Founded in 2011, Journeymen hiphop was architect by producer John Wholetrain. What you need to know is on a need to know basis. Queens emcee Melo Malo and Mickey Boston Kovaks drop the bars mathematical hardbody. Tha Cultivator and the silent madman drop the bars on Wholetrain productions bringing a product that is distinct yet succinct.
In an industry over-exhausted by superficial “Pop-Hop” artists with increasingly electronic sounds and insipid lyrics, hip-hop conglomerate JOURNEYMEN truly is A Sound for Sore Ears. These three grimy gutter boys represent the true essence of Hip-Hop: a poignant social critic expressed through rhyme and punctuated by hard-hitting percussions, infectious bass lines and soulful sampling. Together, Producer John Wholetrain, alongside Emcees Mickey Boston Kovaks and Melo Malo Paulino form the core of JOURNEYMEN, a loosely associated musical co-op that spreads its tentacles across borders.
At the helm, John Wholetrain provides JOURNEYMEN with its signature sound, a sonic blueprint of sorts. Relying on heavy sampling and crafted in the spirit of old school hip-hop, JwT’s gritty boom bap instrumentals are the foundation on which JOURNEYMEN’s vivid lyrics rest firmly. In effect, Mickey Boston’s lyrical landscapes are carefully painted though a collage of mental snapshots that will leave even the staunchest critics dumbfounded. Likewise, Melo Malo’s cadenced flow, weaved in a web of verbal acrobatics faintly reminiscent of reggaeton, conceals underlying gems that frequently enlighten the mind as an aftereffect.
There is no doubt that nostalgic music enthusiasts longing for the gripping sound and narratives of Hip-Hop’s Golden Era will find solace in the music of JOURNEYMEN. In its essence, the group’s vision is characterized by social awareness and lofty ambitions, all the while remaining grounded to the heartbeat of the streets.
JOURNEYMEN found its genesis in a project originally intended as a Mickey Boston solo, “Bodega Sunshine”. The song, in turn, proved to be a catalyst and the two artists decided to create a group to channel their creative aspirations. Between 2011 and 2012, this two-man incarnation of JOURNEYMEN released three songs namely, “Bodega Sunshine”, “Love.Wholesale” along with “Lobes & Neurons”. The shooting of a subsequent music video for “Bodega Sunshine” would eventually bring Mickey Boston and John Wholetrain to New York City, where Mickey Boston introduced John Wholetrain to Queens emcee and inveterate battle-rapper, Melo Malo Paulino. The rest is history.
Kindred spirits often unite, combining under uncanny circumstances and the New York journey proved salutary: Melo Malo officially joined Journeymen in the summer of 2012, further expanding the group to its current threefold manifestation. United under the same musical ideals, these three aspiring master craftsmen are keen on honing their skills to perfect their art. With the release of their much anticipated debut EP “Pledge of the Respirator”, JOURNEYMEN has received airplay and garnered international media attention, thus setting a permanent imprint on the Hip-Hop scene.
Melo Malo Paulino
Pronounced Mic-Key Boston, he assumes the alias of Walter Kovaks. The emcee who delivers that hardbody hiphop with poignant punchlines that make one think and re-think. He is focused on a hard delivery with a socially conscious underpinning. His Journey has been beautiful and complicated, and yet, his narrative is simplified to cadenced rhymes. In truth, Brosky is about implementing a hard beastmode style that is personified by the fire of a hungry belly that yearns to speak over matters other emcees don’t always touch upon. His role as Kovaks is poised on telling the stories of what he has seen and experienced as a nocturnal urban street wanderer.
The former crate digger became a producer of infectious instrumentals. Sniffing classic samples out of second hand stores like a bloodhound, Wholetrain is the architect of the Journeymen venture. His musical contribution is catered to the hardbody and mathematical styles of the Mickey Boston and Melo Malo emcee merge. He is a musical mind that has developed a distinct production technique and style. He is intent on creating new sounds amidst making use of seminal elements of hiphop while fusing them with a cutting edge sound with a classic boombap foundation. His brisk drum loops are inspired by innovative nature to experiment with new sounds.
MELO MALO PAULINO
Queens, NYC contributed its part to hiphop. Melo Malo Paulino follows in that tradition. He brings his science and mathematics in a 90s boombap purist manifestation. The battle emcee narrates a cadenced journey that stays true to the culture. He wields his flows like a craftsman who is skilled in his trade, as he throws caution to the wind he able to handle the intricacies of his rhyme schemes like a skilled snake charmer, never getting bit by what he is handling. Melo Malo moves ahead with a foreshadowing of the political, scientific and conspiratorial whilst also bringing the satirical and embellishments to the Journeymen round table.
- “Metal Centipedes” – Lyrics (mickeyboston.com)