Tech N9ne’s verse on the song “Kill Shit” from Krizz Kaliko’s Kickin’ & Screamin’ has been called one of the best of his illustrious career of intricate rhyme schemes, passionate delivery and sheer originality. Despite this, you won’t hear Tech N9ne tell you that he had the best verse on the track. In fact, he had a hard time sitting down to even write it in the first place.
We talked to Tech N9ne to get his perspective on one of the hottest tracks of 2012.
One verse that sticks out is your verse for “Kill Shit”. Krizz said that it took you awhile to write that and that he thought you were hiding. Was that the case?
Totally. I didn’t want to write it. I didn’t want to have to write after Twista. Twista’s a murderer so I ran from the track for a week. I really don’t like rapping fast because it’s so hard to write but it’s one of my specialties. It was another reason I was running but once I sat down and did it, it came out superb. I think Twista killed everything on it. Everybody’s talking about how much they love my verse. I love it and I love how they love it but they really need to listen to Twista. That boy did something amazing. Yeah I didn’t want to write it and everyone came out beautiful.
Why do you think Twista’s verse is better than the rest?
Oh my God! He’s like the best at it. He’s Twista. His verse is just so intricate. It’s just quadruple timing. The tricks that he’s doing in there, you just have to pay attention to his words and what he’s saying in there – so wonderful. Tech N9ne is treacherous. I think it turned out really wonderful but I’m a Twista fan so I give it to Twista all day. People say “Tech your verse it just all over the place.” It is! My flow is schizophrenic. That’s what sets me apart from everybody. It changes us like every four bars and that’s why I think everybody loves the verse.
You have that part where you think you’re going to slow it down but then you throw in that really fast stuff in the middle of the lines.
“Don’t be stupid…” (Raps the part) That’s like really showing off right there. I had to! I think that’s what you call quadruple time. Like a drum fill (drum noises). Like Travis Barker.
So you’re saying from a rapper’s-rapper standpoint you think Twista killed it.
Oh yeah by far. I know people will be like “What?” The boy is a murderer and he showed it on that. I don’t see how people could listen to it and not know that it’s just murdering. Maybe they do know. I don’t know. But everytime I look on Twitter people are like Tech N9ne killed it on “Kill Shit” and I’m like “Yeah, I love that.” But come on man, look at the nigga before me, look at the nigga before that! Krizz Kaliko ain’t no slouch! I’m flattered they want to put me after Twista. That whole week I had to write the one with Twista and I had to do one for a guy out in Cali named Mr. Smith and I had to go after Busta. I didn’t like that week! Those two guys you don’t want to go after, and I did. It makes me feel good that I can even stand a chance up to these cats. These are elite emcees. Don’t get me wrong, I’m an elite emcee myself and I guess these songs really show it. The one I did with Mr. Smith is called “Energy”. It ain’t came out yet but oh my God. You think “Kill Shit” is murdering…oh my goodness.
People wonder “How is Tech getting better?” Is there a pressure to keep one upping yourself or does it come on its own?
I’m glad it happens on its own but being Technician Number One, you have to bring it all the time. People are going to talk. I am Technician number one and Technician is person who loves the technical style of rhyme so therefore mine has to be intricate. (Spits “Badlands” verse) Everything is schizophrenic. I’m Technician Number One so thank God it comes natural but it’s hard as hell to write and be Technician Number One. It’s hard as hell every night on that stage to stay on beat and do all the Choppers, “Red Nose”, “Beautiful Music”, that’s the scariest part of my show every night. I’m a little more relaxed on “He’s A Mental Giant” but that’s scary too. You gotta do that every night on beat and all the words gotta match up. It’s hard as hell to be Technician Number One but that’s why I am Technician Number One.
Do you feel like an acrobat of sorts when you’re up there?
I’m a hell of an acrobat. I be dancing around on niggas. When you hear that one on Mr. Smith’s album, “Energy” with Busta. Oh my God. I’m tap dancing. I’m Fred Astaire homie. It’s like I am getting better the older I get. It just keeps getting better. It’s such a blessing. I’m listening to my verse on Stevie Stone’s “808 Bendin” just laughing man like “Wow!” It’s the old Tech coming back but it’s still new and even more schizophrenic.
Maybe the reason that a lot of artists don’t get better is that they get comfortable after they attain monetary success. That doesn’t seem to happen with you. Do you think you’ll ever be comfortable? It seems that the art is always way more important than the benefits you get from it.
I’ll never be comfortable knowing that there are niggas out there, murderers like Eminem, murderers like Twista, murderers like Busta, murderers like Crooked I, murderers like Royce Da 5′ 9, anybody in Slaughterhouse. Murderers out there: Chino XL, murderers…Pharoahe Monche. There’s a lot of murderers out there. Talib Kweli is a murderer. I will never be comfortable. I’ll always have to be Technician Number One and the guy who shows out. It’s like “Look what I can do!” (raps backwards). Ever since I started my stepfather was like “What do you have that’s different from everybody else? You ain’t nothing special.” So I had to be something special, and that’s what I am. Thank God. I don’t give a damn if KC Tea comes out in stores and Caribou Lou comes out in stores. I’ll always be on my craft and figuring out how I can take it to the next level because we’re trying to better this thing we call hip hop. I will never be the one to slouch, you feel me? Even though fans be talking that shit like “Tech was better back then!” Bulllll-shit. They’re just talking about how my pain was more on Anghellic, how my pain was more on K.O.D. That’s what they’re talking about. If they’re talking about technique – fuck no. If you listen to “Unfair” and compare it to “Industry Is Punks”…c’mon dog. The technique is way more polished. I listen. I pay attention to music. I know it’s getting better. If you listen to my chopper stuff back then and you hear how I chopped on Lil Wayne’s album and how it’s so schizophrenic and so crispy – you know what I mean? It’s like it’s getting better and better, technique-wise.
Someone on Twitter said the other day “It seems like Tech’s always dope on other people’s features. He’s only dope on other features.” I said “are you fucking crazy? I have you heard ‘Worldwide Choppers’? Have you heard ‘He’s A Mental Giant’? Have you heard ‘Beautiful Music’?” And my fans just started chiming in: “Have you heard ‘Can’t Stand Me’? Have you heard anything? Have you heard ‘Klusterfuk’?” It’s just getting better and better and I so love what it’s turned into. My darkness is always going to be there. I was trying to run from it on The Gates Mixed Plate. It’s always going to be there. But the reason my fans don’t always agree is that I do more than one thing. I’m three-dimensional. They’re going to disagree: “I like the older stuff better, when he did ‘Suicide Letters’.” “I like when he does ‘Can’t Shake It’“. To be Technician Number One has just turned into a monster. I love it.
– Interview Conducted By Jeff Nelson, Senior Blog Editor @JeffreyPNelson
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