Since producing Kid Cudi’s 2008 hit “Day ‘n’ Night”, Dot Da Genius has been Cud’s go-to-guy behind the boards. After lacing the Cleveland MC’s first two albums (2009’s Man on the Moon: The End of the Day and 2010’s Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager) with a couple standout tracks, he and Cudi are teaming up to form the rock duo Wizard, with plans to release an album later this year. We got up with Dot to learn more about the band, he and Cudi’s decision to leave Plain Pat and Emile, and whether the lonely stoner is really giving up smoking and rhyming for good. — Calvin Stovall

XXL: Is the creative process for the band any different from when you were working together on Cudi’s solo projects?

Dot Da Genius: We’re still kind of trying to find it. I have a very particular kind of voice. To fit it in rock, we’re still trying to figure that out. But as far as creating, we only know one way to create. Whether we’re working on some rap shit, or we’re working on our rock project, we just get in the studio and we just play whatever feels good at the time. And if it takes us somewhere, we go with it.

XXL: Do you guys have traditional roles in the band? Like Cudi on vocals, you on the drums, etc…

DDG: It’s traditional in that sense. But we’re gonna be moving between instruments. Like Cudi just picked up the guitar. He’s gonna be playing that primarily. And he’s vocals, obviously. And I’ll be playing bass, I’ll be on the drum machine, on the keys. Pretty much we’re like a two-man band in the sense that we create our music; it’s just me and him. Like we play all the instruments and we’re actually creating the songs, but when we hit the road we’ll probably add like another guitarist or somethin’, a drummer.

XXL: No one knows what to expect from the Wizard sound. Is it different sonically from Cudi’s previous stuff?

DDG: It’s not too far off. It’s more rock driven. Like, we really just digested music and just really use the guitar— like every record pretty much started with a guitar, some type of guitar riff. [We] just really centered the music around the guitar and we just built around it. The actual tone, like with Cudi he shows little shades of it in his [previous] music, but he’s just doin’ it full on, on this album. Like he’s really taking it there. No raps. It’s just gonna be straight music.