When I Say Slaughter, Y’all Say House…


From the very beginnings of rap we have loved the groups that have graced the microphone. Do you remember that scene in ‘Wild Style’ when the Cold Crush Brothers battled the Fantastic Five on the basketball court. The group is the essence of Hip-Hop. Several emcees all rhyming over the same beat trying to find ways to verbally outdo the person who held the microphone before them. As each rapper steps in the cipher the lyrics become more acute and the flows pick up their intensity. This is that REAL rap shit.

And this is why the SlaughterHouse collective wins time and time again. They are practicing the very foundation of rap music. I’m just amazed that these four emcees can unify themselves in a culture that is notoriously selfish and ego driven. You haven’t seen this many good spitters together on the same page since the mythical 4 Horsemen but they had too many difficulties in producing music. There was an early union between Jay-Z, Ja Rule and DMX that fizzled away because these three were too full of themselves and too crazy (in DMX’s case).

slaughterhouse slaughterhouse

Joe Budden, who might be the most hated rapper in the game right now, told me that the origin of SlaughterHouse was simply the ability of he and Royce Da’ 5-9 to squash a simmering feud between the two of them. That is the first and hardest principle in forming the group. Can you imagine what it must be like to ask a rapper to put aside their ego? Rappers need their ego, especially in this day and age, when so many people have become art critiques instead of fans. The rapper’s ego protects them from the comment threads that tell them they suck. So to put down your armor is actually more hardbody than to keep it on. You are vulnerable to attack, but somehow you are now stronger than you were before.

SlaughterHouse bugs me the fuck out because not one of these emcees even shares the same homestate. This means that they will each have their own definitive state of mind. In the short time I have been around them I can sense they have this incredible respect for one another like a band of brothers. They will fight amongst one another, but will instantly flip on anyone who tries to come at one of their brothers. When emcees assume that ‘Ride Or Die’ mentality with their teammates no one holds back any energy or material. They spur each other to leave everything in the booth.

slaughterhouse slaughterhouse

This is why I was scared at first for SlaughterHouse because each of these artists is an individually minded person who has survived in the music industry for at least ten years. All of these dudes came into the business in their late teens and have been thrashed about by label politricks, artist backbiting and the constant fuckery that is the music industrial complex. They are all survivors in one way or another, and the SlaughterHouse collective is their best last chance to tel all the haters and the nay-sayers to go kill themselves.

That theme was evident in the track ‘Move On’ where each of the emcees recounted their angst and the solution they had for dealing with those issues. ‘Move On’ was an epic song for me because I envisioned myself in that same position several years back writing for a magazine that wasn’t paying me shit. I wanted the exposure, and the publisher knew that much, so I traded my labor for that means to an end. We all make those similar decisions in our lives, but instead of living with regret or remorse we shoukd just move on. With that track SlaughterHouse doesn’t just make good music, they made real life music.

slaughterhouse slaughterhouse

SlaughterHouse and Koch, er, E-1 Records invited me to listen to a preview of their upcoming album. Along with some of the people that you have come to see on the internets as the folks that bring info to you live and non-stop. Eskay was in the building so you know that shit is big. Nah’Right Dre came up from his mom’s basement too. Oh shit! I just realized that n8tion had the bridge to starship Enterprise all to himself. Niiiice. Global Grind’s BlogXilla came through and reminded me that we have politicked previously. I am gonna stop puffing because I can’t remember a damn thing. The dudes from ItsThe Real, Eric and Jeff, also showed up. I didn’t see Hoffa from OnSmash but I left the session at 3am and that is usually when Hof appears.

The tracks they played for us were all good and their intensity picked up with the replays. Everything you thought they would be doing on the mic like Crooked spitting his crack verses, Joell Ortiz bringing his energy, Royce providing the structural stability to songs and Budden throwing lyrical shots at your favorite rapper is all in there. SlaughterHouse only previewed seven(7) tracks to us and then we got a cameo from the legendary super-producer Showbiz who brought some HEAT! I’m gonna say this shit right here so it goes on the record. The best music from Dr. Dre comes from when he is digging in the crates.

slaughterhouse slaughterhouse

One of the criticisms that has dogged SlaughterHouse would be their ability to craft songs. I still don’t understand where this comes from though. Maybe it is the perception from fans that these emcees are only freestyle caliber rappers. That is far from the truth though. On the tracks that SlaughterHouse previewed they all showed that they have some incredible range as far as content and concepts. Wait until you hear this track called ‘Cuckoo’. There was also this emo rap joint that I want to say was called ‘Rain Tears’ or some shit like that. When SlaughterHouse pours out their heart like they did with ‘Move On’ you can’t help but be riveted to the music. These emcees are all fans of Hip-Hop before anything else. Don’t get it twisted by wheat you may have heard. If there was a RAP SAT these dudes would be in the top 5 percentile.

