The Infamous Archives: New Breed



Somewhere between getting drunk at Mardi Gras and breaking into abandoned buildings, it got a little out of hand and ended with me falling three stories through a roof and, against all odds, not dying.

What do you write?
Cedar. It comes from the name of the neighborhood where I hung out when I first started getting into mischief as a little kid.

Where are you from and what is the scene like?
I’m from Baltimore, Md., which has a rich graffiti history and a wide variety of original styles. Over the past three decades Baltimore style masters have killed the city and developed truly unique graffiti ranging from hand styles to intricate burners. Sadly, the scene in Baltimore has slowed down significantly, although there are still a handful of people painting.
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Picking up a can for the first time in 2005, Tober is an upcoming graffiti beast who has caught Philly writers by surprise with his ups.

Photography by Matthew Gallaghger

What’s the background on your name?
It started with Tobe (“too-be”). I liked the letters and felt that it was a name no one had written before. Unfortunately, everyone thought it was pronounced Toby. Tober eventually progressed from there.

What is the scene like in Philly?
The scene here is mostly hands, which this city is known around the world for. Walking routes through the city is an important part of the graffiti scene. The buff here in Philly is vicious.
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Quickly getting his style and rep up, the kid is definitely making his mark.

Where are you from and what is/was the scene like there?
Pear: As a writer, I’m from Washington, D.C. The D.C. scene was dead when I started wandering the streets. But, luckily for me, there was a lot of graff still running from the heydays of the 1990s, so I got to see a lot of dope shit from the likes of SMK, Cert, Some, Exist, Cast, Svev, Sycle, Mesk, Ultra, Clear, etc., etc. Within a year of my starting, D.C., began their buff campaign to revitalize certain neighborhoods I frequented. I saw rooftops smashed with sick pieces vanish, original D.C. hand styles washed away, even cutty piecing spots whitewashed. Before I knew it, not only was D.C. dead, but it was clean. I was an angry, depressed kid and heard my calling to pick up the slack, so I went for mines. Then these dudes Koma and Nore came back to town a year later and started smashing again, eventually leading to us beefing for about three or four years, give or take.
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Even though the current scene in New York City is not what Nemz thinks it should be or used to be, this NYC native has been picking up the slack and putting in overtime – NYC is “still better than anywhere else.” Influenced by the streets since he began walking, Nemz started writing in 2000.

What got you into graffiti?
Just walking through any neighborhood, safe or not, at 14 and peeping how niggas had tags, throw-ups, burners, all over, especially in The Bronx and BK and around the block from school. I got a rush just seeing that shit. From there, I was a fiend to actually do it. So it began… the coming of a nemesis to society.

What crews are you associated with?
Over the years I have been thrown down with a bunch of crews. But I mainly push TIS, which stands for “That Ill Shit” or “Third I Soldiers,” and DOD, which stands for “Department Of Defense.”
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