The Underachievers Recall the Time Cops in Missouri Made Them Take Acid


AK and Issa Dash join together as the Underachievers, a Flatbush-based rap duo signed to Flying Lotus’s Brainfeeder label. After dropping the excellent Indigoism mixtape in 2013, they’ve just released Cellar Door. Still buzzing from the reaction to the project, we hit up the indigo kids to talk through their respective Twitter chatter about interacting with cops and acid down in Missouri, an upcoming collaboration with the Flatbush Zombies, and Issa’s early morning dance routines.

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What happened with the cops and the acid in Missouri?

Issa Dash: Oh, shit, yeah! Well, we were outside this hotel in St. Louis with the tour van and we were smoking weed getting ready to go to Kansas and the cops pulled up on us. They hopped out and were like, “Yeah, people said you were sleeping in the van and all this other stupid shit.” The cops were just super happy; they were surprised we were good people so they would pretty much just chill with us. They weren’t angry. They were telling us stories about how crazy it is in Missouri and how there’s meth labs everywhere.

So there’s us with pretty much nothing [on us] and probably people in the hotel right now dealing meth. We’re having a pretty good time with the cops, but it was a case of them thinking that because we’re on a tour bus they don’t want to just walk away. I don’t blame them because they could be walking away from 13 pounds, you know what I mean? So it was like, “We wanna leave you guys but what if?…”

Anyway, so we get searched, we tell them there’s no weed, they find the weed, but what do they also find? Fuckin’ this roll of acid. I seen them reach for it. One of the officers walks over, he knows what it is, and he says, “Do you know that they put drugs on the candy just like this?” And I’m like, “No, we don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about.” So he walks away with the drugs and I’m like, “That’s not acid! I’ll eat the whole thing right now.” He turns around with a grin on his face and he throws it to me. I mean, I’m not going to give the drugs back to the cops regardless of if he’s joking or not, so it was time to eat! [Pauses] I ate it all and we had a really good fuckin’ show in Kansas.

What about AK being fucked up on the plane?

AK: Yeah, it was on a long flight, so it’s so boring and it’s like torture and shit, so we ordered a bunch of drinks and I was fucked up off the drinks! I mean, I don’t enjoy flying but I kinda got accustomed to it because that’s all we do now, travel and perform in places. It’s like taking the train now.

What were you drinking?

AK: It was Jack Daniels and coke. I love most types of cognac.

What can people expect from the Clockwork Indigo collaboration with the Flatbush Zombies?

Issa Dash: That’s gonna be pretty intriguing. It’s going to be a clash of Zombie energy and some super explosive Underachievers consciousness. We wanted to try and make music that works very well to perform — so most of the songs are designed to be heard live. There will be a tour that’s just gonna be us and Zombies so that’s how it’ll go down.

AK: It’ll be fuckin’ madness, man, fuckin’ chaos. It’s two great groups combining their talents together making awesome music. It’s going to be a great experience for the fans.

How did you guys first connect with the Flatbush Zombies?

AK: I met Juice and Issa at the same exact time. I’d seen Issa around the neighborhood when I was younger, just like looking at people like, “Oh, shit, he wears cool clothes.” Back then it was like Hypebeast shit, so me and him in the neighborhood were the only people wearing those clothes in the neighborhood so we sort of stood out. Then one day my friends Jacob — we’d smoke before going to school every day, every morning — he brought Issa and Juice to my house. Then I met Meech probably like a month after and then Erick later. So we’ve all known each other for like seven years.

Is Issa’s morning dancing a regular routine?

Issa Dash: Yeah, all the time. For the music I put on, it’s all types of stuff but it’s usually some Vampire Weekend and some Ruby Suns or some random stuff like some John Mayer or some Jason Mraz, Yeasayer, or maybe Freddie Gibbs… Nah, I’m joking. It’s usually some happy-ass music with some upbeat melodies. It’s usually a lot of Vampire Weekend, I can’t lie.

What sort of dance moves do you do?

Issa Dash: I’m a terrible dancer. Don’t think I’m up doing some professional synchronized dancing — I’m like with my eyes closed, grooving, dancing, and then I realize I’ve been dancing for 45 minutes and my girlfriend is just staring at me. It’s kinda weirdly therapeutic. It feels like praying. Not that I pray, but how a Christian probably feels when he prays, that’s how I feel when I dance.

Do you get many people dancing at your shows?

Issa Dash: Yeah, they dance terribly. I don’t know if you could even call it dancing.

If the Underachievers and the Flatbush Zombies had a dance competition, who’d win?

Issa Dash: Probably Zombies because Juice has the best dance moves on the planet.

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