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  • Writer's pictureEvan

Another Talk with Dome Lettuce: "I let the music fill the gaps when words aren't enough"

Back in 2020, Massachusetts MC Gabriel Carter-Weidenfeld adopted the moniker Dome Lettuce, and started his musical career afresh. The rapper/producer has held on to the name ever since, dropping countless mixtapes to hone his craft and define his signature style. Months after his latest LP, The Mud Is a Rainbow, Lettuce is already working on new material, teasing fans with a new single, ‘Achilles.’

The new song comes after months of inactivity. After Lettuce Season in January, The Mud Is a Rainbow in July, and the collaborative EP CLASSIX in August, the MC took his longest break since 2020 – two months. “It got to the point where I felt I just needed to record a new song and release it,” he said. “I believe it accurately displays my current abilities as far as rapping and production go.”

Though he has plenty of music on the way, ‘Achilles’ might remain a standalone single for the artist. “It just doesn’t really fit the world I’m building … As far as anything I can say about the next release, I’m planning it to be a sort of spiritual successor to my previous two albums, completing what I'm unofficially referring to as the ‘Lettuce Trilogy.’ It’s still gonna be very much its own thing, but in a similar way to how I expanded on many of the ideas from Lettuce Season with The Mud Is A Rainbow, I’m hoping to follow a similar sort of progression with this next release.”

Back in our interview last year, Lettuce opened up about his battle to get personal on the mic. Three projects later, the MC is still working through the process. “I’ve [not] become entirely comfortable with sharing super personal feelings or experiences in my music,” he said. “I’m not sure one ever becomes entirely comfortable with that. But I think that the more I write, record and release music, the more my tolerance increases for the discomfort generated through this sharing.”

He added: “I’ve hesitated to release a number of songs because I’ve thought to myself, ‘Oh, but is this too personal? Nobody will want to hear this.’ But ultimately, those songs are often the ones my audience seems to connect with the most.”

Just as Lettuce grew more personal from Salad Bars to Greenhead back in 2022, he sharpened his lyrical skills even more from Lettuce Season to The Mud Is a Rainbow this year. “Something I’ve had to work past is my tendency to write what I imagine the audience wants to hear,” he said. “I think this is something that everyone has to work through when they start rapping. I’ll still catch myself writing something that isn’t really me; it’s more what I imagine a rapper is supposed to sound like, but I’m definitely getting better at noticing when this phenomenon occurs and avoiding it.”

Beyond his solo work, the rapper teamed up with multi-instrumentalist enzi back in August for the EP, CLASSIX. With synth-laden beats, booming bass, and autotune-layered vocals, the project pushed Lettuce in an energetic new direction. “I didn’t want the EP to sound like I’d entirely abandoned my sound,” he said, “but I also wanted enzi’s style to shine through. I felt that by combining my musical and aesthetic preferences with enzi’s, we’d ultimately develop a wholly unique sound, which I think ended up [being] the case.”

The two have supported one another for years, having attended the same school growing up. Despite having vastly different styles, the duo have become musical confidants, embracing one another’s input when it comes to art. “It’s always such a positive experience working with him, partially because we’re such good friends so his studio is a very low-pressure environment, which I think allows me to feel more comfortable experimenting and trying different ideas that might be outside of my comfort zone.”

Only a few months after CLASSIX, the duo have already started work on a collaborative album. As well as that – and his upcoming installment in the ‘Lettuce Trilogy’ – the MC has a host of projects in the works. He said: “I’m working on an EP which may or may not drop before the album. Really just a short collection of roughly produced tracks … I also have an instrumental project that’s nearly finished – I just haven’t figured out how I want to go about releasing it.”

Speaking of instrumentals, Lettuce has shown off his skills as a producer through 2023. Remixing Ice Spice hits and crafting countless beats for the vault, the artist is also on the lookout to produce an entire record for someone else. “The only reason it hasn’t happened yet is I just haven’t found the right person to partner with, although I’ve recently started working with a new collaborator who will remain anonymous for now. I can definitely see them as a potential candidate for a Dome Lettuce produced album.”

Over the course of his career, developing a signature style has been a top priority for Dome Lettuce. With the release of Greenhead in November 2022, the rapper went into the project hoping to define his voice as a musician. A year on, he said: “This is another process that I don’t believe we as artists ever fully complete, as there will always be more ways to further distance yourself from those who inspired you, more ways to further innovate and expand upon the foundations on which you built your own artistic identity. I think the best we can do is to continue working towards this unachievable ideal so long as we continue to create art, and then one day you will die, and wherever you were able to get to, that’s where you got.”

Despite claiming no artist can truly escape their influences, Lettuce spoke certainly about who he is as an artist. “I would describe Dome Lettuce as a means for me to explore my own identity and mind, reporting back my discoveries through song … Language is often too blunt of a tool to properly articulate something as complex as human emotion, and I find by combining words with music I am able to speak from my heart in a way that I could not accomplish with words alone. I let the music fill the gaps where words aren’t enough.”

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