Majik Ninja Entertainment – “Songs of Samhain 3: Cult of Night” review

This is a brand new showcase compilation from Detroit underground label Majik Ninja Entertainment. Founded in 2014 by Twiztid & their manager George Vlahakis only 2 years following the demented duo’s departure from Psychopathic Records, they quickly built an empire of their own from bringing a few other PSY alumni along for the ride to help introduce G-Mo Skee & Alla Xul Elu to a much wider audience. The label’s first showcase comp Year of the Sword is easily the best one they’ve put out so far given the strength of the roster at the time as solid as Songs of Samhain, the Attack of the Ninjas compilation & Songs of Samhain 2: Haunted Record Player all were. But ahead of the 18th annual Fright Fest a month from now, MNE’s warming everyone up in the form of Songs of Samhain 3: Cult of Night.

After the “Moon Glow is Upon Us” intro, the first song “Gospel” by the demented duo themselves Twiztid kicks off the comp by rapping about bringing you back to life over some rap rock production whereas “10-31” by Oh! The Horror & Twiztid is a creepy trap ballad paying tribute to the titular day. “Terrified No Fear” by Venomous 5 finds the quintent spitting the wicked shit over some a boom bap instrumental just before “My Head” by Triple Threat has a more upbeat sound to it talking about what’s inside the heads of I.S.I..

Meanwhile on “Curse of the Jack-O-Lantern” we have Boondox & the House of Krazees linking up over a dusty beat reminding everyone that nobody’s safe when the sun goes down leading into “Unclear” by Oh! The Horror & Twiztid following the “Nursery Rhyme from a Luminescent Time” skit for a trap rock ballad about being broken mentally. “P3.1” by the Axe Murder Boyz, Bukshot, Cody Manson, Insane E & Jamie Madrox sees the sexiest ruggedly confesses the things that they’ve been told that’ve fucked with their heads, but then “Parasite Paradise” by Venomous 5 works in a macabre trap instrumental talking about hating everything.

The song “Unreal” by Boondox & Triple Threat finds the quartet over a rubbery trap beat describing the way they’re feeling as such while the penultimate track “Mother Witch” by the House of Krazees having a more cinematic vibe to the production talking about a poltergeist. The closer “Soggy Pumpkin” is basically a melodic Jamie solo cut getting on his emo shit pretty much.

Of the 3 installments of the Songs of Samhain trilogy, I think Cult of Night has to be my favorite one thus far. I like how they minimized the amount of affiliates featured on here so the whole roster can make one another stand out in their own way providing the soundtrack to a juggalo’s Halloween.

Score: 3.5/5

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Twiztid – “Nickel Bag” review

Twiztid is a hip hop duo from Detroit, Michigan consisting of Jamie Madrox & Monoxide, both of whom originally started out as part of the House of Krazees alongside childhood friend The R.O.C. in 1992 before their initial disbandment 5 years later. Almost immediately after, the Insane Clown Posse took Jamie & Mono under their wings by signing them to Psychopathic Records as the demented duo they’re known as today. They would become the label’s 2nd biggest act being their mentors off projects like Mostasteless, Freek Show, Mirror Mirror, The Green Book, W.I.C.K.E.D. (Wish I Could Kill Every Day) & Abominationz. Shortly after the latter was released, Twiztid left Psychopathic to form Majik Ninja Entertainment in 2014. Since then they’ve released 6 albums & 6 EPs on their own label, my favorite of which being Revelashen. But with the 5th annual Astronomicon going down this weekend, they’re celebrating by dropping their 14th EP limited to only 420 copies.

After the melodic yet chilled out “Smoke” intro which only has Jamie on it, the first song “High Life” starts off the EP with a fun little ode to that good kush whereas the “Hydro” remix is alright even though the main version with Layzie Bone is a highlight off The Green Book & hearing it without the latter’s verse feels kinda weird to me personally. “The Clouds Outside” goes into hazier territory talking about being higher than such & as for the remix of “Come On Let’s Get High” off of The Continuous Evilutions of Life’s ?’s, I actually prefer it over the original. Especially with the horns throughout.

Even though it’s only an intro with 2 new songs & 2 remixes, I still look at Nickel Bag as an acceptable way to hold everyone over until the Unlikely Prescription follow-up produced entirely by Zeuss & their “straight up wicked” album. I can do without the “Hydro” remix but other than that, Twiztid & Fritz reunite to deliver something fresh for all the smokers out there.