If you weren’t fuxing with the SlaughterHouse collective after the joints they have already released then you aren’t a fan of Hip-Hop. You might listen to rap, but you aren’t a fan of Hip-Hop music. Rap groups are the essence of Hip-Hop culture. Just like writer and breaker crews. The fact that SlaughterHouse finds themselves unified from points all over the counter is some Black superhero shit.

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  • $ykotic

    Good looking DP. You been doing it big since you came back.

    This album is a definitive must cop.

    • Pierzy

      I can’t get enough of these dudes [no rainbow]. DP, I’m glad you keep Slaughterhouse at the forefront…they’re what this whole thing is supposed to be about.

      What’s new, $yk?

      • $ykotic

        I was gonna “Pierzy” but I actually read the post. Them Commission powers!

        • JCITYHUSTLA617

          I’m gonna say this shit right here so it goes on the record. The best music from Dr. Dre comes from when he is digging in the crates.


  • General

    Slaughter House’s CD is the most anticipated joint of the year for me…

    Every track I have heard from them has been ridiculous and has me hittin rewind to hear some of those verses over and over…

  • Dallas Penn

    Good looking $yk, I’m just a lucky dude to be around so many people that inspire me.

    General, trust me that SlaughterHouse mission statement is to MAKE you wanna press rewind button.

    This album is going to be a huge statement that a lot of people are going to follow up on.

    • Pierzy

      And co-sign on “Move On” – that shit is over 5 minutes long and it’s amazing.

      • Jamal7Mile

        5 minutes? Nah, the one that I listen to (@YouTube) is over 8 mins, comes w/a video and is smokin’, Pierzy! Check the YouTube version that’s posted by Koch Records. DOPE!!

      • Pierzy

        What up Jamal? Word? I didn’t see that. I’m going to go look for that right now. Good looks!

  • Azhar

    Can’t wait for this joint to drop, Joell been nice to me since bodega chronicles, can’t front i’m not a big fan of the rest of the group but i can’t wait to hear them as a collective unit.. the joints i’ve heard thus far been fire…. roll up!

  • Chris Cash

    Lookin forward to the album, but I hope it does there individual followings some good as well.

  • http://tonygrands.blogspot.com Tony Grand$

    I haven’t really been fucking with Ortiz & Budden until recently, but Crook & Royce, @ least 10 yrs.

    When those two cats decide to give you some emotion, the shit is powerful.

    (To me) They represent the notion that hip hop doesn’t have to be this segregated, feud-filled bloodspot, as if every dude rapping is competing for the same fans’ attention. Unity & brotherhood can & does exist, manifested right here.

    This here goes beyond any songs. This can be the re-introduction to the hip hop culture that has become so one-sided & bitchmade.

    Your on fire this week, DP [||].

  • og bobby j

    slaughterhouse is that shit…bottomline

    Fuck a yeezy, jeezy or weezy…

    Tell me why Joell is murkin every track….

    “you’ll be making up stories the little kids is buyin/ i do everything my pen state like a nittny lion”

  • http://-- gaddic

    I’m a fan of Royce and it was a smart move to link up with these cats although I feel joe budden’s a arrogant prick. Sure he can spit but dude’s is really gettin on my nerves with these recent methodman/Wu tang comments.
    Joell and crooked are both dope respectable cats and with them and royce combining together this album should be fire!!!
    Slaughter the rap game niggas!

  • Lowedwn

    man SlaughterHouse is the main reason I got actual seats to Rock The Bells this year, otherwise it woulda been lawn status, but I get the feeling that them on this tour with this festival will be something very major.

  • oskamadison

    Random thoughts:

    I just copped AZ last week… So far, it’s good but not as good as Undeniable… Slaughterhose is coming…Damn, I’m broke…Wonder what the kids got in their piggy banks (no Curtis)…Damn, Z, I’ll have to trade you in…Blaq Poet’s comin’ too on the 30th…a whole album of Premo beats?…I wonder what’s for dinner…the Lakers will sweep the Magic…Hip-Hop can be a beautiful thing when untampered with…

  • SH09

    greate article.
    i love slaughterhouse. these 4 dudes are incredibly
    i cant wait for the album and will be copping multiple copies
    these dudes deserve it.

