Unveiling the Unconventional: An exclusive interview with ICM on creativity and being a fan of music above all else

Following the drop of his latest release, we caught up with ICM to delve into his untypical creative process & the seriously underrated hip-hop scene in our nation’s capital

With plans for an epic album launch in Melbourne and a few more mind-bending music videos, ICM is hell bent on a solid trajectory. As ICM’s journey unfolds, one thing is certain: his music is set to leave an indelible mark on the hip-hop landscape.

Yet, amidst the chaos, he finds happiness in the studio, surrounded by loved ones, and indulging in basketball, gaming, and anime. Scroll down for our full interview with the very talented and anything but typical ICM.



Happy: What are you up to today?

ICM: I’m actually a bit of a hermit, for anyone that knows me I’m pretty low key – but I’m always looking for an excuse to turn up and go crazy.

So most of the time I’m just listening to music, making music or working on music haha.

That being said, I’m actually planning an album launch gig in Melbourne around the middle of the year. So I’m really looking forward to that!

Happy: We know of many bands coming out of Canberra, but what is the rap scene like there?

ICM: So, I don’t actually live in Canberra anymore. That’s definitely still my home and I have a lot of friends and family there but, I’m currently living in Melbourne.

The rap game in Canberra is honestly criminally underrated, we’ve produced legends such as Genesis Owusu, YNG Martyr, KIRKLANDD, Citizen Kay, MN Cappo and more that I’m proud to call my homies.

They all inspire me to keep grinding but it’s wild because every single one of them has a completely different sound so I wouldn’t even call them rappers per se.

Happy: What does a typical day look like when recording a song like WHERE’S THE SCOOP?

ICM: Honestly, I’m weird. I don’t have a typical process. I could go months without writing or recording anything, just exploring different sounds and being a fan of the music first.

Then, once I’ve found myself gravitating towards something – I’ll make half a dozen demos in a week. Most of my songs lyrically come from capturing the energy in the studio in the moment.

Once I’ve honed in on a beat, the rest is just adding in little details over time and making sure it stays true to the energy captured the studio. But most of the time, it’s just me in the studio by myself with a bit of sake.

Happy: Can you elaborate a little on the meaning behind the song?

ICM: “WHERE’S THE SCOOP?” is a pretty intense, fast and aggressive track.

It’s kind of an ode to my enemies or naysayers, if you will. I’m really just talking my sh!t, saying how I feel and being unapologetic.

The chorus is tongue in cheek, when I ask “where’s the scoop?” it’s like I’m asking you to find dirt on me. But this song, much like the rest of the project it’s part of, is me airing out my dirty laundry.

There’s nothing I won’t speak on or shy away from, so it’s intentionally loud, sometimes controversial and in your face.

Happy: It’s always interesting to hear about the writing process for rappers. Do your lyrics flow naturally or are they constantly reworked and refined?

ICM: It’s definitely both. Like I briefly mentioned before, the majority of the tone, energy and usually the hook are captured right in the moment when the beat is made.

Sometimes I’ll be able to smash out a whole track in the one session, sometimes it’s just a chorus or just a verse.

That’s usually the fun part. The hard part of the work is definitely done in the following weeks.

That’s when I’ll mess around with the arrangements, re-recording and potentially rewriting as long as it doesn’t mess with the original intent from the first session.

But I enjoy that process too, because that’s when you can turn a throwaway demo into a proper record. Like putting the missing pieces to a jigsaw puzzle together.


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Happy: So much of rap music is about flows. How do you go about keeping verses fresh and rhythmic?

ICM: I don’t know if it’s much of a secret, but you have to be a fan of the music first and foremost.

Listening is one thing, but singing along to some of your favourite records is something everybody does.

So the process of enjoying the art doesn’t change much. I’m not just listening, I’m rapping along, seeing if I can keep pace or if I can match the tone.

The same artists that inspired me as a kid still inspire me now, so yeah I take notes and apply techniques from songs that I truly enjoy and try to make it my own.

Happy: Can you tell us a little bit about the upcoming project that WHERE’S THE SCOOP? forms part of?

ICM: Sure, I can’t give too much away, but what I can say is that the themes from this last record definitely translate to the project as a whole.

A couple of people have picked up on the anti-villain persona and the loud, in your face, confident rap persona.

That much will stay the same. Whereas the sonics from the album, each one of them couldn’t be more different and I’m really excited about that.

I think it will show people that I have a lot more variety than what you’d expect, and I want to surprise people. So as soon as you think you’ve got me figured out I’ve got something different coming next.

Happy: Anything else exciting on the horizon that you can tease for us?

ICM: With the upcoming album in mind, obviously we’ve got an album launch gig planned – the date TBA, but will definitely be in Melbourne.

We’ve also got a couple of different videos in the works, one that involves a fully operational tank which is still pretty surreal. Other than that, you’re just going to have to wait and see.

Happy: What makes you happy?

ICM: Damn, that’s such a broad question. The easiest answer is the studio, it’s my own private getaway – I escape reality in there & just get to create.

The truest answer is the circle of people I have around me – from my beautiful wife, to my two Staffies, peers, friends & family.

Other more superficial things include basketball, gaming & anime. Hope that covers it!

Stay tuned here for Melbourne gig dates.