Score: 3.5/5

Twiztid – “Untitled” review

This is the 13th EP from Detroit duo Twiztid. Consisting of Jamie Madrox & Monoxide, the pair originally started out as part of the House of Krazees alongside childhood friend The R.O.C. in 1992 before their initial disbandment 5 years later. Almost immediately after, the Insane Clown Posse took Jamie & Mono under their wings by signing them to Psychopathic Records as the demented duo they’re known as today. They would become the label’s 2nd biggest act being their mentors off projects like Mostasteless, Freek Show, Mirror Mirror, The Green Book, W.I.C.K.E.D. (Wish I Could Kill Every Day) & Abominationz. Shortly after the latter was released, Twiztid left Psychopathic to form Majik Ninja Entertainment in 2014. Since then they’ve released 6 albums, with my favorites being The Darkness at the top of 2015 & then Revelashen which just celebrated it’s 1-year anniversary recently. But after going into rock territory on Unlikely Prescription at the beginning of the fall, Twiztid gave fans a little treat to those who placed an order of $75 or more this Black Friday.

“The Hell That We Been Through” is an impressive opener from Triple Threat energetically encouraging their Day 1’s to stick together with them while the song “Sugar” goes into a bleaker direction talking about how they’re not fine mentally which they always do well with at subjects like that. The penultimate track “Real Clique” is a ghoulish trap banger taking shots at their opposition which is dope if you’re into battle raps & “On the Grind” finishes the EP off with Triple Threat reuniting on top of a misty instrumental flexing their hustle.

Although the mixed reception of Unlikely Prescription was a given & even I myself was 50/50 on it (that’s coming from a place of love too), I came away from this untitled EP enjoying it as much as I did Electric Lettuce back in the spring. They pick up where Revelashen left off in the sense that they demonstrate how talented they are as MCs & returning to a more hardcore hip hop sound, proving that they haven’t forgotten about their core fanbase.

Score: 3.5/5

Majik Ninja Entertainment – “Songs of Samhain 2: Haunted Record Player” review

Majik Ninja Entertainment is a Detroit based independent record label founded by Twiztid & their manager George Vlahakis in 2014, only 2 years after the demented duo’s departure from Psychopathic Records. However, they quickly built an empire or their own from bringing a few other PSY alumni along for the ride to help introduce G-Mo Skee & Alla Xul Elu to a much wider audience. The label’s first showcase comp Year of the Sword is easily the best one they’ve put out so far given the strength of the roster at the time, but that’s not to say Songs of Samhain wasn’t a respectable Halloween-themed EP. They just dropped an exclusive label comp at this year’s Attack of the Ninjas couple months ago & now with Halloween approaching this weekend, the crew is back together for a sequel to Songs of Samhain.

After the “I Shall Arrive” intro, the first song “Needle on the Record” by Twiztid is a demented boom bap opener about the haunted record player possessing their souls when they turn it on whereas “Go Out” by Blaze Ya Dead Homie, Boondox, Gibby Stites & Jamie Madrox takes a turn into rap rock territory spitting that hardcore shit. “Haunted Thoughts” by the House of Krazees heinously spills out the fucked up shit in their minds just before Blaze, Boondox & Jamie reunite for the slow yet victorious ballad “Sing It”.

Meanwhile on “Heavier Every Time”, we have the Venomous 5 reforming over an unsettling trap beat about how the world will never understand them leading right into the “Nursery Rhyme from a Different Time” interlude. The song “Paint the Town Red” sees HOK keeping it in trap turf getting murderous while the penultimate track “Halloween Treat” by Twiztid & Oh! The Horror is a rap rock cut displaying some goth romance poetry. The album ends with “Quarantine”, where V5 plead to be saved from the disease of living over some pianos & dusty drums.

Compared to the first Songs of Samhain & even the Attack of the Ninjas album, Songs of Samhain 2: Haunted Record Player to me is the best label comp MNE has put out since Year of the Sword. It sounds darker & I really admire that it’s a bit more conceptual than the predecessor did.

Score: 3.5/5

Twiztid – “Unlikely Prescription” review

Twiztid is a hip hop duo from Detroit, Michigan consisting of Jamie Madrox & Monoxide, both of whom originally started out as part of the House of Krazees alongside childhood friend The R.O.C. in 1992 before their initial disbandment 5 years later. Almost immediately after, the Insane Clown Posse took Jamie & Mono under their wings by signing them to Psychopathic Records as the demented duo they’re known as today. They would become the label’s 2nd biggest act being their mentors off projects like Mostasteless, Freek Show, Mirror Mirror, The Green Book, W.I.C.K.E.D. (Wish I Could Kill Every Day) & Abominationz. Shortly after the latter was released, Twiztid left Psychopathic to form Majik Ninja Entertainment in 2014. Since then they’ve released 5 albums & 4 EPs on their own label, my favorite of which being Revelashen. But for their 15th full-length right here, Jamie & Mono are making a complete stylistic departure from the horrorcore sound they became known for.

