The hard-partying, harder-working Slaine has never been more exhausted than he was this Monday. It's no wonder; he'd been draining booze and hibernating in his Brockton lab for 17 straight days and nights recording his new The Devil Never Dies mixtape.
Slaine's looked weathered in the past. But in the wake of this most recent marathon session, his eyes were glassier than than they were on the tail end of his two-month tour with Tech N9ne, and after he completed months of filming for his roles in “Gone Baby Gone” and “The Town.”
“Wouldn't it be funny,” he said, “if I was playing you The Devil Never Dies, and I died right in front of you from the hell I put myself through recording this fucking thing.”
By now, Slaine was supposed to be relaxing. His three-years-in-the-making project, A World With No Skies, was completed weeks before he walked the Fenway Park red carpet with Ben Affleck, and had been slated to drop this Tuesday. Other than giving interviews, Slaine's immediate plan was to hang with family before heading back on tour.
But plans changed when his imprint tried to clear samples for A World With No Skies. For the most part, independent hip-hop artists release music, and then handle lawsuits as they come. And that's the problem; while Slaine's subterranean savagery is hardly commercial, his exposure leaves him with the same clearance issues that only major label artists typically address up front.
With A World With No Skies in limbo – he says the project should drop early next year – Slaine remained determined to release something this week, and decided to compose an (almost completely) original spread with the quickness. All he needed was some help.
In addition to rookie producer-engineer Silvamore, who drove to Brockton for a midnight interview just minutes after Slaine solicited assistance on Facebook, both Amadeus and Jaysaun stabbed three tracks apiece, while Hartford MC Blacastan smashed two. Other Boston cats including Chilla Jones and Esoteric swung through, with local comers Falside and C-Lance joining beat bosses like Stoupe and Statik to rock backdrops. All that plus a heavy cut with Termanology that was recorded two years ago but shelved (more on that here).
In the end, Slaine and friends yielded a mixtape that's both impressive and immediate. His current situation bleeds across the track list – from relationship to label problems – while Slaine rides his roller-coaster stream-of-consciousness the whole way through. The Devil Never Dies is far from an afterthought; it's a tough and focused portrait of a no-holds-barred MC wrestling with the proverbial next level.
“115 hours a week for two weeks straight in the studio to do this record,” slurs Slaine in his outro. “I ain't gonna let you forget about me tomorrow. I went in this fucking studio, and I made this record because I felt like I had to scream on people...The Devil Never Dies is not The White Man is the Devil volume three. You know what is? A World With No Skies."
DOWNLOAD The Devil Never Dies HERE