In a world locked down with quarantines and mass uncertainties, a lot of people find themselves turning towards any semblance of entertainment to take their mind off the worlds woes. It was with this thought in mind that the legendary Independent hip hop duo Twiztid shocked the music world by announcing their first ever surprise album ‘Mad Season’. With a mission statement to provide their fans a new album to dive into and enjoy during this quarantine period (while still evolving their music and brand with top notch lyrics and production), this is one of the most important Albums in their 20 year plus history.
What makes it even more impressive is the new album comes off the heels of one of their most successful albums to date, ‘Generation Nightmare’, which was released almost exactly a year ago at this time. Generation Nightmare was a big win for Twiztid, coming in as the number 3 independent album in the country and 9 on the top album charts (and dominating other charts as they normally do), the big shocker, however, was the new perfected rock sound found on some of the album got them to crack into the Billboard Alternative charts for the first time in their career with Generation Nightmare being the #5 best selling alternative album in the nation. Clearly, they could have rested on their proverbial laurels and waited to put out another album (typically Twiztid releases a studio album every 2 years like clockwork, with mix-tapes, solos, EP, collections, and super groups filling the gap), but they saw a small way to help their fans during this time and jumped on it.
We had the honor and privilege to discuss it with the Titans of the Underground themselves the day they announced/released the album to the world; and to countless music starved fans who also got to ask them their own questions.
RG: What led you guys to releasing a surprise album? Was this something that was always planned or did the quarantine and canceled tours because of said quarantine play a hand in this?
Jamie: We’ve always wanted to do a surprise release of sorts, but never did! And you can totally say that the current pandemic and quarantine only furthered along our decision.
RG: One thing we noticed was less than half the tracks on the new album were the singles you guys have been releasing bi-weekly almost since late last year. Was it always the plan to leave little breadcrumbs of wicked shit to lead to this surprise album?
Jamie: Releasing singles was/is more or less the current way the music industry has been servicing music. Seeing how we always adapt and continue we submitted enough singles to follow the industry template while steady recording nonstop per usual. We always had full intentions of releasing all of the collective singles physically, just didn’t know when or what record or collection.
RG: So along with this huge surprise, you guys dropped a dope new music video/single to accompany it called “Off with they heads”. We hear this was all filmed while on quarantine. Is that true and if so, what was that process like from other music videos?
Jamie: Yes, we each filmed our parts at home during the quarantine and it was completely different than any other video we’ve ever done. Bonez Dub from AMB scoop slammed the collective footage and whatnots that we sent and transformed the craziness into an absolute piece of visual art!
Jamie: We have production by Young Wicked, Fritz The Cat VanKosky, Godsynth, Charlie Beans, A Danger Within, Jimmy Urine, & ScatteredBrains. Features include AMB, Ekoh, Stevie Stone, Blaze, Jimmy Urine, Hyro The Hero, & Anybody Killa.
RG: So, we heard you guys say this puts you in mind of MIRROR MIRROR? Now we can see that with the album cover, but care to elaborate on that at all?
Jamie: It’s sort of a personal thing, but I will say both Mirror Mirror and Mad Season respectfully follow major Twiztid albums in our legacy. Both Mirror Mirror and Mad Season feel as they have their own emotional attachment to a very intricate & specific place in time forever more… it’s as if they are stand-alone releases and/or palette cleansers so to speak, to prepare listeners for what’s next in the world of Jamie and Paul.
RG: What got me on these songs is it’s my favorite side of Twiztid: some pure hip hop with some dark tones with devastating beats. But sound wise, how would you guys classify this album in regard to its sounds and tones?
Jamie: To me, it’s an absolute much needed underground release, getting back to where a lot of things started for us personally. Mentally and physically, it’s like a reboot to our lives, our band, our business and record company alike that continues to push forward no matter how grim the current situation of our world may be. That says a lot to me.
RG: I wanted to let you guys know how much MNE means to a lot of us. I’ve been ready for this since it was MAJIK RECORDZ in 2003 with tattoos going up on bald heads and now we have a huge label with some of the most talented artists and groups in the game and it really feels like you gave the underground a second wind and thrusted the scene into a whole new generation. That said, can you give us the skinny on any future release? I know AMB has an EP and I think G-Mo’s “Filth Element” is coming out, and I heard rumblings of a LARS and LEX album, so what can we expect?