“Corkscrew” is an electronic rock opener produced by A Danger Within talking about breaking down & asking for God to forgive them whereas “Twist & Shatter” gets on some emo shit talking about pulling apart again. “Broken Heart” goes into industrial rock territory with the help of drummer Drayven Davidson addressing an ex, but then “Confused” has a bit of an airy backdrop during the verses as the guitars dominate the majority of it. Lyrically, they’re talking about going from being hated to being famous.

Meanwhile on “Neon Vamp”, we have Cradle of Filth frontman Dani Filth joining Twiztid for a blatantly pure industrial hip hop banger encouraging the listener to go crazy leading into the hard rock banger “Comes with an Apology” talking about dealing with life until they’re gone. “Rose Petal” fuses together industrial music & rap metal going at the throats of judgmental people, but then “Dead Instead” has some killer guitar work despite the verses being mixed low & I appreciate the message of metaphorical walls closing in their minds.

“Parasite” has these infectiously catchy riffs as Jamie & Mono say they’ll never conform whereas the ScatteredBrains-produced “Perfect Problem” has to be my favorite on the album, being a straight up rap rock riot starter declaring themselves as such. “If I Get Things Right” asks to stop with the pretending on top of some killer drums & the hook one of the catchiest on the album, but “More Than a Memory” somberly tells the listener to remember their names in the end.

The song “Envy” is basically a mediocre attempt at a radio rock hit even though I can commend the message about how jealously can be the end of someone while the 7-produced penultimate track “No Change” with Matt Brandyberry sounds like a cheesy entrance theme you’d hear on WWE nowadays. “World of Pretend” ends the album on a victorious note, with Twiztid talking about what it feels like when you’re reeled into such.

These guys have ALWAYS had elements of rock in their music but now that they took on that sound for the length of an entire album, I’m on the fence with it. Half of these joints actually sound really good & the other doesn’t do all that much for me personally. That being said: I am looking forward to the album produced by Zeuss because he did a great job on the mastering, so I have a feeling he’s gonna help refine the style of rock Jamie & Mono wanna go into. Hopefully they give us more shit like “Empty”, “Wrong with Me”, “Alone”, “Darkness” & “Familiar”.

Score: 2.5/5

Majik Ninja Entertainment – “Attack of the Ninjas: The Album” review

This is a brand new showcase compilation from Detroit underground label Majik Ninja Entertainment. Founded in 2014 by Twiztid & their manager George Vlahakis only 2 years following the demented duo’s departure from Psychopathic Records, they quickly built an empire or their own from bringing a few other PSY alumni along for the ride to help introduce G-Mo Skee & Alla Xul Elu to a much wider audience. The label’s first showcase comp Year of the Sword is easily the best one they’ve put out so far given the strength of the roster at the time, but that’s not to say Songs of Samhain wasn’t a respectable Halloween-themed EP. But to celebrate the 5th annual Attack of the Ninjas, everyone on MNE right now & the 2 acts on their Welcome to the Underground sub-label are uniting as one alongside a couple outside collaborators for an exclusive compilation given away at the event.

The opener “Are You Scared?” by Oh! The Horror & Twiztid is a pop punk/rap crossover telling their haters to say their prayers whereas “Each & Every” by Bukshot, Jamie Madrox & Lex the Hex Master finds the trio jumping on top of a west coast instrumental from Fritz the Cat saying they’re broken & don’t feel fine. Buk & Jamie stick around as they enlist Boondox & Mr. Grey to spit the wicked shit on “Horror” down to the Godsynth & Stir Crazy production, but then Gibby Stites & Blaze Ya Dead Homie come in for the atmospheric “Come Up” saying ain’t nobody doing what they’re doing.

“Let ‘Em Burn” by Anybody Killa, the Axe Murder Boyz, Bukshot, Crucifix & Monoxide come together on top of a trap instrumental from 7 to get in their arsonist bag just before the futuristic “Space Between Us” sees Zodiac MPrint reuniting to talk about a toxic relationship. “Kill” by Insane E, Jamie Madrox, Oh! The Horror & Redd goes into a rubbery direction with the help of Grady Finch saying no one’s on their level while “Chin Check” by Bukshot, Gibby Stites, Joey Black, Lee Carver & The R.O.C. encourages the listener to mosh despite the out-of-place forlorn production.

