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Intellekt & Dirty Digits

Who? Dan Chavez (Dirty Digits) is the DJ. Dillon Maurer (Intellekt) is the rapper. They’re jazzy and fresh, but they don’t have their own TV show just yet. The two met about three years ago at a Florida B-boy battle while both were still in college, and after months of working together on tracks, they began releasing singles under the IDD name in 2004. They’ve generated some serious buzz and shared stages with the likes of KRS-One, Kid Koala, and Guru.

What’s the Deal? Intellekt & Dirty Digits are true school all the way, showing their reverence for golden age hip-hop all over their debut. Intellekt’s lyricism reflects the progressive ideologies and personal narratives of the Native Tongues posse, the Roots, or Common. IDD recently moved to Atlanta, where indie-rap stalwart Arc the Finger put out Intellektual Property, Revised, the group’s first full-length, a collection of reworked and refined versions of Intellekt’s early demos, plus all-new tracks by the duo. The album includes cameos from IDD comrades Sol.illaquists of Sound (Epitaph), MC Proper, Speck and Enoch of CYNE, Capitul, and Tough Junkie of Simple Complexity. Whether having some fun with a little Mario Kart competition or getting somber and serious on elegy track “Freebird,” their updated take on a timeless formula puts them right on par with new-old-schoolers like Sage Francis, Blackalicious, or Jurassic 5.

Fun Facts: When they first met, IDD had some pretty wack day-jobs: Dirty Digits was the DJ at an award-winning ’80s dance night, while Intellekt was a hibachi/sushi chef. So rather than getting dope on the mic, Intellekt was getting ill with the meat cleaver and tossing lil’ shrimp up on top of his tall white hat. Take that, Steve Aoki! J. GABRIEL BOYLAN

Now Hear This: Intellekt & Dirty Digits – “Phenom Mental” (Download MP3)

Talk: How intellectual is the Intellekt? COMMENT

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