Jamie: To be blatantly honest, you should expect GOOD music! You should expect QUALITY entertainment. You should also rest assured that we ONLY put out quality entertainment and music with integrity, and although our label roster may shrink or grow in an unforeseeable future…I can and will ONLY guarantee that whatever the future may hold for listeners, it will be worth it!
RG: So, to wrap it up we got this segment we like to call RAPID FIRE FANDOM, where I ask you questions from YOUR FAN BASE and you give us a quick response. I got 10 fan questions (FQ) ready to go but don’t worry, we will blast through them quick as possible…
FQ: This question is from the adorable super fan Christy Hamm, she asks “what is your favorite tattoo that you have?
Jamie: Christy my fav tattoo would have to be of my father.
FQ: Lance Caldwell has a good one: he loves LDLHAIBCSYWA and said it feels like you guys opened your souls on this album, so what was it like playing such a personal song live for the first time?
Jamie: Lance, love don’t live here…isn’t the only personal song Paul and I get weird about performing. I won’t mention the other songs by name but people that have seen us live enough times over the years may understand what I mean when they’ve seen us tell the club to cut the lights, or close our eyes while performing certain tunes. These songs will always be powerful and every time performing them can feel like the first time.
FQ: Carmen Skinner asks What’s your favorite album cover from another band or group?
Jamie: I have a few Carmen, but “Destroyer” from Kiss came to mind first so ima say that. Great cover and album btw.
FQ: Christopher Allen asks, “Blunts, papers, bongs or edibles?”
Jamie: Papers mostly Chris, but I like edibles too and been known to have a bong or 8 in my lifetime, so there’s that! Lol
FQ: Cody Miller asks will there be another chainsmoker or phatso solo album?
Jamie: Anything’s possible Cody, but I feel if we did solo ventures again, this time they would be new, new not carried over or continued from phatso or chainsmoker ya know?
FQ: Krystal Marie Squires asks what’s your favorite city you’ve been to and why?
Jamie: Krystal to be honest home is home for me, but any city, state, etc. that gets Twiztid and shows up for the demented duo is ALWAYS highly regarded in my book.
FQ: Roberta Laforme would like to ask how you guys are handling these trying times lately?
Jamie: Roberta I got hobbies girl…in addition to writing songs for myself and others, I draw, paint, write poetry, watch movies, and read and collect comic books.
FQ: Missy Stover wants to know any chance of a Lotus album like Rydas?
Jamie: I would say no Missy…I actually tried to get something in the go for a new DL record entitled 3of5, and it was voted out. I completely understand why and I’m ok with that for now.
FQ: Sue Tyras wants to know with this lock down, have you guys collected anything new or started collecting anything new?
Jamie: Nothing new for me Sue, same ol goodness of toys, comics, Blu-rays, and Vinyl!
FQ: Corey Gibson wants to know will Astronomicon be relocated to a bigger venue seeing its growing larger and larger every year?
Jamie: With the recent pandemic Corey we are taking things one day at a time, maintaining relationships with talent and vendors alike to structure our beloved annual event in the most safest of manner for all the attendees as we go forward into the unforeseeable future. We are positive about it and will keep everyone, including you, informed as any changes occur.
Fan request: This is more of a request that comes from a hardcore, lifelong fan and a friend of mine Josh Cole. His cousin and his wife Mike and Ashton Cole are huge lifelong fans who got Josh into your music. After 3 miscarriages they finally had a beautiful and healthy boy named Elijah. Josh wanted to know if you could give mike, ashton and baby Elijah a shout out?
Jamie: Congratulations Mike & Ashton!!!! And welcome to the FAM baby Elijah whoop whoop!
RG: We really do appreciate your time and everything you do for us fans. Any words of wisdom for the fans?
Jamie: Allow time for yourself. This stuff that’s going on is unlike anything we as a people are use to. It’s OK to be upset, scared or afraid… it’s also OK to be angry, confused and feed up… these things are all human emotions and DO NOT make you any less a person… please remember that… then turn up the fucking music full blast and enjoy the clarity even if it is only momentarily! #muchmuchfamilyluv
Twiztid’s new album mad season is available now at http://www.MNEStore.com. Available on digital platforms April 24, 2020.