The track “We Are the Underground” by Boondox, Blaze Ya Dead Homie, Gibby Stites & Oh! The Horror needs no further explanation lyrically diving into a trap/metal fusion whereas the final song “Boohoo” by Gibby Stites, Lex the Hex Master & The R.O.C. ends the comp with a boom bap-tinged shot at their detractors even though the hook is a bit tedious. The actual closer though is just a remix to “Maelstrom” off of Cabal’s most recent debut album The Watchers featuring the Super Famous Fun Time Guys & the Venomous 5.

I don’t expect all that much whenever a label puts out a project showcasing their artists & although I enjoyed the last 2 that MNE has put out, I’m a bit torn on this one. Some of the collabs on here come off to me as natural, but then there are others that seem hamfisted & in no way shape or form am I trying to be disrespectful to anyone because I’ve given a good share of positive feedback on the label’s output throughout the years like with Revelashen & Krimson Crow.

Score: 3/5

Eastside Ninjas – “Pact of the 4” review

The Eastside Ninjas are a supergroup from Detroit, Michigan consisting of duos Twiztid & Drive-By. Now this is far from the first time Jamie Madrox & Monoxide have worked with Blaze Ya Dead Homie & Anybody Killa, especially since all 4 of them have known each other since childhood as well as being members of Dark Lotus & the Psychopathic Rydas back when they were all signed to Psychopathic Records as protégés of the Insane Clown Posse. So really, it was only a matter of time before they united as a quartet & put out a full-length debut before Twiztid drops their rock album Unlikely Prescription on September 10.

After the “Assemble” intro, the first song “ESN” opens the album up by getting in their shit-talking bag assisted by a saxophone-heavy instrumental from Young Wicked but then the next track “Outshine” goes into a more triumphant direction as they proclaim that their time has come. The quartet go on to address their haters on the bouncy, electronic-tinged “Like 2 Talk a Bit” whereas the appropriately titled “Highest in the Game” incorporates an alluring vocal sample as they talk about weed.

Meanwhile on “Get the W”, we get a rubbery instrumental as the Eastside Ninjas strive for success & then “All 4-1 1-4 All” brings in some west coast vibes in the production with lyrics about loyalty. The track “Relax Ya Mind” is a synth-laced banger about being relieved of stress while the final song “Reintroduce” is a boom bap/rock infused cut reminding listeners who the fuck they are.

To me, this is what the Triple Threat album should’ve been. I love the diverse range of sounds Young Wicked went for on the production end as well as the way all 4 members continue to bounce off each other just like they did when they all came up together.

Score: 4/5

Twiztid – “Electric Lettuce” review

This is the 12th EP from Detroit duo Twiztid. Consisting of Jamie Madrox & Monoxide, the pair originally started out as part of the House of Krazees alongside childhood friend The R.O.C. in 1992 before their initial disbandment 5 years later. Almost immediately after, the Insane Clown Posse took Jamie & Mono under their wings by signing them to Psychopathic Records as the demented duo they’re known as today. They would become the label’s 2nd biggest act being their mentors off projects like Mostasteless, Freek Show, Mirror Mirror, The Green Book, W.I.C.K.E.D. (Wish I Could Kill Every Day) & Abominationz. Shortly after the latter was released, Twiztid left Psychopathic to form Majik Ninja Entertainment in 2014. Since then they’ve released 5 albums, with my favorites being The Darkness at the top of 2015 & then Revelashen from this past Black Friday. But being big stoners for as long as they’ve been around, Jamie & Mono have decided to drop Electric Lettuce just 3 days after Alla Xul Elu’s new album Necronomichron 2: Dead by Bong.

After the “Safe Place” intro, the first song “We All Float” encourages the listeners to “come down here” with them & the trap instrumental Young Wicked cooks up is totally off the wall. After the “Get Matt Nipps” skit, the following song “Light It Up” goes into a more west coast direction I almost wanna say as they talk about “rollin’ rappers up”. After the “Get Blaze” skit, the song “No Smoke” is a MNE posse cut sans Lex the Hex Master & The R.O.C. threatening their opposition with a piano-instrumental from 7 that really helps kick up the grimy tone of it.

