Psycho Les: Still Reigning

Fifteen years after “Reign Of The Tec” dropped, The Beatnuts are still hungry. In the four year stretch since their last album Milk Me, Psycho Les put out a couple of low key projects, but the Nuts’ brand of rowdy rhymes have been noticeably absent since 2004. Thankfully the Columbian and Dominican are back in […]

Fifteen years after “Reign Of The Tec” dropped, The Beatnuts are still

hungry. In the four year stretch since their last album Milk Me,

Psycho Les put out a couple of low key projects, but the Nuts’ brand

of rowdy rhymes have been noticeably absent since 2004. Thankfully the

Columbian and Dominican are back in the lab in NYC, rejuvenated after

hitting the stage overseas with D.I.T.C. members, and ready to drop

some new product. found out what’s been good with Psycho

Les and what to expect from the pit-fight producers this summer. Se

acabo. After doing

The Beatnuts for so long, you finally decided to drop solo last year

with Psycho Therapy. What led to that? 

Psycho Les: To tell you the

truth, that album has been around for like five years. It was just a

lot of songs I had just laying around, so I threw it all together and

just slapped it up. It’s not like I planned it like that, they were

just songs I had already. Well I did create like three or four new songs,

but the rest were done. It was all just ideas I had that I didn’t

want to go to waste, so I threw it out there. The Big City

project you did with Problemz and Al Tariq didn’t make much of a national

impact, but I imagine the support and NY and from your existing fan base

was enough to satisfy you guys?


Psycho Les: That right there was me just doing Tariq and Problemz a

favour. They was just doing nothing with themselves and they needed

a deal, so that’s really how they got the deal, if I was involved

in it. So I just did all the tracks and chilled in the studio, let them

do most of the work. I didn’t want to get too busy, if you notice

I was just slapping up a few verses and s**t. I wanted it to be mostly

them so when they hit the road people don’t expect me to be there.

I just created it so they could do whatever, and that would be there

little spaceship to hit the road with. You know, my s**t is Beatnuts

always and that’s what people are waiting for. So what’s

good with you and Ju Ju? I haven’t heard much about you guys recently. 

Psycho Les: Yeah, we’ve been

on the road. We just came back from Japan, we’ve been everywhere.

We were out there with Lord Finesse, Nice and Smooth, Showbiz and AG,

O.C., the whole Diggin In The Crates. I can’t even believe it to this

day. We had Diamond D, but he couldn’t make it cause his passport

expired or some s###. M############ in New York was like “Yo, you

need to bring that s**t to New York!” But you know, motherf***ers

don’t want to pay that money. So you know, if they get that money,

boom, they’ll get that real Hip Hop s###. But for me to watch [D.I.T.C.]

performing was crazy, cause I’m a fan of this Hip Hop s### too. The

club was crazy too, it was like a stadium and that s**t was packed.

Like real s**t, you know? So we were on the road, but now we’re back

home and working on this next album, trying to drop it for this summer. Before we get

into that, I want to talk about some of the work you’ve done. The

best-known tracks you produced were probably on Mos Def’s Black On

Both Sides, but I’m curious what made you start doing solo production

outside Beatnuts? 

Psycho Les: Well we’ve both

always done our own production. We’re both two producers, and we don’t

always produce our own s**t together, you know? It’s not like I live

with him, so I’m running around and whatever and if I bump into Mos

Def and he needs a track I’ma bring it to him. Ju Ju too. You notice

he’s done tracks for Ghostface or whoever, and I’m not involved.

It’s all good. But when it’s Beatnuts, we pick each other’s beats.

He’ll pick from my stash, and I’ll pick from his. That’s what

we’re doing now actually. For this next album, forget it, it’s sounding

crazy already. How long have

you been working on it already? 

Psycho Les: A few weeks now.

We’ve already done a joint with U-God, we’ve got a joint with Keith

Murray, we’re just trying to bring Hip Hop back on some real hard

s**t. Not no happy s**t. Some real hard, crazy s**t. From the new cats

of today, we’re looking forward to working with Cassidy, cause we’re

in touch with his DJ and he’s going to make that happen. And we’ll

bring in some more new cats too, keep it up to date. It’s kind

of a trip that you guys had Akon on a track from The Originators.

That was the first time I’d heard him, and I remember thinking he

had some potential. Was it crazy for you to see him blow up like he


Pyscho Les: Well that’s the

case for all our albums man. If you see every album we ever worked with,

we always worked with the m############ before they blow up. Think about

it. When we did “Off The Books,” nobody knew who the f**k Pun was.

After that, boom, the s**t took off. Same thing with Akon, same thing

with every other joint. It is crazy, but s### just seems to happen that

way. It seems strange

to me that more new and even established artists haven’t reached out

to you over the years for tracks. You and Ju have always come with some

of the best party and club joints out there. 

Psycho Les: Yeah you know everybody

is looking for that other sound, that new sound of today. So, you know. Do you get a

lot of calls for beats? 

Psycho Les: Yeah definitely.

A lot of underground cats are reaching out, so you know I f**k with

them. A lot of unknown motherf***ers, I give them a helping hand. I saw a picture

of you wearing a Joker mask with a G-Unit shirt on your MySpace. Did

that have any significance to it? 

Psycho Les: (Laughs) Naw. That

s**t is funny cause I just happened to be wearing that shirt, and I

was in a toy store looking at all these old school toys. So I put the

mask on and took a picture, and I didn’t notice that I was wearing

that shirt until after. But that made it even more funny to me, so I

just threw that s**t up. So what’s

your schedule like now that you’re back from overseas and preparing

the new album? 

Psycho Les: Now I’m just

focused back in the lab, pulling records out that closet. That old s**t

that I haven’t even heard in a minute, chopping s**t up and just trying

to put something out for summer. Do you guys

still do straight samples? 

Psycho Les: Samples is number

one for us, always. But as far as our sound, it’s going to be crazy.

It’s big, we’re f**king with everything else. Whatever cats is using

nowadays, we’re using all that s**t. It’s like we’re cooking the

food on a new up-to-date oven. We’re taking it back to the grimy

drums and hard samples. No happy music, just ugly faced music. When

you hear that s**t you’re going to make an ugly face like “Yeah.” So what’s

your take on the production scene right now? 

Psycho Les: It’s all happy

and hand-clappy kind of s**t. But that’s what makes me want to keep

doing it. Young motherf***ers out there still want to hear our s**t,

even they’re getting tired of all that s**t playing on the radio. Which joints

to you get the most response to on the road? 

Psycho Les: When we throw “Off

The Books,” the whole place just loses it. But “Watch Out Now,”

“No Escapin This” and “Off The Books,” those joints there. People

just lose it and start fightin’ in the crowd. That’s what I like, that

energy s**t, we’re trying to take it back to that. That jump-up-and-down,

wild-out-and-punch-somebody-in-the-nose-whatever music. Are you guys

going to hit the road again with this new album? 

Psycho Les: Definitely, we’re

gonna go everywhere and promote the s**t out of it. It’s definitely

going to be a better situation than when we had no money. We’ve got

a plan man. The beats are there, everybody’s around us that wants

to work with us and it’s love. So it’s going to be nothing. Everybody’s

hungry and it’s that time again. Beatnuts “Reign Of The Tec”Beatnuts “Off The Books”