  • Moving Sideways

    Rock The Bells in Chicago has M.O.P. and SlaughterHouse on stage on the same night.


  • http://myspace.com/noahjones noah jones

    the craziest part of it all was i was in a listening session with crooked i after he and i recorded our track called “the pugilist” over a week ago and we heard all 13 or 14 tracks…and they were all nuts..they have a joint called “cut you loose” which is crazy….and a joint the former aftermath producer “focus” produced which is insane!!!!
    slaughterhouse is by far my favorite group of emcees…by far…if your interested in hearing my tracks with glasses malone, knocturnal, jay rock and coming soon “the pugilist” featuring crooked i go to http://www.myspace.com/noahjones

    noah jones

  • http://www.Myspace.com/Lyrik07 L-Y, NawfWestSide

    P.E.A.C.E. – My niggaz from the Chi, whuddup? Screwston, Texas in here – All i have to say iz, when SlaughterHouse dropz, we gon cop, pbp. Yea, Joe Beezy sometimez fliez off the deep end, but overaLL, i fuccz wit duke – wtF iz a pause? – Good Read D.P. – one-hunneRd – FrontLine, nucca. http://www.YouTube.com/4ThaLuvTube

  • DazzOne

    Tell me they got a track, no chorus, verses back to back on some ‘Triumph’ stezz…

    First album I know I’ll cop in 2009.

    • Jamal7Mile

      The “Move On” joint gotta non-intrusive, enjoyable, related and relaxing chorus. You won’t (or shouldn’t) be disappointed.

      It’s different from “Triumph” but just as cohesive.

      YouTube it, Dazz! You’ll like it!

  • DV8

    cant wait for this shit

  • http://www.myspace.com/taitenelson TNTV

    Best post on XXL EVAR! This should be in the mag.


  • latino heat

    co-sign Lowedwn. sitting on that lawn for 8 hours ain’t the business. i got me some good ass seats to RTB’s this year! never seen any of the Slaughter House dudes or M.O.P. live before. them and Busta are the main reasons i’m going. Busta is always the shit live.
    good looking out Oskamadison, i didn’t know Blaq Poet was coming out on the 30th. Screwball used to be my shit!

  • Knotez

    SLAUGHTER HOUSE for the April Cover..

    Who Agrees wit Me?? we should start a Petetion..

    Slaughter house for the April Cover!!!


    this joint going be epic because i know they will not release no weak shit. Slaughter House yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

  • http://www.myspace.com/emcdlthemusicprofile EmCDL

    Damn ya’ll already got ya’ll tickets for RTB? Are thy just selling in your city or are they available for sale anywhere? I got until August till they come out here to Cali and I DEFINITELY want to see them cats!

    • latino heat

      @ EmCDL
      what part of Cali are you from homie? i’m from the Bay Area. i don’t know if there on sale to the public yet, but my girl bought ours about a month ago as part of a pre-sale.

  • Zulu1925

    ‘The group is the essence of Hip-Hop. Several emcees all rhyming over the same beat trying to find ways to verbally outdo the person who held the microphone before them. As each rapper steps in the cipher the lyrics become more acute and the flows pick up their intensity. This is that REAL rap shit.’

    - Dallas Penn

    I agree and disagree with this passage. I agree that multiple folks trying to one-up the previous cat on the same beat “is that real RAP shit.” [emphasis mine] But, it is NOT the essence of Hip Hop. The essence of Hip Hop is a DJ stretching and reimagining a break beat for party people to ‘break’ to, with the DJ or his homeboy exhorting the dancers on and letting the crowd know how fly the DJ is and when and where the next party is.

  • Dallas Penn

    If you were really smart, and apparently you aren’t you would understand that Hip-Hop cu;ture is a great big stewpot, filled with emcees, deejays, breakers, graff writers and b-boys(the fans) who ALL make up the mixture with the ingredients they bring.

    I’m sorry that I even have to write this down because you lack the intuit to understand this organically.

    • Zulu1925

      @ Dallas Penn

      Never in the myriad of posts I’ve directed towards you have I ever condescended to insulting you. It’s a shame you continually stoop to that level whenever someone disagrees with you. My intelligence aside – it is a FACT that Hip Hop STARTED with a DJ and his turntables, extending the instrumental ‘breaks’ of electronic, funk, R&B and disco records for folks to get busy on the dancefloor. The MC was a LATER evolution. Therefore, DJing and B-Boying are the ESSENCE of Hip Hop. MCing is an important, though later, facet. Flipping your stew analogy a bit, since I’m from New Orleans: Just as in a gumbo, which may contain shrimp, oysters and crabs – the roux is the essence of the dish. DJing and B-Boying are the roux of Hip Hop. Everything else is seasoning.

