Infamous Mobb Interview: Blood Thicker Than Water

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by Alex Shtaerman

With a new album and a groundbreaking DVD documentary hitting stores in less than a month, Infamous Mobb is poised to make an impact. In case you didn’t know, this is that raw, gutter Queensbridge shit, no holds barred. After appearing on Mobb Deep’s Hell On Earth LP in 1996 as well as 1998’s Murda Muzik, the group initially secured a record deal with Virgin in 1999; however, as the deal soon went sour, Infamous Mobb, consisting of MCs G.O.D. Father Pt3, Twin Gambino and Ty Nitty, opted to go the independent route. Blood Thicker Than Water Vol. 1 will be the first release on the group’s new IM3/Monopolee Records imprint and is the highly anticipated follow-up to their 2002 Landspeed Records debut Special Edition.

Set for an April 20th release date, Blood Thicker Than Water will also come with a bonus DVD featuring over two hours of documentary style footage including candid interviews with Infamous Mobb, Mobb Deep, Big Noyd, Alchemist and Ron Artest. Directed by filmmaker Jordan Tower, the DVD aims to give fans an honest look into the everyday lives of Infamous Mobb and their extended family. “It’s grimy,” says Tower, “you can feel the struggle. After watching it, you’ll finally know where Mobb Deep and Infamous Mobb come from”. Infamous Mobb and Mobb Deep also reveal parts of their history that have never been told. In one sequence Prodigy describes how he taught Havoc, who is known for his production, how to make beats while Havoc coached Prodigy in the art of rhyming. In another segment Infamous Mobb recounts their signing to Virgin Records and how the deal fell apart.

As more and more quality Hip-Hop acts forgo major labels in favor of self-propelled independent ventures and the creative freedom entailed therein, we are certain to see the resurgence of originality. However, it is up to all of us to support these artists. Chances are you won’t hear an Infamous Mobb track on the radio. You won’t see that shit on MTV either. The model of Hip-Hop media is changing; what was once available through mainstream channels is no longer there for us. At this point it’s up to us to look elsewhere and dig deeper. If this was 1995, the track Watch Your Step off Blood Thicker Than Water would be a radio hit along the lines of Broken Language if not bigger. But in 2004 they trying to keep the real down. If you want to help, spread the hate of mainstream media to others and support independent artists who do not take their cues from a marketing plan. If you haven’t done so yet, you could start by checking out Infamous Mobb. For more on Infamous Mobb please visit www.InfamousMobb.com.

Read review for Infamous Mobb’s sophmore album Blood Thicker Than Water Vol. 1.

RIOTSOUND.COM: In the past you had a deal with Virgin; more recently you started your own label, how did that come to be?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: We had a deal with Virgin back in 1999, things ain’t go good since they didn’t have no idea of what to do with our music. I guess it was like a new breed to them, a new flavor.

TWIN GAMBINO: Basically we just felt like we needed to do our own label so we don’t have to answer to nobody. When we first did it, it did good, know what I’m saying; so we said fuck it, we gotta do it again. Our first record was distributed through Landspeed Records which was also independent and once we got the feedback from that it was crazy. When we realized there was the type of situation where we had fans out there wanting our music, we had to take it further and go all out with it.

RIOTSOUND.COM: How would you say your new album compares to your 2002 debut Special Edition?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: It doesn’t compare, that was two years ago. Two years passed and we’ve got a lot better with our skills and everything like that.

RIOTSOUND.COM: Going back to your days on the road with Mobb Deep, when did the turning point occur as far as Infamous Mobb forging its own distinct identity and sound?

TWIN GAMBINO: When we first started working, we’d basically just be working to see how it would come out. But then a lot of people start giving us a response like this shit is hot. And we knew we could make some paper over this so we just ran with it.

RIOTSOUND.COM: I just heard the track Watch Your Step off the new CD, that’s got street anthem written all over it; what was the creative process like in making that song?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: At first we didn’t really like the beat. Nucleus brought it to our attention like you gotta rhyme with this beat, this is the one right here, this is the one! Originally we was gonna pass on the beat but once we laid our vocals and everything else, it was crazy. Nucleus lives out in LA so originally we did the song for a 12 inch for him and a lot of people responded to it on the Internet, so then we was like fuck it, we’re gonna use it for our album.

