his highly anticipated six-track Red EP. Already known for his work as an electronic artist, his budding career as a hip-hop producer comes full circle as he merges both aspects of his career to create a distinctly forward-thinking EP that makes your heart beat faster before plunging you deep into the throes of battle, where hip-hop and trap collide. Leading the charge with a massive brass movement that quickly assaults your senses, Lewis builds a captivating escape filled with drama and excitement.
Red EP was a way for me go beyond the typical “trap trombone banger” and a way for me to dig even deeper with live instrumentation and blend it with electronic music. Red (being part 1 of a color series of EPs) is just another part of my musical influences and a way for me to showcase more depth in my music, not only as a producer but a composer and arranger. I wanted to give the listener a glimpse of what’s to come with mixing trap and more live instrumentation and foreshadow something I’ve always dreamed about doing; performing live with a full orchestra. – Alexander Lewis
Gorgeous cinematic highs reign supreme on the first track “Soar,” where his trusty trombone signals an irrefutable call to arms that continues to echo throughout the EP. Slick verses from up and coming rapper B. Anderson fuel the fire on “Win The War” and “Energy” while Lewis continues to put his skills to the test on “Alexander The Great” and “Strategy.” The final track, “Left U on Red” with longtime collaborator JNTHN STEIN, is the ultimate finish to an EP. Peep out our exclusive interview with Alexander Lewis and stream his new Red EP below.
Alexander Lewis – Red EP | Stream
Run The Trap: Congratulations on the new EP! It has a distinct hip-hop/ trap vibe layered with a lot of cinematic highs and impressive brassy moments throughout. It’s a trap-head’s dream and from the looks of your Red EP, you had a ton of fun making it. What were some of the best and worst moments from creating the EP?
Alexander Lewis: Thank you! It was a blast making this EP. I think the best moments for me were seeing half ideas transformed into fully realized songs – going into a recording studio and seeing other musicians playing/recording music that I wrote is a very rewarding experience.
The worst moments had to be the self-doubt that every artist feels when they’re about to put out a body of work. You start second-guessing yourself, and analyzing your music very heavily and wondering if it’s good, if people are going to like it, etc.
RTT: If you had to pick a favorite track off the EP which one would it be?
AL: I have favorite parts from every song, but if I had to choose just one I think “Left U On Red” would be my favorite. The energy and overall arc of the song, the full orchestral break down, and the triumphant ending. This song made me feel like I was writing 3 different movements similar to what you would hear in a Symphony – Allegro (the fast movement), Adagio (slow movement), and the Finale (grand triumphant finish). It was really rewarding to write and record live strings and brass on this one to see it come to life.
RTT: “Soar” is probably one of the most dramatic songs that I’ve heard from you. It’s a true call to arms anthem that would sound just as good in a movie as it would from a festival stage. What inspired that particular song?
AL: I was inspired by videos of eagles hunting their prey. There’s a sound at the beginning of “Soar” that emulates the ‘call’ of an eagle which sets the stage or a visual for an eagle soaring over a landscape waiting to strike. The F22 artwork is just a representation of a bird hunting it’s prey (calling an airstrike).
RTT: For “Soar” you worked with three string players and eight brass players and created one of your best tracks to date. What kind of songs do you think you’d be able to create with a full orchestra at your disposal?
AL: I recorded 3 strings players and layered them over and over again to sound like a full orchestra, which is heard throughout the entire EP (including brass players and recordings of me as well), but I think the possibilities are endless if I had a full orchestra at my disposal. All of my trap songs adapted and orchestrated for full orchestra performed out live in concert would be a really cool thing for me to do. So maybe a performance of Alexander Lewis live with a full orchestra is in my future.
RTT: “Win The War” is the first track that you worked on with Dallas based up-and-comer B. Anderson. What made you tap him and William $ for “Energy”?
AL: They were both in town working with me on their own projects for a weekend, and the Saturday of that weekend I had a Brownies and Lemonade performance that I bought them along to. We were in the hotel waiting for soundcheck and we decided to cook up. They recorded their verses in that room, and we ended up performing it that night at B&L.
RTT: You recently produced for Juice WRLD, MadeinTYO, and YBN Cordae. What other rappers would you like to work with in the future?
AL: I want to continue working with the rappers that I’m currently working with and grow with them. I don’t really care about how “big” an artist is as long as they’re driven, and ready to work hard. I’m in this for the long haul and I’d rather create strong relationships and build with an artist than try and chase the big placements.