  • foolio_iglesias

    Dallas,he,um got you there.Zulu actually broke down his previous breakdown.I hear what YOU’RE saying ,but he’s absolutely right…although to take even HIS point further,I submit that the true SPIRIT of hip hop is spontaneity.The act of putting it down without hint or preview.Running into another b-boy and challenging him/her ON THE SPOT.Battling some dude on the train.So on and so forth.That rarely,if ever happens anymore,that’s why ,at best,we are left buying records..

  • Dallas Penn

    Hmmmm, nah, you still nahright (not Nahright).

    Actually, graff and rapping precede deejaying. Consider the music of Gil Scott-Heron and the Last Poets.

    It wasnt until some writer for the NYTimes (or maybe the Village Voice) likened the music scene he witnessed emerging from the Bronx impoverished into a Be-Bop derivative did we get Hip-Hop.

    Shit was already in effect. People were already putting in work to describe the conditions we lived, loved and learned through. Do your research for real, for real, for really real.

    I respect the deejay but it is only one of five elements that comprise Hip-Hop. Can you name all of the five? I dont think you can.

    • Around and Around

      Agreed, DJ is only one part of the whole. Overall though…stupid fucking debate.

      Common said it started in Chicago on a Tuesday.

  • anutha_level

    yup yup…good drop

  • Joey Montana

    Sluaghterhouse is why Hip-Hop will NEVER die


    Whats good DP!?

  • Joey Montana

    **Slaughterhouse is why Hip-Hop will NEVER die


    Whats good DP!?

  • Zulu1925

    @ Dallas Penn ***3rd Try***

    If you want to consider Gil Scott-Heron and the Last Poets, why not the Beat Generation of the 40’s, 50’s & ‘60’s who mixed poetry with jazz or congas/bongos or go all the way back to West and Central Africa and the griots who preserved history and folklore by weaving it into songs and poems? While we’re at it, we can rope in those cave drawings in France as the origins of Graffiti Writing. C’mon, man! Let’s all agree that the movement and culture we now call Hip Hop started in the Bronx in the early 70’s. With that said, DJing and B-Boying (Break Boying = dancing) were the first elements. MCing was an evolution of DJing and Graffiti Writing was incorporated into the scene. Those are the 4 (FOUR) Elements of Hip Hop. Now, there are some who include Beat Boxing and Fashion as additional elements. Those are debatable, but I can see the validity of the argument.

  • westcoastaggie

    I wish these men all the success in their endeavor and they should be an example of teamwork and joining forces in a common goal. We need more groups in this Rap game. Heck, we have those posse cuts…

    With this in mind, I do not believe they will receive adequate promotion to reach the ears they deserve to reach. If it wasn’t for bloggers like D. Penn or Joe Budden TV, I probably would not have known of Slaughterhouse.

    I also believe that they will not be the main Hip-Hop interest of my generation. Many of my generation and younger (23-under) will be checking for Drake, which isn’t a bad thing since he is a good artist who is focused on perfecting his craft.

  • Remixznflow

    This discussion between Zulu and DPenn is new and interesting….

    However, I cannot agree with one without seeing the points of the other. Lets agree that Hip Hop is a beautiful art form. Why cant it be that simple and move on?

    Slaughterhouse, I hope, will be a commercial success as long as the promotion is done right. I haven’t heard a song yet that i don’t like. All of these brothers are creative and I’ll be getting the album.

  • OG Matt Herbz

    @ ZULU & DP

    Why don’t y’all just take a cue from Slaughterhouse and squash the impending beef?

    I’m looking forward to actually coming out of my pocket for this shit. Does anyone have an idea as to when this ‘ish will be available?

    Release date?

    –OG Matt Herbz–

    • NextLvL

      @ oG Matt Herbz
      it’s supposed to be 7/7/09

      @ DP & Zulu
      This is the closest thing i have seen to debate on any of these sites very refreshing. With that said you better say something about each others mothers or slapping each other on sight. LOL

  • Dallas Penn

    Me and Zulu don’t have any beef. We are discussing this shit we love and I am teaching him about this shit.

    The funny thing about the term Hip-Hop is that it wasn’t given to the culture by the culture. It was ascribed to the culture by someone outside of the movememnt who wanted to liken it to something he had previously experienced.

