10 Vegas acts to watch in 2016: The Lique

The Lique
Photo: Christopher DeVargas

Here’s a lesson for the local music community via The Lique: You should have a vision for your album before you actually start making it. The eager, year-old and ascending hip-hop/jazz act overlooked that detail when it came time to record its stockpile of songs a few months back. “It was tough because we didn’t know what we wanted—no clear plan, no real headway,” drummer Jeremy Klewicki says. The solution: Ask fellow musicians—from Vegas talents like singer Cameron Calloway and saxophonist Julian Tanaka to some renowned California emcees the band can’t reveal yet—to come down, share their ideas and get behind a mic. “It’s becoming a collaborative project and surpassing our expectations.”

The making of The Lique’s debut full-length also challenged its five members in how it differed from their previous recording experiences. Frontman Rasar had been accustomed to rapping over beats producers sent him, while the four musicians—all recent or future graduates of the UNLV jazz program—either used written charts or improvised when in the studio with their student ensembles. “Recording and playing jazz is much different than making a hip-hop album,” Klewicki says.

Now in the mixing phase, the album is due out in the spring, and after the usual release party, the aspiring “hip-hop Rat Pack” wants to get out of town—not relocate, but embark on its first tour. “We want to get as far from Vegas as possible,” Klewicki says. “We appreciate the support here, but we want to get our music to as many people as possible.” facebook.com/theliqueband

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