RIOTSOUND.COM: This DVD you got coming out with your album, it seems like it was a big project, maybe even bigger than you originally intended, how did that whole situation develop?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: Well, we met Jordan Tower through a friend at Landspeed. Jordan came with the idea that for our next project we should put a visual to it and he wanted to do that hands on; it came out hot. It took a little longer than we expected but it’s definitely worth what it is. It’s basically about how we live and how we get down, in a way it’s a documentary about Queensbridge but more about our lives in Queensbridge and how we live our lives day in and day out.

RIOTSOUND.COM: I think a lot of people may wanna know this. Ron Artest is on the DVD, we know he’s from Queensbridge but what is the connection to Infamous Mobb?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: Shit, I used to basically baby sit him back in the days when I was younger and shit. Like if his mom had to run and do something I would watch him and his brothers. But we go way back, I’ve known him since I was a kid; I’ve watched him play ball everyday and now I’ve watched him get better. Basically we grew up on the same block, he lived like right across the street from me so we would see each other every day.

RIOTSOUND.COM: Ever play ball with Ron Artest?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: Yea, ask him, when we used to play jumpshots for money I would take all his money (laughs).

RIOTSOUND.COM: What are your plans for this label? What can fans expect from IM3/Monopolee Records in the coming months?

TWIN GAMBINO: Monopolee Records, after they drop our joint, they are gonna drop a joint with NORE and Tragedy; as far as IM3 Records, we working on several artists and also on our solo projects, those should be dropping within the next six months to a year. Within the next six months we definitely want to drop something new.

RIOTSOUND.COM: You also got a movie coming out, what’s that all about?

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: The movie is called Murda Muzik. That’s gonna be out next month. It’s being distributed through Koch. Prodigy (from Mobb Deep) produced it and wrote the whole thing. It’s a crazy flick; we star in it. The story is basically like you can’t play both sides of the fence, its either you gonna do this or you gonna do that. Like you can’t be in the streets hustling and then goin’ into the studio and getting that rap money, ’cause there’s gonna be a lot of people that envy that and want to take it from you. It’s best to put all your eggs in one basket and just run with it; so if you gonna do something, do it for real.

TWIN GAMBINO: Like the role I play, I’m the hustler and I work for Big Noyd and we just doing our thing on the block, pumpin everyday, regular shit. Plus we also be in the studio trying to do a little studio thing; but when you in the hood pumpin and hustling there’s always gonna be drama. So basically I play the part of the dude that handles all the drama.

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: I play this dude who just came home from doing four years. In the movie Noyd comes through the prison system and I am the one who teaches him how to write rhymes. When I get out we try to put our efforts together and flip the situation.

TY NITTY: I’m in the movie but I don’t got a huge role ’cause at the time they were making it, I was in the studio a lot. One of scenes I’m in, I am in a shootout and I get shot in my arm.

RIOTSOUND.COM: Aside from working, what do the three of you like to do when you’re not in the studio?

TWIN GAMBINO: I usually get drunk and fuck with mad bitches, chill with my niggas in the hood. You know, just regular shit, smoke mad herb, chill out.

TY NITTY: Me, I like chillin with the kids, smoking my bud and just chillin out and doing the things I like to do.

G.O.D. FATHER PT3: I like cooking, legal or illegal (laughs).

RIOTSOUND.COM: Last question, how do you feel about New York City Hip-Hop radio in its present state?

TY NITTY: It sucks, I’ma blow that shit up. They need to get they shit together. It’s all a money issue, they want money for every little thing, and we ain’t got it, we independent. I do feel though our music could be in rotation right now.

RIOTSOUND.COM: I definitely think it should be. It’s unfortunate how things have changed in recent years.

TY NITTY: Yea, that’s why basically we don’t even aim for the radio or the video or TV, we just put our music out and people respond to it. It travels through word of mouth and word of mouth will always work better than anything else.

RIOTSOUND.COM: Anything else you wanna tell the fans?

TY NITTY: Just want to remind all the fans that our new album Blood Thicker Than Water is dropping April 20th. That also includes the DVD with nine exclusive videos and also interviews with Ron Artest, Prodigy, Havoc, Alchemist plus we got all the young up and coming kids in the hood rhyming on there; so it’s definitely gonna be hot.

RIOTSOUND.COM: Most definitely. Everyone should be checking for that!