In June 1997 I interviewed Domino about the current state of the first Hieroglyphics “family album,” 3rd Eye Vision.
Presented below is a screen recording of the enhanced interview as well as a transcription of the conversation.
Stinke: So, how’s it been going with the [3rd Eye Vision] album and everything?
Domino: It’s cool. We’ve just taken a little break because we work out of Hyde Street Studios & they’re replacing the [mixing] console. So, we were the last people to work on that console; we retired it.
But nah, the album is done. We have 3 songs left to mix…But we have 12, 13 songs [already] mixed…
Stinke: So it’s going to be about — how many songs on the album?
Domino: We’re going 14 songs and a bunch of shorts & skits. So, 14 full songs. And the guys are trying to get more…’Cause we’re having a hard time debating on what is getting the cut. People are like, “Let’s just put on 15 [songs]! Let’s put on 16!” And I’m, like, holding back. Because I feel like we have to hold back. If we gotta take off [inaudible] that means what is left will be highly impressive.
Stinke: So, what’s the reaction been from people checking it out in the industry and whatnot?
Domino: I mean, no one’s really heard it, really…The single, Live 97 seems to be getting good reaction, but I haven’t really circulated it in the industry, really…I’m starting to…People are getting more curious. But it seems like the fans — the people that buy Live 97 on the website or at shows — they seem to dig it. I played some stuff for this guy in the insudtry in Los Anegles and he was really digging it. But we haven’t been able to press up [promotional] copies for press yet.
Stinke: Can you talk about distribution yet or is it too early?
Domino: We’re real close on this one thing. But I’m about to go to New York on the 9th of this month and I’m gonna put out a little feelers. ‘Cause before I finalize a deal I kinda wanna check on some things first; make sure I cover all bases.
Stinke: And you were down at Rap Pages [magazine] the other day when I hollered at you, right? So it’s gettting out to the publciations?
Domino: Yea, there’s a spread on us in the July  issue of Rap Pages with Craig Mack on the cover. It’s not out yet, I guess the current issue has Muggs on the cover. But there’s a pretty big article in there on us, I got a chance to check it out. It’s looking good. We talk about the website, of course!
Stinke: Haha! Oh, people were hollering about [the mixtape] Domino Oldies II…
Domino: I’d say that Domino Oldies [II] is gonna be a while…Just for the fact that I want to at least get our current stuff rolling. I had said in the past that I didn’t want people to jump backwards. I feel like Domino Oldies is dying down, and pople are trying to see what we’re doing now. And I feel like if I put out Domino Oldies II, people will be back on that. So I feel like, since we haven’t been back in awhile, let’s let people know where we are right now [with 3rd Eye Vision]. And then we’ll feed them with [Hiero Oldies II] later.
I’m just hooking up shows…We’re trying to hook up a bunch of stuff. But we’re trying to coincide that with the release of the [After Dark] single which is being pressed right now. Like as far as vinyl. So it should be hitting college radio DJ’s in like 3 weeks, to a month, to where you will start hearing it more.
Stinke: Any talk of a video?
Domino: Not for [After Dark]. We’re not gonna do a video until we have the distribution solidified, the album is done and pressed up, and then we’ll decide which route we’re gonna go. Intitially, we’re gonna start with a bunch of underground — like this single that we have, which is “The Who.” A-Plus did a remix for “The Who,” and After Dark is the single. We’re gettig that pressed up, we’re gonna put that out, mainly just hitting up DJ’s, and maybe you might get it on cassette here-and-there…But basically we’re just focusing on getting the buzz started by the DJs. And then if things go well on that front, then maybe next single may get a video. But if not, if we don’t feel like we gain enough momentum, we’ll probably put out another, more underground single.
We’re taking it slow, we’re not doing it like the major [record labels] where they throw out a single, they throw out a video, and the album is a set date. That’s why when people ask me, ‘When is the album coming out?’…I’m kinda regretting we actually gave dates in the past, because it goes against what my whole mentality about working this project, which is: look at the climate. Make sure people are ready for it before you just put it out. Because I wanted it to be out in February at first. And then I wanted it to be out in April. But then it wasn’t ready. But even if it was ready, if I don’t feel like people were hot for it, and we didn’t set it up right, it won’t happen. Just like, look at [Souls of Mischief’s] No Man’s Land: a lot of people didn’t even know it ever came out, and to a lot of other people it was just “out,” you know? It’s not just about putting the product out; it’s about getting people primed and ready.
Stinke: What have your feelings been towards working independtly as oppsoed to with a record label with this project?
Domino: Oh, I mean…It’s — man…It’s day and night…But you know, we haven’t really gotten to the real brunt of things. At this stage, even on a major [label], was still fun: it’s still creative, it’s still getting ideas, finishing up the album, getting the pictures, doing the interviews…So, I can’t compare it yet until we get into the full campaign, where we gotta do a promo tour, get our marketing plan, call DJ’s…It’s hard to judge it yet, but I’m looking forward to it, I must say that.
Stinke: Did all of the producers within the crew produce some songs on the alum?
Stinke: So, it’s pretty diverse?
Domino: Yea, it’s pretty diverse. I guess I produced most of it, as far as if you want to count numbers per songs? But everyone pretty much did stuff. Me and [A-Plus] did the most. Kinda like going back, know what I’m saying? ‘Cause me and Plus used to do the majority of the procution when we first started putting out records. Opio did a couple of tracks, meaning beat-wise. Del did the “The Who.” And he did a little snippet song, as well. And Causal did a couple of things. Everyone’s pretty much represented. Jay-Biz…Everyone’s pretty much represented on this album.
Stinke: And everyone’s feeling the vibe off this album?
Domino: In the crew?
Stinke: Yea, do you think this album brought everyone together as a family?
Domino: I think it’s the first step toward it, know what I’m saying? It’s going in the right direction. I think our next record — the Souls record or the Casual record or the Del record — the next record we do after these, will be “It.” Know what I’m saying? Because in-between this album that we’re doing, and when everyone was signed [to major record label deals], we weren’t all together like we used to be, and like we’re getting back to now. Because in the process of creating this album we’re getting people together. And yea, we’re pretty much all on the same page. I think we can get even more on the same page, let’s put it like that.
Stinke: Sounds good! Anything else you’d like to comment on?
Domino: I’d like to really, really, get some feedback from people in different areas, through the web, just to see what people feel like we can do in their area to get Hiero more known and get exposure. What are some of the outlets in everyone’s area? I don’t think people have to say now, but it seems like people want to be a part of it.
All the people that are on the website, who log on and stuff…I feel like if people are interested maybe they might want to pass out stickers or do little things in their area. And maybe have feedback. Because, you know, it is an independent thing. Somebody who is in New Mexico, or wheverver, is gonna know what’s happening in their area, and how to get kids better then I would. So I think that’s one thing I want to have ongoing feedback with people through the site about some of their ideas.
Stinke: I appreciate your time! This has been a Hieroglyphics Online exlcusive interview with Domino! Peace!