The track “High ‘Til I Die” goes back into that trap direction as they talk about always being lifted & Lee Carver just shows why he’s my favorite Alla Xul Elu member. Especially when he said “Breaking up weed on the case of The Green Book”. I’m kinda disappointed that “Right Here Ninja” makes no reference or homage to “Here I Am” off of Blaze’s classic debut 1 Less G n da Hood, but the futuristic sound is fresh. “Feeling Stuck” is a great way to finish the EP, as it’s a guitar-trap driven cut about how COVID has effected everyone.

Despite my expectations not being super high given that this is a holiday-themed EP, I actually like it more than that short Songs of Samhain compilation that MNE put out this past fall. It continues to stray away from the wicked shit in favor of a more traditional hip hop vibe much like Revelashen, except most of the songs are weed-related.

Score: 3.5/5

Twiztid – “Revelashen” review

Twiztid is a hip hop duo from Detroit, Michigan consisting of Jamie Madrox & Monoxide, both of whom got their start alongside The R.O.C. as part of the trio House of Krazees throughout the early/mid 90’s. After their initial disbandment in 1997, the Insane Clown Posse almost immediately took Twiztid under their wings & signed them Psychopathic Records. But at the end of 2012, the demented duo decided to branch out on their own & started up their own record label Majik Ninja Entertainment just a couple years after. They’ve released a few outings on their own since, with the latest being Mad Season back in April of this year. However, Jamie & Monoxide have decided to go back-to-back & drop their 14th full-length album.

The album starts off with “Hallelujah”, where Twiztid talks about the game being fake over over bass-heavy trap beat from Young Wicked. The next song “Blueprint” talks about going back to their old ways over an ominous instrumental from Seven while the track “We Just Wanna Be Heard” literally speaks for itself over an apocalyptic beat. The song “Get Through the Day” talks about wanting their pain to be taken away over a ScatteredBrains instrumental with a flute in the background & a heavy guitar during the hook while the track “Come Alive” with Kid Bookie sees the 3 talking about living every day like they don’t see the sunlight over a trap beat with blobby bass.

The song “Clear” takes aim at those biting them over an instrumental with a pots & pans loop while the song “Hold Up” with Young Wicked finds the trio talking about pushing it ‘til the wheels fall off over a tropical trap beat. The song “Separate” would have to be my favorite on the entire album as it talks about escapism over an instrumental that continues to build up while the track “Twinz” gets on their shit-talking tip over a boom bap beat with some chimes.

The song “Laughable” with Lex the Hex Master sees the 3 talking about how “one of us has to go & no it won’t be me” over an instrumental with some angelic background vocals while the penultimate track “Change Me” talks about striving to become the person you want to be over an acoustic instrumental. The closer “Never Be Nothing” talks about being misunderstood over a trap beat with some somber piano chords.

Not only is this better than Mad Season, but I’ll also say that this is Twiztid’s best album post-Psychopathic. It all flows together so well as they distance themselves from their horrorcore roots in favor of showing listeners they still have it lyrically this deep into their career & the production only enhances the emotion behind each joint.

Score: 4/5

Majik Ninja Entertainment – “Songs of Samhain” review

This is the new surprise EP from Detroit hip hop label Majik Ninja Entertainment. Founded by Twiztid in 2014, they’ve proven themselves as a force to be reckoned with in the underground with an all-star lineup of artists & a consistent work ethic. They dropped a fantastic showcase compilation in 2017 called Year of the Sword but almost 3 years later, the label’s coming together once more on Songs of Samhain.

After the “We Only Have So Much Time” intro, the first song “Wash” by the House of Krazees talk about murder over a somewhat quirky beat while the track “9lb. Hammer” by Twiztid is a full-blown rap rock moshpit starter. The song ” Murder Carnage” by Blaze Ya Dead Homie, Boondox & Lex the Hex Master sees the 3 getting violent over a rubbery beat from Godsynth & Stir Crazy but after the “Nursery Rhyme from Another Time” interlude, the track “Die on Samhain” by Alla Xul Elu & the Axe Murder Boyz portrays themselves as serial killers over a nocturnal instrumental.

The track “Death Talk” by the House of Krazees talks about being lunatics over a rock-tinged beat while the song “Haddonfield 2 Crystal Lake” by Twiztid compares themselves to Michael Myers & Jason Voorhees over a somewhat funky beat. The EP finishes with “In My Head”, where Twiztid contemplate about whether or not they’re insane over a spooky instrumental.

Overall, this is a short but sweet surprise effort from one of my favorite hip hop labels in recent memory. All the artists stand out in their own unique way & given everyone’s history in the horrorcore subgenre, they all come together with a consistent batch of songs just in time for the Halloween season.

Score: 3.5/5