    This is why so many critics called Hip-Hop a fad. Because it was equated with the jazz outgrowth of be-bop which came up and fizzled out. If you know the history of dub systems in Jamaica you might would understand that the emcee(deejay) and the deejay(selector) go hand in hand to moving the crowd.

    But that would require you to know a lot more than just music. You would need to understand how culture moves. Hip-Hop was NOT invented in the Bronx no more than fire was invented in Uganda.

    • OG Matt Herbz

      The movement of culture probably has a lot to do with dudes trying to find a new way into a girl’s pants. Thing is, niggaz don’t wanna boil shit down.

      Or maybe it moves because something gets hot, then everyone flocks to it…then the originators get peeved that so many gay niggaz have infiltrated so they move it on out. But fuck it, Hip Hop is me, nigga. None o’ y’all tight pants wearing niggaz can spit like me. I’m Herbz, ho.

      And yo, DP, I liked that lil video you pieced together that showcased all the broads strolling down the Ave. That chick that rolled her tongue is wifey-material…no questions asked or needed.

      –OG Matt Herbz–

    • Zulu1925

      @ Dallas Penn

      I concur – no beef, merely a discussion. There is nothing that you have stated in this thread that I have not previously heard, read or experienced. I didn’t want to date myself, but here it goes: I grew up in a family of musicians in New Orleans; the most noteworthy is renowned drummer Jonathan “Sugarfoot” Moffett. I also played drums from as far back as I can remember. I went to F.W. Gregory Jr. High with the future members of Beats by the Pound production team. I went J.S. Clark Sr. High with Mannie Fresh and Mia X. I helped co-host a radio show at WTUL Tulane University focusing on underground Hip Hop in ’89-‘90. I ran an entertainment company in the St Joe/K.C. MO/Overland Park/Lenexa area in ’99 – ’00 called Dominion Entertainment that supplied DJs to clubs or ran specific club nights – if you’re from The Lou, DJ Cub was one of the DJs. We specialized in having the newest N.O. joints first because of my connects in the N.O. music scene. We would cut our radio drops for upcoming events in Tech N9NE’s basement studio. I’m saying all that to say: I LOVE AND LIVE MUSIC!!! When you couple my love for music with my voracious reading appetite you get someone who is both passionate AND well-versed in music history as a whole and Hip Hop specifically. I have already DONE the research!

  • Dallas Penn

    I see one of you rapphags is complaining about my typos.

    Eat shit and die schoolmarm!

  • Zulu1925

    @ Dallas Penn

    My last comment on this subject – Many of the DJs at the beginning of the coalescing of culture that became Hip Hop WERE either from Jamaica or had Jamaican ancestry. Therefore, these men DID have knowledge of the Jamaican soundsystems. However, as with most traditions that migrate away from their place of origin, the Americanized version of these gatherings were slightly different than their Jamaican forerunners: Instead of dub plates, American DJs used the break beats of popular records; And, because this difference required a heightened skill than their Jamaican counterparts, the American DJ became the star of the show, even assuming the duties traditionally ascribed to the Selector (Jamaican rapper).

  • $ykotic

    Ha Ha. Ya’ll know I’ve been following this.

    Keep teaching them. You know they’re reading.

    Penn schooling them, Bol dissing them, Mexx laughing at them.

    Gotta love the XXL team.

  • Dallas Penn

    I’m glad you took ther time to divulge your pedigree to us. Since you are close to my age I will withhold calling you a rap phag, but don’t talk about being from New Orleans and not shouting out my nigga DJ Jimi. That is blasphemy.

    Also, don’t come on my threads with bad info. You obfuscate my lessons to these white that want to learn about this culture. In Jamaica the “deejay” is what we call the emcee, and the “selector” is what we here in America call the deejay.

    Your music history and proximity to Jamaica should have given you that info, but since you ain’t know the difference I advise you to open the world’s most accurate encyclopedia…



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  • Zulu1925

    @ Dallas Penn

    Hahahahahaha!!!! I fucked that Selector up! I was talking to my wife at the time and didn’t pay attention. You’re right about that. But, that nomenclature error aside, I am completely right about everything else I’ve said. BTW, if you know ANYTHING about New Orleans Bounce, you KNOW that T.T. Tucker, not DJ Jimi, was the first one to make ‘Where Dey At’ and if ANYONE is to be shouted out, it’s DJ Jubilee! I’m finished for real, this time!!