Swagger of a college kid

Underground hip-hoppers, Duenday, release their debut self-titled album

by Conrad Schoenleber


One night of luck can go a long way. During an evening of ecstasy-fueled revelry last New YearâÄôs Eve, rappers Matt Thornton and Matt Carter of Duenday (pronounced dwen-day) serendipitously ran into underground rap forerunner Big Zach of Kanser in the lobby of the downtown Radisson hotel.

Unsuccessful in trying to book a room, they instead found themselves invited into a penthouse filled with the tastemakers of underground rap. After performing an impromptu set for Big Zach later that night, Duenday secured a spot on the bill for KanserâÄôs upcoming show. Not bad for a couple of 20-year-olds still in their sophomore years.

âÄú[Kanser] allowed us to skip all of the typical bull**** of the rap scene. 2010 has been the best year in the history of life,âÄù Matt Carter said.

2010 started off on a bright note for the duo and itâÄôs only gotten better with the release of their first full-length, self-titled record. It was released Nov. 13 by Minneapolis underground rap label No Static Records at Downtime Bar and Grill to a capacity crowd.

A band that has honed their craft at University of Minnesota keggers, Duenday is unashamed of their party mentality.

âÄúEvery time I go to a house party people want to hear me rap and [expletive]. EveryoneâÄôs always like doing ciphers and stuff. IâÄôve met a lot of cool people doing that [expletive],âÄù Carter said. âÄúItâÄôs surprising how many people you meet rapping at parties.âÄù

This is probably a consequence of their age. DuendayâÄôs debut record describes the lives of drunk and stoned college students and it sounds young. The two, however, have enough lyrical talent to make this often-trite subject matter sound fresh.

âÄúFunâÄôs funner than politics,âÄù Carter said. âÄúOur market is the fun market. I donâÄôt think the people coming to our shows like hearing about politics.âÄù

As they age and sharpen their wit into something more mature, itâÄôs easy to imagine their sound doing the same.

The duo practices a form of music that has been described as âÄúhippie-hop.âÄù From playing shows at festivals like the Bella Vida and the Prairie Grass Music Festival, they have gained some non-traditional hip-hop fans.

âÄúIt was really weird to see how torn the crowd was at our CD release show. We had the festy hippie fans and also all these hip-hop kids and preppy bros all there together,âÄù Carter said.

âÄúSometimes I want to be playing all these festivals, because thatâÄôs fun and happy. The other half of me is like, âÄòNah, [expletive] that; I need to stay here and battle dudes and prove myself,âÄôâÄù he said.

The band bucks the term hippie-hop, instead simply viewing themselves as a hip-hop band that practices and preaches free love. Their debut album pushes this message, but also maintains a hard hip-hop edge.

âÄúWe just want to make rap and get away from all bull**** that usually goes along with it,âÄù Carter said. âÄúSometimes you have people going behind each otherâÄôs backs and talking [expletive] and weâÄôre not down with that.âÄù